Brussels, 15 July 2005
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has today opened a public consultation on the Post Market Environmental Monitoring (PMEM) of Genetically Modified (GM) Plants. In a new chapter of EFSA's Guidance Document for the Risk Assessment of GM Plants*, adopted last September, the Scientific Panel on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) has outlined an approach to ensure the general surveillance of the impact of GM Plants on the environment. This surveillance is intended to detect and monitor any possible unforeseen or unanticipated adverse effects on the environment following market introduction. Interested parties are invited to provide comments to EFSA through an on-line consultation by 15 September 2005.
At present, PMEM is carried out by applicants for GM plant authorisations under the terms of Directive 2001/18/EC ** on the deliberate release of genetically modified organisms into the environment and an existing European Commission guidance note*** to applicants. EFSA's guidance on PMEM (Chapter 11.4), once adopted, will eventually also be used by applicants for GMO authorisations in the environmental monitoring plans foreseen in the Directive. Chapter 11.4 provides further detailed guidance to applicants in the preparation and presentation of their monitoring plan.
EFSA has held workshops on PMEM with experts from industry, environmental groups and Member States. EFSA is now starting a wider consultation process and welcomes input from stakeholders and interested parties on the PMEM and general surveillance procedure before 15th September 2005.