18 Jun 2020

Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) Legislation

These Regulations establish criteria for evaluating the potential risks, harmonised procedures for risk assessment and authorisation, provisions for the labelling of feed consisting of and containing GMOs and produced from GMOs as well as the traceability and labelling of GMOs and the traceability of food and feed products produced from them. Related information includes the GM Food and Feed – Notification of Existing Products.

Regulation 1829/2003 on genetically modified food and feed

See Regulation 1829/2003 on genetically modified food and feed

The objective of this Regulation is to:

  • provide the basis for ensuring a high level of protection of human life and health, animal health and welfare, environment and consumer interests in relation to genetically modified food and feed, whilst ensuring the effective functioning of the internal market; 
  • lay down Community procedures for the authorisation and supervision of genetically modified food and feed; and 
  • lay down provisions for the labelling of genetically modified food and feed.

A paper “Genetically modified food & feed” summarising Regulation 1829/2003 has been produced by the Commission.

Associated legislation

Commission Regulation 619/2011 laying down the methods of sampling and analysis for the official control of feed as regards the presence of genetically modified material for which an authorisation procedure is pending or the authorisation of which has expired.

This regulation also provides for a "technical solution" that introduces a 0.1% threshold for the low level presence (LLP) of EU non-authorised GM material in imported feed materials. The GM material concerned must (reference Article 2 (a)):-

  • be authorised for commercialisation in a third country; 
  • have a valid application submitted under Regulation 1829/2003; 
  • have been subject to the EU authorisation procedure for more than 3 months with no adverse effect identified by EFSA; and 
  • have a validated and published method of analysis.   

The Animal Feed (Composition, Marketing and Use) (England) Regulations 2015 (SI 2015 No. 255) provide for the enforcement of the feed-related provisions of Regulation 1829/2003 on genetically modified food and feed, by linking them to penalties for non-compliance and the powers of enforcement officers to seize products and issue notices.

Separate but parallel legislation applies in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

Regulation 1830/2003 concerning the traceability and labelling of genetically modified organisms and the traceability of food and feed products produced from genetically modified organisms and amending Directive 2001/18/EC

See Regulation 1830/2003 concerning the traceability and labelling of genetically modified organisms and the traceability of food and feed products produced from genetically modified organisms and amending Directive 2001/18/EC

The objective of this Regulation is to provide a framework for the traceability of products consisting of or containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and food and feed produced from GMOs, with the objectives of facilitating accurate labelling, monitoring the effects on the environment and, where appropriate, on health, and the implementation of the appropriate risk management measures including, if necessary, withdrawal of products.

A paper “Traceability and labelling of GMOs” summarising Regulation 1830/2003 has been produced by the Commission.

The EU Register of authorised GMOs is available here

Guidance

The FSA website provides information on GM in animal feed which includes topics on:-

  • GM labelling animal feed;
  • Supplies of GM material to the EU;
  • Transfer of GM material from animal feed.