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German Agriculture Minister warns against ‘reflexive’ rejection of nutritional and safe CRISPR gene editing-created crops and foods

| July 19, 2018
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This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

Federal Agriculture Minister Julia Klöckner has warned against a “reflexive” rejection of the use of [new breeding techniques, or NBTs] in agriculture. “We must be careful that we do not refuse [technological] progress because we have an abundant supply of food. The technology could save lives in other regions of the world,” she said on [July 14th]. New breeding methods could, for example, help crops survive in regions where the soil is too dry.

Klöckner demanded more transparency about food and agriculture at the same time, noting that providing information does no harm to anyone. The topic causes consumers discomfort because they do not fully understand how technological innovation is changing food production.

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) will review [NBTs] on July 25th. The court will clarify whether certain new [plant breeding] methods will be exempted from Europe’s strict rules on genetic engineering, and evaluate licensing procedures and labeling requirements.

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in German. This English summary has been prepared with Google Translate and lightly edited for clarity.

Read full, original article: Klöckner gegen reflexartiges Nein zu Gentechnik bei Lebensmitteln

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