Commission publishes GM ingredient list

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Related tags: European commission, European union, Maize

Seeking to clear up confusion over approved GM ingredients, the
European Commission has published a list of the 26 biotech products
cleared for use across the EU 25 member nations.

EU consumer protection commissioner Markos Kyprianou said the online register​ is "an important tool to clarify the legal status of GMOs allowed for sale in the EU."

He said the list reflects the GMOs allowed for sale in the EU before the current legislation entered into force in April 2004.

"The register makes it clear which products can legally be sold in the EU, although in reality many of these products may not currently be on the EU market,"​ commented Kyprianou.

Under the new rules passed into force through Regulation 1829/2003 on GM food and feed, all GM products seeking to enter the EU market as food or feed have to undergo "a thorough authorisation procedure, including a scientific safety assessment by EFSA."

Under those new rules, the European Commission has already approved two additional biotech products, the Bt11 sweet corn from Swiss firm Syngenta and NK603 corn product from US biotech giant Monsanto.

Products listed on the register include 12 varieties of sweetcorn, six varieties of oilseed (mostly rapeseed), five of cotton and one soybean product.

The Commission move to publish the list comes after the European Union voted on Friday​ to block imports of certain US grain (corn gluten feed and brewers grain) unless they prove they are free of the genetically modified maize Bt10.

The decision comes after Swiss biotech firm Syngenta announced recently it had accidentally sold unapproved genetically modified seed corn in the US for four years, resulting in about 133 million kilograms of the corn making its way into the food chain.

The European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union, has said it thought about 1,000 metric tons of the unauthorised strain of Bt10 corn, all grown in the US, had entered member states through animal feed, corn flour and corn oil.

In a bid to stem the flow of any further consignments of the illegal Bt10 GM ingredient into the European food chain, the Commission passed the emergency measures.

Related topics: Europe, Safety, Regulation

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