Viewpoint: When it comes to CRISPR crop regulations, Europe must trust its biotech experts


The latest ruling by the European Court of Justice requires that crops created using gene-editing techniques such as CRISPR must go through the same lengthy approval process as conventional genetically modified (GM) plants. This has surprised many scientists, who are concerned that it will complicate promising applications of gene editing.

As members of the European Food Safety Authority’s panel on GM organisms since its inception, we have witnessed a mounting distrust of scientific assessments. That has manifested with the approval of rules that demand a rigid analysis of GM plants. We need to reverse this trend, for example by acknowledging that approval of genome-edited plants calls for much less data than classic GM organisms, and by commanding greater respect for the work of scientific panels. This would promote scientifically sound risk analysis while complying with existing directives.

Related article:  Fear of biotechnology threatens efforts to save Brazil's pinto beans

Read full, original article: European politicians must put greater trust in plant scientists

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