Netherlands wants CRISPR gene-edited crops exempt from Europe’s GMO laws

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The Netherlands believes the new plant breeding techniques should not come under the GMO legislation as they are as safe as traditional breeding. It also insists that a discussion on the issue should be launched soon, even before the EU Court rules on the issue.

New plant breeding techniques (NPBTs) focus on developing new seed traits within a given species through genetic engineering. For the agri-food industry, the plants resulting from these new breeding techniques should not be considered genetically modified because no foreign DNA is present in their genes.

To opponents, they are just another attempt at selling GMOs to Europeans through the back door.

Now the case is in the hands of the EU Court of Justice, which will decide whether a specific technique called “mutagenesis” should come under the GM legislation or not.

[T]he Netherlands made a proposal to improve the exemption mechanism for genetically modified plants under the GM directive at an informal meeting in Brussels (7 September).

“The main aim is to initiate a discussion on whether EU authorities can share the view that the Directive should not apply to plants resulting from the use of New Plant Breeding Techniques (NPBTs), provided these plants are at least equally safe as plants obtained by traditional breeding,” the Dutch proposal noted.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis. Read full, original post: Amsterdam wants to revive talks on new plant breeding techniques