France’s highest administrative court, the Conseil d’État, has reportedly invalidated a 2014 decree banning Monsanto’s MON810 maize, a genetically modified organism (GMO), because the decree did not demonstrate that the maize would cause serious health or environmental risks, a standard determined by EU rules. The ruling will not allow GMO maize to be cultivated in the country; in 2015, an EU directive allowed member nations to prohibit GMO crops, and France passed legislation complying with the directive’s standards. The later law bans cultivation of all GMO maize in France.
The French maize seed federation sought to appeal the earlier rule despite the symbolic nature of the action to argue that the ban was not based on sound science. “It was more a matter of principle that we conduct this appeal to show there was no scientific basis to the ban,” the organization’s managing director told Reuters. “In concrete terms, it will not change the situation in France.” See Reuters and The Connexion, April 15, 2016.