August 5, 2016 / 9:15 PM / 2 years ago

Quarantined Washington state wheat tests negative for GMO: USDA

(Reuters) - No genetically modified (GMO) wheat has been found in a Washington state farm’s crop tested after an unapproved biotech variety was discovered growing there in June, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Friday.

The quarantined grain will be allowed to enter the marketplace, the USDA said.

The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has launched an investigation into how an unapproved GMO wheat variety developed by Monsanto Co but never approved by federal regulators came to be growing in Washington. It was the third such finding since 2013.

There are no commercially approved varieties of GMO wheat.

The discovery, announced last week, prompted importers such as Japan and South Korea to suspend purchases of some U.S. wheat.

South Korea’s Ministry of Food and Drug Safety said on Friday that it has not found any GMO wheat in tests on imported wheat and flour from Washington state after receiving testing supplies on Aug. 1. The fifth largest buyer of U.S. wheat said it will continue testing incoming U.S. wheat and reject loads containing any rogue wheat.

Reporting by Karl Plume in Chicago; Editing by Sandra Maler and Jonathan Oatis

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