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Edited Oil in Use

Oil made from gene-edited soybeans is already being used in food service in the Midwestern US, the Associated Press reports.

According to the AP, Calyxt CEO Jim Blome has announced that oil from his firm is "in use and being eaten." Calyxt has edited soybeans to inactivate two genes so that they produce oil that is lower in trans fats and has a longer shelf life. The firm has argued that though its soybeans are gene-edited, its product doesn't qualify as a genetically modified organism, as the changes made could have also been made through traditional breeding approaches.

The AP adds that, in the US, regulators have decided that gene-edited crops don't need special oversight. In particular, the Department of Agriculture has said it does not plan to regulate gene-edited crops. Similarly, regulators in Japan have decided not to regulate some types of gene editing. Meanwhile, in Europe, regulators have found that gene editing is a type of genetic modification and falls under the GMO Directive.