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for a responsible, fair & sustainable food system

Vigilance Still Needed on GM Rice Contamination

Immediate release (12 Apr 2007)

Calls to Pete Riley 07903 341 065

GM Freeze is calling on the Food Standards Agency, as well as food retailers and manufacturers, to be on maximum alert to prevent further imports of GM contaminated US long grain rice after Swedish authorities announced yesterday finding Bayer’s unauthorised GM LL601 in pre-packed US rice.

Sweden imported the rice in January 2007, five months after the US authorities informed the EU of the contamination they had first discovered in January 2006. Earlier this year another important variety of long grain rice in the US, BASF’s non-GM Clearfield, was found to be contaminated with 4 GM traits developed by Bayer. [1] GM contaminated rice was available for purchase in UK shops as late as January 2007, more than two months after the FSA claimed no contaminated rice remained on the market.

Commenting Pete Riley of GM Freeze said:

It is pretty clear that the GM contamination of US rice has not yet run its course. The whole of the UK’s food industry, from supermarkets to catering establishments, needs to be very vigilant to prevent further contamination of our supply chains. The Food Standards Agency must ensure that the food chain is being adequately monitored to ensure that no contaminated lots get through and contaminated stocks are removed from the market.

Calls to Pete Riley 07903 341 065.

1. See www.aphis.usda.gov/newsroom/content/2007/03/CL131update3-9-07.shtml