BIO Welcomes EU Decision on Biotech Crops

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (Tuesday, March 02, 2010) - The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) applauded today’s announcement by the European Commission to authorize the cultivation of a biotech potato, as well as the commercialization of three varieties of biotech maize for food and feed uses and import and processing.  

In a statement, Health and Consumer Policy Commissioner John Dalli said, “After an extensive and thorough review of the five pending GM files, it became clear to me that there were no new scientific issues that merited further assessment. All scientific issues, particularly those concerning safety, had been fully addressed. Any delay would have simply been unjustified.” 

Sharon Bomer Lauritsen, BIO Executive Vice President for Food and Agriculture issued the following statement in response to the EU’s decision: 

“We welcome the decisions made by EU officials to move forward with these pending biotechnology applications.  Authorization of the genetically engineered Amflora potato for cultivation and for use in animal feed and industrial practices is the first biotech crop approved for domestic growing in the EU in more than a decade.  

“This represents an encouraging first step towards remedying an impasse that has put EU farmers at a disadvantage in the competitive marketplace.  Currently 14 million farmers around the world choose to grow biotech varieties because these crops are more environmentally friendly, yield more per acre, resist diseases and insect pests and reduce farmers’ costs.  

“But a lot more needs to be done.  Another 17 products are awaiting EU approval for cultivation, and 44 biotech products are awaiting authorization for food and feed as well as for import and processing in the EU.

“If the EU and the world are to reap the benefits of agricultural biotechnology, timely and science-based approval is needed now more than ever.”

Upcoming BIO Events

BIO-Europe Spring
March 8-10, 2010
Barcelona, Spain

BIO Intellectual Property Counsels Spring Conference and Committee Meeting
April 19-21, 2010
New Orleans, LA 

Partnering for Global Health
May 3, 2010
Chicago, IL
McCormick Place Convention Center

BIO International Convention
May 3-6, 2010
Chicago, IL
McCormick Place Convention Center

2010 BIO Human Resources Conference
May 4-7, 2010
Chicago, IL 

World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology and Bioprocessing
June 27-30, 2010
Washington, DC

BIO’s Livestock Biotechnology Summit
September 28-30, 2010,
Sioux Falls, SD

 

About BIO

BIO represents more than 1,200 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the BIO International Convention, the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry, along with industry-leading investor and partnering meetings held around the world.

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About BIO
BIO is the world's largest trade association representing biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the BIO International Convention, the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry, along with industry-leading investor and partnering meetings held around the world. BIOtechNOW is BIO's blog chronicling “innovations transforming our world” and the BIO Newsletter is the organization’s bi-weekly email newsletter. Subscribe to the BIO Newsletter.