15 years, 81 projects, 400 teams and €70 million all about GMOs and GMO safety– thank you European Union taxpayers

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European commission webpage describing EC-sponsored research on safety of genetically modified organisms.

In the Introduction to this European commission webpage they note:

Of particular importance in this context is the use of Genetically Modified Organisms outside contained facilities. Consequently, GMO safety research has been supported in successive Framework Programmes from 1985 to the present day. The pattern of development of this support is illustrated in the table below, which shows that over this 15-year period 81 projects have been supported. These projects have involved over 400 teams from many different disciplines and represent a combined Community financial contribution of about €70 million. Summaries of all these projects are contained in this review.

This website overall provides a comprehensive review of the results of EC-supported research into the safety of Genetically Modified Organisms.


It presents research carried out under successive EC Framework Programmes for Research and Technological Development from 1985 (Biotechnology Action Programme) to 2000 (Fifth Framework Programme).

The site is navigated by the sidebar to the left which contains links to research areas which include:

Plants, Plant microbes, Biocontrol, Food, Bioremediation, Tools, Fish, Vaccines

and these in turn link on to numerous different sub pages which are finally annotated with lists of papers supported with funding to the tune of millions of European taxpayers euros.

For example the Food Link provides access to:

  • 4-01 Consumer attitudes and decision-making with regard to genetically modified food products (FAIR-CT96-1667)
  • 4-02 Reliable, standardised, specific, quantitative detection of genetically modified food (QLK1-1999-01301)
  • 4-03 Development of methods to identify foods produced by means of genetic engineering SMT4-CT96-2072)
  • 4-04 New methods for the safety testing of transgenic food (SAFOTEST)
  • (QLK1-1999-00651)
  • 4-05 Development of new methods for safety evaluation of transgenic food crops
  • (AIR3-CT94-2311)
  • 4-06 Opportunities of transgenic food crops for the consumer and the food industry in the Community (AGRF-CT90-0039)
  • 4-07 Safety evaluation of horizontal gene transfer from genetically modified organisms to the microflora of the food chain and human gut (QLK1-1999-00527)
  • 4-08 Stability, survival and horizontal gene transfer of genetically engineered lactic streptococci (BAP-0409/0420/0477)
  • 4-09 Gene transfer from and survival of genetically modified lactic acid bacteria (BAP-0474)
  • 4-10     New methodologies for assessing the potential of unintended effects in genetically modified food crops     (QLK1-1999-00765)
  • 4-11     European network safety assessment of genetically modified food crops     (QLK1-1999-01182)
  • 4-12 Safety assessment of biotechnological processes and products in the agro-food area (SABAF) (AIR3-CT94-2342)
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David Tribe is an applied geneticist, teaching graduate/undergrad courses in food science, food safety, biotechnology and microbiology at the University of Melbourne.