Ministry of Agriculture responds on GM corns in Xinjiang

Source:CRI Online Published: 2016-09-08 10:55:49

The Ministry of Agriculture responded on Monday, regarding a case of genetically modified (GM) corn planted in northwest China's Xiangjiang, stating that the seeds had been smuggled from abroad.

It stated that the company which introduced the GM corn did this to seek profit.

The local seed control authority in Xinjiang, uprooted over 2000 acres of GM corn in May, imposing a fine of 10,000 yuan (around US$1,500) on the growers.

The genetically modified crops have greater immunity to pests and diseases, tempting farmers from some regions of the country, to risk growing such crops.

Genetically modified corn has not been allowed for commercial production here in China, and growing it violates regulations.

Regulation on growing GM crops is quite strict in China.

China currently approves only the production of GM cotton, and papaya, and prohibits commercial production of any GM staple foods.

Huang Dafang, researcher at The Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, says that the illegal growing of GM crops disturbs the current market order, and obstructs scientific research on GM corn, according to the report of thepaper.com.

He also points out that the ban on growing such crops is not due to the safety concerns, but because the procedures are yet to be perfected.

Despite the strict ban on growing, China is a major importer of GM farm produce. GM soybeans, corn, cotton, sugar-beets and rape can be imported for processing.

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