Research and analysis

Genetically modified crops: contamination risks in the UK

The Advisory Committee on Releases to the Environment's advice to government on the risks of genetically modified crops growing wildly.


Advice on notifications for import and processing of GM crops that have a limited potential to grow outside of agricultural conditions

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To help government respond to import and processing requests, the Advisory Committee on Releases to the Environment’s (ACRE) has produced this report on the danger of uncultivated growth of some common types of genetically modified (GM) maize and soybean.

The report looks at:

  • how seeds or grain can be accidentally introduced into the wider UK environment during processing or transport
  • whether such small quantities of the crops could become established in the UK
  • any other risks, such as soil contamination

The committee’s conclusion for all the crops discussed is that they wouldn’t grow successfully in the UK, and that they carry no other significant risk.

Published 18 February 2013