Europe Lowers its Guard on GMOs

Friday 4 July 2008


A "detection threshold" would be set to 0.1%. It would be considered to be the zero value for lab devices. Furthermore, the Commission is indicating that “due to the uncertainties linked to the sampling and the analyses”, the twenty-seven Member States would need to multiply this threshold by 2 or 3 before asking the Customs to get into action. This would bring the tolerance threshold to 0.2% to 0.3%.

However limited it may be, the leeway thus obtained would allow the United-States and Brazil or Argentina to continue exporting without much risk, at least in the short term. The dependence of European of livestock farms to maize and soy from the American continent is such that, the Commission justifies, it will no longer be possible to guarantee their supplying without turning a blind eye to transgenic contaminations.

This comforts the position of stockbreeders and the foodstuff industry, who reckon that dozens of millions of Euros are wasted due to the “zero tolerance” for GMOs of Old Continent at its borders. Besides, as underlined by a pro-GMO lobbyist, “up to 2% stones or rat excrements are tolerated in agricultural products…”