US wants China to approve more GM crops under trade deal
The US is seeking better access for imports of GM crops into China as part of a trade deal currently under discussion between the two sides. The subject, long a major irritant in agricultural trade between the countries, is a main issue for the US Department of Agriculture, said a biotech industry source.
The US FDA has approved GMO golden rice for use in human and animal food. In line with its usual practice, the FDA makes no claims about finding this GMO safe. The FDA’s decision follows similar approvals from Australia/New Zealand and Canada.
The version of golden rice approved by the US FDA, called GR2E, contains very little of the key ingredient beta-carotene. Worse, even the little that it does contain rapidly degrades during storage. For these reasons, FDA has told its developer (the International Rice Research Institute) that no health claims may be based on it. It seems that the trade-off experienced by the golden rice project between beta-carotene production and yield in its various GMO rices has not been resolved.
Mixtures of chemicals present at so-called “safe” levels cause liver damage
New research shows that chemicals at low levels deemed safe by regulators for each individual substance are toxic when present in mixtures. The experiment was designed to reflect real-life scenarios, in which the general population is exposed to combinations of chemicals at low doses from dietary and environmental sources. Adverse effects were observed in liver parameters, especially at the low dose and affecting mainly male rats.