Calls to stop its members using meat from animals fed on GM crops without proper labelling have been dismissed by the BRC.

The Soil Association, Friends of the Earth, GM Freeze, GM Watch and Gene Watch UK wrote a joint letter to the BRC last month warning against relaxation of the rules on GM feed. It followed calls by egg producers for a relaxation of GM rules because non-GM feed was becoming difficult to source.

In a letter addressed to the five NGOs, sent earlier this month, BRC director-general Helen Dickinson said GM feed was not an issue it could comment on as it was not involved in its members’ commercial decisions. “Decisions on sourcing of feed materials and control of poultry supply chains is an individual commercial decision for each of our member companies,” she said.

Last year, Morrisons changed its policy to allow the use of GM feed by poultry farmers supplying both meat and eggs into own label products, to alleviate soaring input costs as non-GM feed costs were rocketing. Its move was welcomed by the National Farmers Union but criticised by the Soil Association and anti-GM groups.