Biotech Updates

GAIN Report on Biotechnology in Japan: Numerous Approvals But No Planting

July 13, 2012

USDA FAS Global Information Network published the Agribiotechnology report of Japan. The Report highlights Japan's existing heavy reliance on food and feed imports which is considered to be the world's largest per capita importer. The country has been importing about 16 million metric tons of corn and four million metric tons of soybeans, approximately three quarters of which are produced through biotechnology.

Biotech regulations in Japan are characterized as science-based, transparent, efficient, and process approvals within acceptable time periods. However, Japan's biotech review system would seem slow with the increasing number and types of biotech events released to the market over the next decade .

The government had over 130 events approved for food use and completed the review of 44 events last year. There have been 95 events in 7 crops approved for environmental release including cultivation. Biotech rose released by Suntory in 2009 is the only biotech crop commercially cultivated in Japan and no commercial cultivation of biotech food crop in Japan even if there are numerous approvals in various crops.

Download the report at