E-mail this article to
yourself or a friend.
Enter address:


Anti-GMO atmosphere in Eastern Europe?

(Jan. 15, 2002 – CropChoice news) – Despite pressure from U.S. officials, the government of Croatia is preparing legislation to ban genetically engineered crop production and to limit imports of transgenic food products. Meanwhile, in the Czech Republic, a new law went into effect on Jan. 1 requiring the labeling of genetically modified foods.

According to Reuters, Croatian Environment Minister Bozo Kovacevic told a press conference: "Considering that tourism is our strategic business and that we pride ourselves on organic farming, the government wants to stress the fact that we offer only GMO-free products as our comparative advantage. That is our national interest. Therefore, we want to draft legislation that will make sure our interests are protected, without violating any of our international commitments… The U.S. government is lobbying for the interests of U.S. companies, and that is their right. Our duty is to protect our interests and follow the legislation of the European Union."

A widely circulated letter from the U.S. government to the Croatian government revealed threats of retaliatory moves in the World Trade Organization if Croatia did not back down on the legislation. See the letter at http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=542

Meanwhile, the Czech Republic’s GMO labeling law went into effect on January 1. Although no consumer products with the new label have appeared, retail suppliers have requested that companies document that their products do not contain transgenic ingredients. To see the full report on the law from the USDA, Foreign Agricultural Service, go to http://www.fas.usda.gov/gainfiles/200112/135683051.pdf

Sources: Reuters, AgNet, USDA Foreign Agricultural Service