Seed World

Britain’s Leading Scientists to Carry on Research into Gene Editing


Less than two months ago the Court of Justice of the EU has concluded that organisms obtained by newer forms of mutagenesis are subject to the obligations laid down by the GMO Directive.

That was a very sad day for the seed sector.

“While other parts of the world go ahead with these innovations without unnecessary overregulation, Europe’s breeders and farmers will once again loose out, without a chance to explore the huge potential and benefits of these plant breeding innovations in practice,’’ said Garlich v. Essen, ESA Secretary General.

Now, leading scientists and researchers in the UK are convincing the Government to let them carry on their research into gene editing. What they push for is a more enabling and science-based environment for genetic innovation in agriculture post-Brexit.

They ask for clarity on the regulation of new technologies such as genome editing in crop and livestock breeding, in which UK research is world-leading and which offer tremendous potential to deliver increases in agricultural productivity, more durable pest and disease resistance, improved nutrition and resilience to climate change.

Source: European Seed Association