Biotech Updates

France Ban on GM Cultivation Illegal Says European Court of Justice

September 15, 2011

Europa Bio, Europe's association of bioindustries, said that the European Court of Justice's decision on the illegality of France's ban on the cultivation of genetically modified (GM) is a "step towards choice in Europe."

Carel du Marchie Sarvaas, EuropaBio's Director of Green Biotechnology Europe, commented, "The European Court of Justice has given a clear verdict: EU member states cannot ban GM based on myths and hearsay. In fact, French farmers had three years of experience planting GM crops prior to this ban. European scientists have shown again and again that GM crops pose no risk to health or the environment and, in fact, have health, socio-economic and environmental benefits. After all, they are grown on nearly 150 million hectares worldwide by over 15 million farmers, 90% of whom are resource –poor farmers working in developing countries."

France banned the cultivation of GM in 2007 citing health and environmental risks. Advocate General Paolo Mengozzi, advisor to the European Court of Justice, said the EU could only institute such bans.

See Europabio's press release at