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GMO field trial decline continues in EU

The ongoing “brain drain” in plant biotechnology research in Europe has been confirmed by figures showing that the number of requests for field trials continues to fall, says European biotechnology industry association EuropaBio. Figures from the German biotechnology information website, Transgen, show that there were only 42 new requests in the EU for field trials starting in 2011, compared with 81 in 2010 and 109 in 2009. Such requests are a good indicator for research activities, both in the public and private sector, and the decline confirms the difficulties researchers face in developing GM crops in the region, EuropaBio says.

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