USDA Won’t Impose Restrictions on Biotech Alfalfa Crop
The Obama administration Thursday abandoned a proposal to restrict planting of genetically engineered alfalfa, the latest rule-making proposal shelved as part of the administration’s review of “burdensome” regulation.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack’s decision not to regulate alfalfa genetically modified to survive applications of the Monsanto Co. herbicide Roundup is a victory for the big seed and agri-chemicals company and the American Farm Bureau Federation, which represents farmers, who had opposed the proposed curbs that were proposed about a month ago.
The Obama administration said earlier this month it is reviewing all proposed government regulation to weed out proposals that are overly burdensome to businesses—part of a broader effort to repair relations with employers and industry. The administration has also shelved two proposed workplace-safety rules opposed by business.
The USDA is expected to decide next week whether or not to issue a new approval for genetically modified sugar beets in time for planting this year.