Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 

MAF extends GM testing for imported seeds

MAF extends GM testing for imported seeds

Embargoed 12 noon

Thursday 1 August 2002

New protocols to test imported sweet corn and maize seeds for the presence of genetically modified (GM) seeds will come into force on 1 August 2002.

No GM crops are grown commercially in New Zealand and no GM seeds have been approved for release into the environment. The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) is responsible for preventing unapproved GM seeds being imported into New Zealand. The current testing regime expires on 31 July 2002.

MAF has released a revised import health standard for Zea mays seed for sowing. All consignments of sweet corn and maize seeds for sowing must be tested for the presence of unapproved GM seeds, either offshore or at the border, unless MAF is satisfied that the source country has sufficient systems in place to provide a level of assurance equivalent to testing every consignment.

MAF's Director of Plants Biosecurity, Richard Ivess said MAF is extending its current testing regime to include a wider range of seeds. As well as extending the sweet corn regime to maize seeds from 1 August 2002, testing of canola seeds will start from 1 October 2002, in time for the planting season. MAF will begin discussions with industry with the aim of introducing testing for soybeans from 1 January 2003.

"The purpose of testing is to validate, within the practical limits of testing and sampling, that there is no contamination of the seeds with unapproved genetically modified material. If the testing shows any contamination at all, then the seeds will be rejected," Richard Ivess said.

Seeds imported from countries without commercial production of GM varieties are extremely unlikely to contain GM seeds. These countries' regulatory systems may provide equal or better assurance that their seeds are not contaminated than the assurances provided by testing.

MAF will develop a standard setting out criteria for deciding whether countries are free from commercial production of GM varieties, and have sufficient controls at their borders and over any trials of GM crops, to provide a level of assurance equivalent to testing every consignment. Until then, MAF will consider applications from countries in consultation with other New Zealand agencies and will publish its decisions. Once approved, routine testing of seeds will not be required though MAF may conduct random testing of imports.

"Although some countries do ad hoc testing on imported seeds, New Zealand was the first to develop a systematic approach when it introduced testing last year. We have had to develop our own rules because there are no international guidelines," Richard Ivess said.

"It is also important to recognise that existing seed production systems already provide a high level of assurance that unapproved GM seeds do not enter New Zealand. Many companies also do their own testing for commercial reasons," Richard Ivess said.

The new testing protocol was developed by MAF in consultation with other government agencies including the Environmental Risk Management Authority and the Ministry for the Environment. MAF also consulted widely with the public and industry through its discussion paper released on 6 May 2002.

Information about the new testing regime, including the testing protocols, explanations of MAF's decisions, and information about the submissions received, is available on MAF's web site at www.maf.govt.nz/gmseeds or by contacting MAF directly.

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Auckland Transport: Successful Bridge Repair Opens Two Additional Lanes To Traffic

The opening of two additional lanes on the Auckland Harbour Bridge this morning will help relieve some motorway congestion for motorists heading home to the North Shore tonight. More>>

ALSO:

Statistics New Zealand: COVID-19 Sees Record 12.2 Percent Fall In New Zealand’s Economy

Gross domestic product (GDP) fell by 12.2 percent in the June 2020 quarter, the largest quarterly fall recorded since the current series began in 1987, as the COVID-19 restrictions in place through the quarter impacted economic activity, Stats NZ said ... More>>

ALSO:

Climate: Scientists Release ‘Blueprint’ To Save Critical Ecosystems And Stabilize The Earth’s Climate

A group of scientists and experts produced the first comprehensive global-scale analysis of terrestrial areas essential for biodiversity and climate resilience, totaling 50.4% of the Earth's land. The report was published in Science Advances ... More>>

ALSO:

MPI: Independent Review Launched Into Assurances For Safe Transport Of Livestock By Sea

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has launched an independent review of the assurances it receives for the safe transport of livestock by sea. MPI Director-General Ray Smith says Mike Heron QC has been appointed to lead the review, which is expected ... More>>

ALSO:


Computers: New Zealand PC Market Grows Nearly 40% Due To Work From Home Demand

COVID-19 had large impacts on demand for PCs as businesses prepared for lockdowns by purchasing notebooks to mobilise their workforce. In the second quarter of 2020, New Zealand's Traditional PC market experienced a 39.7% year-on-year (YoY) growth ... More>>

ALSO:


University Of Auckland: Whale-Watching By Satellite – Follow Their Travels Online

Scientists have successfully attached satellite tracking tags to six New Zealand southern right whales, or tohorā, and are inviting the public to follow the whales’ travels online. Part of a major research project involving the University of Auckland ... More>>

Commerce Commission: Kiwibank Admits System Failures And Agrees To Pay Customers $5.2 Million

Kiwibank has entered into a settlement agreement with the Commerce Commission after reporting that it failed to have in place robust home loan variation disclosure policies, procedures and systems. In a settlement dated 27 August 2020, Kiwibank admitted that ... More>>

Ministry of Health: Public Transport Distancing Requirements Relaxed

Physical distancing requirements on public transport have been reviewed by the Ministry of Health to determine whether they are still required at Alert Level 2 (or below). The Ministry’s assessment is that mandatory face covering and individuals tracking ... More>>

ALSO:

NZHIA: New Zealand Hemp Industry Set To Generate $2 Billion Per Annum And Create 20,000 Jobs

A new report says a fully enabled hemp industry could generate $2 billion in income for New Zealand by 2030, while also creating thousands of new jobs. Written by industry strategist Dr Nick Marsh, the report has prompted calls from the New Zealand Hemp ... More>>

ALSO:

Stats NZ: One In 14 Employed People Report High Risk Of Losing Jobs

About one in 14 workers say they expect to lose their job or business by mid-2021, Stats NZ said today. A survey of employed people in the June 2020 quarter showed 7 percent felt there was a high or almost certain chance of losing their job or business ... More>>

ASB Quarterly Economic Forecast: NZ Economy Doing Better Than Expected, But Challenges Remain

August lockdown estimated to have shaved 8% off NZ’s weekly GDP, and 0.5% off annual GDP Economy now expected to shrink 5% (year-on-year) by end of 2020 Unemployment rate now expected to peak at 7.2% The latest ASB Quarterly Economic Forecast is less ... More>>

ALSO: