European Union’s process-based GMO regulations ‘defy scientific, economic, and common sense’

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[Editor’s note: John Davison, now retired, was the research director at the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA) in France. Klaus Ammann is the former director of the University of Bern’s botanical garden in Switzerland.]

[T]he present GMO regulations stem from the early days of recombinant DNA and are not adapted to current scientific understanding on this subject. Scientific understanding of GMOs has changed and these regulations are now, not only unfit for their original purpose, but, the purpose itself is now no longer scientifically valid. Indeed, they defy scientific, economic, and even common, sense. … We advise that the [European Commission] re-writes its outdated regulations and moves toward such a product based approach.

[O]ver the last few years new genomic editing techniques (sometimes called New Breeding Techniques) have evolved. These techniques are basically mutagenesis techniques that can generate genomic diversity and have vast potential for crop improvement. They are not GMO based techniques (any more than mutagenesis is a GMO technique), since in many cases no new DNA is introduced. Thus they cannot simply be lumped together with GMOs (as many anti-GMO NGOs would prefer). The EU currently has no regulations to cover these new techniques….

The EU is at a turning point where the wrong decision could destroy European agricultural competitively for decades to come.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: New GMO regulations for old: Determining a new future for EU crop biotechnology (behind paywall)

For more background on the Genetic Literacy Project, read GLP on Wikipedia

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