Genetically modified organisms - European and Romanian legislation

Author:Ovidiu Horia Maican
Position:Law Department, Bucharest University of Economic Studies

The paper outlines the current European Union legislation regarding biotechnology and specifically the use of genetically modified micro organisms. The first regulation was issued in 1990 and was updated during the last 20 years. The relevance of the regulation for the industrial and environmental activities is discussed, linking in the context of the other regulations applicable to the... (see full summary)

Genetically modified organisms European and Romanian legislation
Lecturer Ovidiu Horia MAICAN
Abstrac t
The paper outl ines the cu rrent Europe an Union legisl ation rega rding
biot echnolog y and specificall y the u se of genet ically mod ified micro -organisms. The first
regula tion wa s issued i n 1990 and was upda ted during the last 20 yea rs. The relevan ce of
the regulatio n for the industria l and environmenta l activi ties is d iscussed, lin king in the
conte xt of the other regu lations ap plicable to the biotech nolog y research and b usiness.
Keywords: Genetica lly modified organisms, regulatio n, hea lth, foo d, Europ ean
Union, Roman ia.
JEL Cla ssification: K32
1. Introduction
Genetic modification of micro-organisms, plants and animals existed since
the 1970s.
Genetically modified crops grow on a 25 % of the land under cultivation
worldwide and some genetically modified products re already on the market in the
European Union.
Genetic modification raises public concern in terms of health and
environmental protection.
United Nations conventions address these concerns. The World Trade
Organisation (WTO) deals with trade in genetically modified products. The
European Union (EU) is both party to the UN conventions (e.g. on biosafety) and a
key actor in the WTO.
2. European Union
European Union has the most severe regulations in the world for the
presence of GMOs in food
That means the labeling of food and feed where the level of approved
GMO exceeds 0.9% of unintentional adventitious presence. In the situation of non-
Ovidiu H oria Maican - Law Department, Bucharest University of Economic Studies,
John Davison, GM plants: Science, politics and EC regulations, Plant Science, Volume 178, Issue
2, 2010, p. 94.

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