Croatia to Introduce “GMO Free” Food Labels?

By , 11 Jan 2017, 16:34 PM Business

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Agriculture Minister supports the idea.

There are growing demands in Croatia that food which has absolutely no genetically modified organisms should be officially labelled as “GMO free” since, at the moment, by purchasing food in Croatia and in other parts of the EU consumers cannot be absolutely sure that they are not buying small doses of GMOs as well, reports Večernji List on January 11, 2017.

Currently, the fact that there is no GMO label on the food implies that there are no GMOs in it at all, which is not necessarily true. Although there is no reason to think that the EU could soon change its legislative framework related to the presence or absence of GMOs in food, it is not unrealistic to hope that individual EU member states, including Croatia, could adopt regulations labelling as GMO-free those products which contain absolutely no GMOs.

The latest initiative was launched by Member of European Parliament Marijana Petir who wants to label GMO-free food as such, as well as to proclaim the whole Alps-Adriatic region as a GMO-free zone. Her initiative is supported by 35 MEPs from Austria, Slovenia, Italy, Hungary and Croatia. “Croatia should definitely adopt a law to regulate the labelling of GMO-free products. The fact that in Croatia it is not allowed to sow using GMO seeds or to produce GMO agricultural products is our strategic advantage which we have to take advantage of, for the benefit of our agriculture and tourism”, said Petir.

Today as many as 18 EU members do not have a law which would regulate the labelling of food without GMOs. “Consumers in all countries should have the right to an informed decision about food they buy, and GMO-free label may provide additional value for certain agricultural products, increase profits for farmers and open new markets for their products. And it will also be easier for them to compete with import goods which can be contaminated with GMOs and which should also be labelled so that consumers know what they are buying”, explained Petir.

Her position is supported by geneticist Marijan Jošt and chairman of Croatian Chamber of Agriculture Mato Brlošić. “I absolutely support the idea for labelling of GMO-free food, and we should also investigate the issue of GM soybean which is now mostly used for feeding cattle”, said Jošt. Brlošić called for stronger controls on imported soybean, which mostly comes from GMO infested Brazil.

Agriculture Minister Tomislav Tolušić said that Croatian producers deserved for their products to be labelled as GMO-free and added that he was already working on establishing a system for the identification and control of GMO-free food products. “Special attention will be given to educating consumers about the difference in the food products that will carry such a label, in comparison with the food that will be label-free”, explained Tolušić.

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  • The A1 Zagreb-Split-Ploče and A6 Rijeka-Zagreb motorways, the Pag bridge, as well as Dr. Franjo Tuđman bridge in Dubrovnik are open to all vehicle categories. Due to strong wind there is a traffic ban on double-decker buses, campervans and motorcycles on the following sections: -on the A7 motorway between Draga and Šmrika, -on the Krk-bridge, -on the DC8 Adriatic road between Bakar and Novi Vinodolski. There is an additional ban on delivery vehicles and vehicles with covered cargo area on the DC8 Adriatic road between Novi Vinodolski and Sveta Marija Magdalena. A1 MOTORWAY ZAGREB-SPLIT-PLOČE - On the A1 motorway there is a 2 km long queue at Lučko toll station in direction Zagreb. - Traffic is proceeding with difficulties between Posedarje junction and Sveti Rok tunnel in direction Zagreb. - Due to a traffic accident between Novigrad and Karlovac junctions traffic is proceeding slowly in direction Zagreb. A2 MOTORWAY ZAGREB-MACELJ There is a 3,5 km long queue on the A2 Zagreb-Macelj motorway at Trakošćan toll station in direction Slovenia. A3 MOTORWAY BREGANA-LIPOVAC - There is a 2 km long queue on the A3 Bregana-Lipovac motorway at Bregana toll station in direction Slovenia. - Due to a traffic accident on the A3 Bregana-Lipovac motorway traffic is proceeding slowly in a 2 km long queue at Križ junction in direction Zagreb. A7 MOTORWAY RUPA-DIRAČJE At Rupa border crossing in direction Slovenia there is a 2 km long queue. A8/A9 MOTORWAY IN ISTRIA - There is a 5 km long queue at the border crossings Kaštel und Plovanija in direction Slovenia. - There is a 2 km long queue at Učka tunnel in direction Rijeka. KRK BRIDGE Traffic is very dense on the Krk bridge: 3 km towards the island, from Malinska in direction mainland. Roads are wet and slippery countrywide. Rockfalls and landslides are possible. Drivers are advised to adjust the driving speed to the road conditions and to keep the safety distance. Strong wind is blowing on the A1 motorway between Sveti Rok tunnel and Božići viaduct. The queues: on the A1 Zagreb-Split-Ploče there is some queueing traffic between Karlovac and Lučko in direction Zagreb at the toll station Lučko 1 km in direction Zagreb, an Demerje 500 m on the A2 Zagreb-Macelj at the toll station Trakošćan the queue is 3 km long in direction Slovenia at the border crossings Kaštel and Plovanija in Istria 7 km queueing traffic towards Slovenia on the A7 Rupa-Diračje on the state road towards the border crossing Pasjak 4 km The roads are occasionally wet and slippery in the northwestern parts of the country and in the Croatian Littoral. Driving restrictions: freight vehicles exceeding 7,5 t - Sunday, 20th of August; 12AM - 11PM Sections of the roads closed due to roadworks: -the DC29 from Novi Golubovec (DC29, DC35) -the DC502 Smilčić-Pridraga state road -ŽC5042 Višnjan-Tićan. Traffic is regulated by traffic signals/one road lane is free only: -on the DC1 state road in Knin, on the section Sučević-Otrić in Otrić -on the state road DC2 in Vukovar, (Kudeljarska and Priljevo street) -on the state road DC66 Pula- Raša bridge -on the state road DC206 Valentinovo-Petrovsko. With the sunny and dry weather, more and more cyclists and motorists are on the roads. Other vehicles (such as cars or trucks) should look carefully for bicyclists before turning left or right, merging into bicycle lanes and opening doors next to moving traffic. Check your mirrors and be aware of blind spots before turning. While at a stop sign or red light, make a complete stop in order to let bikers pass, and check for unseen riders. Respect the right of way of bicyclists because they are entitled to share the road with you. Cyclists are not immune to traffic violations: pay attention to red lights and practice arm signaling!
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  • Due to heavy traffic during the tourist season longer wait times are possible on most border crossings with Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro.
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  • The catamaran lines Mali Lošinj-Cres-Rijeka and Pula-Mali Lošinj-Zadar are suspended due to bad weather conditions.
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