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November 28, 2010

EU urged to allow trace GM in food imports

by Charlie Dunmore

A number of European Union governments on November 15 urged the bloc's executive to allow tiny traces of genetically modified (GM) material in food imports for human consumption as well as in animal feed, an EU source said. But it is not yet clear whether enough EU governments support the change to force the European Commission to amend its proposal, and a final decision is unlikely before January at the earliest.

The Commission has proposed allowing up to 0.1 percent of unapproved GM material in feed imports, provided the GM crop in question has been approved in the exporting country and there is a valid EU testing method for the unapproved variety.

EU and national officials met in Brussels recently to discuss the draft plans, which are meant to avoid a repeat of last year's disruption to feed imports, when several U.S. grain shipments were blocked after being found to contain traces of unapproved GM material.A number of member states asked the Commission to include food imports in the proposal, said the source, who was in the meeting and would not specify which countries requested the change.


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