EU GMO labelling policy causing confusion
completely free of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) was almost
impossible and EU...
European industry representatives said on June 28 that food completely free of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) was almost impossible and EU draft labelling rules were both unenforceable and costly. "There will always be some kind of risk of GMOs in food and it is impossible to get reliable information on GMOs," Neville Craddock, Regulatory and Environmental Affairs manager from Nestle UK Ltd told a European food law conference, organised in Brussels by Agra Europe. The European Commission's controversial legislation on GMO labelling is seen as the final part of a framework of laws paving the way for a resumption of the approval process for gene-altered crops, which has been on hold in Europe since 1998. Commission official Patrick Duboyser said the EU executive had already postponed its adoption of the new proposals seven times after months of internal wrangling. They were now planned to be unveiled in mid-July. "GMOs judged safe in risk assessments are currently blocked in the approval process, not because they are not safe, but simply because member states say the regulation is not satisfactory and call for a change in the authorisation process with full traceability and labelling," Duboyser said. The Commission's plans call for the labelling of all foods containing GMO ingredients. But GM enzymes used to cause a chemical reaction in food production are excluded from the law because they do not form part of the finished product. The EU has been much more resistant to GM crops than the United States because of public concerns over their impact on health and the environment.The Commission's proposals will be debated by member state governments and the European Parliament, which has wide powers over food safety, and could take up to two years to adopt. "We want the authorisation process to function because if a GMO is tested as safe then it should have access to the market. We are certainly not against GMOs," Duboyser said. Source: Reuters