gmo regulations in south africa

There are two major international protocols that address genetically modified organisms, the Cartagena Protocol of  2000 and the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol of 2010. [3], South Africa has a fairly vigorous regulatory regime governing various aspects of GMO use, including contained use, trial release, commercial release, and transboundary movement. Legal | [69] Consumer Protection Act No. [5] Genetically Modified Organisms Act, 1997, Regulations, 2010, Government Notices [GN] No. Apply for a permit at the Registrar of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs). This bibliography lists selected, recent English-language works on restrictions on GMOs. Genetically modified crops are currently grown in 29 nations around the world, while dozens ban farmers from planting GMO crops. examining applications for GMO-related activity; ensuring that all users take the necessary measures to protect the environment as well as human and animal health; and. [46]  In effect, a GMO would not be approved for any form of release if “safety to the environment cannot be demonstrated.”[47], The law also imposes a public notification requirement for the release of GMOs. 17, 2007) is available on the South Africa government portal, at http://www.info.gov.za/view/DownloadFileAction?id=67850. At an African Agriculture Conference in 2012, 24 African countries agreed to allow the use of genetically modified crops. While the government and the agriculture sector take a pragmatic approach toward the import and use of GM products, public opinion is divided as to whether GM foods pose health risks. [22]  All decisions of the EC require unanimous support of its members, and anything short of that amounts to rejection. d)      An estimate of the overall risk proposed by the genetically modified organism based on the evaluation of the likelihood and consequences of the identified adverse effects being realized. 32966 (Feb. 26, 2010), http://www.info.gov.za/view/117972; Genetically Modified Organisms Act, 1997, Regulations Amendments, 2010, GN No. Cultivation of transgenic plants for commercial use is not allowed in the Russian Federation. Germany discourages the cultivation of GM crops to the extent possible within the already stringent European Union legislation on GMOs. French legislation supplements the broader framework of European regulation with national rules that provide additional restrictions, particularly focused on the potential release of GMOs in the environment, and on labeling requirements for GM products. All activities with GMOs in South Africa are primarily regulated under the GMO Act (Act 15 of 1997). The 1997 GMO Act is available on the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) website, at http://www.daff.gov.za/doaDev/sideMenu/acts/15%20 GMOs%20No15%20% 281997%29.pdf. GMOs are regulated in Argentina under the Law on Seeds and Phytogenetic Creations and the Law on the Promotion of the Development and Production of Modern Biotechnology, and under administrative regulations issued by the Secretary of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Food. [78], Hanibal Goitom The European Union and International Protocols. [36], A person interested in carrying out a GMO-related activity may make an application to the Registrar, and the application must include. GMOs are safe. However, several types of GM food and feed lines that have passed the procedure of state registration and control are allowed to be imported, processed, and used for food or feed production. Nevertheless, Japan is one of largest importers of GMO foods, though labeling is required if GM crops are used in food in certain cases. You need a permit if you want to participate in activities relating to genetically modified organisms in South Africa. Norway is one of the most restrictive importers of GM products and does not produce GMOs. [71], In 2005, questions regarding access to information on GMO-related activities were litigated in court. [14] PMG, Genetically Modified Organisms Amendments Bill: Hearings, Submission by Kwangwanase Farmers Union, supra note 12. The Consumer Protection Act requires that “[a]ny person who produces, supplies, imports or packages any prescribed goods must display on, or in association with the package or those goods, a notice in the prescribed manner and form that that discloses the presence of any genetically modified ingredients or components of those in accordance with applicable regulations.”[58]  Goods covered by this requirement are all goods approved for consumption by the EC and containing at least 5% GMOs. A person commits an offense if he contravenes any of the GMO Act’s provisions or any condition, restriction, ban, or instruction imposed under its provisions. This includes research and development, import/export, production, consumption and other uses of … [65]  A person who impersonates any officer appointed under the GMO Act also commits a crime. 25908 (Feb. 26, 2010), http://www.doh.gov.za/docs/foodcontrol/advertising/2004/fcr25.pdf. The importation, development, testing, and release of GMOs are strictly regulated in New Zealand. The most recent statistical data located regarding public sentiment toward GMOs in South Africa is contained in a 2005 study, which found that only a small segment of South Africa’s public had an understanding of and held an opinion about GMOs. These include promoting responsible GMO-related activities; limiting harm to the environment as well as to human and animal health; and establishing standards for conducting risk assessments for GMO-related activities. [42]  The application for registration must include the name of the person taking responsibility for the facility; a map of the facility showing the different units within the facility; a locality map that includes geographic coordinates; a science-based risk assessment of the activity within the facility; and the proposed risk-management mechanism, measures, and strategies. . 