Press Statement on General Affairs Council Meeting on GM Maize 1507

12.02.2014

The plant biotech industry notes the outcome of yesterday’s General Affairs Council meeting, in which Member States could not reach a qualified majority either in favour or against a Commission proposal to authorise the placing on the market for cultivation of the genetically modified maize 1507. In accordance with EU law, it is now up to the Commission to authorise the 1507 maize, based on the seven positive safety opinions provided by the EFSA.

This particular dossier was submitted for approval 12 years ago. There continue to be serious delays in submitting GM cultivation and GM import dossiers for vote by Member States. EU and national public institutions must abide by the rules they adopted and process dossiers according to the legal timelines.

Moreover, the biotech industry firmly believes that failing to support the EU’s own best science by voting against a product approval or abstaining, is the single most damaging element for growth and investment and, indeed, consumer confidence. Any product that fulfills the EU’s science-based risk assessment requirements as set out in legislation should be authorised to offer European farmers the same right to choose that their competitors have around the world.

All GM crops that are currently on the market in Europe have undergone a rigorous safety assessment by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and have been deemed safe. This was reinforced by 2 reports published by the European Commission in 2000 and 2010, covering 25 years of research on the safety of GM crops that concluded that GM crops approved in the EU are as safe as, if not safer than, conventional crops [“A decade of EU-funded GMO research (2001-2010)” and “EC-Sponsored research on safety the genetically modified organisms (1985-2000).”]

 

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For further information, please contact:

Nilsy Desaint

Communications Manager Green Biotechnology Europe, EuropaBio

Telephone: +32 2 735 03 13 /

Mobile: +32 473 33 48 75

 

See more:

-    European Council Press Release: http://www.consilium.europa.eu/uedocs/cms_data/docs/pressdata/EN/genaff/140991.pdf   

-EuropaBio’s factsheet on product safety : http://www.europabio.org/food-security-factsheet

-EuropaBio’s factsheet on farming and the environment: http://www.europabio.org/green-biotechnology-factheet-farming-and-environment

-Latest undue delays report: http://www.europabio.org/positions/approvals-gm-crops-eu-january-2014-update

-Pocket guide to GM crops and policies: http://www.europabio.org/positions/pocket-guide-gm-crops-and-policies

 

 

About EuropaBio

EuropaBio is the European Association for Bioindustries, bringing together bioscience companies from all fields of research and development, testing, manufacturing and distribution of biotechnology products. It has 56 corporate members, 14 associate members and Bio Regions and 19 National Biotechnology Associations- representing some 1800 small and medium sized enterprises across Europe.