15 August 1997
Recall for Canadian GM rape seed
By FW staff
MORE than 60,000 bags of genetically modified rape seed was recalled from the Canadian market earlier this year after the seed was found to contain the wrong gene.
Two varieties of GM Roundup tolerant rape seed – enough to plant 242,915ha (600,000 acres) – was withdrawn from the market after the unapproved gene was found in the seed, according to a report in the Canadian newspaper, The Western Producer.
The article said a handful of producers were forced to destroy GM crops which had already been planted – with Monsanto compensating farmers.
A Monsanto spokesman told the paper that the gene was “correctly (inserted) in those varieties. But what happened is that one variety, or the gene construct that we decided to work on and got approval on, was not the one that was put into production.”
The Canadian government says it wants to ensure that similar mistakes do not happen again.
The timing of the mistake could not have come at a worse time for the North American chemical giants who are trying to convince European consumers that GM products are completely safe.