Hearing in the German Parliament: Preserve genetic engineering regulations!

- The rules on approval, risk assessment and labelling of genetic engineering in food and feed must not be eroded. This has become clear once again at an expert hearing in the German Parliament (Bundestag).

ENGA General Secretary Heike Moldenhauer at the hearing

In a motion, the CDU/CSU parliamentary group demands to exempt a large part of the new genetic engineering methods from the genetic engineering regulations in order to promote their application. Several experts have now been heard in the Bundestag.

Softening the rules would endanger organic farming and "Ohne Gentechnik" (Non-GMO)

"The hearing has once again clearly shown that we must preserve the existing, tried and tested genetic engineering regulations. Eroding them would not only be a risk to the environment and health, but would also pose an existential hazard to the organic and conventional 'Ohne Gentechnik' food industries, which together account for almost 30 billion euros in sales in Germany. Organic farming and 'Ohne Gentechnik' depend on being able to guarantee their customers GMO-free products. This would hardly be possible if the existing regulations no longer applied consistently to new genetic engineering methods," comments VLOG Managing Director Alexander Hissting.

There is no reason to weaken the rules

"GMO-free quality foodstuffs are highly valued by consumers. An erosion of the rules would rightly shake their trust in products, the economy and politics. The German government must stop the EU Commission's plans to deregulate genetic engineering. There is no reason to erode the existing regulations. Not even if CRISPR and co. are seen as having a great potential. Research on genetically modified plants is already permitted and takes place in Germany. There are tried and tested regulations for a possible market approval. In reality, so far, there have been mainly promises regarding future attributes of genetically engineered plants, but no marketable products. For this reason alone, it would be paradoxical now to change laws in anticipation for the sake of mere promises of salvation."

Bundestag: No majority for genetic engineering in agriculture (in German)

SPD Bundestag parliamentary group: New genetic engineering - precautionary principle must apply (in German)

Informationsdienst Gentechnik: Expert hearing: No genes against extreme weather (in German)

VLOG statement on the genetic engineering hearing in the Bundestag on 28 November 2022 (in German)

ENGA statement on the genetic engineering hearing in the Bundestag on 28 Nvember 2022 (in German)