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Advisory reports 22.03.2017

Renewal of the authorisation for import of feed of genetically modified oilseed rape GT73

(CGM/170322-01)
  • The present application (EFSA/GMO/RX/002) concerns the renewal of the authorisation for import of feed and other products (containing or consisting) of genetically modified (GM) oilseed rape GT73;
  • Oilseed rape GT73 has previously been authorized for import of feed and other products (containing or consisting of) in 2005, and for feed (produced from) and food in 2015;
  • Oilseed rape GT73 expresses the cp4 epsps and goxv247 genes, which confer tolerance to glyphosate containing herbicides;
  • Feral oilseed rape populations occur across the Netherlands, with a small number of plants (<25 or less) per location, along distribution routes and handling areas as a result of spillage of oilseed rape seeds during transport and transshipment;
  • Oilseed rape can hybridise with Brassica rapa which is a common plant along Dutch roadsides. To a lesser extent it can also hybridise with Brassica juncea and Brassica oleracea;
  • Stable incorporation (introgression) of genes from B. napus into wild populations of B. rapa may be possible;
  • The molecular characterisation of GT73 has been updated and meets the criteria of COGEM;
  • Oilseed rape GT73 in itself poses a negligible risk to the environment in the Netherlands;
  • There are no indications that the introduced trait alters the fitness of oilseed rape GT73 under natural conditions, except in places where glyphosate containing herbicides are used for weed control;
  • In the long term, prolonged use of herbicides may lead to the establishment of feral herbicide tolerant GM B. napus, including plants with stacked events, or feral B. rapa harbouring GM traits, such as herbicide tolerance;
  • The applicant wants do discontinue the monitoring of GT73 oilseed rape and did not submit a monitoring plan. COGEM is of the opinion that a monitoring plan which includes monitoring along transport routes (including roadsides and railway beddings) and transshipment areas is a prerequisite to grant an authorisation for import of GM oilseed rape.
  • Because such a monitoring plan was not provided, COGEM cannot advise positively on the renewal application for import of GT73 oilseed rape.