Lithuania has secured a ban on genetically modified maize2015-11-19
The European Commission reports it will take the claims made by Lithuania into account, and its geographic territory will be excluded from the permits to cultivate 8 genetically modified plants (maize).
According to Kęstutis Trečiokas, Minister of Environment, “We have always acted with caution when it comes to genetically modified organisms. The Ministry of Environment has ensured the biodiversity in Lithuania will continuously face no risk brought by cultivation of genetically modified plants”.
In early 2015, the EU Member States were permitted to decide whether or not they wish to cultivate genetically modified plants. Once the Parliament and the Government came to a political decision, in September the Ministry of Environment contacted the entities that have previously applied for cultivation of genetically modified plants and holding a permit for their cultivation. In response, exclusion of the entire national territory was requested from commercial area of cultivation of 8 types of genetically modified maize.
According to the European Commission, this appeal was granted. This is to say the genetically modified plants, covered by the applications made on the EU level, will not be cultivated here in Lithuania.
16 other Member States have brought identical claims to have all or part of their national territory excluded from the area of commercial cultivation, including Latvia, Poland, Greece, Croatia, Austria, France, Hungary, the Netherlands, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Cyprus, Germany, Bulgaria, Italy, Denmark, and Slovenia.
Decisions on specific genetically modified organisms are taken on a case by case basis. Should either company apply for cultivation of a new line of genetically modified plants, Lithuania would be required to reconsider claiming exclusion (or not) of the national territory from the geographical area of cultivation of a genetically modified plant in question.