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APHIS Issues Regulatory Status Review Response: Light Bio Petunia

WASHINGTON, January 22, 2024 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) recently reviewed a petunia plant modified using genetic engineering. Light Bio modified the petunia for altered appearance (glowing). We reviewed the modified petunia to determine whether it posed an increased plant pest risk as compared to cultivated petunia.

APHIS found this modified petunia is unlikely to pose an increased plant pest risk compared to other cultivated petunia. As a result, it is not subject to regulation under 7 CFR part 340. From a plant pest risk perspective, this petunia may be safely grown and bred in the United States.

You can view the RSR request from the Light Bio and APHIS’ response letter on the APHIS website. Our response is based on information from the developers and our:
familiarity with plant varieties,
knowledge of the traits, and
understanding of the modifications.

Under 7 CFR part 340, developers may request an RSR when they believe a modified plant is not subject to regulation. APHIS reviews the modified plant and considers whether it might pose an increased plant pest risk compared to a nonregulated plant. If our review finds a plant is unlikely to pose an increased plant pest risk relative to the comparator plant, APHIS issues a response indicating the plant is not subject to the regulations.

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