Challenges and Risks of Genetically Engineered Organisms

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This book discusses the often diverging risks and opportunities associated with genetically engineered organisms in terms of the environment, food safety, and economics and trade. These issues were raised at the OECD Workshop on Challenges and Risks of GMOs - What Risk Analysis is Appropriate? Options for Future Policy Making Towards Integrated Agro-Food Systems, held in Maastricht, Netherlands, in July 2003.  Discussions also covered the relevant WTO Agreements and their relationship with other multilateral accords as well as  regional and national approaches.


General Discussion

B. Le Gallic highlighted certain definition issues. He expressed surprise about the range of terms and concepts used (e.g. GMO, LMO, GMPs, Conventionally Modified Organism, GMO-free, etc.) and pointed out that this may increase difficulties in achieving a clear and transparent discussion on GMOs. In particular he noted the difference between US and EU approaches, namely: product (US) vs. process (EU) as well as the related distinction between LMOs and GMOs, the first of which seems to exclude processed product from the analysis (e.g. milk, eggs or meat from animal fed on GMOs; cheese using GM enzymes). He concluded that while products may be similar (following the principle of “substantial equivalence”), it may nevertheless be important for the consumer to have access to information on the ...


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