Last week, USDA announced a final rule that updated and modernized the agency’s biotechnology regulations under the Plant Protection Act. 

The final rule is called The Sustainable, Ecological, Consistent, Uniform, Responsible, Efficient Rule, which USDA says will bring its plant biotechnology regulations into the 21st Century. 

The American Farm Bureau says the revision will encourage innovation of new plant breeding techniques while safeguarding our food supply. 

“We appreciate the USDA and Secretary Perdue for their common-sense approach to encouraging innovation,” says AFB President Zippy Duvall. “At a time when agriculture is facing many economic headwinds, the science-based rule provides the opportunity to solve current and future challenges for agricultural production and food security.” 

The American Soybean Association is another group pleased with the changes. 

“We’re happy that the new rule streamlines the regulatory process for low-risk crops to come to market,” says ASA Regulatory Committee Chair Caleb Ragland. 

“By establishing a common-sense regulatory process to ensure new biotech plant varieties are reviewed quickly with predictable timelines and allowed to go to market if they pose no threat, soybean growers will remain efficient and competitive through this continued access to innovation.”