As part of its annual update to the List of Bioengineered Foods (the List), the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) invites public comment on a proposed rule to make two changes to the List in accordance with the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard (the Standard). The Standard requires AMS develop and update the List to identify Bioengineered products that are approved for production and in commercial production somewhere in the world. The Standard at 7 CFR 66.1 defines bioengineered foods as those that contain detectable genetic material that has been modified through in vitro recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid techniques and for which the modification could not otherwise be obtained through conventional breeding or found in nature.
A notice announcing the List updates was published today in the Federal Register. Interested parties have 60 days to comment on the proposed changes and/or recommend foods to add to the List. In this year’s update, AMS is proposing to make two changes to the List:
- add “sugarcane (Bt insect-resistant varieties)”
- amend “squash (summer)” to “squash (summer, mosaic virus-resistant varieties)”
The current List, 7 CFR 66.6, identifies the crops or foods that are available in a bioengineered form to aid regulated entities considering whether they may need to make a BE disclosure. The Standard, 7 CFR Part 66, establishes the need for recordkeeping by regulated entities who are using or selling the crops and foods on the List.
The Proposed Rule was developed based on public comments received from the Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR). On July 24, 2020, AMS published an ANPR in the Federal Register seeking public comment on recommendations to update the List (85 FR 44791). The comment period for the ANPR closed on August 24, 2020, and AMS received a total of 17 comments.
More information about the Standard and the List are available on the AMS website at https://www.ams.usda.gov/rules-regulations/be/bioengineered-foods-list. AMS invites public comment on the proposed updates through September 20, 2022. Comments should be submitted online at www.regulations.gov.
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