But EU Commission decision is not being questioned
4 January 2017 / The EU Ombudswoman has criticised the EU Commission in regard to procedural errors in the risk assessment of genetically engineered plants. The case was started after Testbiotech made a complaint regarding the import of viable oilseed rape kernels that could, due to spillage, lead to the uncontrolled spread of genetically engineered plants. The EU Commission had, in fact, taken far longer to deal with the complaint than the stipulated time frame. This has now been deemed ‘maladministration’ by the ombudswoman.
According to a Testbiotech analysis, there are clear indications that the companies Dow and Bayer manipulated the data for risk assessment of their genetically engineered soybeans. The claim is based on analysis of the data presented by the companies for risk assessment in the EU. Analysis showed that Dow used a special sample of the genetically engineered soybeans in their feeding studies with rats, which was sprayed with much lower amount of herbicides than usual.
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is withholding access to data from feeding trials with genetically engineered soybeans. Testbiotech is concerned that the real health risks from consumption of these soybeans are being concealed. The plants produced by Bayer and Dow AgroSciences each have resistance to three different herbicides, including glyphosate. In analysing documents, Testbiotech became aware of inconsistencies in regard to the feeding trials performed by the US company Dow and, therefore, requested access to the relevant data several weeks ago.
As documents published today show, an international campaign is underway behind the scenes to pave the way for the release of genetically engineered insects and mammals, carrying a so-called gene drive. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is particularly active in this regard. The foundation has, amongst other things, hired a specialised consulting agency (Emerging Ag) specifically to influence public opinion and future regulatory systems.