A group opposed to genetic modification has released a poll showing almost 80% of respondents want councils to retain the power to create GM-free zones.
The phone survey of 1000 people was commissioned by Pure Hawke's Bay and carried out by Colmar-Brunton.
Under proposed changes to the Resource Management Act, central government rather than councils would have the power to decide where GM crops can be grown.
However, Pure Hawke's Bay says 79% of the people surveyed want decision making powers to stay with the councils.
Spokesperson Bruno Chambers says GM free products command a premium price and the group wants GM-free zones so farmers can grow unmodified crops with less risk of contamination.
The survey has a plus or minus margin of error of 3.1%.