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Proposed tighter regime regarding GM crops

Hon Trevor Mallard
Minister for the Environment

31 July 2008 Media Statement

Proposed tighter regime regarding GM crops

Proposed amendments to current legislation will provide a greater level of transparency and increased accountability regarding the management of genetically modified (GM) crops, Environment Minister Trevor Mallard says.

The Minister today instructed the Environmental Risk Management Authority (ERMA) to consult on proposed new regulations to deal with the segregation and traceability of GM crops.

“The specific proposals ERMA will consult on are intended to improve the processes for applications to ERMA while not limiting opportunities for innovation and use of beneficial new organisms,” Trevor Mallard said.

The proposed new rules could require people wanting to conditionally release GM crops to provide ERMA with information on segregation and traceability schemes they might use to manage those crops. This would enable ERMA to take such information into account when it considered applications for conditional releases. ERMA could then use the information to identify what controls might be needed.

While ERMA can already require this information, the proposed new regulation would provide greater certainty to applicants on information requirements and greater transparency about the process.

“I would encourage all people and organisations likely to be affected by this initiative to contact ERMA so that their views can be considered as we develop these new regulations,” Trevor Mallard said.

“Consultation is only for a few weeks because I want to get these new regulations in place as quickly as possible to provide certainty for all involved.

“While ERMA will be working hard to inform everyone with an interest in this proposal about the consultation, I urge anyone with a view to make a submission by accessing the consultation and submission documents on ERMA’s website,” Trevor Mallard said.

For more information on the HSNO Act regulation-making process contact the Ministry for the Environment. (04) 439-7400.
ERMA’s website is: www.ermanz.govt.nz


ENDS

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