E.U. Commission rejects GMO-free zones
September 01, 2003
by Emily Buckley
BRUSSELS, BELGIUM — The European Commission denied the concept of GMO-free zones when it recently rejected a request from Austria for a three-year ban on the use of genetically engineered seeds. The Commission concluded that such a ban would be in breach of the E.U. Treaty and could not be allowed under the special environment protection clause, which allows member states to break from E.U. rules when deemed necessary for environmental protection.
GM proponents were pleased by the decision, although it upset many in the E.U., where the majority of consumers, according to numerous polls, are still reluctant to accept GM-crops. The U.K. in particular worried about the affect on its growing organic industry.
It was reported in the EUOoberserver that Austrian Greenpeace suggested Austria appeal the decision to European Court of Justice.