Vote on GMO opt-out for EU member states 

New legislation to allow EU member states to restrict or ban the cultivation of crops containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) on their own territory, even if this is allowed at EU level, will be put to a vote on Tuesday. The plans, informally agreed by Parliament and Council in December, were originally tabled in 2010 but were then deadlocked for four years due to disagreement between pro and anti-GMO member states.

The new rules would allow member states to ban GMOs on environmental policy grounds other than risks to health and the environment as assessed by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

Member states could also ban GMP crops on other grounds, such as town and country planning requirements, socio-economic impact, avoiding the unintended presence of GMOs in other products and farm policy objectives. Bans could also include groups of GMOs designated by crop or trait.

In any event, member states should also ensure that GMO crops do not contaminate other products and pay particular attention to avoiding cross-border contamination with neighbouring countries, says the text.

Procedure: Ordinary Legislative Procedure (second reading agreement)

Procedure Code: 2010/0208(COD)

Debate: Tuesday, 13 January

Vote: Tuesday, 13 January

Press conference by rapporteur Frédérique Ries (ALDE, BE): Tuesday, 13 January 16.00