GMO Law in Italy passes in Lower House (25/1/2005)

GMO Law in Italy passes in Lower House
January 21, 2005
By Robert Derham, Checkbiotech
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ROME - The much contested Alemmano GMO decree was passed by Italy's Lower House with amendments, which would make it more difficult for genetically modified crops to be grown in Italy.

With the passage of the Alemmano GMO decree, the Italian Lower House has found a loop-hole in the EU legislation that will allow Italy to inplement its own policy on the grounds of co-existance of transgenic, conventional and organic crops.

The EU has been slowly opening the doors to GM crops, and has asked its member states to do the same.

However, Italy has several regions [about 70% of them] that have banned together to block the sale and use of genetically engineered crops.

Early in November, Italy moved to open its doors to GM crops, while granting the authority to regional areas to implement their own bans or open-door policy.

Italy is not the only dissenting EU member state. It is joined by France and Austria who lead a coalition of EU member states that oppose opening the doors to genetically engineered crops. While Holland, Spain and the UK have voiced a more open-door policy to GMOs.

Ermete Realacci, of the Italian Margherita party, is pleased with the modifications to the Alemanno GMO decree and its subsequent approval in the Lower House.

"This time the quality lobby won. The one that cares about the quality of Italy's produce and is not convinced that our country can compete with other countries with GMO corn."

"We hope that the senate will approve the decree swiftly. Our agriculture, the growers and the citizens need precise rules which guarantee freedom of choice which is our only chance to give our produce a place on the world market," Realacci told AGI.

Quotes source: AGI

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