December 5, 2008
The European Commission on Thursday (December 4) approved genetically modified soy developed by Monsanto Co. (MON) for import into the European Union, a commission spokeswoman said.
The soy, Roundup Ready 2, was approved more quickly than almost any other genetically modified product in the EU.
Farmers and some EU officials were worried on EU's complex approval process for biotech products that would deprive farmers of imported soy, a crucial source of protein for the region's livestock.
The approval lasts for ten years.
Roundup Ready 2 is one of Monsanto's major new products. It will be planted over millions of acres in the US in the next growing season, and the company is seeking approval for farmers to plant it in Brazil and Argentina, the two largest exporters of soy to the EU.
It is impervious to the Roundup herbicide, also made by Monsanto, and yields 7 percent to 11 percent more than the first version of Roundup Ready soy, Monsanto says.