Food Law News - EU - 2011

Council Press Release (7779/11), 17 March 2011

GM FOOD - Authorisation of three genetically modified varieties

The following is an extract from the minutes of the Agriculture and Fisheries Council meeting

Proposals for decisions authorising the use of three genetically modified varieties in food, feed and for other uses, but excluding cultivation, have been presented to the Council for adoption. No agreement was reached either in favour of or against the authorisations.

Following the submission of initial applications for authorisation of these genetically modified varieties, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) was initially consulted, as provided for by Regulation 1829/2003, and issued favourable scientific opinions. On that basis, the European Commission drew up proposals for authorising these varieties, which were presented to the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health (SCoFCAH). At its meetings on 24 September 2010 and 15 November 2010, the SCoFCAH was unable to achieve the qualified majority necessary to deliver an opinion for or against the authorisation measures proposed by the Commission. In the absence of an opinion it was up to the Council to act on the Commission proposals within a three-month period.

Today, the Council noted that there was not a qualified majority either in favour of or against the following three proposals:

The Council having concluded its proceedings on this issue, the Commission is now entitled to finalise the decision-making procedure in respect of all the proposals.

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