QI live in Germany, why is it not possible for me to buy GMOs like the arctic apple etc.? Why have Americans and Canadians the chance to buy your products but we have not? Do you intentionally ignore the growing customer demand from Europeans?

I live in Germany, why is it not possible for me to buy GMOs like the arctic apple etc.? Why have Americans and Canadians the chance to buy your products but we have not? Do you intentionally ignore the growing customer demand from Europeans?

AExpert Answer

The principle reason that GM products such as Arctic apples are not available in Germany or any other country of the European Union is due to the GMO labelling legislation in place there. Presently, any food product that contains GM ingredients of greater than 0.9 percent has to be labelled as being a GM food product. The environmental non-governmental organizations have led extensive public relation campaigns to convince European consumers that GM labels are to be viewed as a warning, or danger, sign. Given that products like GM apples, papaya, potatoes or salmon are directly consumable GM products, they would have to be labelled as being genetically modified.

 

In Canada, these products do not require labelling. They can be sold as a regular food products with no identification as to the breeding method used to create them. The absence of mandatory labelling in these markets makes it much harder for environmental organizations opposed to GM food products to stigmatize them as negative food products. In 2016, the USA implemented mandatory labelling of some GM products. There is still uncertainty as to which plant breeding techniques this will cover, but for the present, some food products will require mandatory labels. Uncertainty exists as well about how the label information will be made available as there have been some suggestions that this could be done through scanning a QTL code, rather than expressing it visibly on the product packaging.  

 

The companies that have commercialized these GM food products are not intentionally ignoring Germany or any other European nation, however, the mandatory labelling requirements mean that it is very unlikely that any labelled GM food products will be available for sale there in the near future. This is very unfortunate. I am sure there are more consumers that would be glad to purchase GM food products if they were available, sadly their voice is drowned out by the very vocal voices of the environmental opposition to GM food products.

 

At this point, Arctic apples are being sold as dried slices in vacuum-sealed packaging. Given the difference in size between the Canadian and American markets, Okanagan Specialty Fruits would be expected to focus on the American market ahead of the Canadian one. I expect the day will come when a consumer will be able to buy a fresh Arctic apple in a grocery store, but that day may be a little way away as a considerable number of apple trees will need to be planted to ensure a supply that is sufficient to meet market demands. 

Posted on November 6, 2017
This question has previously been answered by a variety experts.   Jim Gaffney, PhD, Strategy Lead of Biotech Affairs and Regulatory at DuPont Pioneer says this:   “In short, yes, genetically modified (GM) crops are one tool with great potential for helping feed the growing population. The challenge is not just one of increased productivity though, but also of improving prosperity for millions of smallholder farmers and environmental stewardship and sustainability. That... Read More
Answer:
Posted on October 29, 2017
Every fruit, vegetable & grain that is available today has been altered genetically through human intervention and selective breeding. Read more about how this is done here.    Cabbage, broccoli, kale and brussel sprouts are all the same species.       There are only nine GM crops commercially available on the market today: sweet and field corn, soybeans, cotton, canola, alfalfa, sugar beets, rainbow papaya, potato and summer squash. GM apples are approved... Read More
Posted on June 19, 2017
Yes, the EU is one of the geographies where GM-derived food and animal feed must be labeled according to conditions outlined by the European Commission on this webpage. GM labels are very common on sacks of animal feed. Depending on the type of animal, GM labeled feed is often the standard – except of course when it comes to GM free or organic supply chains. Read More
Answer: