“This proposal provides more legal predictability and an enabling framework for category 1 NGT plants, such as the ones being developed in the project. With GeneBEcon, we can contribute scientific data to the upcoming discussions, particularly for the implementation regulation, which will be developed once the final legislative text is adopted both in the EU Council and Parliament.” says Dennis Eriksson, coordinator of GeneBEcon and Associate Professor at the Department of Plant Breeding, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.

The European Parliament has voted in support of a proportionate regulatory approach to New Genomic Techniques (NGTs) by the EU Parliament’s Plenary session. The legislative proposal recognizes that some NGT plants are as safe as conventionally bred plants and will only be assessed based on their equivalence with the latter. The legislation recommends a verification process, ensuring a science-based approach where competent authorities assess the molecular characteristics of NGT plants. This process determines if they belong to Category 1 or Category 2 (NGT plants that do not meet equivalence criteria and must undergo an adapted risk assessment).

This new proposal will create an enabling regulatory environment for the use of NGT plants by agrifood value chain players and consumers. With examples like an NGT potato with improved starch quality and resistance to a virus, and a microalgae producing high-value compounds, the GeneBEcon consortium is assessing the impact of regulatory options on the feasibility, safe use, and business case for such products in the EU. This approach is essential to ensure the safe use of these products and the continued progress of scientific innovations.

GeneBEcon’s press release can be found here.

Get more information on the Legislative Proposal here.