Crop Biotech Update

UK Announces Simpler Rules on Gene Editing for the Benefit of Farmers

January 26, 2022

The Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) announced that new UK legislation will be implemented to cut the unnecessary red tape for gene editing, with the goal of helping farmers have access to more resilient, nutritious, and productive crops. This also implies that UK scientists will be able to conduct research and development more easily using genetic technologies for plants.

"New genetic technologies could help us tackle some of the biggest challenges of our age – around food security, climate change and biodiversity loss…Now we have the freedom and opportunity to foster innovation, to improve the environment and help us grow plants that are stronger and more resilient to climate change. I am grateful to the farming and environmental groups that have helped us shape our approach, and I look forward to seeing what we can achieve," said Jo Churchill, Minister for Agri-Innovation and Climate Adaptation.

According to DEFRA, the new legislation does not mean that environmental or research standards will be lowered. DEFRA also expects that the new rules will pave the way for UK's target to be a global science superpower by 2030 and position itself as a global leader in sustainable climate-friendly farming.

Read the news release from DEFRA.

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