A number of EU Member States have banned the cultivation or import of certain EU approved GM crops. These bans are based on safety concerns which have never withstood scientific scrutiny by the competent body, the European Food Safety Authority EFSA. Legally, such bans are only possible if the Member State has “detailed grounds for considering that the GMO in question constitutes a risk to human health or the environment” (‘safeguard clause’ – Art. 23 Dir. 2001/18/EC) or where the GMO in question is “likely to constitute a serious risk to human health, animal health or the environment” (‘emergency measures’ – Art. 34 Regulation EC 2003/1829). Such bans must also be provisional but almost invariably are not provisional. Six Member States currently apply such legally questionable bans: Austria, France, Greece, Hungary, Germany and Luxemburg. In addition, countries such as Italy, Poland and Bulgaria have found other ways to enact bans.
Despite of its role as guardian of the correct implementation of the European law, the European Commission has failed to ensure legal compliance with EU legislation, in full knowledge of non-compliant practices by several Member States.
The farmer-scientist network is now publishing an overview map on the national GM crop situation in these EU countries, including also results of the survey among farmers and public scientists on needs and experiences with GM crops it published some months ago. Find the map here.
Map is free for use without changes. (Creative Commons by-nd).