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The Costs of GM and Non-GM Co-existence in Processed Food Systems – Demonstrated for the Cases of the German Supply Chains of Chocolate and Frozen Pizza

  • Andreas Gabriel EMAIL logo and Klaus Menrad


In contrast to the increasing use of GM plants in agriculture worldwide, the acceptance of GM food is still low in the European Union. If GM food products were introduced in the EU, the German food industry would be confronted with increased efforts to separate GM and non-GM processing lines and it would have to perform compulsory quality management. This paper analyses the costs of co-existence for producers of frozen pizza and chocolate in Germany. In order to provide an idea of the general magnitude of these costs, an adaptive calculation model was developed, supported by qualitative information from expert interviews for both sectors. The case studies reveal that the possibilities of the companies are quite different in terms of size, infrastructure, and available resources to operate parallel production. Companies which already have sufficient existing facilities to run separated production lines might have the opportunity for specialisation and could manage a possible emerging GM market situation.


This study was financially supported by the European Commission through the Integrated Project Co-Extra, Contract No. 007158, under the 6th Framework Program, priority 5, “food quality and safety”. We would like to thank the project partners of work package 3 involved, especially Mr. Jürgen Bez and Mr. Gottfried Ziegleder (Fraunhofer Institute for Process Engineering and Packaging IVV, Germany) and Mrs. Bernadette Oehen (Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL), Suisse) for their assistance in expert acquisition and data gathering. Additionally, we are indebted to our former colleague Mr. Tobias Hirzinger for his preliminary work during his postgraduate study.


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Published Online: 2014-4-3
Published in Print: 2014-1-1

©2014 by De Gruyter

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