February 24, 2010


Indian non-GM soymeal exports to EU seen to surge



Indian soymeal exporters could see sales to the EU surge to three million tonnes in the next three years from a standing start as the 27-nation bloc seeks more non-GM varieties, a leading exporter said on Tuesday (Feb 23).


As Brazil and Argentina increasingly grow GM soy, India has an opportunity to become a leading exporter of non-GM meals made of non-GM soy seeds, said Girish Matlani, managing director of Sonic Biochem, India's biggest exporter of soy products.


Indian exporters have sold about 23,000 tonnes of the animal feed to EU, a new market for them, since the start of the marketing year in October, traders said.


Matlani believes that the country will emerge as the main supplier to meet the EU demand of six million tonnes of non-GM feedstock, adding that about 100,000 tonnes of soymeal is seen to be exported.


India is Asia's leading supplier of soymeal, mainly exporting to countries such as Vietnam, Japan and Indonesia. Meals, processed from oilseeds and are primarily used for cattle and poultry feed.


Meanwhile, India does not allow commercial cultivation of GM food crops. Adopting a cautious approach, the government earlier this month put off the launch of a GM vegetable, unlike China which has approved rice and corn varieties developed in laboratories.