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GM Crops Approved for Import as Processing Materials
Although China hasn't approved the commercial production of GM grain crops so far, GM food is widely consumed in domestic market.
According to the statistics from Customs General Administration, China imported 54.80 million tonnes of soybean in 2010, hitting a record high. The import volume was 12.25 times higher than that in 2009. In contrast with the import volume, China's soybean yield was only about 15.00 million tonnes in 2010, which means most of the soybean consumed in China is imported GM soybean. From 2005 to 2009, China's soybean import volume was 26.59 million tonnes, 28.24 million tonnes, 30.82 million tonnes, 37.44 million tonnes and 42.55 million tonnes respectively.
By 21 March 2011, China had issued 29 biosafety certificates (valid) to five crops, including 12 to corn, 5 to soybean, 7 to canola, 4 to cotton and 1 to sugar beet.
The 29 biosafty certificates are to 5 companies, namely Dupont, Monsanto, Syngenta, Bayer and Dow. 13 biosafty certificates were issued to Monsanto, 9 to Bayer, 4 to Syngenta, 3 to Dupont and 2 to Dow (this 2 biosafty certificates were issued to both Dupont and Dow).
Source: Seed China News June 2011
Content of Seed China News June 2011:
GM crops approved for import as processing materials
PBR application in China
CRI, CAAS made progress in GM wheat breeding
Scientist suggests to screen corn germplasm resources
Winall Hi-tech cooperates with AAAS
Xinjiang Condy fails to launch IPO
Longping High-tech increases investment in chili business
Shandong Denghai strengthens base construction in western China
Second Guangxi-Asean vegetable exhibition held in Nanning
Foreign seed giants compete to seize Chinese market
According to Ministry of Agriculture, it is very necessary to spread scientific knowledge about GM crops at present because most of people in China have little or no knowledge about GM crops and they are easily be misguided by unscientific speech.
On 27 June, Ministry of Agriculture published a book, namely "100 questions about GM crops", aiming to spread scientific knowledge about GM crops and GM products to create a favorable circumstance for the development of GM crops in China.
Ministry of Agriculture has strengthened the propagating of the knowledge on GM crops since late last year. In late 2010, Chinese government set up a special funds of about USD0.4 million for scientists to spread GM crops to the public. Early this year, Ministry of Agriculture released a notice asking agriculture departments at all levels should further propagate GM crops knowledge.
Besides the publication of the book, agriculture departments in Beijing and Hebei held promotional activities recently to propagate GM crops knowledge.
The government's recent policies showed that China may take GM technology as an effective measure to safeguard the food security. Although China hasn't approved the commercial production of GM grain crops so far, GM food is widely consumed in domestic market.
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