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Danish Council of Ethics urges EU to revamp GMO rules—’very new stance’​ for Denmark

| | April 30, 2019
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Europe's Court of Justice ruled that CRISPR crops are GMOs in 2018. Image: The Institute of International and European Affairs
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The Danish Council of Ethics recommends that legislation regarding the approval of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) be changed to help achieve sustainability objectives.

In an opinion published [April 29], Denmark’s Ethics Council called for a new debate on genetically modified plants. ….According to the Council – which provides ongoing advice about ethical problems within the national health service and biomedical fields to parliament, authorities and the public – much has changed since GMOs were developed in the 1990s.

As it stands, EU law regulates GMOs, which use genetic engineering to insert new code, in the same way as genome-edited crops – which do not contain foreign DNA.

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“All plants with new properties should be screened regardless of whether they have been developed with gene technology or traditional breeding [techniques],” ​a majority of Council members [wrote].

According to Andreas Christiansen, a postdoc researcher from the University of Copenhagen who contributed background material to the Ethics Council, the opinion is significant.

“Denmark has consistently been against GMOs and voted against [their use] many times,” ​he told FoodNavigator. For Christiansen, this latest opinion therefore represents “a very new stance” for the Nordic country.

Read full, original article: ‘It is time for a new position’: Denmark’s Ethics Council calls for updated GMO law

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