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How ‘regulatory lag’ in approving GMO crops hurts international trade

This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

Time is money. This time-worn axiom of business school courses and the corporate world is also particularly applicable to the regulatory world. The time required for technology development firms to receive regulatory approval for a genetically modified (GM) crop, and thus the ability to commercialize the technology, has consistently increased over the past two decades. Jaffe (2005) reported that in spite of no new traits being regulated, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) consultation process had more than doubled over the first decade of GM crop regulation.

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[W]e strongly assert that efforts to streamline GM crop approval processes are a worthwhile endeavor. The legal consequences of GM regulatory lag are significant and ongoing. Unless action is taken to address these consequences, a rapidly decelerating approvals process could grind to a complete halt. Negotiations may be difficult, and a modest goal of streamlining approvals may be a long way from the end goal of synchronous approvals, but the status quo is not a viable option. The development and operation of the PCT provide a model worth pursuing with some vigour.

Read full, original post: The Legal and International Trade Implications of Regulatory Lags in GM Crop Approvals

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