Tags: EPA | Still | Wary | Bio-Corn

EPA Still Wary of Bio-Corn

Tuesday, 14 November 2000 12:00 AM

According to Reuters news service:

In a preliminary evaluation, the Environmental Protection Agency said it still questions Aventis SA's contention that StarLink poses no such risk.

Even so, the EPA said this latest scientific information it received does indicate that the potential dietary exposure of humans to StarLink in corn flour, chips and other processed foods is "extremely low."

The EPA then published questions about the safety of StarLink that it wants a panel of independent scientists to consider before giving it their recommendation on Dec. 1.

Two years ago, after agency scientists said they could not determine if StarLink might cause allergic reactions in humans, the EPA certified its use only as livestock feed.

In September, traces of the corn were found in taco shells.

That brought on a recall of more than 300 brands of foods, broad testing of raw corn supplies and complaints from overseas buyers that American corn shipments may be contaminated.

In October, Aventis requested a four-year temporary approval for the bio-corn to be used in human food, which it said is how long it would take for existing corn to make its way from food-production plants to consumers' pantries.

It was in connection with that request that Aventis submitted its new data to support its contention its product is safe for human consumption.

For humans to have an allergic reaction to StarLink corn – skin rashes, diarrhea or respiratory problems – they must first become sensitized to its unique protein (Cry9C).

And that comes after exposure to the protein at high enough concentrations and over an extended period of time.

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According to Reuters news service: In a preliminary evaluation, the Environmental Protection Agency said it still questions Aventis SA's contention that StarLink poses no such risk. Even so, the EPA said this latest scientific information it received does indicate that...
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2000-00-14
Tuesday, 14 November 2000 12:00 AM
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