The European Commission has ruled out a decision on new authorizations for genetically modified organisms (GMO's) until fall this year at the earliest.

The statement follows concerns voiced by some member states that biotech firms might get the go-ahead to market or import GM crops before final European Union regulations on GMO's have been put in place.

Some member states — the UK included — have yet to enshrine within national law EU regulations on GM food and feed, and the traceability and labelling of GM products. Legislation on this is due for a second reading in the UK Parliament in the next few months.

Most EU members agree it would be unsatisfactory to allow GM commercialization to proceed before each individual country has finalized the details on these regulations.

But the issue is clouded by the fact that some member states argue commercialization could already go ahead under an...

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