FSA publish report into international approaches to the regulation of GM and novel foods

17 August 2021

Article: 55/3305

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has published a report examining different international approaches and processes in the regulation of genetically modified (GM) and novel foods. The report explored several aspects of food safety regulation, including definitions, underlying legislation, authorisation processes and production standards.

A novel food is any food or substance that has not been used for human consumption to a significant degree within the EU before 15 May 1997. Since then, there have been over 90 novel foods authorisations approved for use by the EU. Novel foods and genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are subject to a large variation in regulatory approaches around the world, for which many countries have specifically developed their own regulatory frameworks to control the placement of such products on their markets.

Countries of interest for novel foods that were selected for review by the FSA included Australia, Canada, Japan, and the USA, with a focus on their approach to novelty determination, authorisation processes, differences in terminology, safety standards, and evidence-based requirements. In the regulatory approaches for GMOs, the countries reviewed were Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, and the USA.

Source: FSA, 9 August 2021