Gene Revolution in Post-Brexit UK

Why and How Britain Can Become a Biotech Powerhouse

In the light of recent leadership changes and Brexit approaching its final stage, the possibility of the United Kingdom becoming a biotech powerhouse is as high as ever. Revolutionising the UK biotech sector by allowing it to utilise the latest developments of genetic engineering in food production and healthcare is only possible if the existing restrictions are relieved and replaced with a more pro-consumer, pro-innovation, and prosperity-fostering approach.

The European Union has traditionally objected to most innovations in food science and prevented European consumers from accessing biologically enhanced food. This can be seen in the very limited number of genetically modified crops authorised for cultivation in the EU, a very cumbersome and expensive process of importing genetically modified food and a recent European Court of Justice ruling against gene editing.

Recommendations

  • Enable the commercial growth of genetically modified crops

  • Introduce equal labelling rules for both GMO- and GMO-free foods

  • Allow and enhance gene-editing