European Commission Approves Genetically Modified Soyabean for Food and Feed

Thursday, October 29, 2020

The European Commission approved the genetically modified (GM) soybean, XtendFlex, after a comprehensive authorization procedure, including a scientific assessment by the European Food Safety Authority, a Euroactiv report said. The soybean, produced by biotechnology company Bayer, has been developed to confer tolerance to three major herbicides: dicamba, glufosinate-ammonium and glyphosate. With a guaranteed European market, growers in the US and Canada are expected now to ramp up the production of the soybean to capitalize on the new avenues opened by this decision. All member states were given the opportunity to express their view in the standing committee and subsequently the appeal committee. 

The authorization is valid for 10 years, and any products produced from this GM variety will be subject to the EU’s labelling and traceability rules. XtendFlex is Bayer’s newest soybean and builds on a previous GM variety with an added tolerance to glufosinate. This means that growers are “provided with additional flexibility and tools to help manage tough to control and resistant weeds,” a Bayer representative told Euroactiv. “With this authorization, Bayer now looks forward to a full launch in the United States and Canada in 2021,” they confirmed.

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