WTO Members Support Policy Approaches to Enable Innovation in Agriculture

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue last week announced the United States has joined 12 other nations to support policies that enable agricultural innovation, including genome editing. The International Statement on Agricultural Applications of Precision Biotechnology was released in Geneva at the World Trade Organization Committee on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures. Perdue says of precision biotechnology that it “can play a critical role in helping farmers address many of the production challenges they face.” Unfortunately, Perdue says, these technologies “too often face regulatory roadblocks.” The effort is an attempt to embrace science-based regulatory systems. Countries and organizations supporting the statement include Argentina, which led the effort, as well as Australia, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Honduras, Jordan, Paraguay, the United States, Uruguay, Vietnam and the Secretariat of the Economic Community of West African States.