Germany’s Minister for Research gives strong commitment to agribiotech
Berlin – Germany’s Minister for Research Annette Schavan has clarified that agribiotechnology will be part of Germany’s €2.4bn bioeconomy funding programme, which will be spread over the coming six years. “I am convinced that global nutrition can’t be guaranteed without the help of agri-biotechnology,” Schavan told the news magazine Der Spiegel. The statement came after Germany’s Federal Constitutional Court last week confirmed the strict rules in Germany’s Genetic Engineering Act. According to the act, GMO farmers must pay compensation to non-GMO farmers in cases of economic damage caused by GMO acreage. Additionally, they must publish the locations of all fields planted with GM crops in a registry accessible to all citizens. Also last week, representatives from the chemical industry called for the implementation of more supportive conditions for GMO acreage in Germany, arguing that agri-biotechnology is needed to satisfy demand for plant feeds for the bio-based production of fuels and chemical products. Schavan also criticised European Commission plans to allow national bans of GMO acreage.