The arguments about genetically modified food are heating up. While plenty of people unknowingly ingest it every day in the form of corn or soy products, many believe it is dangerous. In what some are calling a surprise move, inspections officers in China decided to destroy three shipments of GM corn on arrival. The country may now be cracking down on biosafety standards.
Recently, during inspection and quarantine of imported food from the USA, the Wanzai Office of Zhuhai Inspection and Quarantine Bureau detected two shipments containing GM corn products, which were not in compliance with China’s Entry and Exit of Genetically Modified Products Inspection and Quarantine Management Approach. The crops were subsequently destroyed.
In a report from GMWatch.org, “The law says that the [Chinese] Ministry of Agriculture must require environmental and food safety tests to be carried out by Chinese institutions, in order to verify data provided by the seed developer. All these documents must be reviewed by the National Biosafety Committee before the MOA can issue a safety certificate. Yet these shipments of US corn did not have the relevant safety certificates and approval documents.”
The first two shipments were referenced on the website of the Zhuhai Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau, confirming that two illegal GM corn shipments entered Wanzai Port in Zhuhai City on May 7th, and were destroyed.
However, this may not be a sign that China is becoming anti-GM products. According to an article from China Daily, “Imported RR soybeans (Roundup herbicide resistant GM soybeans) have already accounted for over 80% of total consumption of soybeans in China. The assessment and approval procedures for the initial imported GM soybeans…exist with defects.”
Many people say it is interesting that China allowed this information to be made public. It used to be that such a move might have been kept private or covered up. Perhaps people are starting to take notice and demand more stringent laws governing GM products.