French court overturns ban on Monsanto GMO maize

PARIS Thu Aug 1, 2013 8:49am EDT

PARIS Aug 1 (Reuters) - France's highest administrative court rejected on Thursday a government ban on growing Monsanto's MON810 genetically modified maize (corn).

In its ruling, the Conseil d'Etat said under European Union law such a measure could only be imposed in an emergency or if there was a serious health or environmental risk.

This marks the second time in two years that the State Council has overturned a government ban on growing MON810. France, which is the EU's largest grain producer and a vocal opponent of GMO crops, has argued the technology poses environmental risks.

The ruling was expected after a preliminary hearing earlier this month found there was no scientific justification for the ban. The government has said it remains opposed to the cultivation of Monsanto's GMO maize. (Reporting by Sophie Louet and Gus Trompiz, editing by Michel Rose)

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