China renews GMO corn import certificates

decrease font size  Resize text   increase font size       Printer-friendly version of this article Printer-friendly version of this article

Beijing's renewal of expired import certificates of several biotech corn strains last week is an encouraging sign that the United States and China will soon resolve the import dispute over an unapproved corn variety that has caused the rejection of several U.S. corn shipments, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said.

"These were renewals, so it's not new, but it's comforting to the companies who had been waiting for quite some time for this," Vilsack told reporters at the annual American Farm Bureau Federation convention here.

"These renewals had been sitting on the desks of ministers for some time so that was a positive step."

U.S. trade groups got word last week that China renewed the import of several GMO seed varieties, but there was still no word on Syngenta AG's MIR 162 corn, a GMO variety that has been awaiting China's official approval for more than two years.

Beijing, the third largest buyer of U.S. corn last year, has rejected some 600,000 tonnes of U.S. corn shipments since November after testing positive for the unapproved corn strain. Chinese officials have also rejected about 2,000 tonnes of U.S. dried distillers' grain (DDG), a popular corn-based feed grain.

Despite those rejections, China continues to ship U.S. corn and has relaxed import restrictions on DDGs. China shipped 155,600 tonnes of U.S. corn just last week, the second biggest shipper behind Japan.

USDA last week reduced its forecast for corn imports by China in the 2013/14 (Sept/Aug) marketing year to 5 million tonnes, down from 7 million previously, amid the still-unresolved MIR 162 issue and as China's domestic crop was larger than initially thought.

Vilsack met with Chinese government officials in December as part of the annual Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade talks and discussed biotech approvals, including a pilot program to synchronize U.S. and Chinese regulatory review of new biotech crop varieties. Currently, China does not begin its reviews until U.S. approval is received.

"After we left, they put a little distance between our visit and their action, but after we left four or five events that had been sitting for some time were finally approved," Vilsack said. "What we've been able to get them to agree to is to start on a pilot at the same time. We will probably have to finish before they do, but they'll at least start and that could save a year in the process on their side."

It remained unclear why Chinese officials began rejecting MIR 162 corn this season when the variety has been in the U.S. corn supply since 2011.

From China and from "folks representing American shipping interests" Vilsack was told that there was "a significant issue between the company and the Chinese officials. They didn't get into the details about what the issue was."

When asked how long it will take for a resolution Vilsack would not give a specific time frame.

"Their systems need to be upgraded and they're facing political issues and we just need to be patient."


Buyers Guide

Doyle Equipment Manufacturing Co.
Doyle Equipment Manufacturing prides themselves as being “The King of the Rotary’s” with their Direct Drive Rotary Blend Systems. With numerous setup possibilities and sizes, ranging from a  more...
A.J. Sackett Sons & Company
Sackett Blend Towers feature the H.I.M, High Intensity Mixer, the next generation of blending and coating technology which supports Precision Fertilizer Blending®. Its unique design allows  more...
R&R Manufacturing Inc.
The R&R Minuteman Blend System is the original proven performer. Fast, precise blending with a compact foot print. Significantly lower horsepower requirement. Low inload height with large  more...
Junge Control Inc.
Junge Control Inc. creates state-of-the-art product blending and measuring solutions that allow you to totally maximize operating efficiency with amazing accuracy and repeatability, superior  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The flagship blending system for the Layco product line is the fully automated Layco DW System™. The advanced technology of the Layco DW (Declining Weight) system results in a blending  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The LAYCOTE™ Automated Coating System provides a new level of coating accuracy for a stand-alone coating system or for coating (impregnating) in an automated blending system. The unique  more...
John Deere
The DN345 Drawn Dry Spreader can carry more than 12 tons of fertilizer and 17.5 tons of lime. Designed to operate at field speeds up to 20 MPH with full loads and the G4 spreader uniformly  more...
Force Unlimited
The Pro-Force is a multi-purpose spreader with a wider apron and steeper sides. Our Pro-Force has the most aggressive 30” spinner on the market, and is capable of spreading higher rates of  more...
BBI Spreaders
MagnaSpread 2 & MagnaSpread 3 — With BBI’s patented multi-bin technology, these spreaders operate multiple hoppers guided by independent, variable-rate technology. These models are built on  more...


Comments (0) Leave a comment 

Name
e-Mail (required)
Location

Comment:

characters left


Smooth Wall Grain Bins

Meridian’s SmoothWall bins are the ultimate storage bins, used to handle and store fertilizer, grain, feed and seed, and extend ... Read More

View all Products in this segment

View All Buyers Guides

Feedback Form
Feedback Form