The U.S. Supreme Court sides with agricultural biotechnology and other news from this week in ag biotech…
Want to learn more about ag biotech? Check out the stories below to read the news we thought was important this week!
Supreme Court lifts the ban on GM Alfalfa Seeds
The Supreme Court decided to overturn a lower court’s ban on planting genetically modified alfalfa seeds on Monday, a sweeping victory for Monsanto Co. in what was the first ruling by the Supreme Court over genetically modified organism (GMO) crops. The ruling, a 7-1 decision, allows the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to consider a partial deregulation of alfalfa during the time when USDA is completing its Environmental Impact Statement, which is necessary before full deregulation of the genetically engineered alfalfa at issue in the case can occur.
At an International Grains Council Conference, Peter Reading, managing director of Australia’s Grains Research and Development Corporation said that Australia should focus its energies on wheat breeding technologies, including GM wheat, in order to address the decline rates in Australia’s wheat productivity growth. However, GM wheat is not expected to be available for another ten years.
Lack of communication between scientists and public, Jia Hepeng says
In a piece Thursday on how well scientists inform the public about food safety, Jia Hepeng said that China’s conflict over genetically modified crops can only be resolved through improved communication between scientists and the public. Citing events such as the Ministry of Agriculture’s announcement that it had issued biosafety licenses to two pest-resistant rice varieties and one phystaze maize, Hepeng calls for more refined, reader-friendly ways of presenting ongoing research on GM crops and better systems for decision-making, regulation, and monitoring.