12, 2010), http://www.info.gov.za/view/123130; Genetically Modified Organisms Act, 1997, Regulations Amendments, 2011, GN No. [54] Food Control, Department of Health, http://www.doh.gov.za/healthtopics .php?t=FoodControl (click on “Food Control” under “Health Topics”) (last visited Oct. 30, 2013). Germany imposes strict liability for accidental contamination with GMOs, and has tough and methodically enforced controls over the release of GMOs. Even though more and more research on GMOs is being performed, people are still concerned. [34]  This includes “activity with genetically modified organisms but it is not limited to the importation, exportation, transit, development, production, release, distribution, use, storage and application of genetically modified organisms only.”[35]  However, a permit is not required for organisms under conditions of contained use at containment level 1 or 2 in a registered facility. [78] Biowatch Trust v Registrar Genetic Resources and Others 2009 (6) SA 232 (CC), available at http://www.saflii .org/za/cases/ZACC/2009/14.pdf. By 2009, 98 percent of c… GMOs are regulated in the United States under the Coordinated Framework for Regulation of Biotechnology, published in 1986, pursuant to previously existing statutory authority regulating conventional products, with a focus on the nature of the products rather than the process in which they are produced. [57] Id. The use of GMOs in food is a sensitive topic that generates strong public opinion. In Brazil, GMOs are governed by a law that defines the concept of a GMO and sets rules for the laboratories that work with them. Accessibility | Id. Mexico’s Federal Criminal Code provides that an individual who, in contravention of applicable law, commercializes, transports, stores, or releases into the environment a GMO that negatively alters or may alter the components, structure, or functioning of natural ecosystems is punishable with imprisonment of one to nine years and a fine. 467 (Apr. They are required to take a number of actions, including ceasing the act causing the damage, containing/minimizing the spread of the GMOs, eliminating the source of the damage, and remedying the damage caused. 34020 (Feb. 18, 2011), http://www.info.gov.za /view/142060; Genetically Modified Organisms Act, 1997, Regulations Amendments, 2011, GN No. GMOs and food or feed made from GMOs can be marketed in or imported into the EU, provided that they are authorized after passing strict evaluation and safety assessment requirements that are imposed on a case-by-case basis. South Africa Patent Act (No. [58] Consumer Protection Act No. Canada regulates products derived from biotechnology processes as part of its existing regulatory framework for “novel products.” The focus is on the traits expressed in the products and not on the method used to introduce those traits. They apply only to transboundary actions; they do not apply to use or transit of GMOs within countries. The production and sale of certain GMOs are legal in France, but are subject to very restrictive rules. The Department of Health, specifically the Food Control Section, tasked with the responsibility to ensure food safety in the country, has issued regulations requiring that foodstuffs obtained through certain genetic modification techniques be labeled as such before being offered for sale in the marketplace. Most of Belgium’s regulation of GMOs is directly or indirectly derived from European regulations. The statistics for the 2011–12 maize production season illustrate the scale of GMO penetration in the country. [55], South Africa requires that foodstuffs obtained through certain techniques of genetic modification be labeled as such before they are offered for sale in the marketplace. During this period, genetically modified maize accounted for 79% (2.1 million hectares) of the commercial land planted with maize, with white maize accounting for 78% (1.3 million hectares) and yellow maize accounting for 81% (863,277 hectares) of the total maize planted in their respective classes. Official blog from the Law Library of Congress. [Download this page as a PDF] [See also: GMO Myths in Africa] 1. Israel’s religious kashrut authority has determined that the use of GMO ingredients in food does not affect its kosher status because GMOs are only used in “microscopic” proportions. [66]  In addition, a person who violates any of the GMO Regulations commits an offense. Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) Approach At Mars, we not only ensure the safety of all raw materials in our products, we also are committed to being transparent with our consumers so they can understand what is in the products they love. [12] Parliamentary Monitoring Group (PMG), Genetically Modified Organisms Amendments Bill: Hearings (Jan. 17, 2006), http://www.pmg.org.za/minutes/20060116-genetically-modified-organisms-gmo-amendment-bill-hearings. [72] Trustees, Biowatch v. Registrar: Genetic Resources, and Others 2005 (4) SA 111 (T), available on the Southern Africa Legal Information Institute (SAFLII) website, at http://www.saflii.org/za/cases/ZAGPHC/2005/135.html. There are strict rules on how a scientifically-based risk assessment is to be conducted. [33], A GMO-related activity may not be conducted in South Africa without a permit. advising the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries on GMO-related activities and monitoring these activities to ensure that they follow the rules and procedures set under the GMO Act; determining whether an applicant should submit an environmental assessment report; and. The EU’s legislation and policy on GMOs is designed to prevent any adverse