The USDA issued a release this past week stating that the agency does not have any plans to regulate plants that have been genome-edited… What the USDA is doing here is drawing a line in the sand: if a plant (or whatever) is altered by adding genes from some unrelated plant, it’ll be regulated. If no other plant is involved, you can mess around in the genome of your subject however much you want, without oversight. Plants that would thus qualify for regulation-free modification include those edited with a process usually referred to as CRISPR, or gene editing.
The federal government has given the final OK to three more types of potatoes genetically engineered by Boise’s J.R. Simplot Co. to resist the pathogen that caused the Irish potato famine. They are safe for the environment and safe to eat, officials announced. Story here
For years, Chile has had a curious double standard when it comes to genetically modified organisms. The country is a global powerhouse in the production of GM seeds — but makes them strictly off-limits to domestic farmers. Throw any in the ground for the local market, and the crop cops may slap you with a fine.
In the wake of lobbying by IFOAM (International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements), the European Parliament has rejected GMO maize use in its member states. This is the fifth time in a year that they’ve rejected maize. Member states will likely vote on the issue next month. Continue reading “EU Rejects GM Maize Use”