EFSA scientific assistance to EC on the internal review submitted under Regulation (EC) No. 1367/2006 on the application of the provisions of the Aarhus Convention against Commission Decisions to authorise genetically modified soybeans 305423, MON 87705 and MON 87769
Following a request of the European Commission, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) reviewed the technical aspects of arguments raised by two NGOs (GeneWach UK and TestBiotech) on its GMO Panel’s risk assessment of three soybeans with altered fatty acid content (305423, MON 87705 and MON 87769). The main argument of the NGOs was the lack of a specific guidance for assessing GM crops with significantly altered nutrient composition. EFSA considers that the nutritional issues raised by such type of GM crops do not differ in principle from those arising from non-GM novel foods and/or ingredients. A considerable body of knowledge exists within the Authority in relation to nutritional issues and their assessment. A specific guidance for the assessment of GM crops with altered nutritional composition would not change the current assessment of these GM crops. EFSA addressed one-by-one the technical issues raised by the NGOs, relating to, for example, literature searches made, consumption data source, consumer groups, field trials, and the genetic modification process. In conclusion, EFSA considers that the two NGOs did not put forward new information that would invalidate the previous risk assessment conclusions made by its GMO Panel for these three GM soybeans. Therefore, EFSA considers that the previous risk assessment conclusions on soybeans 305423, MON 87705 and MON 87769 remain valid.