As swine fever is spreading and its control is becoming more difficult, MAFF has approved the use of vaccines. (See BJ November 2019
) The African swine fever virus has also been found in pork products brought in by users of Narita Airport and other locations, making it clear that infestation by the virus is close at hand. For this reason, an epidemic prevention countermeasures headquarters, which held its first meeting behind closed doors on October 18, has been established to strengthen countermeasures.
Reflecting moves to use genome editing technology to promote US organic farming, Japan's Food and Agriculture Agricultural Materials Inspection Center (FAMIC) has held meetings to consider how to handle organic certification for genome editing since September 30. On November 8, FAMIC formally indicated its policy not to grant organic certification for genome edited crops and initiated a call for opinions from the general public. However, the meetings are still continuing and since a formal decision has not yet been reached, there is a possibility that exceptions will be approved.