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USDA OKs Dow's GM insect-resistant soybeans

The USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has made a preliminary decision to deregulate Dow AgroSciences' genetically modified insect-resistant and herbicide-tolerant DAS81419 soybeans. The APHIS has made a preliminary finding of no significant impact and issued a plant pest risk assessment and environmental assessment for a 30-day public review. The soybeans produce the Bt Cry1Ac and Cry1F toxins for the control of a range of lepidopteran pests and are tolerant to the herbicide, glufosinate-ammonium. Dow applied for US approval for seed production for DAS81419 soybeans, with initial commercialisation targeted at Brazil and Argentina in 3-5 years' time. The EPA granted a tolerance exemption for the Cry1F toxin in soybeans last month (Agrow No 683, p 26). Dow's petition to the USDA for deregulation was opened to public comment last year (Agrow No 659, p 18). The preliminary deregulation decision is open to public comment until April 2nd.

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