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NFU: Farmers Will Not Sit in Silence on GM

by 5m Editor
2 November 2011, at 9:50am

UK - The European Commission has published two independent studies reviewing EU legislation on genetically modified organisms.

In general, the reports conclude that EU laws on GMOs are 'on the right track', but that they are not being implemented properly.

Health and Consumer Affairs Commissioner John Dalli said he believed that the problems of implementing GMO legislation did not come from its design or its objectives but rather "the way that these sensitive issues are handled at a political level."

NFU chief scientific adviser Dr Andrea Graham agreed and said farmers would not continue to sit in silence on the issue.

"The main barrier to sensible GMO regulation is political," she said.

"Europe cannot continue to allow the GM decision-making process to be hijacked by political points-scoring and expect farmers to sit back in silence.

"The EU currently operates in a paradox where the significant delays in the approvals process restrict GM feed imports from South America, for example, but we can import meat that has been fed on that feed. As a result UK farmers are finding it increasingly hard to compete on the market. Therefore we call on all politicians to consider GMO regulation based on the scientific evidence and advice from experts."

The two reports were carried out by independent consultants on the Commission's behalf and are based on 'facts and opinions' from stakeholders, competent authorities and other bodies.

There has also been formal notice from the Commission that 'more precise requirements for the submission of authorisation applications for imported products for food and feed use' will be proposed in the coming weeks.