Workshop C2: Future availability of non-GM resources

Saturday, 25th April 2009, 12.30 – 15.00h

Chair and moderator:

Jochen Koester, TraceConsult
Presentation: Future availability of non-GM resources (pdf, 518 KB, English)


1: Brigit Hofer, Coop Switzerland – Responsible Consumer Policy & Sustainability (
2: Wolfgang Heck, Life Food – CEO (
3: Jochen Koester, TraceConsult – Founder (


Besides concerns about the impacts GMOs have on nature in the widest sense and on human as well as animal health, there is reason to be alarmed about the continued availability of raw ingredients and semi-processed products that are pure in their conventional, GM-free state. Ubiquitous GMO contamination in the food and feed supply chains would render the free choice of consumers as well as of food producers and manufacturers impossible.
What would be the consequences of a worst-case scenario?
What must happen to avoid a worst-case scenario?
What is already done to ensure future availability of a wide range of GM-free ingredients?
Is there any interdependence between different crops and raw materials?


Minutes of the workshop (pdf, 86 KB, English)

(1) Introduction (Jochen Koester)
- Factors threatening GMO-free raw materials in the future
- Factors preventing an increase of GM contamination
- Influence of industry players on continued GMO-free availability
- The range of industry positions on the issue
- Influence of legislation and regulations on availability
(2) Input paper 1 (Brigit Hofer):
- Swsiss consumers prefer GM-free products. This is not (yet) a problem with
food, but what is the situation in respect to feedstuffs?
- Due to the strict segregation in the flow of raw materials plus the
necessary certification GM-free products are more expensive than commodities
containing GMOs. Which prerequisites and conditions must be met from the
point of view of a major retailer for GM-free food and feedstuffs to have a
long-term future?
(3) Input paper 2 (Wolfgang Heck):
- An organic food manufacturer encounters GMO problems
- Problem analysis and self-help
- Planting of raw materials (soybeans) in new territory
(4) Questions and discussion
(5) Exchange on possible influencing on continued availability of GM-free resources.

Background and literature:

The workshop has demonstrated the importance of a correct application of EU and national laws and regulations for a commodity ordering behavior by the respective industries that would have a positive effect on the supply of GM-free raw materials. Both mandatory labeling for GMO content according to EU regulations as well as voluntary claims as “GM-free” based on some national laws in EU Member States are in the focus of these documents.
The following article: Supplying Raw Materials for GM‐free Animal Products, by Jochen Koester – TraceConsult, Geneva, September 2008:
“international” version in English
(Brazilian) Portuguese version
“German” version (German only) (German only)