EU grants first GMO planting approval for 12 years
New EU Health and Consumer Commissioner John Dalli has acted swiftly to kick-start the approval process for genetically modified crops by authorising the cultivation of BASF’s GM improved starch Amflora potato. This is the first approval for cultivating a GM crop in the EU in 12 years. Progress with Amflora’s dossier, along with other applications for cultivating GM maize lines, had been repeatedly delayed in the EU Environment Directorate General under Commissioner Stavros Dimas ( Agrow No 543, p 7). With the advent of the new European Commission last month, responsibility for approving GM crop cultivations was moved from the Environment DG to Mr Dalli’s department. The new Commissioner acknowledges that decisions on the other GM crops will have to be taken “in the near future”.