Brussels, 29 Jul 2003
The Council approved the European Parliament's amendments at second reading concerning the proposal for a Regulation on genetically modified food and feed. In accordance with the codecision procedure the act was thus deemed adopted by a qualified majority, with the United Kingdom, Luxembourg, Austrian and Danish delegations voting against.
The aim of the Commission's proposal was to provide the necessary basis for ensuring a high level of protection of human life and health, animal health, environment and consumers' interests in relation to genetically modified food and feed, whilst ensuring the effective functioning of the internal market. 22.VII.2003 The proposal defines centralised Community procedures for the assessment, authorisation and supervision of genetically modified food and feed, including requirements as regards the labelling of such products.
The Council adopted a common position on this proposal on 17 March 2003, before forwarding it to the European Parliament for a second reading. The Parliament adopted nine amendments to the common position. Those amendments were accepted by the Permanent Representatives Committee on 11 July 2003. The compromise achieved with the Parliament requires the Member States to take appropriate measures to avoid the unintended presence of GMOs in products, and that on the basis of experience at national level, the Commission should set guidelines regarding the co-existence of genetically modified, convention and organic seeds.