State Legislators Seek To Broaden Regulation Of Biotech Products

Scientists fear that a patchwork of local laws more stringent than federal restrictions may hamper research and industry As state legislatures throughout the United States take steps to intensify their participation in biotechnology regulation, some states are enacting restrictions on the use of biotechnological products. In some cases, these laws go beyond limits already put in place by the federal government. While legislators say they believe that such regulation protects their states' eco

Robin Eisner
Feb 17, 1991
Scientists fear that a patchwork of local laws more stringent than federal restrictions may hamper research and industry
As state legislatures throughout the United States take steps to intensify their participation in biotechnology regulation, some states are enacting restrictions on the use of biotechnological products. In some cases, these laws go beyond limits already put in place by the federal government.

While legislators say they believe that such regulation protects their states' economic and public safety interests, some scientists say that more restrictive regulations may inhibit industrial and academic scientists from doing research in these states.

"It becomes dismotivating and expensive for the business when there are too many differences across the states," says Jerry Barnett, director of government affairs for Monsanto Agricultural Co. in St. Louis. "It is not that we as an industry are opposing legislation at a state level, but we hope [the states] participate in what...

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