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Groups sue to cancel Big Island modified crop law

HILO, Hawaii >>  Hawaii County’s law restricting the use of genetically modified crops is the target of a lawsuit filed in federal court.

The Hawaii Tribune-Herald reports Big Island agriculture groups and farmers sued Monday to overturn the law. It’s the second legal challenge for the six-month-old law.

The law bans open-air testing of transgenic plants. It also prohibits most outdoor uses of modified agriculture.

The plaintiffs include organizations representing Big Island nurseries, papaya and banana growers, and cattle ranchers. The lawsuit says a ban on most modified crops puts the county in conflict with federal and state laws.

The lawsuit says the law is not backed evidence that genetically engineered crops are harmful or a danger to the environment.

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