The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) yesterday released three draft regulations governing the labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), which would lower the threshold of tolerance for authorized GMOs in non-GM foods from 5 percent to 3 percent.
“Under the draft regulations, packaged foods containing GMOs or non-GM foods and ingredients that ‘unintentionally contain’ more than 3 percent GM materials are required to label the products as ‘genetically modified’ or ‘containing GMOs,’” said Lee Wan-chen (李婉媜), a section head at the agency’s Division of Food Safety.
Food ingredients that are sold loose or in small quantities are also to be subject to the same regulations, such as soybeans, soybean milk, tofu and vegetarian meat made from soy, Lee said.
Those who fail to comply would face a fine ranging from NT$30,000 to NT$3 million (US$1,000 to NT$100,000), as stipulated in Article 47 of the Act Governing Food Safety and Sanitation (食品安全衛生管理法), Lee added.
Public comments on the draft regulations are set to close on July 19 and the regulations are scheduled to take effect on Jan. 1, 2016, except for the one governing the labeling of unpackaged GM materials, which is to be implemented in three phases, Lee said.
As of this month, the FDA has approved 67 GM food ingredients, all of which are imported, mainly from the US.
Lee said the regulations are designed to assuage some consumers’ concerns about genetically modified foods by improving transparency in GMO labeling.
“We are hoping to help consumers make informed food choices,” Lee added.
With regard to the agency’s controversial decision to lower the threshold to 3 percent rather than 0.9 percent as Minister of Health and Welfare Chiu Wen-ta (邱文達) had promised, Lee said the decision was made after factoring in the nation’s food supply and demand.
“Nevertheless, a further lowering of the tolerance threshold is still possible, depending on the effects of the regulations,” she said.
Currently, the unintentional presence threshold for GMOs in non-GM foods is 0.9 percent in the EU, 1 percent in New Zealand and Australia, 3 percent in Malaysia and South Korea, and 5 percent in Japan.
HIGH STAKES: An attack on Taiwan could prompt a joint response from the US and Japan, and trigger a global conflict that could bring down the CCP, Liu Tai-ying said The Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) would not be able to launch an invasion of Taiwan for at least another 10 years, Taiwan Research Institute founder Liu Tai-ying (劉泰英) said on Friday. To occupy Taiwan, China needs to transport at least 300,000 to 400,000 troops across the Taiwan Strait during battle, but it would lack the ability to do so for at least another decade, said Liu, a former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) treasurer and a close aide to former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝). The challenges that China would face during an attempted invasion of Taiwan would be even greater than those
CHINA CRITIC: Prime ministerial candidate Giorgia Meloni, the front-runner in today’s election, said that she would not renew a Belt and Road Initiative deal with Beijing Italian lawmaker Giorgia Meloni, the front-runner to become the country’s next prime minister, is expected to reverse course on Italy’s support for China’s Belt and Road Initiative and strengthen ties with Taiwan if a coalition headed by her party wins the country’s general election today. “Without any doubt, if there is a center-right government, it is sure that Taiwan will be an essential concern for Italy,” Meloni told the Central News Agency in an interview. Italians are to vote in a snap election triggered by the resignation of Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi following a failed attempt to get his coalition partners
HAWAII MODEL: While Hawaii held a referendum on becoming the 50th US state, Taiwan has never applied to join the People’s Republic of China, Miles Yu said China comparing Taiwanese independence to Hawaii seeking independence from the US is illogical, as Taiwan has never applied to be a part of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), Hudson Institute senior fellow Miles Yu (余茂春) said over the weekend. Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi (王毅), who is in New York for the UN General Assembly, has given multiple talks asserting Chinese sovereignty over Taiwan. In a speech to the Asia Society on Thursday, Wang likened Taiwan to Hawaii. “Just as the US would not allow Hawaii to break away,” Beijing “reserves the right” to seek unification, Wang told the gathering. The
Taiwanese on average first use pornographic material at the age of 14, an international survey found on Wednesday. Researchers at National Cheng Kung University, who conducted the survey in the nation, said 50.2 percent of Taiwanese respondents said they used pornographic material two to three times per month over the past year. Lin Chung-ying (林宗瑩), an associate professor at the university’s Institute of Allied Health Sciences, said the results indicate that Taiwanese are less sexually active than people in other countries, especially in the West. Taiwanese on average masturbate 10 percent less often than respondents from other nations in the survey, Lin said. The