Hertfordshire scientists have written to anti-GM campaigners pleading with them not to ruin experiments on genetically modified wheat...
Trials at Rothamsted Research in Harpenden are experimenting on the crop to deter pest attacks
"Take the Flour Back" are planning a major protest there later this month.
In an open letter to the campaigners published today, the scientists wrote: "We know we cannot stop you from taking the action you plan, nor would we wish to see force used against you.
Therefore we can only appeal to your consciences, and ask you to reconsider before it is too late, and before years of work to which we have devoted our lives are destroyed forever.
(ABOVE: An extract of the letter from Scientists at Rothamsted to the Campaigners)
The letter goes on to say: "You have described genetically modified crops as 'not properly tested'. Yet when tests are carried out you are planning to destroy them before any useful information can be obtained.
What you are planning to do is reminiscent of clearing books from a library because you wish to stop other people finding out what they contain. We remind you that such actions do not have a proud tradition."
A member of the campaign group calling herself Helen told The Telegraph there were no plans to cancel their protest in response to the letter and that if the scientists did not abandon the trial voluntarily, the group would break into the site and "remove" the crop.
She said: "We're not taking this lightly. We really don't want to be pushed into this action. We're not anti-science. It's just about doing things responsibly."