b'INTERNATIONAL NEWSGLOBAL SEED WATCHCANADIAN HONOURED FOR THEIR WORK, JAPAN STARTING TO SELL THEIR GENOME EDITED TOMATO,AND A NEW ADVANCED GENOMIC RESEARCH FACILITY OPENS IN THE UAE.STATUS AUSTRALIA Sanatech Seed Co. in Tokyo developed the variety by modi-fying genes so that it contains four to five times the usual amount CEFC, the Australian government-owned clean energy financeof GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid), a substance that can pre-corporation and global agricultural impact fund Kempen SDGvent blood pressure from rising. Sicilian Red High GABA tomato Farmland Fund have each made a A$50m (32m) cornerstoneproduces lower than usual quantities of an enzyme that breaks investment in a new vehicle managed by Gunn Agri Partners. down the amino acid GABA (or gamma-aminobutyric acid), so The Transforming Farming Platform will span mixed farm- fruits contain more GABA than normal tomatoes. GABA is pro-ing assets across the main cropping areas of Australia and willduced by our body and plays a key role in the brain and nervous focus capital investment in underperforming small to mediumsystem. In addition, other types of GABA have been increased farms to help lift productivity and optimise land use. that specifically lower blood pressure. The product is sold online CEFC CEO, Ian Learmonth, said: Smaller-scale, mixed-useby Pioneer EcoScience Co., which established Sanatech in 2018. Australian farms can reap considerable benefits by using data- According to media, the price of the worlds first genetically mod-backed best practice farming techniques to increase profitabilityified tomato has been fixed at USD68 per kg.and productivity while cutting their carbon footprint. This isNamed Sicilian Rouge High GABA, the genome-edited a win-win development for farmers, agriculture and emissionstomato is grown in greenhouses by a contracted farmer in reduction. Kumamoto Prefecture.The project has support from research groups such asSanatech used genome editing technology to remove the Australias research institute, the CSIRO, and it aims to deliverauto-inhibitory domain that prevents tomatoes from increasing energy efficiency improvements to farms, optimise production,their GABA content. However, the start-up did not add any genes soil carbon (capture), promote biodiversity and achieve otherthat are not naturally found in the vegetable.environmental outcomes. In December last year, Sanatech Seeds submitted a notice Source: IPE Real Assets of its intent to commercialize Sicilian Rouge High GABA as the nations first genome-edited food product to the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry. The notification was accepted.STATUS CANADA The government does not require business operators to identify gene-edited foods as such in their labeling, but Sanatech The rust-resistant wheat cultivar development team atSeeds makes it clear that the variety was developed using Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) earned the Borlauggenome editing technology. Global Rust Initiative (BGRI) 2021 Gene Stewardship Award forIn the European Union, the tomato would currently be reg-their long-standing innovations and strategies to combat wheatulated as a genetically modified product, which would make the rust in Canada and around the world. cost of authorization prohibitive. However, the UK is expected The BGRI Gene Stewardship Award is the premier recogni- to change its legislation soon. Sanatech Seed has previously said tion for researchers serving a national breeding program or otherit is closely following UK regulations.nationally based institution for their contribution to wheat rustSource: Tomato Newsresistance research. The AAFC team developed a model and standard for the preservation of the important rust resistance genes that integrates pathology with genetics and the develop- STATUS UAEment of rust resistant germplasm with combinations of effective rust resistance genes. A new advanced genomic research facility was inaugurated The award was presented on Oct. 8 at the BGRI 2021at the headquarters of the International Center for Biosaline Technical Workshop. Agriculture (ICBA) to further genomic research on, among With a core team of wheat breeders, pathologists, cytoge- other things, healthier, more nutritious, and resilient crops for neticists and molecular biologists, the AAFC team has main- sustainable food systems.tained an enduring commitment protecting wheat in Canada andAs a joint venture between ICBA and BGI, the worlds largest around the globe, said Ronnie Coffman, vice-chair of the BGRIgenomic research institution, the Desert Life Science Laboratory and professor in Cornells Department of Global Development.(DLSL) will help to fast-track the discovery and development of They are collaborators who work across disciplines and bor- food and other crops suited to marginal environments, that is ders to provide support and germplasm to develop rust-resistantagroecosystems constrained by a range of factors such as water cultivars. scarcity, soil and water salinity, heat and drought, among others.The establishment of the DLSL is a result of strategic col-laboration between ICBA and BGI and is in line with their shared STATUS JAPAN objective of addressing global challenges such as hunger and poverty through use of cutting-edge science and technology.A start-up launched at the University of Tsukuba has recentlySource: ICBA started selling a tomato variety developed with genome editing technology, the first food product of this kind ever to be put on the Japanese market.34IEUROPEAN SEEDIEUROPEAN-SEED.COM'