Just when the Greens were doing well, they have to go and open their mouths about GE again, reacting hysterically to a plan by AgResearch to pharm human lactoferrin. Lactoferrin is an anti-microbial agent. It's an important part of the body's defences against bacterial invasion, and found in saliva and tears. It has various medical uses, notably in boosting the immune system, promoting bone growth, and possible reducing the size of some cancerous tumours. Cows produce lactoferrin in their milk, but a slightly different version; AgResearch's plan is to tweak a small herd of cows to produce the human version instead, then extract and purify it.
Jeanette Fitsimons' main issue is the spectre of GE milk entering the food chain, and safety. But as I understand it lactoferrin is extracted from whey protein. This alone means that the public will not be seeing GE milk turn up on their supermarket shelves - but I guess mentioning that fact would reduce Fitzsimons' ability to scaremonger. She's also concerned about the prospect of widespread GE release - but these are animals, not plants, we are talking about. Their movements and breeding can therefore be easily controlled, and AgResearch plans to do so (the intellectual property alone gives them serious reasons for doing this). Finally, there's "safety" - but lactoferrin is an ordinary human protein which we ingest every single time we swallow. The fact that it was made in a cow doesn't change that in the slightest. What matters about chemicals (and that is all lactoferrin is - a chemical) is what they are, not where or how they were made.
So, this use of GE technology isn't going to enter the food chain, isn't going to spread, and doesn't pose any safety risks, so why oppose it? The underlying reason seems to be a fear of spiritual pollution. But as someone born in the twentieth century, that's just not something I can take seriously.