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Crop Biotech Update

GM White Clover Field Trial in Australia Gets Approval

April 7, 2021

Australia's Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) has issued license DIR 176 to PTM Solutions Australia Pty. Ltd. authorizing the limited and controlled release (field trial) of white clover genetically modified (GM) for increased condensed tannins.

The trial is proposed to take place between April 2021 and December 2026, on up to four sites per year with a maximum area of 1 hectare per year across all sites. The trial would be subject to control measures that restrict the spread and persistence of the GM plants and their introduced genetic material. The GM white clover would not be used for human food or animal feed.

The finalized Risk Assessment and Risk Management Plan (RARMP) and the license were finalized from input received during a consultation with the public, State and Territory governments, Australian Government agencies, the Minister for the Environment, the Gene Technology Technical Advisory Committee, and local councils. The finalized RARMP concludes that this field trial poses negligible risks to the health and safety of people and the environment, thus it does not require specific risk treatment measures.

The finalized RARMP and its summary, the license, and Questions and Answers about this decision are available online from the DIR 176 page on the OGTR website.

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