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US Feed Suppliers Welcome EU Biotech Approvals

11 December 2009

US - The recent approval of a number of biotech corn varieties in the European Union (EU) is a step in the right direction for a resumption of trade in U.S. feed ingredients such as distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) and corn gluten feed for the current marketing year, according to the U.S. Grains Council.

These events include YieldGard VT Pro (MON 89034) and YieldGard VT Rootworm/RR2® (MON 88017), both developed by Council member Monsanto Company; and Agrisure RW (MIR 604), developed by Council member Syngenta. Each of these events have been authorized as safe for food and feed use by the European Food Safety Authority and the European Commission.

"Time after time, the Council's DDGS and corn gluten feeding trials have proven to provide significant input cost savings. These approvals will allow the EU feed industry to have more choices with regard to feed ingredients, which directly impacts their bottom lines," said Gary Schmalshof, USGC Biotechnology Advisory Team leader.

While these approvals are a positive step, the EU's zero tolerance of unapproved varieties will continue to provide a significant market challenge. "The EU needs to make progress in its regulatory processes in order to provide a long-term, permanent solution to issues of timeliness of biotech approvals and tolerances for low-level presence of unapproved varieties that meet internationally-adopted guidelines," said Rebecca Fecitt, USGC director of biotechnology programs.

"We are optimistic these approvals are a step in the right direction and we will continue to work with European Union on this important issue."

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