According to a report by a foreign news agency, a panel of experts from the Japanese Ministry of Health has approved the sale of the country's first genetically engineered tomato. The tomatoes were co-created by the University of Tsukuba and a biotech company.
The panel yesterday approved a request to sell a tomato whose genetic set has been modified to enable it to produce more amino acids called GABA, which is said to lower blood pressure.
The panel says that there are no genes in tomatoes that are different from natural types of tomatoes. Experts further say that genetic trimming has not increased the amount of allergens or toxins.
Under a regulation introduced last year, genetically engineered food can be sold after the government requests it if a panel of experts concludes that the food does not need any inspection for safety.
In contrast, the sale of genetically modified food must pass an Food Safety Commission inspection that includes genes from other organisms.
According to sources, the biotech company had submitted the application yesterday, saying that all this information would be pasted on the genetically modified food.