The journey to Golden Rice is one step closer to completion, with the formal opening of the 60-day public comment period for its proposed commercial propagation. This follows the regulatory application submitted by the Department of Agriculture – Philippine Rice Research Institute (DA-PhilRice) to the Department of Agriculture – Bureau of Plant Industry (DA-BPI) in October 2020. Public participation is a critical component of the Philippine biosafety regulatory process and is among the final steps towards making Golden Rice available to those who need it most.
“Golden Rice has been previously assessed for food safety in five countries, including the Philippines, and we are confident that it will meet the rigorous standards of our regulators,” notes DA-PhilRice Executive Director Dr. John de Leon.
DA-PhilRice and the International Research Rice Institute (IRRI) are working together to develop and introduce Golden Rice in the Philippines. Golden Rice is a genetically modified rice that contains beta-carotene (a source of vitamin A) and can be grown like ordinary inbred rice. It is intended to provide 30-50% of the estimated average requirement for Vitamin A of young children. Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) continues to be a significant public health issue affecting almost 17% of Filipino children aged five and below. A successful application will enable DA-PhilRice to proceed with the pilot-scale deployment of Golden Rice to selected Philippine communities and lay the groundwork for further research on its impact on vitamin A intake and status.
Public comments or letters of support on the Proposed Commercial Propagation of Rice Event GR2E (OECD Unique Identifier: IRØØGR2E-5) may be sent to:
Bureau of Plant Industry
San Andres, Malate, Manila
Telephone Number: (02) 8251-2267 loc 203 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ronan G. Zagado
Golden Rice Communications and Stakeholder Engagement Focal Person
(044) 456-0258 local 501/ 0998-999-2805
email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org