Crop Biotech Update

EU Consultation Confirms Europeans' Support for Policy Change on Novel Genomic Techniques

October 5, 2022

The European Commission has published the results of a public consultation on "Legislation for plants produced by certain new genomic techniques (NGTs)." The public consultation conducted from April to July 2022 is an important source of information as it sought citizens' and stakeholders' views on the functioning of the current legislation for plants obtained by targeted mutagenesis and cisgenesis and their food and feed products.

The results show that almost 80 percent of the 2,200 participants view the existing provisions of the GMO legislation as inadequate for plants obtained by the latest breeding methods such as targeted mutagenesis or cisgenesis. Applications of targeted mutagenesis are highly versatile and can be used in the development of a wide range of different plant products while the existing EU rules largely date back to the 1990s and are based on the scientific knowledge of that time.

The consultation details that a large majority of citizens, academia and research institutions, companies and business associations, public authorities, and the majority of trade unions support this view. On the other hand, only environmental organizations, and a majority of NGOs and consumer organizations insist to keep the current legislation in place.

For more details, read the news article in Euroseeds. The results of the consultation and the Commission's report are available on the European Commission website.

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