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Tuesday, 17 February 1987
Page: 96

Senator MACKLIN(8.18) —I apologise to the Minister for getting emotional about the poisoning of people but I see it as an emotional issue. I was actually asking a question which was relevant to the Bill rather than a discussion of food irradiation as such until I was provoked by Senator Peter Baume's interjections. The question that I actually asked was about the involvement of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation in regard to the importation of cobalt 60 or caesium 137 if they happen to be the ones that we use. Is it necessary for ANSTO to be involved in any way in regard to this as the government arm, as the Minister has said? The information I am seeking is whether the Commonwealth Government has any powers to prevent the development of food irradiation in Australia until such time as the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Environment and Conservation reports. That is the information that I am basically looking for. Is ANSTO the body that will provide the Government with that type of operation?