Imidazolinone herbicide tolerant grain sorghum ADV-IMI-R

In 2018, Health Canada received a submission to allow the sale of imidazolinone-tolerant grain sorghum ADV-IMI-R, which was developed using chemical mutagenesis and conventional breeding procedures to be herbicide tolerant.  In order to determine whether the ADV-IMI-R grain sorghum could be sold in Canada as food, the scientists at Health Canada conducted a scientific assessment that ensured the sorghum is safe for consumption, still has all its nutritional value and therefore does not differ from other sorghum available on the market. Our scientists also needed to assess how the sorghum was developed and whether it can be toxic or cause allergic reactions.

Health Canada has approved ADV-IMI-R grain sorghum for sale in Canada.  ADV-IMI-R grain sorghum expresses the mutated sbAHAS protein which leads to imidazolinone herbicide tolerance.

Scientists with expertise in molecular biology, microbiology, toxicology, chemistry and nutrition conducted a thorough analysis of the data and the protocols provided by the applicant to ensure the validity of the results.

Following this assessment, it was determined that the changes made to this sorghum did not pose a greater risk to human health than sorghum currently available on the Canadian market. In addition, Health Canada also concluded that ADV-IMI-R grain sorghum would have no impact on allergies, and that there are no differences in the nutritional value of ADV-IMI-R grain sorghum compared to other sorghum available for consumption.

Health Canada's assessment of ADV-IMI-R grain sorghum was conducted according to the Guidelines for the Safety Assessment of Novel Foods.  The approach taken by Health Canada in the safety assessment of GM foods is based upon scientific principles developed through expert international consultation over the last 20 years with agencies such as the World Health Organization (WHO), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The approach taken by Canada is currently applied by regulatory agencies around the world in countries such as the European Union, Australia/New Zealand, Japan, and the United States.

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