BEIJING, Dec 28 (Reuters) - China plans to approve the
safety of more genetically modified (GMO) corn varieties
produced by domestic companies, the agriculture ministry said
late on Monday.
The move comes after Beijing last month proposed an overhaul
of regulatory seed rules to pave the way for approval of GMO
crops and as top policy makers urged progress in biotech
breeding, seen as key to ensuring food security.
The three new corn products include ND207 produced by China
National Tree Seed Corp and China Agricultural University, Zheda
Ruifeng 8 made by Hangzhou Ruifeng Biotech Co and DBN3601T from
Beijing Dabeinong Biotechnology Co, according to the notice
posted on the website of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural
The plan to approve the new corn varieties, along with seven
new GMO cotton products, will be open for public comment until
Jan. 17, the ministry said.
The DBN3601T corn is an upgraded variety from DBN9501 and
DBN9936, two corn traits owned by Dabeinong Biotech, parent
company Dabeinong Technology Group Co said in a
Dabeinong will work with partners to get ready for the
commercialization of the product, and prepare inventories of the
variety, Dabeinong Technology said.
The new variety, combining traits from both DBN9501 and
DBN9936, will have stronger resistance to a wider range of
insects, especially the fall armyworm, according to a statement
released on the company's website.
Safety approval is seen as a major step towards
commercialization of GMO crops, but it is still unclear when the
new products will be ready for a market launch.
Beijing has so far not permitted the planting of GMO soybean
or corn varieties, but it allows their import for use in animal
Both Hangzhou Ruifeng, in which Yuan Longping High-Tech
Agriculture Co Ltd owns 41.8%, and Beijing Dabeinong
already own GMO corn traits approved as safe by the government.
(Reporting by Hallie Gu and Emily Chow; Editing by Richard
Pullin and Christian Schmollinger)