‘Not based on science!’ Lord Frost mocks EU approach to genetically modified organisms

Lord Frost provides update on Northern Ireland protocol

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GMOs are made when genetic material from food and plants are modified artificially to give it a new property, like plant’s resistance to a disease, insect or drought, a plant’s tolerance to a herbicide, improving a food’s quality or nutritional value, increased crop productivity). The EU’s GMO approach is described as a precautionary approach, which requires pre-market authorisation for any GMO to be placed on the market and post-market environmental monitoring for any authorised GMO.

But Lord Frost thinks that this approach is “too restrictive”.

He said in a statement made in the House of Lords on September 16:
“Brexit is now a fact. This country is now embarked on a great voyage.

“We each have the opportunity to make this new journey a success. To make us as a country more contented, more prosperous, more united and I hope everyone will join us in doing so.”

He also said the UK government is planning to create a “pro-growth trusted data rights regime” which would replace the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

He claimed that this new regime would be “more proportionate and less burdensome”.

He also said: “I don’t make any apologies for standing up for freedom, for free enterprise and freedom to think and debate things.

“I think it is axiomatic that free debate, free enterprise, free economies and the ability to change your government will always benefit the countries that have those things.”

Lord Frost promised a “review of the inherited approach to genetically modified organisms”.

These include insects and soil bacteria used in farming, along with reform of “outdated EU legislation” around medical devices and clinical trials.

He claimed this would help British research and development and help speed up access to lifesaving medicines for patients.

Boris Johnson had previously pledged to abandon European environmental rules that he claimed slowed down the development of genetically modified (GM) crop plants and farm animals in the UK in his first speech as Prime Minister.

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He said: “Let’s liberate the UK’s extraordinary bioscience sector from anti-genetic modification rules. Let’s develop the blight-resistant crops that will feed the world.”

In 2018, a ban on genome editing in agriculture by the European Court of Justice was the source of widespread criticism and was said to be out of line with mainstream scientific opinion, in both Europe and the rest of the world according to some scientists.

Lord Frost said that the Environment Secretary will shortly set out the plans to reform the regulation of gene-edited organisms.

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