More than 60 countries around the world, including Australia and Japan consider GMOs NOT to be safe. In the Middle East, Saudi Arabia is the only country that has banned the growing of GMO foods and the importing of GMO wheat.
In Lebanon, although we do have some laws that forbid implicitly releasing organisms in the environment or using it in foodstuff, GMO are found in many food products sold on the Lebanese market. There is currently no data in Lebanon and other countries in the region regarding GMO distribution in the market. However, given that many well-known brands are imported from the USA, Canada, Australia, India, Mexico, and China… and given that we do not force labeling of GMOs, we are unknowingly consuming GMO-containing products.
However, governments who created a regional platform for the detection of genetically modified organisms have made some efforts towards better transparency and traceability. The participating countries include Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, the UAE, Yemen and Sudan. The aim of the project is to handle and manage GMO detection and related procedures through increased regional cooperation and standardization of GM detection and analysis procedures within the region.