Call for membership: Task force of national contact points on GMOs and new genetic engineering techniques

IFOAM EU is setting up a task force of national contact points on new genetic engineering techniques. The call for membership to participate in the task force is now open. IFOAM EU members and members of IFOAM EU members can apply before 11 November 2019.

This group will ensure effective advocacy work at EU and national levels for the regulation of GMOs. This includes new genetic engineering techniques and adequate implementation of the EU legal framework on GMOs to ensure risk assessment, traceability and labelling.

As emphasized in the terms of reference, the mandate of this task force is not to provide scientific/technical advice that feeds into the position of IFOAM EU. We are looking for national contacts to do effective advocacy work at their national level.

IFOAM EU members can consult the terms of reference on the member extranet for more information. Members of IFOAM EU members can contact martin.Sommer [at] ifoam-eu.org (Martin.Sommer [ at ]  ifoam-eu.org). Are you unsure if you are a member of an IFOAM EU member? Check out the member list on our website.

The deadline for expression of interest is 11 November 2019. Please fill in the online form if you would like to apply to become a member. Do read the terms of reference before applying! You will receive feedback about whether you have been selected in the last week of November 2019.

Background
The ruling of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) of 25/07/2018 clarified that products from new mutagenesis techniques are to be regulated according to the GMO legislation. Yet, there is currently no proper implementation of the decision by the Commission and the EU Member States. On the contrary, there is an industry push to excluding certain products from new genetic engineering techniques from the GMO legislation. This would exclude these products from the risk assessment, traceability and labelling requirements and thereby threaten the capacity of organic agriculture to exclude GMOs from their production processes.

To enable the organic sector to remain GMO-free, coordinated efforts at the EU and national levels will be crucial. National contact points that are in touch with relevant networks and policy-makers are important to facilitate the flow of information. As emphasized in the terms of reference, the mandate of this task force is not to provide scientific/technical advice that feeds into the position of IFOAM EU. We are looking for national contacts to do effective advocacy work at their national level.

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