France maintains opposition to Monsanto GM crops: Sarkozy
President Nicolas Sarkozy said Tuesday his government remained opposed to genetically modified crops from US firm Monsanto and would seek new legal measures after a court overturned a French ban.
"The government maintains and will maintain its opposition to the cultivation of Monsanto (GM crops) on our territory," Sarkozy told an agricultural roundtable in the southwestern town of Gimont.
Sarkozy added that Environment Minister Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet and Agriculture Minister Bruno Le Maire were preparing a "new safety clause" to restrict planting.
France's top administrative court on Monday overturned a government order banning French farmers from planting GM crops from US agriculture giant Monsanto.
France's agriculture ministry imposed a ban in February 2008 amid concerns over public safety, but the State Council's ruling stated that the government had failed to prove that Monsanto crops "present a particularly elevated level of risk to either human health or the environment".
Monsanto markets MON 810 maize -- which has been modified at a genetic level to include DNA from a bacteria -- under the trade name YieldGuard as being resistant to insect pests that can threaten harvests.
But some governments believe it could pose a danger to plants and animals.
© 2011 AFP