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Crop Biotech Update

USDA Seeks Public Input to Revise its Biotechnology Regulations

February 3, 2016

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has announced that it will issue a notice that it is developing a draft programmatic environmental impact statement (EIS), required under the National Environmental Policy Act, that will evaluate a range of alternatives that the Agency can take as it works to update its biotechnology regulations. The notice also invites the public to comment on the range of alternatives that APHIS will study in the draft EIS, along with definitions that APHIS plans to use in the draft EIS.

APHIS is considering amending its biotechnology regulations pertaining to introductions of the products of biotechnology that may pose plant pest or noxious weed risks to reflect lessons learned from regulating biotechnology products since 1987, reflect advances in biotechnology and address comments and suggestions raised by stakeholders. 

The notice is expected to be on display at the Federal Register on February 4, 2016, and will officially publish in the Register on February 5, 2016.

For more, read the APHIS bulletin.