Mexico unlikely to see GMO crops anytime soon after court reaffirms block on test plots over ‘environmental concerns’

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Mexican farmer Ignacio Ramos works at his plot of corn in San Nicolas de los Ranchos community, Puebla state, Mexico, 27 December 2007. Mexican opposition groups will start protests this 31 December, at midnight, against the elimination of taxes for corn, beans and sugar between Mexico, the US and Canada, which will take place next 01 January 2008, in the framework of their North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). AFP PHOTO/Jose CASTA-ARES (Photo credit should read Jose Casta��ares/AFP/Getty Images)

A ban on planting genetically modified corn in Mexico is likely to continue for years as a slow-moving legal battle grinds on, said a top executive of U.S.-based seed and agrochemical company Monsanto Co.

[On January 26] a Mexican court upheld a late 2013 ruling that temporarily halted even pilot plots of GMO corn following a legal challenge over its effects on the environment.

“It’s going to take a long while for all the evidence to be presented,” Monsanto regional corporate director Laura Tamayo said in an interview. “I think we’re talking years.”

Several years ago, Monsanto submitted two applications for the commercial planting of GMO corn in Mexico. Both sought 700,000 hectares (1.7 million acres) in the northwestern state of Sinaloa, the country’s largest corn-producing area.

Monsanto’s main business in Mexico is developing and selling conventional corn seeds and vegetable seeds, but Tamayo says the company is determined to defend the benefits of genetically modified crops on scientific grounds.

Nevertheless, she noted that for years Monsanto did not see the need to persuade consumers and focused exclusively on convincing farmers to buy its products, allowing some environmental organizations to dominate the debate.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: Monsanto sees prolonged delay on GMO corn permits in Mexico

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