Despite misleading statements: "Ohne Gentechnik" production is secure

- The German Raiffeisen Association (DRV) and the German Feed Association (DVT) try to conjure up a collapse of "Ohne Gentechnik" (Non-GMO) production. The "maintenance of the supply of the wide market with GMO-free material" is "not realistic in the long run", the associations claim, apparently misleading deliberately.

Alexander Hissting, Managing Director of the Association for Food without Genetic Engineering (VLOG), comments: “If the topic were not far too serious, the statements could be dismissed as a bad April Fool's joke. Apparently DRV and DVT are deliberately trying to talk the successful 'Ohne Gentechnik' sector into a crisis without any factual basis.

DRV and DVT instrumentalize war effects

“Of course, the terrible war in Ukraine has far-reaching elementary effects in many areas, including the supply of agricultural raw materials. Prices for animal feed have risen exorbitantly. But DRV and DVT are instrumentalizing this situation in an unfair and unobjective manner by mixing facts and figures and by consulting their own pre-colored crystal ball for long-term forecasts.

Over 120 percent self-sufficiency in rapeseed meal

“In 2020, the degree of self-sufficiency in Germany for the actual feed ingredient rapeseed meal was not 30 percent, as the two associations claim, but over 120 percent. Presumably, DRV and DVT are referring to the unprocessed raw material rapeseed, for which the degree of self-sufficiency was just under 40 percent. However, imports from Ukraine accounted for only about 10 percent of the total volume of rapeseed to be processed in Germany.

For rapeseed, a shortfall of around 5 percent will probably have to be compensated for

“Despite the war, cultivation in and deliveries from Ukraine are continuing. After the blockade of the ports, the export of agricultural products by rail has currently increased significantly. Experts expect the total 2022 harvest in Ukraine to average 50 to 70 percent of the usual amount for all crops. Based on the 2020 harvest and import figures, Germany would therefore have to compensate from other sources for about 5 percent of the war-related shortfall in rapeseed meal. This is within the range of usual weather-related fluctuations.

No serious basis for long-term forecasts

“There is no serious basis at all for long-term forecasts for the coming years, such as those finally published by DRV and DVT. Long-term development depends on the further course of the war, on weather-related yield levels, and on supply and demand worldwide. If the corresponding demand exists, more GMO-free feed crops will, of course, in the future also be grown in other regions.

The goal is obviously the weakening of 'Ohne Gentechnik' through uncertainty

“It is obviously the planning of DRV and DVT to alienate the retail and the food industry in order to deliberately reduce demand and thus, ultimately, also the supply, with the aim of weakening the 'Ohne Gentechnik' platform. It is absolutely unacceptable to use the consequences of the horrific war against Ukraine as a pretext to push through one’s own interests.

GMO-free production does not reduce the amount of food

“Furthermore, the argument of food supply security is unfair and simply wrong. After all, GMO-free production logically does not reduce the total amount of food produced. On the other hand, everyone has to struggle with rising prices, whether GMO-free, conventional or organic. Farmers must not be left to bear these additional costs."

Figures on rapeseed meal in Germany
(based on figures from OVID for 2020)

•    Production of rapeseed meal: 5.2 million tons
•    Import rapeseed meal: 0.9 million tons
•    Export rapeseed meal: 1.9 million tons
•    Results in net consumption: 4.2 million tons of rapeseed meal
•    Results in a degree of self-sufficiency of 123 %

Figures on rapeseed in Germany
(based on figures from OVID for 2020)

•    Processing of rapeseed: 9.0 million tons
•    Own harvest of rapeseed: 3.5 million tons
•    Results in self-sufficiency of 38.9 %

•    Import of rapeseed from Ukraine 2020: 0.9 million tons, 10 % of the amount processed in Germany
•    Estimates: 50-70 % of Ukrainian arable land can be cultivated in 2022
•    If import from Ukraine decreases by 50 % in 2022, as a result 5 % of the total amount would have to be compensated for in Germany

Press release of DRV and DVT
Global competition for agricultural raw materials: "GMO-free" material remains scarce! (in German)