Russian draft bill bans GM food (20/6/2007)

Duma Drafts Tough GM Food Bill
Kommersant (Russia's Daily Online), June 20 2007

The Russian Duma's Security Committee has drafted a bill banning production and sale of genetically modified food. Moscow authorities threw their support behind the legislation. Moscow Duma deputies were among the drafters while Mayor Yuri Luzhkov called on President Vladimir Putin to address the GM food issue head-on.

Kommersant has got hold of a draft federal law on biological safety and circulation of genetically modified food.

The Russian Academy of Science currently permits the use of 13 sorts of genetically modified sources three sorts of soy, five sorts of corn, two sorts of sugar-beet, two sorts of potato and one of rice. A possible harmful influence of transgenic products has not been scientifically proved as yet.

The draft bill bans the production of GM plants used for food, sale of GM food to children under 16 and at hospitals. The army and navy are also banned from purchasing GM food. The legislation binds producers to indicate the amount of genetically modified components on the packaging irrespective of the GM share in the product while currently products with the GM share less than 0.9 percent are not to be labeled as "GM".

Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov, an ardent supporter of the move, has sent a letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin, suggesting setting up a governmental commission to research the GM issue.

"We will do all it takes to ban the uncontrolled circulation of GM food in the country and transgenic imports to Russia," says Lyudmila Stebenkova, head of the Moscow Duma’s health care committee and drafter of the federal bill.

All the Article in Russian as of June 20, 2007


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