New genomic techniques - What lies ahead?
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New genomic techniques (NGTs) and their products have been rapidly developing in the last 20 years in many parts of the world, with some applications already on the market of some EU trade partners.
On 5 July 2023, the European Commission adopted a proposal for a new Regulation on plants produced by certain new genomic techniques, as part of a package of legislative proposals to support the EU’s Farm to Fork and Biodiversity strategies.
There is significant demand in the EU and globally for NGT plants, because of their potential to contribute to addressing current challenges in the agri-food system, such as climate change and biodiversity loss.
The scientific and NGO communities are divided on this issue. Some welcome the Commission’s new Regulation proposal, believing it could be an important part of the EU’s bioeconomy revolution. Others believe that there are considerable risks, such as, in the agricultural field, the unknown effects on wild relatives of crops and the unintended release of new genetic traits into nature.
On 24 October the Alliance for Science is publishing a new research report on the potential economic losses to the European economy of non-adoption of NGTs, a cost which, according to the report, will run into hundreds of billions of euros annually during the next decade.
Join this EURACTIV hybrid conference to discuss the way forward for new genomic techniques. Questions to be discussed include:
- What is the growth potential of the use of NGTs in agriculture? And what are the risks that should be taken into account?
- Can NGTs play a role in meeting the EU’s climate targets?
- What role could NGTs have in ensuring food security?
- What would the economic benefits of using NGTs be for the European Union?
- What are the next steps for NGTs in the EU legislative process?
Euractiv Network Office
Boulevard Charlemagne 1, 1041 Brussels
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Acting Director, Food Safety, Sustainability and Innovation, DG SANTE, European Commission
Garlich von Essen
Secretary General, Euroseeds
Thor Gunnar Kofoed
Chair of the Seed Working Group, Copa-Cogeca
Dr Sheila Ochugboju
Director, Alliance for Science
12:00 - 12:30 Registration of participants
12:30 - 12:35 Welcome
12:35 - 12:50 Panellist statements
12:50 - 13:40 Discussion and Q&A
13:40 - 13:45 Closing statements
Followed by a light networking lunch.
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New genomic techniques are unavoidable and could considerably reduce the use of pesticides without affecting food production, some European agricultural players have argued, though NGOs and environmental groups have been sceptical.