Bayer blows up “unscientific” rejection by Mexican regulators of GMO corn permit


Mexico City — Bayer is evaluating its legal options after first denying the GMO corn permit sought by Mexican health regulators, a German pharmaceutical and crop science giant said in a statement to Reuters on Friday. He stated and accused the decision of being “unscientific.”

Reuters reported that regulator Cofepris refused to permit corn for future imports as President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s government solidified opposition to GM crops.

“I’m disappointed with the unscientific reasons Coffepris used to deny the authorization,” the statement said, identifying the rejected corn varieties as using proprietary HT3 x SmartStax Pro technology.

Bayer emphasized that the refusal of the permit would not affect its current business, and last year due to regulatory delays in the European Union, the company stopped working on the HT3 hybrid corn variety and the company will launch it later. He pointed out that he supported the planned new HT4 line. Ten years.

Nonetheless, Bayer criticized what it described as a continued regulatory delay by Coffepris and the possibility of additional permit denials that could have a “catastrophic effect” on the Mexican supply chain. ..

According to the company, genetically modified crops, including corn, have undergone more safety testing than “any other crop in agricultural history” and are considered safe for humans, animals and the environment.

The Coffepris press did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

At the end of last year, Lopez Obrador issued a controversial decree outlining a three-year plan banning human consumption of the herbicide glyphosate and GMO corn.

Industry groups have sharply criticized the plan, arguing that there is a risk of a trade dispute with the United States, and failed to persuade judges to withdraw it. If the ban is interpreted to include animal feed or other industrial uses, they say it will ultimately hurt consumers at higher food prices.

However, planned bans are popular with environmentalists and health food advocates who claim that spraying glyphosate on GMO crops designed to tolerate them is certainly harmful.

Glyphosate was pioneered by the herbicide Roundup brand of pesticide company Monsanto, which was acquired by Bayer as part of a $ 63 billion acquisition in 2018.

David Arile Garcia

Reuters

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