News

2018-12-04 |

The USDA Will Release a Final Rule on Labeling GMO Foods

After a contentious two-year comment period pitted corporate interests against consumer advocates, a rule requiring companies to label genetically modified foods is being finalized this week. The White House Office of Management and Budget approved the Obama-era legislation last week, industry site IEG Policy reports, marking its last step before publishing.
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When the proposal was first unveiled for comment, many of the food and environmental groups that had spearheaded the call for transparency in food labeling opposed it, criticizing the friendly design and confusing language as "pro-biotech propaganda." (Notably, the labels change GMO to "BE" for bioengineered.) "It's almost a little smiley face," George Kimbrell, legal director for the Center for Food Safety, said in a statement to the Sierra Club.

Since then, the USDA has modified its design: The new, slightly more somber labels will adorn packing on GMO foods starting in 2020—exempting certain manufacturers and foods with minor GMO ingredients, according to the proposal.

2018-12-04 |

Tanzania Ban Genetically Modified Crop Trials

On November 21st, 2018, the Ministry of Agricultural of Tanzania has instructed the Tanzania Institute for Agricultural Research (TARI) to terminate Genetic Modified Organism-GMOs at its research centers.

In addition, it has ordered TARI to destroy with all remainders of the experiments on GMOs.

The action was taken after the Institute began to disseminate the results of its researches on GMOs without obtaining government approval.

Tanzania has been carrying out GM seeds confined field trials for maize in Makutopora in Dodoma Region and for cassava at the Mikocheni Agriculture Research Institute in Dar es Salaam.

2018-12-03 |

GMO cotton failure in Burkina Faso: Farmers speak out

For two years, over 500 farmers from the different cotton-growing regions in Burkina Faso documented their experience with Monsanto’s Bt cotton. This three-year farmer-led research initiative, called “Bt Cotton and Us: The Truth from our Fields,” provides an important counterbalance, as Burkina Faso was the first country in West Africa to adopt genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and industry often lauds its success when promoting GMOs in other countries.

2018-12-03 |

Non-GMO starch Market : Rising Demand For Non-GMO Ingredients in a Food Item to Bolster Industry Growth

Starch is a carbohydrate that is abundantly used in the food and beverage industry, owing to its wide range of applications and functions. Starch is usually extracted from natural sources such as wheat, cassava, potato, rice, sago and corn. Non-GMO starch was first coined under the non-GMO project, where starch was prepared from non-genetically modified plants. Non-GMO starch is manufactured under strict regulated environment and protocols in order to prevent contamination and preserve the identity of the crop. Farmers are also required to use only non-GMO seeds for the crop production. These non-GMO crops are usually grown in countries where the growing of genetically modified organism is prohibited.

Opportunities for Non-GMO Starch Market Participants

The non-GMO starch available in the market are also very expensive, hence companies associated with non-GMO starch production need to find ways to offer the cost-effective solution to its customers. In today’s world, consumer buying behavior has continuously being influenced by the internet, buyers spend more time searching required products from various manufacturers before arriving at a decision. All companies have an online presence, but today, consumers are looking for an interactive web experience. Hence companies operating in this market needs to improve its web experience for the consumers and increase transparency of products accordingly. The role of retail and online support is no longer limited to the sale, and customer satisfaction after the sale is of paramount importance. Moreover, there is an increase in demand for non-GMO starch flour by the consumers of Europe, so new entrants could focus on offering such innovative products in order to enhance its foothold in the region as well as globally.

2018-12-01 |

Genetically modified mosquitoes: Malaria trial pays Africans to be bitten

Villagers in the west African state of Burkina Faso will be paid to be bitten by mosquitoes that have been genetically modified in an attempt to end malaria.

By monitoring the insects’ behaviour, researchers funded by $70 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, hope to move closer to eradicating a disease that kills 3,000 children every day, mostly in Africa.

Under the scheme 10,000 specially bred mosquitoes are to be released in the remote village of Bana, not far from the laboratories where researchers have carried out the genetic manipulation.

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