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Sep 1, 2010

USDA - APHIS' Next Steps Following Federal Court to Ban GM Sugar Beets

On 1 September 2010, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) issued a press release on how it would respond to a federal court decision to ban gene modified (GM) sugar beets.

APHIS will follow these steps:


  • APHIS has received applications from and is issuing permits to sugar beet seed producers to authorize "steckling" (i.e seedlings) production this fall under strict permit conditions that would not allow flowering of the stecklings. APHIS anticipates that issuance of such non-flowering permits can be completed in the next 2 weeks. 
  • APHIS has also received and is evaluating a request for a partial deregulation of Roundup Ready sugar beets. 
  • In connection with this evaluation, APHIS is developing an appropriate environmental analysis to inform its decision making regarding this request to authorize future seed and root crop plantings under a combination of permits, administrative orders, or other regulatory measures. 
  • APHIS will continue to place a priority on the expedited completion of the EIS, a process that is anticipated to take 2 years. 
  • The Court's ruling does return GM sugar beets to regulated status. This does not apply to GM sugar beet root and seed crops planted by August 13, 2010. 
  • The GM sugar beet root crop that has already been planted may be processed and sold as sugar. The GM sugar beet seed crop that has already been planted may be harvested and stored."
For more see: "USDA Announces Next Steps on Sugar Beets," USDA Press Release, 1 Sept. 2010.

About Margaret


CEO and Curator (The Food Museum) | Managing Director and Chief Editor (GR2 Global LLC) | Educator (UCLA PhD) | Researching and writing on global food issues, nutrition and health, sustainability, history (preservation), conservation (natural resources), and design.
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