AMIGA «Assessing and Monitoring the Impacts of Genetically modified plants (GMPs) on Agro-ecosystems» is a EU project, funded by the FP7, aiming at producing scientific data related to the possible environmental and economic impacts of cultivation of GMPs that are relevant to European environments.

The consortium includes 22 partners (Research institutes, Universities, State Agencies and SMEs) located in 15 EU countries and an ICPC country (Argentina) will contribute in validating the monitoring methodology in areas where GM crops are cultivated on larger scales.The coordinator of the project is the National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (ENEA), Italy, which is the second largest research organisation in Italy. Their agro-biotechnology activities include a wide range of areas and a dedicated research group will be in charge of specifically studying environmental impacts of GM plants.

A project’s cornerstone is the application of the EFSA ERA Guidelines, which is the basis for the update of the regulatory process of GMPs in the EU. The Guideline has provided ecologically sound principles for ERA, triggering the need of practically testing them. Partners of the consortium participated to the preparation of guidelines and 3 of them are senior authors of relevant chapters. The scientific activities will consist of case studies of maize and potato, the two GM crops currently approved for cultivation in the EU, and surveys in non-GM agro-ecosystems.

The final outcome will include a network of EU representative sites for pre-market risk assessment and long-term monitoring studies, a set of standardised testing methods and a geographical information system integrating relevant datasets, protocols and tools to help EU decision-makers.