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Monsanto drops GM crop plan in EU

A field of GM corn
Monsanto will now look to import genetically modified crop varieties into Europe

Biotechnology giant Monsanto is scrapping plans to win approval to grow new types of genetically modified crops in the European Union.

It says the move is due to the lack of prospects for cultivation in the EU.

Monsanto produces GM crops and agro-chemicals which are in wide use in the US and in other parts of the world.

In Europe there have been concerns about the use of GM food products, and approval for GM crop cultivation can take years to obtain.

The Monsanto decision related to pending requests to grow genetically modified maize, soybean and sugar beet.

It comes just days after the EU began talks with the US on a wide-ranging trade deal, with agriculture likely to be one of the toughest issues.

The company said it would now concentrate on growing its conventional seeds business in Europe.

It will also look to get EU approval to import its genetically modified crop varieties from the US and South America into Europe.

In 2012, Germany's BASF halted the development of genetically modified crops in Europe and moved its European research operations in this area to the US.

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