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The Codex-Directive "GMO-free"

The production directive is based on the Directive Defining the “GMO-free Production” of Food and its Labelling in the regulations of the Austrian Codex Alimentarius. The first directive was released in 1998, with a major revision in December 2007.

Specifications for GMO-free production:
The strict cultivation, production and monitoring specifications of the Codex Directive allow consumers to make an informed decision when buying food – now and in the future. 

The Codex Directive resp. the label „Ohne Gentechnik hergestellt“ on the product itself ensure that:

  • food does neither consist of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) nor contains any;
  • feed for the production of animal products neither consists of GMO nor contains any;
  • no genetic engineering procedures are being used during the production of food and feed as well as during the production of all containing additives (i.e. vitamins, enzymes, flavouring);werden;
  • seed, pesticides, fertilizers and soil conditioners also comply with these requirements;
  • adequate transition periods for feeding the animals are defined before the final product (meat, eggs, milk) are allowed to be labelled „Ohne Gentechnik hergestellt“; 
  • standardized and clear specifications for the monitoring and labelling of GMO-free produced food are effective. 

Exemption Clause
Exemption clauses may apply for ingredients such as food additives, flavours, enzymes and vitamins – analogous to the EU Organic Regulation – if the ingredients are not continually and demonstrably available in GMO-free quality but are necessary for the production. Exemption clauses of this sort can be granted by the Ministry of Health, which is responsible for all issues around food and GMOs, upon the recommendation of the expert group defined in the directive - in accordance with the market evolution as regards the supply with GMO-free ingredients. 

The recent status of the directive resp. the valid exemption clauses are published on the website of the Federal Ministry of Health.

 Codex-Directive "GMO-free" (pdf; 122 KB)

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