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GMO field trials continue to decline in EU

The number of field trials on genetically modified crops continues to decline in the EU, reveal the latest figures from the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre. A total of 72 trials were notified under the EU GMO registration Directive (2001/18) in 2011, the lowest since 2004 and down from 92 in 2010 and 127 in 2009. Figures for this year show that 51 trials were notified by April 26th, 35 of these in Spain, with ten other EU member states having between one and three trials each. BASF recently decided to resume field trials on GM potatoes in the EU, having earlier said it would concentrate on the Americas and Asia. The company says that this will keep strategic options open, but adds that there is little commercial opportunity for GM crops in Europe in the mid-term ( Agrow No 638, p 2).

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