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July 12, 2010

EU: Brussels prepares GM reform initiative

The European Commission will tomorrow (13 July) unveil long-awaited reforms to the EU's market approval process for producing GM foodstuffs.

The European Commission will tomorrow (13 July) unveil long-awaited reforms to the EU’s market approval process for producing GM foodstuffs.

A Brussels memorandum said officials have drafted an EU-wide “authorisation system, based on science, [that] can be combined with freedom for member states to decide whether or not they wish to cultivate GM crops on their territory”.

The move could break a political stalemate, with the EU Council of Ministers failing to allow or block GM production in Europe. Proposals for GM food production are shelved for months, even years, while the politicians argue.

The reform, pushed by Commission president José Manuel Barroso, should allow member states to approve the cultivation of a GM foodstuff generally, while anti-GM countries opt-out and impose national cultivation bans.

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