Mexico Closes Border to U.S. GM Rice

Mexico is requiring certification to show that U.S. rice crossing the border does not contain genetically modified rice.

Mexican officials are holding U.S. rice imports at the border and requiring certification o conclusively show that the rice is not contaminated with genetically engineered variety LLRICE601.

Mexico joins other U.S. rice markets such as Europe and Japan in putting measures in place to stop genetically engineered rice from crossing their borders. Mexico is currently the largest export market for U.S. rice, with $205 million worth in exports in 2006.

The precautionary measures come in response to the contamination of conventionally grown rice with LLRICE601, a genetically engineered variety developed by Bayer CropScience.

The USA Rice Federation is in contact with the U.S. embassy in Mexico City in relation to the border closing.

The actions mark Mexico's first precautionary measures on the import of genetically engineered food.

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