USDA Proposes Nonregulated Status for RR Beets


The following article is from  CLICK HERE to get the official news from the USDA.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), published June 1 two assessments prepared in response to a petition for nonregulated status submitted to the Agency by developers of a variety of sugarbeet genetically engineered (GE) to be resistant to the herbicide glyphosate. This variety is commonly referred to as Roundup Ready (RR) sugarbeets.

Under the Plant Protection Act and APHIS’ regulations, the Agency is specifically required to evaluate if the RR sugarbeet variety is a plant pest to agricultural crops or other plants or plant products. APHIS’ final plant pest risk assessment (PPRA) finds RR sugarbeets are not likely to pose a plant pest risk.

Monsanto first introduced RR sugarbeets during the 2008-09 growing season. On January 21, 2008, opponents to the technology initiated a legal action in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, challenging the deregulation of Roundup Ready sugarbeets by USDA.

At that time U.S. District Court Judge Jeffrey White ruled the USDA would have to complete an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for Roundup Ready sugarbeets, but this ruling focused on the process used by the USDA in deregulating Monsanto’s Genuity Roundup Ready sugarbeets.

In considering the request for nonregulated status, and in accordance with the U.S. District Court decision in 2009, APHIS just completed two analyses, one under the Plant Protection Act and another under the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA). These two analyses will be available for public review for at least 30 days before APHIS makes its final regulatory determination. APHIS anticipates that EPA will publish a notice on June 8, 2012 in the Federal Register for the final EIS on RR sugarbeets.

APHIS evaluated a host of concerns and issues that have been raised regarding RR sugarbeets. These include gene flow between RR sugar beets and non-GE sugar beet, table beet, Swiss chard, and wild beet varieties. APHIS also analyzed the implications for herbicide use and tillage, and impacts on weed development and on non-target organisms, such as amphibians. The Agency also studied impacts of its decision on public health and worker safety.


Posted by Haylie Shipp


Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x