The government in Germany has announced it has agreed
to draft rules for the cultivation of genetically modified crops.
The cabinet has already granted a draft law from the Agriculture Minister,
The local German rules have already been authorised by the European Union
and notes that farmers who grow GM crops will be liable if neighbouring
plantings tainted with more than 0.9% GMO content. Farmers will then have to pay
financial compensation. Naturland, Organic farming association, said that the
0.9% of GMO contamination level is too high for members to sell such crops as
The rules declare that there should be a 150-metre gap between GMO crops
and conventional crops to prevent cross-pollination and a space of 300-metres
must be kept from fields with organic crops. Any changes in the distances will
have to be agreed upon by neighbouring farmers.
The draft which is to include a minimum buffer zone from conventional
plantings, has been criticised by the German Farmers' Association DBV. It has
stated that the rules would be too complex and a single unified buffer zone for
conventional and organic crops is needed.
The DBV also criticised the lack of detail about financial liability.
"Neither farmers nor the insurance industry has been given a sufficient basis
for the calculation of possible liability," the DBV said. Environmental pressure
group, BUND, also criticised that buffer zones were too small and would permit
uncontrolled cross-pollination of conventional crops.
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