[DE] Germany: Regions are to decide on GM planting, says Minister Aigner
German agriculture minister Ilse Aigner (CSU) wants to leave the decision up to the regions about planting genetically modified crops. "The German states as well as the administrative districts should decide themselves if they want to have green gene technology or not," said the minister in an interview with the Reuters news agency.
German agriculture minister Ilse Aigner (CSU) under pressure: A campaign supported by environmental and consumer organisations calls for a ban to be imposed on the planting of GM maize before sowing begins. Photo: campact
Aigner had previously announced that the authorisation for MON810 Bt maize, the only genetically modified crop grown in the EU, would be reevaluated before sowing begins mid-April. The reason for this is the monitoring plan to which Monsanto is committed to keep track of any environmental changes caused by the planting of MON810 maize. It was only after this plan had been worked out and approved by the Federal Office of Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL) that former agriculture minister Horst Seehofer lifted the commerical ban on MON 810 maize in May 2007.
Monsanto is required to submit a report on the implementation of this monitoring plan and its results by the end of March. "This will then be carefully reviewed as to whether the monitoring plan was correctly implemented and if the practical implementation lived up to the high requirements and expectations of it. It will be determined from the outcome of this evaluation," stated Ilse Aigner on the ministry's website, "if protection measures will again be imposed during the time it takes for a decison on a reauthorisation to be worked out in Brussels."