Monday, January 14, 2008

France bans Monsanto genetically engineered corn

"France decided Friday to invoke an EU safeguard procedure to bar a strain of genetically-modified corn after a watchdog said it had doubts about the product, the prime minister's office said."

"France's Provisional High Authority on GM Organisms said Wednesday it had "serious doubts" as to the safety of Mon 810, the only GM crop grown in France.

It pointed to what it described as "a certain number of new scientific facts relating to a negative impact on flora and fauna.""

"Chairman Jean-Francois Le Grand, who also holds a seat in the Senate, said evidence had emerged that Mon 810 had an effect on insects, a species of earthworm and micro-organisms.

There was also concern that wind-borne pollen from Mon 810 could travel much further than previously thought -- perhaps as much as hundreds of miles (kilometres), said Le Grand."

"Under European Union laws, a member state can invoke a safeguard clause, enabling it to bar a GM crop that has otherwise been given EU-wide authorisation, provided it has scientific evidence to back this decision.

Six other EU members have already invoked this clause.

The maize, marketed as YieldGard, has been engineered to produce a naturally-occurring toxin, Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), that kills a pest called the corn borer.

That saves farmers money they would otherwise have spent on spraying insecticides."

from the article:

France bans Monsanto corn

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