“President Trump wants to make it easier for genetically engineered plants and animals to enter the food supply, and he signed an executive order Tuesday directing federal agencies to simplify the ‘regulatory maze’ for producers,” the AP reports.
The move comes as companies are turning to newer genetic engineering techniques that make it easier to tinker with the traits of plants and animals.
Greg Jaffe, biotechnology director at the Center for Science in the Public Interest, said the impact of the executive order will depend on the details of how it’s carried out by federal agencies. Simply deregulating could make people lose confidence in genetically engineered foods, he said.
“There needs to be an assurance of safety for those products,” said Jaffe, who was among those briefed by government officials on a call before the order was announced.
The order also noted the government’s policies should urge trading partners to adopt similar regulatory approaches. Even if the U.S. loosens regulations on genetically engineered foods, Jaffe noted companies could be hampered by regulations overseas.
Americans have shown time and time again they don’t want GMO garbage and they don’t want to be Monsanto’s guinea pigs.