The USDA announced its final rule on plant biotechnology regulations, which will revise decades-old regulations surrounding the development of certain genetically engineered organisms. National Sorghum Producers CEO Tim Lust says they’re pleased USDA has “moved forward” with the rulemaking process and is following earlier guidelines to include new plant breeding technologies like gene editing and technologies like CRISPR (Crisper). “Plant breeding innovations are vital to sorghum producers and will play a fundamental role in our ability to produce more with fewer inputs and to compete in the global marketplace,” says Lust. “By utilizing new techniques, products can be developed more efficiently, saving valuable time and resources.” He says USDA’s approach is commensurate with the broadly-acknowledged low-risk and substantial benefits associated with these breeding innovations. The organization is hopeful that the Environmental Protection Agency will follow the lead of USDA so the improvements in pest and disease resistance can also be achieved through these techniques without any expansion of unnecessary regulatory burdens.”

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