Food not issue, according to cancer cluster campaigner

THE man at the centre of "cancer cluster" claims in Grantham has thrown his support behind the Lockyer Valley farming community.

Former Grantham Community Recovery Committee chairman Marty Warburton's wife Janelle was diagnosed with breast cancer following the 2011 floods.

About 10 other community members have also fallen victim to the disease, which some attribute to contaminants in the floodwaters.

Mr Warburton said he never had any doubts about the safety of eating Lockyer Valley produce.

"I have only been concerned with health issues that have arisen since the flood and any possible links to what may have been in the water on that day or in the mud during the clean up," he said.

"I am disappointed and sorry that the focus has been on the farmers and produce.

"Again I have not questioned the quality of the produce or made any comments in relation to such, as I know the farms after the flood were all laser-levelled and cleaned before any crops were planted.

"My questions are in relation to what may have been in the water on the day and the mud during the clean up."

Lockyer Valley Regional Council Mayor Steve Jones was very critical of the claims last week.

"We certainly acknowledge that anyone suffering from cancer should be given the full support of the community. However, we mustn't let that take away the livelihoods of our farming families who take great pride in delivering safe, fresh produce to the dinner plates of Australians," he said.

Grantham farmer Derek Schulz has slammed the Channel7 news item which brought the safety of the region's produce into question.

His own daughter has been battling brain tumours for more than a year.

"I am not blaming the floods for her tumour. It is just a fact of life, an unfortunate fact that some people must face," he told The Gatton Star.

"The scar has almost healed. Why do we have to go pick at it again?" he said.



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