Genetically modified wheat developed by Monsanto Co, and never approved by federal regulators, has been found growing in a Washington state farm field, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said on [July 29].
The discovery of 22 unapproved genetically modified (GMO) wheat plants has prompted an investigation by federal and state investigators – the third such discovery in three years.
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The grain has not been traced in commercial supplies, USDA said in a statement.
There are currently no commercially approved genetically modified wheat varieties and incidences of rogue plants are rare. The first case was in 2013 in Oregon. . . More unapproved wheat was found in Montana in 2014.
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Monsanto helped to develop a test for MON 71700, the strain found in Washington state, which would be available to U.S. trading partners, the USDA said.
The variety was tested in limited field trials in the Pacific Northwest from 1998 to 2000, but was never commercialized, said Monsanto spokeswoman Christi Dixon.
The wheat found in Washington state is a slightly different strain than the one discovered in 2013, although both were developed to withstand applications of glyphosate. . .
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