New Delhi: Research projects on at least 36 genetically modified crops including rice, okra, brinjal, potato, groundnut and tomato are under process, the government told the Lok Sabha Wednesday.
"There is no ban on genetically modified (GM) agricultural products in the country. However, approval of the Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) is mandatory prior to production and sale of GM seeds," Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said in a written reply.
Sugarcane, cabbage, papaya, apple, pea, black gram, chili, cowpea, watermelon, corn and pomegranate are the other GM food crops that are in the research pipeline, he said.
Ramesh said that as of date, Bt cotton was the only GM crop in commercial cultivation.
"The Government has recently imposed a moratorium on commercial cultivation of Bt brinjal. No permission has been given to `Monsanto India` to trade in genetically modified
seeds and other agriculture inputs."
The application of Mahyco pertaining to commercial cultivation of Bt brinjal is pending consideration of the GEAC in light of several views that have emerged during the public
consultations organised by the Ministry, Ramesh said.