Premier Cooperative will be accepting Xtend Soybeans for Fall 2016 at its elevators.
WASHINGTON, July 22, 2016
After a long delay, the European Union has approved three biotech soybean traits for import and processing, according to the U.S. Soybean Export Council.
The stacked events are:
• Monsanto's Xtend (MON87708 x MON89788, with dicamba and glyphosate tolerance. It is approved in China and is being planted by U.S. farmers.
• Monsanto's Vistive Gold (MON87705 x MON89788, the product is high-oleic with glyphosate tolerance and is being grown by U.S. farmers to provide transfat free soybean oil for the food industry.
• Bayer CropScience's Balance GT (FG72, with isoxaflutole and glyphosate resistance. The product is a soybean being grown for seed increase multiplication with an expected commercial launch this fall.
"The EU's approval of these events is welcome news for U.S. soybean farmers," USSEC chairman Laura Foell, a soybean grower from Schaller, Iowa, said in a release. “We're happy that we can supply our European customers with a reliable supply of safe food.” In April, the American Soybean Association sent a letter to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman urging the Obama administration to press the European Commission the EU's executive arm to approve the products, pointing out that they had been waiting final approval since January. The applications for the three traits were submitted to the European Food Safety Authority in the summer of 2011.
In the letter, ASA said approval was needed “for the EU Commission to have any semblance of a working biotech approval process.” It also noted that timely approval would “avoid the risk of unnecessary costs and disruption to the essential supply of feedstocks needed by the EU's livestock, poultry and feed industries, which are more than 70 percent dependent on imports of protein.”
USSEC says Europe is one of the largest customers of U.S. soybean farmers with over 165 million bushels of soybeans in exports already this year.
(This story was updated at 9:40 a.m.)
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