EU takes big step to give individual member states powers to block GM crops on their territory

MarketsAssociated Press

The European Union is taking a big step toward giving EU member states the power to ban the cultivation of genetically modified crops in their countries even if it's been approved by the 28-nation bloc.

The European Parliament and member states agreed on Thursday that national governments can have the final say in the matter — a move that goes counter to many EU initiatives, which traditionally seek a common stance on EU policies.

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EU Food Safety Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis says member states "can take into account their national context and, above all, the views of their citizens" to impose such national bans.

The measure still needs final approval from the parliament and member states over the coming weeks.