GMO-free Europe Event held at the European Parliament to take a stand discuss the European Commission’s new NGT legislative proposal

The European Commission announced a new legislative proposal for so-called ‘Novel Genomic Techniques’ in the second quarter of 2023. This may exempt certain GMOs obtained from CRISPR-Cas and other so-called ‘Novel Genomic Techniques’ from the present level of risk assessment, traceability, and labelling. The consequences of certain scenarios currently under consideration would be immense on environmental and consumer protection and on the GMO-free production chain – including organic production – in Europe.  

Together with Save our Seeds, we organized the GMO-free Europe Event 2022 on 17 November. The event was hosted in the European Parliament by Green/EFA Members of Parliament and united representatives of GMO-free Regions, scientists, farmers, producers, retailers, and consumers as well as NGOs, civil servants, and politicians to scrutinize the proposal and take a stand together. The event was a full success with more than 250 participants joining online and in person. 

As it stands today, the European Commission is in the process of creating a huge conflict of goals in its Farm to Fork Strategy. On the one hand it recognises the benefits of GMO-free organic farming and proposes to expand it to 25% by 2030. On the other hand, it mulls over the idea to abolish the basis for GMO-free agriculture in the EU with a new legal framework.

As IFOAM Organics Europe, we stressed that: 

  • Any future legislative proposal must contain strong provisions for co-existence of GM and non-GM agricultural production in Europe;  
  • Systemic problems must be answered with systemic solutions: to secure food for the people of our planet, we need a holistic, sustainable agriculture that takes nature and the many interactions in our land use into account. 
Panellists at the GMO-free Europe conference agreed: EU consumers don’t want GMOs

We will continue to advocate on this topic on behalf of the organic sector to make co-existence a focal point in the upcoming legislation.  

The recording of the event will be on our website by the end of November. Make sure to keep an eye on our GMO-page and read our Twitter thread. In the meanwhile, you can watch the below interviews to some of the panellists of the event.

For more information on (new) GMOs and IFOAM Organics Europe’s work on this issue, please contact [email protected]. IFOAM Organics Europe members can find more information on the member extranet and background materials in the arguments database on the member extranet (main messages, arguments/FAQs, visuals & videos). Contact [email protected] for access rights (issues). 

For information about what you can gain from being a member, read our membership page and contact [email protected]

The work of IFOAM Organics Europe on this topic is co-financed by the LIFE programme of the European Union, under the Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA). This page only reflects the views of the authors and its sole responsibility lies with IFOAM Organics Europe. The CINEA is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information provided.

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