GMO guideline amendment under discussion

Date: 1 March 2023

Japan’s Food Safety Commission (FSC) in consultation with the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare is responsible for food safety assessments of genetically modified (GM) food and food additives produced by GM microbes. The guidelines for the assessment of GM food and food additives have not been amended since their implementation in 2004.

After almost two decades of implementation, FSC has recently announced the intention to review the guidelines by reflecting recent scientific knowledge and accumulated experience of safety assessments in Japan.

The FSC committee responsible for GM food started their discussions on the revision of the guidelines for GM food and held three meetings in October and December 2022 and the recent one in mid-February 2023. The consultations are expected to be completed by the end of March 2023  and to be followed by the discussions regarding amendments to the guidelines for GM food additives.  

It remains to be seen whether the revision will proceed smoothly and reflect global developments in the food safety assessment.

We will continue to advise our customers on Japan’s regulation on GM food and food additives helping to expand their business opportunities in Japan.