The National Corn Growers Association supports the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s option to fully deregulate glyphosate tolerant alfalfa events J101 and J163, as published in the Final Environmental Impact Statement this past December. House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., is pressing USDA to fully deregulate Roundup Ready alfalfa in a committee forum today.  Roundup Ready alfalfa was found to pose no risk to health or safety.

The U.S. regulatory system for biotechnology derived agricultural products has been the world leader for 25 years based upon a science-based decision-making process.

“Biotechnology benefits the environment and helps to provide food, feed, fiber and fuel to the world’s growing population.” said Bart Schott, NCGA president from Kulm, N.D.  “A full deregulation of this important crop would allow farmers to move forward with alfalfa production this spring.”

An order issued in 2007 by the U.S. District Court in San Francisco required USDA to conduct a full Environmental Impact Statement regarding Roundup Ready alfalfa. USDA has since put in place reforms to address the court’s concerns regarding compliance. NCGA also strongly supports continued efforts to adequately fund USDA’s biotechnology regulatory program to address compliance issues regarding deregulation. A Record of Decision for these alfalfa events is expected beginning on Jan. 24.