China Shares Biotech Commercialization Experience with Developed Countries

Over 60 representatives from Chinese government, academia, media, industry and Embassies of USA, Canada, Australia, Argentina, and Brazil gathered in Westin Hotel, Beijing, China on December 8, 2015 to promote biotech risk communication experience-sharing, strengthening communication and cooperation between government, academia, media and the industry in the dissemination of biotechnology.

In the opening remarks of the Seminar on Government and Public Communication of AgBiotech, Mr. Ye Jiming, Deputy Director General, Development Center of Science and Technology (DCST), China MOA pointed out that China is one of the earliest countries in the world to develop GM technology and had a relatively large planting area in the past. However, insufficient risk communication is becoming a major reason leading to the slowing down of developments in the last  two years. Mr. Philip A. Shull, Agricultural Minister Counselor, U.S. Embassy stressed that to provide food for the world's population is most important, likewise the most noble mission. Biotechnology has made a very important role in providing food for the world and this fact should be well recognized by the public.

Dr. Zhen Zhu from Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences introduced the activities initiated by Platform of Science Communication for Agri-Biotechnology (PSCAB) and its effects in GMO knowledge dissemination. Dr. Anna Somerville, Counselor of Australian Embassy and Mr. Murray Gwyer, Counselor of Canadian Embassy shared experiences with biotechnology risk communication. Mr. John Cordts, Former USDA APHIS regulator presented U.S. approach to public input in the regulatory decision making process. Dr. Judy Wang, Senior Manager, Biotech Regulatory and External Affairs, Du Pont Pioneer North Asia, delivered the efforts of CropLife China in biotech communication from industry perspective.

In the open discussion section, the attendees discussed how to collaborate for efficient and effective GMO risk communication and build public knowledge and confidence in biotechnology.

The seminar was organized by Chinese Society of Biotechnology, supported by CropLife (China) Biotech Committee and ISAAA China Biotechnology Information Center.

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This article is part of the Crop Biotech Update, a weekly summary of world developments in agri-biotech for developing countries, produced by the Global Knowledge Center on Crop Biotechnology, International Service for the Aquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications SEAsiaCenter (ISAAA)

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