European Governments Stalled on GM Corn Talks

Strain that received approval in U.S. runs into stalemate in EU import approvals, with the outcome potentially impacting U.S. trade interests.

Published on: Jun 26, 2007

Members of the European Union are deadlocked in discussions on whether or not to approve imports of a genetically modified strain of corn.

The U.S. cleared the rootworm-resistant strain, Dow and DuPont's Herculex RW, in 2005, and Japan cleared it this year. Now the 27 nations of the European Union may eventually allow the corn to be imported.

The commission-backed advisory group European Food Safety Authority earlier this year called the strain safe for the EU market. However, some governments and environmental groups worry that the strain could be harmful to human and animal health.

E.U. national agriculture ministers must now decide whether to allow the strain within roughly three months, a commission official says. If the ministers can't agree to allow the corn, the commission will approve the strain for import for a period of 10 years.