Golden Rice is being developed using well-established processes used around the world to ensure safe research and development of genetically modified crops, and our work is subject to rigorous safety evaluations by regulators, as appropriate and required at each stage of our project. To date, we know that:
- Beta-carotene in food is a safe source of Vitamin A, the beta-carotene in Golden Rice is the same as the beta-carotene found in other food, and that proteins from the new genes in Golden Rice do not show any toxic or allergenic properties.
- Golden Rice varieties grow in the same way as other rice varieties do in greenhouses, screenhouses, and the open field, based on tests that have been done.
- Golden Rice is unlikely to harm biodiversity by becoming a weed or by endangering wild rice varieties. (See related FAQ, Will Golden Rice affect biodiversity in the places where it is grown? Will it endanger wild rice varieties?)
These findings, together with information from other safety-related studies, will be submitted to government regulatory authorities in the countries where we are developing Golden Rice.
The following safety studies will also be carried out, as required by regulators:
- Toxicological assessment
- Allergenicity assessment
- Nutritional composition
- Environmental impact, compared with other varieties
Collectively, these studies will be used to evaluate the safety of Golden Rice for humans, animals, and the environment according to national and international standards. The studies are expected to be completed within 2016, so that results and data can be submitted to national regulators. These studies will also be prepared for peer-reviewed publication in scientific journals.
- β-Carotene Is an Important Vitamin A Source for Humans. J. Nutr. December 1, 2010 vol. 140 no. 12 2268S-2285S
- Paine JA et al. 2005. Improving the nutritional value of Golden Rice through increased pro-vitamin A content. Nature Biotechnology 23:482–487
- Goodman RE, Wise J. Bioinformatic analysis of proteins in Golden Rice 2 to assess potential allergenic cross-reactivity. Preliminary Report. University of Nebraska. Food Allergy Research and Resource Program. May 2, 2006