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Crop Biotech Update

New USDA Quality Compliance of GE Products Launched

September 28, 2007

The US Department of Agriculture, through Acting Agriculture Secretary Chuck Conner, has announced a new Biotechnology Quality Management System: a voluntary compliance assistance program which will be implemented in 2008. This system will emphasize the quality of processes involved in safely releasing genetically-engineered (GE) organisms in compliance with federal regulations. It will consist of two program levels based on domestically and internationally recognized quality management systems.

  1. Level-A program: for participants without formal quality management background and in small businesses and universities, designed to help them develop good management procedures
  2. Level-B program: designed for companies and researchers with formal management systems, growing GE plants at multiple sites; the program will include training guidelines and documentation procedures to ensure accountability at all levels by involved parties.

The USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspections Service (APHIS) is tasked to oversee the Biotechnology Quality Management System program, in partnership with USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), which will manage the audit component of the program and accredit third party auditors.

Addition information can be obtained from the press release at:  http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/!ut/p/_s.7_0_A/7_0_1OB/.cmd/ad/.ar/sa.retrievecontent/.c/6_2_1UH/.ce/7_2_5JM/.p/5_2_4TQ/
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