Import and processing of genetically modified maize MON87403 with increased biomass

Advisory reports | 17.12.2015 | CGM/151210-01

The present application (EFSA/GMO/BE/2015/125) concerns import and processing for use in feed or food of genetically modified maize MON87403. Cultivation is not part of this application.
Maize MON87403 was generated by Agrobacterium mediated transformation of conventional maize and expresses the gene ATHB17. As a result, maize MON87403 has an increased ear biomass compared to conventional maize.
During its long domestication process, maize has lost its ability to survive in the wild. In the Netherlands, the appearance of maize volunteers is rare and establishment of volunteers in the wild has never been reported. There are no reasons to assume that the introduced trait will allow maize MON87403 to establish feral populations. The introduced sequences cannot introgress into other species since wild relatives of maize are not present in Europe. COGEM is of the opinion that incidental spillage of MON87403 poses a negligible risk to the environment.
The molecular characterisation of MON87403 maize meets the criteria of COGEM.
In conclusion, COGEM considers the environmental risks associated with import and processing of maize MON87403 to be negligible. COGEM abstains from giving advice on the potential risks of incidental consumption because a food/feed assessment is already carried out by other organisations.

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