Despite GMO skepticism, German Green Party may endorse crop gene editing to promote farm sustainability

Logo Buendnis Gruene minified
Logo of the German Greens. The party has previously been hostile to crop biotechnology

[I]n June 2020, more than twenty officials from the German Green party signed a contribution entitled: “New Times, New Answers: Regulating the Law of genetic engineering in a modern way.”

The signatories affirmed that it is imperative to combine sustainability and the new biotechnologies stemming from genetic engineering. For this, they formulated six proposals which emphasize that genetic engineering applied in human health is universally accepted and that applications in agriculture can also be part of sustainability “with good conditions of supervision.”

The signatories stressed that these technologies could help Europe quickly adapt to future challenges, most notably climate change. They also noted that the current regulations favor “monopoly structures in agriculture,” which hinder public research, and they insisted on the need to have new rules to give public institutions and medium-sized enterprises an opportunity to use these new techniques.

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They concluded that the current European regulations on GMOs “no longer correspond to the current state of science” and that “the decisive factor is not the technology, but the result,” and recommended “a balanced and careful technological assessment in dialogue with science.”

[Editor’s note: This article was published in French and has been translated and edited for clarity.]

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