Press conference and open letter by 23 associations on the ECJ’s ruling on new breeding techniques
A press conference was held in Berlin on 23 October at the Federal Press Conference to publish an open letter, signed by BIO Deutschland and 22 other associations, expressing their concerns about the ECJ’s ruling on new breeding techniques. The central message of the letter is that the ruling of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) from 25 July 2018 regarding new breeding techniques such as CRISPR-Cas9 makes such techniques practically impossible to use, thus preventing them from being used beneficially to protect the climate, to mitigate the effects of climate change, and to promote agricultural biodiversity and sustainability. The letter further says that ruling gives rise to legal uncertainties with regard to international agricultural trade, and therefore calls for European GMO legislation to be revised.
Participating in the discussion at the press conference were David Spencer, a researcher and science slammer; Heinrich Böhm, Managing Director of EUROPLANT Pflanzenzucht GmbH; Oliver Balkhausen, Head of the Economics Department at ADM Germany GmbH, a subsidiary of Archer Daniels Midland Company; and Marco Gemballa, a farmer from the agricultural cooperative Zinzow. The press conference was moderated by Henning Ehlers, Secretary General of the German Raiffeisen Federation (DRV).
The full open letter can be read at: www.biodeutschland.org/en/position-papers-overview.html.