GMAC Subcommittee on Release of Agriculture-related GMOs

“Agriculture-related organisms” refers to animals (including fish and invertebrates), plants, microorganisms and vaccines used in cultivation, farming, agronomy, husbandry and horticulture or as food.

GMAC has established a subcommittee to evaluate, advice, and make recommendations on proposed releases of agriculture-related genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in Singapore.

The terms of reference of the Subcommittee are as follows:

  • To draft revisions of the Singapore Guidelines on the Release of Agriculture-Related GMOs, when necessary, for GMAC’s approval;
  • To designate the various agencies (ie. AVA, NEA, MOH, NParks) to implement the Guidelines using their existing legislation;
  • To assess the risks associated with the release of agriculture-related GMOs or recommend to GMAC to appoint an expert panel if necessary;
  • To make recommendations to GMAC on the approval for release of agriculture-related GMOs
  • To assess the risks associated with the release of agriculture-related GMOs or recommend to GMAC to appoint an expert panel if necessary;
  • To monitor the control of release of agriculture-related GMOs in the environment by the relevant agency

In 1999, GMAC published the Singapore Guidelines on the Release of Agriculture-Related GMOs to ensure the safe movement and use of such organisms in Singapore. In particular, we work very closely with regulatory agencies such as the Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority to ensure that all GM foods commercially available in Singapore are at least as safe as their conventional counterparts.

The Subcommittee on the Release of Agriculture-Related GMOs makes science-based risk assessments of proposed releases of agriculture-related GMOs. Its recommendations are forwarded to the GMAC main committee, which decides whether or not it will endorse the application. The regulatory authorities will take into account GMAC’s advice when considering the official approval of agriculture-related GMOs.

The Subcommittee consists of scientific experts as well as representatives from the regulatory authorities. When necessary, ad hoc expert panels will be appointed for particular cases.

The composition of the Subcommittee is as follows:

Name

Role in GMAC

Designation

Organisation

A/Prof Peter Dröge

Subcommittee Chairman

Associate Professor,
Division of Molecular Biology & Genetics School of Biological Science

Nanyang Technological University (NTU)

Ms Lee Siew Mooi

Member

Deputy Director (Technology)
Planning & Management Dept

Agri-food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA)

A/Prof Matthias Maiwald

Member

Senior Consultant,
Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine

Associate Professor (Adjunct)
Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine

KK Women's and Children's Hospital

National University of Singapore and Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School

A/Prof Hong Yan

Member

Chief Scientific Officer

Associate Professor (Adjunct), School of Biological Sciences

JOil(S) Pte Ltd

Nanyang Technological University (NTU)

Dr Yin Zhong Chao

Member

Senior Principal Investigator

Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory (TLL)

A/Prof Xu Jian

Member

Associate Professor
Department of Biological Sciences

National University of Singapore (NUS)

A/Prof Pan Shen Quan

Member

Associate Professor
Department of Biological Sciences

National University of Singapore (NUS)

A/Prof Ho Han Kiat

Member

Associate Professor
Department of Pharmacy
Faculty of Science

National University of Singapore (NUS)

Dr HuangFu Taoqi

Ad-Hoc Member

Deputy Director
Virology Section

Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA)

A/Prof Justin Chu

Ad-Hoc Member

Assistant Professor
Laboratory of Molecular RNA, Virology and Antiviral Strategies, Department of Microbiology and Immunology

Yong Yoo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore (NUS)

National University Health System (NUHS)

Prof Wang Linfa

Ad-Hoc Member

Professor & Director Programme in
Emerging Infectious Disease Programme

Duke-NUS Medical School National University of Singapore (NUS)


For more information on the work of the Subcommittee, please see:

Various Agencies, 6 Nov 2008
Multi-Agency Circular on Biosafety Guidelines for Research, Release and Importation of GMOs


The Straits Times, 25 Mar 2008
All Food Here, Including GM Food, Safe to Eat: AVA


The Business Times, 8 Mar 2008
Guardian of Singapore's Food Supply


The Straits Times, 21 Jun 2006
GM Food Facts


The Straits Times, 21 Jun 2006
Test-Tube Foods Still a Hot Potato


The Straits Times, 9 Jun 2004
GM Food Here Tested for Safety


GMAC, 20 Aug 1999
Singapore Guidelines on the Release of Agriculture-Related GMOs