GM Policy strangles EU livestock industry
Fefac President Pedro Corrêa de Barros called on the
EU Farm Council to take urgent measures ensuring adequate access of livestock
farmers to feed materials.
He welcomed the proposed decision to eliminate set-aside for the new crop season but stressed
that this measure is not effective to address the present acute shortage of feed
materials for the EU livestock population.
He noted that the only way out
to cover current market needs are additional imports of energy-rich feed
materials of which the EU needs to import 15-25 million tonnes according to
trade and industry experts.
However, access to imports is severely
restricted due to the present EU GM policy.
Corrêa de Barros warned the EU Farm Council that "The current EU
GM policy will cripple the EU livestock industry.
"Livestock producers in
third countries will be able to use the GMO crops not yet approved in the EU to
feed their animals and will increasingly sell their products of animal origin to
EU consumers at a lower price compared with EU operators".
that the systematic slowdown of GM approvals in the EU combined with a strict
0-tolerance policy for the presence of non EU-approved materials already
resulted in the loss of 4 million tonnes of CGF (Corn Gluten Feed) and DDGS
(Dried Distillers Grains with Solubles) that the EU used to import for years
from the US.
Feed price inflation
CGF and DDGS are staple feeds
mainly for cattle in the "Atlantic" EU countries (Ireland, Portugal, the
Netherlands, Spain and the UK). Their substitution has artificially inflated
feed prices in the EU by 2-3 billion euros, out of a total cost increase for
compound feed of 10 billion euros since last year due to higher world prices for
Further massive feed price increases in the EU,
which livestock farmers may not be able to recover from consumers, must be
expected in the new marketing year.
This can happen if traces of newly
authorised GM grains in export countries appear in the supply of soybean meal to
the EU, before they obtain full EU approval.
Corrêa de Barros asked Farm Ministers to take their
political responsibility to avoid strangling the EU livestock
"It is the EU Farm Ministers' duty to maintain EU's feed and
food security by accelerating the EU GM approval process.
set a workable threshold for technically unavoidable presence of GM crops which
have been approved in exporting countries but are pending approval in the EU at
the time of import of feed grains.
The planned EU CAP health check can
meet its objective of market-orientation and competitiveness only if the EU
livestock sector is on a level playing field with third countries operators,
which is also in the interest of their main suppliers, the EU grain producers.
To comment, login here
Or register to be able to comment.