USDA/APHIS Announces Public Meeting on its Proposed Rule on Genetically Engineered Organisms

April 13, 2009

By Ricardo Carvajal –      

The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (“APHIS”) will hold a public meeting on April 29 and 30 to foster discussion of  certain issues that were raised during the comment period for its proposed rule on Importation, Interstate Movement, and Release into the Environment of Certain Genetically Engineered Organisms.  The agency has also reopened and extended the comment period for the proposed rule until June 29.  Discussion during the public meeting will focus on:

(1) Scope of the regulation and which [Genetically Engineered (“GE”)]  organisms should be regulated;
(2) Incorporation into APHIS regulations of the Plant Protection Act’s noxious weed authority;
(3) Elimination of notification procedure and revision of the permit procedure;
(4) Environmental release permit categories and regulation of GE crops that produce pharmaceutical and industrial compounds.

As we noted in a prior posting, APHIS hosted a scoping session on March 13 to ferret out additional significant issues that might merit discussion at the public meeting.  No word yet on which additional issues, if any, APHIS considers worthy of inclusion in the agenda for the public meeting.

Categories: Foods