Australia imports over 60 GMO food crops—but farmers can only grow one

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Food derived from 60 genetically modified crops can be imported into Australia, but local growers can only grow one GM food crop — canola.

GM proponents say complex and costly regulations, state bans and Australia’s small market mean local farmers cannot access a raft of genetically modified food crops.

Yet Food Standards Australia New Zealand has signed off on the import of food derived from GM potatoes, corn, soybeans, sugar beet and rice, which are found in many of the products sitting on Australia’s supermarket shelves.

CropLife Australia chief executive Matthew Cossey said the cost of getting a GM crop to market was about $170 million and could take up to 13 years of research and ­development.

“Regulatory approval accounts for one-third of that cost,” Mr Cossey said. “The Australian market is already quite small and the risk to business in bringing a product to market in Australia is very high.

He called for the removal of “unnecessary regulations” on GM crop innovations to allow access to plant breeding innovations, including scrapping GM bans in NSW, South Australia, and Tasmania.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis. Read full, original post: GM crops: Farmers fight for access while importers benefit from foreign crops

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