Foreign Media Get Firsthand Experience with US Corn Production

MON GH92Japan has a well-developed regulatory system for biotechnology and food safety approvals. The U.S. Grains Council works closely with Japan's regulatory government agencies to ensure the United States remains in compliance and to help keep the industry up-to-date on U.S. regulatory processes. While biotechnology products are proven safe and appropriately labeled in Japan's food system, some consumers remain hesitant, as they do not fully understand the intricate details behind the safety system.

Last week, the Council hosted several of Japan's mainstream media reporters, food industry advisors and consumer group opinion leaders to the United States to get a firsthand look at the extensive biotechnology approval and regulatory process.

"We all know how influential the media can be on the general public. It's very important to our industry that these consumers get all sides of the story, so they then can formulate their own opinions," said Tommy Hamamoto, USGC director in Japan. "Reporters and opinion leaders are a great way to get fair information out to a larger, more public audience, something the Council cannot do on its own."

The reporters learned about the technological advancements in biotechnology, farming practices and U.S. biotech policies. The team traveled to Nebraska was one of the best places to observe how modern irrigation and biotechnology is used to mitigate the impact of drought.

"The reporters appreciated the rare opportunity to meet and talk directly to the farmers during the trip," said Hamamoto. "The information observed by the group members will contribute to their future stories on how food security around the world benefits from U.S. farming and biotechnology. We are hopeful these participants will help raise awareness and offer fair reporting to the general public, and consumers.

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