effects on the environment and the health and safety of humans and animals, and it reflects concerns expressed by skeptical consumers, farmers, and environmentalists. All activities with GMOs in South Africa are primarily regulated under the GMO Act. Legal | In 2006, during the public hearings it conducted on the GMO Amendment Bill, the Agriculture and Land Affairs Portfolio Committee of South Africa’s Parliament received over ten submissions from a range of pro- and anti-GMO activists, including farmers unions, nongovernmental organizations, governmental agencies, and academics. Egyptian activists have voiced their rejection of this policy. Activities involving GMOs are for research purposes in laboratories or field trials, and are tightly regulated, in particular through EU Directives made applicable in the Netherlands. As a member of the European Union, Italy has been implementing European directives concerning GMOs over the last two decades, but at a rather reluctant pace. [44], There is a strict application and approval process for the release of GMOs, including a trial release and a general release. 36124 (Feb. 8, 2013), http://www.info.gov.za/view/183647 (hereinafter collectively referred to as GMO Regulations, as amended). The GMO Act also provides a list of activities to which it does not apply, including techniques involving human gene therapy. A GMO-related activity may not be conducted in South Africa without a permit. [1] Rosemary A. Wolson, Assessing the Prospects for the Adoption of Biofortified Crops in South Africa, 10(3) AgBioForum 184 (2007), available at https://mospace.umsystem.edu/xmlui/bitstream/handle/10355/57/ Biofortified %20Crops%20in%20South%20Africa.pdf?sequence=1. [47] Understanding Genetically Modified Organisms: What Are the Issues of Concern for the Environment?, DAFF, http://www.nda.agric.za/doaDev/sideMenu/biosafety/doc/understandingGMOs.pdf (last visited Oct. 30, 2013). A number of national and international regulations govern the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in South Africa. Mexico’s Law on Biosecurity of Genetically Modified Organisms is a federal law that provides rules concerning GMOs, and is aimed at preventing, avoiding, or reducing the risks that these activities may cause. [24]  Among the Registrar’s functions are, The Registrar is required by law to keep a register of all facilities used for the contained use of GMOs, all trial release sites, and the names and addresses of all users (individuals involved in GMO-related activities). About | Official blog from the Law Library of Congress, Back to Restrictions on Genetically Modified Organisms. 35007 (Feb. 10, 2012), http://www.info.gov.za/view/159582; Genetically Modified Organisms Act, 1997, Regulations Amendments, 2011, GN No. They are attached to the Convention on Biological Diversity of 1993. [49]  The notice must include, among other things, information about the applicant, the objective of the application, the general description of the GMOs, and the place of release. a) Identification of any potential adverse effect resulting from the novel genotypic and/or phenotypic characteristics of the genetically modified organism. Egyptian laws do not contain restrictions on researching, producing, or marketing genetically modified crops and food products. While marketing and importing GMOs and food and feed produced with GMOs are regulated at the EU level, the cultivation of GMOs is an area left to the EU Members. 68 of 2008, § 110, 526 GG No. [64]  A person also commits a crime if he refuses to cooperate with or provides false or misleading information to an inspector, the Registrar, the EC, or the AC. [i] The Act was aimed at regulating all South Africa’s genetically modified activities. As the official representative body for the sector, AFMA positions and aligns itself by identifying the business environment that will benefit its members. Advertising or labeling the presence of GMOs in particular food is voluntary unless there is a health or safety concern. [54]  As part of its functions, this section oversees the administration of food legislation, which includes publicizing regulations for food safety, labeling food, and evaluating risk assessments for DAFF that are related to agricultural chemicals and food produced through biotechnology. Sweden, as a European Union Member, has adopted a case-by-case analysis for each GMO. Genetically modified (GM) crops have been produced in the initial adopting countries for 20 years. Every major scienti c body in the world agrees that GMO foods are just as safe […] [76]  The Court also found unacceptable the Registrar’s claim that Biowatch’s request was too broad, noting that the Registrar had a legal obligation to work with Biowatch to identify the relevant information sought. The Department of Agriculture houses the GMO Secretariat and all decision-making is managed by The GMO Act imposes civil liability on people who conduct GMO-related activities for damage they cause and criminalizes various acts, including violations of its provisions or refusing to cooperate with the regulatory bodies. [59], The GMO Act imposes two forms of liability: civil and criminal liability. [10]  The study found that eighty percent of those surveyed had limited understanding of biotechnology, and more than two-thirds had never heard of GMOs before. The regulation for mandatory GM labelling in South Africa does not make provision for the terms "GMO free", "non-GM" or "organic". Typically, the GMO events that have been commercialized in South Africa have therefore been subjected to the regulatory requirements and scrutiny of various other countries as well. [11], However, various key organizations have shown interest in the process of overhauling the GMO regulatory regime. 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