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APPROVAL / CONTAMINATION: News on GE rice approvals andcontaminations

                                 PART I
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TITLE:  Central Lab assures rice in Dubai market is free from GM content
SOURCE: AME Info, United Arab Emirates
DATE:   23.05.2007

Central Lab assures rice in Dubai market is free from GM content

A survey conducted by the Food and Environment Laboratory in the Dubai
Central Laboratory has found that the different varieties of rice
available in the local market are free from any genetically modified content.

During the survey, conducted for the first time in the country, specimen
were taken from the market to see whether there is any genetically
modified content of Liberty Link Rice type available in them.

Amina Ahmed Mohammed, Head of Food and Environment Laboratory Section
said the step was taken to protect the health and safety of the consumers.

"During the survey conducted by the lab specimen of 11 varieties of rice
available in the local market were taken for test and it was found that
the market is free of any genetically modified content in them," said

"The specimen were subjected to tests to find out whether there is any
genetically modified content of LL601 type in them," she said, adding
that this type is not approved even by the US Department of Agriculture.

She said Dubai Central Laboratory has a pioneering role in finding the
variety of genetically modified food items, which are prohibited to be
used worldwide.

"The lab is equipped to provide specialised training courses to find out
these types of modifications," she said, adding that there is a
possibility of offering this service to the customers also.

Dr. Mazin Hameed Majeed Matloob, an expert in GM engineering and Bio-
technology, who is working with the Food and Environment Laboratory
Section said the tests were conducted using a number of special
diagnoses to find out the type of genetically modified content, which is
approved by the US Department of Agriculture.

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                                 PART II
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TITLE:  NFU concerned over GMO rice approval
SOURCE: National Farmers Union, USA
AUTHOR: Press Release
DATE:   21.05.2007

NFU concerned over GMO rice approval

WASHINGTON (May 21, 2007) - National Farmers Union expressed great
concern today over the approval by the Animal Plant and Health
Inspection Service (APHIS) to allow Ventria Bioscience to plant
genetically modified pharma rice in Kansas. NFU said the decision poses
a potential risk to the American food supply.

"America's farmers have suffered the economic consequences of two major
instances when unapproved genetically-modified rice entered the food
supply in the past year," NFU President Tom Buis said.

Buis said NFU is concerned Ventria Bioscience's proposal did not
specifically address the necessary safety precautions for transit of the
rice. He added that a significant risk may exist to all crops and soils
neighboring the transportantion route.

Despite Kansas' recent devastating tornadoes and disastrous flooding,
part of APHIS' response to official comments was that "extreme weather
events are unlikely to occur in the area of the field trial."

"Until USDA and FDA improve oversight and regulation of pharma crops,
NFU will remain extremely concerned about pharma commodity production
based on economic, environmental, food safety and liability risks to
both producers and consumers," Buis said.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved the rice-grown
drugs due to potentially hazardous side effects. This lack of approval
means Ventria Bioscience does not have a sufficient market, thus the
production of this crop appears to provide no benefit to Kansas farmers
or the economy.

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                                 PART III
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TITLE:  Rice recall
SOURCE: Kathimerini, Greece
DATE:   23.05.2007

Rice recall

Supermarket chain AB Vassilopoulos announced yesterday that it was
pulling off its shelves rice imported from Italy found to have been
genetically modified. The "Risotto Tex-Mex AB" rice, with a November 13,
2007, expiry date, failed to meet EU and local food standards, the
company added.

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