News last update:6 Aug 2012

Swiss allowed to use GM wheat in studies

The Swiss Federal Department of the Environment (Bundesamt fuer Umwelt – "BAFU") has approved that GM wheat can be sowed experimentally in the spring at the Agricultural Research Institute of Zurich-Reckenholz.

As reported by BAFU, researchers have provided the required evidence that antibiotic-resistance genes are not found in the two varieties of wheat. In addition, emergency planning has been completed.  

Powdery mildew
The applications made by the University of Zurich pertain to the investigation of wheat plants with increased specific resistance to powdery mildew fungal disease as well as to crosses of wheat with the wild grass, Aegilops cylindrica. The ETH wants to experimentally plant wheat with increased fungal resistance.  

Greenpeace levelled the criticism that, "We only know a part of what they are approving. The approval that BAFU has now definitely granted is based on information that is incomplete. 'Important data' were missing when the application was submitted this past May." Greenpeace has received support from the Small Farmers Association.

(Source: checkbiotech.org) 

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