Despite Japan's decision to allow food products to contain up to 5% of approved genetically modified crops to be labelled as non-genetically altered food, the government will not change its stance against letting StarLink corn into the country.

An official at the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries stressed on Thursday that the new rule does not apply to bans on unapproved biotech crop varieties, such as StarLink corn. "Only grades approved as safe should be on the (Japanese) market," she said.

The official said that when transporting both genetically-modified and non-genetically-modified corn or soybeans together, non-biotech crops are often contaminated with the other by around 5%, but this did not mean it was okay to add 5% of genetically modified (crops) to be identified as non-GMOs.

"We are to call the crops unintentionally mixed as non-GMOs," she said

The new regulations will have no impact on Japanese corn imports from the US, the US Feed Grains Council said on Thursday. The new rules only affect corn exports into the country for food use.
 
The new 5% rule on GM foodstuffs, such as corn and soybeans, comes into operation next month.