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China approves import of new GMO traits from South America

6/11/2013 at 12:00 a.m.

China just green-lighted a handful of GMO imports from Brazil and Argentina, including a number of traits that are currently tied up in the U.S. regulatory process.

"This is among the most important news we've had in recent times for foreign trade," said Norberto Yauhar, the Argentinian minister of agriculture, in a statement published on Argentina's presidential website. "The Chinese minister just confirmed the approval of all the strains of corn and soybeans that were pending, including Monsanto's Intacta."

Brazil and Argentina are, respectively, the second- and third-largest soybean growers and exporters in the world, trailing only the United States. 

According to Matt King, an Arkansas Farm Bureau economist, this development puts U.S. farmers at a comparative disadvantage to those in South America.

“The USDA continues to delay new technologies, including dicamba-resistant soybeans and cotton by Monsanto, and 2,4-D-resistant soybeans by Pioneer," he said. "Both these products have been in the deregulation process for more than 1,000 days, and the USDA continues to request additional information, as environmental groups claim these products are unsafe for consumers and the environment."

For more information, contact Matt King at 501-228-1297.

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