From January 8, 2016, prepackaged genetically modified (GM) foods traded in Vietnam must be labeled “genetically modified”, according to Joint Circular No. 45/2015/TTLT- BNNPTNT-BKHCN issued by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Ministry of Science and Technology on November 23.
Subject to this Circular are food products containing at least one GM ingredient making up over five percent of their total ingredients.
Genetically modified corn is experementally planted in Moc Chau district, Son La province__Photo: Dinh Hue/VNA
For GM products with a total area for labeling smaller than 10 cm2
, producers are required to inscribe the “genetically modified” phrase in the labels, while other compulsory contents may be shown in product instruction sheets.
GM foods with improper labels will not be permitted for production and trading from January 8, 2016 (the effective date of this Circular). If by that date, such foods are still circulated on the market, they may continue to be permitted for trading till their expiry date.
Fresh and live GM plants and animals, unpackaged GM foods, GM foods produced for export only are not subject to this regulation. The labeling of these foods is required neither to misrepresent their nature nor violate the laws of Vietnam and importing countries.
GM foods carried along by passengers on entry for personal consumption within the import duty-free quotas, those contained in diplomatic or consular bags, or temporarily imported for re-export, those foods in transit or border-gate transfer or kept in bonded warehouses, those for use as experiment or research specimens; and those for display at trade fairs and exhibitions are also exempt from this compulsory labeling.- (VLLF)