China plans to increase its oversight of genetically modified crops due to heightened public concern over Beijing’s ability to keep illegal GM products out of the food chain.
Beijing supports genetically modified organisms (GMO) technology, which it sees as crucial to future food security. But critics have alleged the technology could pose health risks, and while China allows imports of some GMO crops it is yet to permit domestic cultivation of GM food crops.
The planned changes to China’s safety administration regulation do not alter its GMO policy but will increase the supervision of biotech products under development, said Huang Dafang, professor at the Biotechnology Research Institute under the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences.
The revisions, published by the agriculture ministry on its website, stress the primary responsibility of research institutes to ensure that GMO products are developed according to safety rules.
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