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  • Condensed by Lynda Kiernan-Stone

South Africa Approves GM Corn Imports from U.S.

After suffering through its worst drought in 104 years, South Africa has approved imports of genetically modified corn from the U.S. for the first time.

The country officially became a net importer of corn for the first time since 2008 at the conclusion of the season ending in April as drought cut its corn production by a quarter, landing at 7.97 million tons – the smallest harvest in a decade. And despite the recent return of more regular rain, there remains a concern for future supply.

In response, a spokesman for the secretariat of the Pretoria-based South African Cereals and Oilseeds and Trade Association announced during an interview that the country will now allow for the importation of both white and yellow GM corn from the U.S.

It is estimated that by the end of next April South Africa could import 300,000 tons of U.S. GM white corn and 50,000 tons of U.S. GM yellow corn.

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