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Turkey bans food, feed containing GM components
The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) reported on its web site that this signifies approval of the fourth draft of a National Biosafety Law and is similar in nature to the draft reviewed in 2008. O�Brien said the potential impact is substantial to U.S. coarse grains and producers. For example, Turkey is the largest buyer of U.S. corn gluten feed (GCF) and the third-largest buyer of U.S. distiller�s dried grains with solubles (DDGS). Turkey imported 435,378 tonnes of CGF in 2008 and 202,422 tonnes in the first six months of 2009. Turkey imported 465,212 tonnes of U.S. DDGS in 2008 and 199,173 tonnes from January through August of this year. USTR reports the U.S. goods trade surplus with Turkey was $5.8 billion in 2008, an increase of $3.8 billion from 2007.

USTR also said the total value of U.S. "transgenic" crop exports to Turkey exceeded $1 billion in 2007, which are endangered depending on how this new regulation is implemented. O�Brien said one issue currently "up in the air" is the fate of the vessels currently on the water loaded with U.S. goods. Turkey�s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs has to give instructions to the ports regarding this regulation, but that has not happened yet, USGC said. Rebecca Fecitt, USGC director of biotechnology programs, said the food and feed industry in Turkey can make a significant difference in this matter.

"This is an example of a losing situation for Turkish importers, consumers and end-users," Fecitt said. "We have learned that local feed and food groups have already started to express dissatisfaction with this irrational regulation. If these groups continue to put pressure on the Turkish government, expressing how detrimental this decision could be for their profitability, the regulation could be reviewed more closely by government officials and potentially reversed."

A federal judge can reportedly overturn this regulation. USGC said that Oct. 29 marks Turkey�s Independence Day, which will keep any immediate information on this new regulation at bay.
MGR Archive 1.11.2009
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