US says rogue wheat was 'isolated' incident

A farmer drives his combine harvester on a wheat field, August 11, 2012, in Cassel, northern, France
A farmer drives his combine harvester on a wheat field, August 11, 2012, in Cassel, northern, France. US agriculture officials said Friday the discovery of genetically engineered wheat in an Oregon field appears to be an isolated incident.

US agriculture officials said Friday the discovery of genetically engineered wheat in an Oregon field appears to be an isolated incident.

The plants, modified to be resistant to Monsanto , were discovered last month and led some Asian importers to halt or suspend trade with US wheat growers while an investigation was launched.

Some crops of corn and soybeans are genetically engineered to be resistant to herbicides on the global market, but such modifications to wheat have never been approved anywhere in the world.

"As of today, USDA has not found nor been informed of anything that would indicate that this incident amounts to more than a single isolated incident in a single field on a single farm," said a statement from the US .

"All information collected so far shows no indication of the presence of GE (genetically engineered) wheat in commerce."

The USDA said the discovery does not pose any concern to public health or food safety, and recalled that the completed its consultation process with Monsanto in 2004.

"Completion of the FDA consultation process means this variety is as safe as non-GE wheat currently on the market," it said.

The probe so far has included interviews with the farmer and the seed supplier, USDA said. Samples of the the farmer bought, along with sample of his and this year and last have tested negative for GE material.

"Investigators are continuing to conduct interviews with approximately 200 area growers," said the statement.

US officials have also provided trading partners with a DNA-based method for detecting Monsanto modified grain at a frequency of one in 200 kernels, it said.

"Major markets, such as Japan, Korea and Taiwan, have postponed imports of US as they continue to study information from US officials to determine what, if any, future action may be required," said the statement.

"USDA officials will continue to provide information as quickly as possible as the investigation continues—with a top priority on giving our trading partners the tools they need to ensure science-based trade decisions."


Explore further

USDA: Unapproved modified wheat in Oregon field (Update)

© 2013 AFP

Citation: US says rogue wheat was 'isolated' incident (2013, June 14) retrieved 23 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-06-rogue-wheat-isolated-incident.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
0 shares

Feedback to editors

User comments

Jun 14, 2013
likely "planted" by one of the many enviro-whackos to create news.

JRi
Jun 15, 2013
Gene modified wheat should glow in the dark so it would be easier to spot.

Jun 15, 2013
Moot point, as weeds are becoming glyphosate resistant. No point in purchasing/planting herbicide resistant crop seed if the herbicide isn't effective. Ditto the herbicide itself.

Jun 15, 2013
No one is saying _how_ the frankenwheat got there. I wont be suprised when _more_ examples are found. Remember, Monsatano has only _one_ serious competitor for food production: Nature. It is in Monsatano's interest to destroy the competition... Watch and see.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more