France placed a temporary ban on the growth of Monsanto's MON810 GMO maize earlier this month after a previous moratorium was annulled by the country's top court in November on the basis that it was not sufficiently justified.
"This restriction does not rely on any serious scientific element, and maize producers, hit by [insects], sustain real financial damage," French growers group AGPM, French seed firms group UFS and the maize and sorghum producers federation FNPSMS said in a joint statement yesterday (29 March).
France asked the European Commission in February to suspend authorization to sow the insect-resistant maize, the only GMO crop allowed for cultivation in the European Union.
The French government's request to the EU Commission was based on "significant risks for the environment" shown in recent scientific studies, it said.
Global agribusiness company Monsanto said its GMO maize is perfectly safe.
French and European farmers have expressed concerns about the consequences of EU consumers' hostility to GMOs, saying it is likely to make them fall behind in the competitive world grain market.