China has been rejecting large quantities of genetically modified corn shipped from the U.S., according to press reports.
The Chicago Tribune reported
last Friday that, “In recent weeks, Chinese inspectors have sent back roughly 600,000 tons of U.S. grain, saying it flunked their quality-control standards. By rejecting such a vast amount of corn, China has roiled the marketplace and shattered trade relations.”
Reuters also said last week
, “China is set to keep rejecting U.S. corn shipments containing an unapproved genetically modified strain at least until the end of March, shrugging off pressure from Washington to swiftly approve the variety developed by crop chemicals giant Syngenta AG.” It said approval of the genetically modified strain might not come until March or June. It added that China “turned back more than 600,000 tons by the end of last year, or around a fifth of China's total imports in 2013.”
Earlier in the month, Reuters had said
Chinese quarantine authorities had sped up testing on imports of distiller's dried grains with solubles (DDGS), which are frequently shipped in containers, suggesting they had relaxed checks on the corn by-product. It said China had turned away about 2,000 tons of U.S. DDGs by late December in addition to the 600,000 tons of U.S. corn.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture said that in the first 10 months of 2013, containerized exports of DDGS, an ethanol byproduct, were a record 244,465 TEU, accounting for 46 percent of containerized grain exports.
USDA's Grain Transportation Report
noted, however, that China has restricted “the entry of an unapproved GMO corn product. At this time, the long-term impact of these new regulations is unclear. However, the use of containers to move these products would allow for smaller and more easily identified shipments.”