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Mexico Rejects Permit for New GM Corn Variety For the First Time

For the first time, Mexican health regulators have rejected a new variety of GMO corn. Bayer, the developer of the strain, has stated that it will explore its legal options to counter the move, which Mexico’s National Farm Council (CNA) believes violates the USMCA North American trade agreement.

In the past, Mexico has approved 90 GMO corn varieties for import, among 170 total approvals for GM soybeans and cotton. However, earlier this year, the government announced a ban on all GM corn imports or cultivation, as well as glyphosate by 2024. Last year Mexico imported 16 million tons of U.S. corn - nearly all of its GMO varieties. This year, imports are expected to increase to more than 19 million tons, despite the country vowing to increase domestic production. This is the first rejection to happen since the passing of this new legislation. Currently there are seven other pending permits for GM corn in Mexico awaiting resolution, as Mexico’s domestic production is down by more than 5 percent in the first half of this year.

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