Organic industry opposes CRISPR gene editing to preserve its ‘natural’ farming methods

| October 2, 2019
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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.

During a hearing earlier this summer, U.S. Department of Agriculture undersecretary Greg Ibach expressed interest in opening the discussion surrounding gene editing technologies and their possible uses in advancing organic agriculture.

However, in a letter delivered to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, the Organic Farmers Assn. (OFA) and 78 other organic farm organizations opposed allowing the use of gene editing technology in organic farming.

When USDA was first writing the national organic standards in 2001, the agency tried to allow genetic engineering, but the organic community responded with more than 400,000 comments demanding its prohibition, OFA said.

Since then, consumer acceptance of genetically engineered products has dropped precipitously, while certified organic food sales have seen consistent growth. OFA said it feels strongly that working with natural materials and cropping systems ….

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Read full, original article: Organic groups oppose gene editing in organic farming

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