Trait 1 Added Protein: 5-Enolpyruvylshikimate-3-phosphate synthase (EPSPS)
Source: Agrobacterium sp. strain CP4
Intended Effect: Tolerance to the herbicide glyphosate
Date of authorization:
Scope of authorization:
Food and feed
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Summary of the safety assessment:
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The Food and Drug Administration regulates food and feed (food for humans and animals) from genetically engineered crops in conjunction with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). EPA regulates pesticides, including those that are plant incorporated protectants genetically engineered into food crops, to make sure that pesticide residues are safe for human and animal consumption and do not pose unreasonable risks of harm to human health or the environment.
In the Federal Register of May 29, 1992 (57 FR 22984), FDA published its "Statement of Policy: Foods Derived from New Plant Varieties" (the 1992 policy). The 1992 policy clarified the agency's interpretation of the application of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act with respect to human and animal foods derived from new plant varieties and provided guidance to industry on scientific and regulatory issues related to these foods. The 1992 policy applied to all foods derived from all new plant varieties, including varieties that are developed using genetic engineering (also known as recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid (rDNA) technology).
In the 1992 policy, FDA recommended that developers consult with FDA about foods from genetically engineered plants under development and developers have routinely done so. In June 1996, FDA provided additional guidance to industry on procedures for these consultations (the consultation procedures). These procedures describe a process in which a developer who intends to commercialize food from a genetically engineered plant meets with the agency to identify and discuss relevant safety, nutritional, or other regulatory issues regarding the genetically engineered food and then submits to FDA a summary of its scientific and regulatory assessment of the food. FDA evaluates the submission and if FDA has questions about the summary provided, it requests clarification from the developer. At the conclusion of the consultation FDA responds to the developer by letter. The approach to the safety assessment of genetically engineered food recommended by FDA during consultations, including data and information evaluated, is consistent with that described in the Codex Alimentarius Guideline for the Conduct of Food Safety Assessment of Foods Derived from Recombinant-DNA Plants.
The safe use of pesticidal substances is regulated by EPA. Food from a genetically engineered plant that is the subject of a consultation with FDA may contain an introduced pesticidal substance, also known as a plant-incorporated protectant (PIP), that is subject to food (food for humans and animals) safety and environmental review by EPA.
PIPs are pesticidal substances produced by plants and the genetic material necessary for the plant to produce the substance. Both the PIP protein and its genetic material are regulated by EPA.
When assessing the potential risks of PIPs, EPA requires studies examining numerous factors, such as risks to human health, non-target organisms and the environment, potential for gene flow, and insect resistance management plans, if needed.
In regulating PIPs, decisions are based on scientific standards and input from academia, industry, other Federal agencies, and the public. Before the first PIP product was registered in 1995, EPA required that PIP products be thoroughly tested against human safety standards before they were used on human food and livestock feed crops. EPA scientists assessed a wide variety of potential effects associated with the use of PIPs, including toxicity, and allergenicity. These potential effects were evaluated in light of the public's potential exposures to these pesticides, taking into account all potential combined sources of the exposure (food, drinking water, etc.) to determine the likelihood that a person exposed at these levels would be predisposed to a health risk. Based on its reviews of the scientific studies and often peer reviews by the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Scientific Advisory Panel, EPA determined that these genetically engineered PIP products, when used in accordance with approved label directions and use restrictions, would not pose unreasonable risk to human health and the environment during their time-limited registration.