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Following the ECJ honey ruling: Call for safety distances of up to ten kilometres between GM fields and beehives

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The European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled last week that pollen from genetically modified (GM) plants contained in honey counts as a food ingredient and requires authorisation.

Initial reactions from politicians and associations welcome the ruling unanimously because it creates legal certainty at last.

Opinions vary, however, regarding the possible consequences. Whereas Bavarias Environment Minister, Markus Sder (CSU), a number of environmental associations and the German Beekeeping Association (D.I.B.) are calling for safety distances of between three and ten kilometres between beehives and fields with GM crops, some beekeepers and the German honey association (Honig-Verband) are worried that the ruling could spell the end for some beekeepers.

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