Overwhelming majority of Europeans support compulsory labeling of GM-derived food, claims study commissioned by EU Green group

Credit: Ctsenatedems/Flickr
Credit: Ctsenatedems/Flickr

[A] report, commissioned by the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament and carried out by the polling organisation Ipsos, surveyed thousands of consumers across all 27 member states between February and March of this year in an attempt to gauge their understanding and attitudes towards genetically modified (GM) crops.

It found that, of those which have heard of the technology, 86% of people want food containing GMOs to be labelled accordingly, while 68% of respondents that have heard of new genomic techniques would also like these to be clearly labelled.

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The report comes amid heated debate over the future of the technology after a 2018 European Court of Justice ruling found that GE crops fall, in principle, under the EU’s GMO directive.

However, the outcome of this ruling has since been heavily disputed, with industry players pushing for the decision to be revised so as to exclude GE crops from the scope of EU regulations governing GMOs.

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MEP Herbert Dorfmann [recently said] that he is frequently in contact with scientific experts on the matter who maintain that it is not possible to differentiate between GMOs and GE crops.

“In my opinion, labelling is simply not possible and [without regulating gene editing] we will have plants, seeds that will come from outside Europe, where we don’t know which technology of genetic improvement was applied,” he said.

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