November 26, 2013


Germany may seek stricter rules on GMO meat labelling



Germany may seek tougher regulations in the EU, including the implementation of the labelling of meat from farm animals that are fed genetically-modified organisms (GMOs), according to reuters.


Any such policy would have to be agreed and approved by the EU via a lengthy process. If introduced, the labels could potentially have a significant impact on livestock production as many European consumers might be reluctant to knowingly eat GMO-fed meat.


Currently most soy-based animal feed, which is mainly imported from the US and South America, contains GMOs while other grains that are often domestically grown for animal feed mostly do not. Soy-based feed is valued and widely used for its high protein content.


A new coalition would retain the policy of zero-tolerance of non-approved GMOs in human food.


The draft agricultural policy document said the conservatives and SPD have not yet been able to agree whether to continue current German policy restricting GMO cultivation. A decision will be made later about whether Germany would make use of possible new EU rules which would enable countries to prevent farmers from growing GMO crops even if they had been approved for cultivation at EU level, the document said.


A new coalition would start a new initiative to improve welfare of farm animals, the document said. Restrictions on the use of antibiotics on farm animals agreed before the election will be introduced as planned, it said. The coalition would also press for an EU-wide ban on animal cloning and an EU ban on imports of cloned animals or their meat, it said. It would also seek EU-wide freedom from patent laws on conventional plant seeds.


Some seed companies have caused controversy by seeking to stop farmers producing seeds which are patented.

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