Tuesday, December 22 06:38 pm
More research is needed into Monsanto’s genetically modified maize MON 810, the only biotech crop commercially grown in Europe, to assess its environmental impact, a French advisory body said.
The opinion given by biotech committee HCB, published on Tuesday, was requested by the French government, which last year banned cultivation of MON 810 citing environmental concerns.
In an debate about whether to renew the license for the maize type, France and other European Union states have criticized as insufficient a favorable opinion in June from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).
HCB called for further studies to evaluate potential drawbacks in MON 810, such as damage to non-targeted insects or the development of resistance to the crop among targeted pests.
"The only way to highlight … a significant increase or decrease in populations of non-targeted invertebrates is to implement monitoring over several years," the HCB said.