The European Commission has published a list of 26 genetically modified products which have been legally on the EU market since before the new legislative framework for authorising GM food and feed came into effect.
These so-called ‘existing products’ were either approved under former EU legislation, or did not require approval at the time that they were put on the market. They have been added to a specific section of the Community register of genetically modified food and feed in order to clarify exactly which GM products are legally permitted to be sold in the EU and to have full information on these products.
“This register is an important tool to clarify the legal status of GMOs allowed for sale in the EU before the current legislation entered into force in April 2004,” said Markos Kyprianou, commissioner for health and consumer protection. “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.”
Since the entry into force of Regulation 1829/2003 on GM food and feed in April 2004, all GM products seeking to enter the EU market as food or feed have to undergo a thorough authorisation procedure. However, there are certain GM food and feed products which can be legally sold in the EU according to the rules in place before Regulation 1829/2003.
Twenty-six GM products have been included in the register; twelve varieties of maize, six of oilseed rape, five of cotton and one of soybean, one biomass and one yeast cream.