Syngentas Agrisure corn trait got EU approval
Dec. 4, 2009
The European Commission today voted to approve Syngentas Agrisure - MIR604 biotech-enhanced corn. This action should allow soybean and soybean meal trade to resume after traces of this and other corn events (which were approved last month by Commission) were found in U.S. soybean meal shipments earlier this summer.
While the Commissions action is welcome news and allows U.S. soy trade to resume, an intermediate and long-term fix to the European Unions (EU) zero-tolerance policy, and slow and politically-influenced approval process, is still needed.
The American Soybean Association (ASA) has urged the European Commission to find a workable and commercially viable solution to the EUs zero tolerance for the low level presence of EU-unapproved biotech events. European livestock and feed industries, along with U.S. growers, all have been advocating for a workable solution due to the EUs slow and politically-influenced biotech approval process that results in European biotech reviews and approvals taking over twice as long as science-based reviews and approvals in the rest of the world, including the United States.
ASA and European feed and livestock industries believe a partial practical solution to this problem is for the EU to permit the low level presence of a biotech trait that has undergone regulatory review and received safety clearances in the country of export. The other part of the solution is for the EU to greatly improve the timeliness of its approval system and ensure that its approval process is wholly science-based.
The EU is the fourth largest export market for U.S. soybeans, representing sales of more than $1 billion in 2007. To avoid disruption of trade and resulting negative impacts on EU livestock production, ASA is advocating practical and sensible tolerance level solutions be found to ensure that there are no unwarranted barriers to trade.
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