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Crop Biotech Update

Australian OGTR Invites Comments on GM Wheat Field Trial

May 9, 2018

Australia's Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) is currently assessing license application DIR 162 from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), for a field trial (limited and controlled release) of wheat genetically modified for enhanced rust disease resistance.

The field trial is proposed to take place in the Australian Capital Territory and the Hilltops Council area in New South Wales over five growing seasons between September 2018 and September 2023. The proposal is to plant up to 40 m2 in total in each growing season. The GM wheat grown in this field trial would not be used in human food or animal feed.

The Gene Regulator has prepared the Risk Assessment and Risk Management Plan (RARMP) for the application which concludes that the proposed release would pose negligible risk to human health and safety or to the environment. The Regulator welcomes written submissions to finalize the RARMP, which will then inform the decision on whether or not to issue the license. Submissions should be received by close of business on June 12, 2018.

For more details, read the DIR 162 documents available at the OGTR website.