Calls to Halt GM Maize Authorizations

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05 May 2017 --- MEPs oppose EU Commission plans to authorise imports of products derived from or containing herbicide resistant genetically modified (GM) maize and cotton, in two resolutions voted on Thursday. They highlight the concerns raised by independent research and member states, and reiterate Parliament’s call for a reform of the EU’s GMO authorisation procedure.

The resolution opposing the placing on the market of products containing maize DAS-40278-9 highlights the concerns raised by independent research about the risks of the 2,4D herbicide, to which the maize is resistant, regarding embryo development, birth defects and endocrine disruption. 

MEPs stress that many critical comments were issued by Member States during the three-months consultation period before approval, referring inter alia to missing or insufficient data, contradictory statements and poor test design.

The resolution was adopted with 35 votes to 19.

In a separate resolution, adopted with 38 votes to 15, MEPs say that imports of products from genetically modified cotton GHB119 should not be authorised as this would encourage the use of glufosinate ammonium-based herbicides (to which GHB119 is resistant) in the world, while glufosinate is classified as toxic for reproduction.

Critical comments were also submitted by Member States, MEPs say, highlighting shortcomings in the environmental risk assessment and missing data.

Next steps
Both texts, tabled by MEPs Bart Staes (Greens/EFA, BE) Lynn Boylan (GUE/NGL, IE), Guillaume Balas (S&D, FR), Eleonora Evi (EFDD, IT), Valentinas Mazuronis (ALDE, LT) and Sirpa Pietikäinen (EPP, FI) will be put to a vote by the full House during the 15-18 May plenary session in Strasbourg.

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