Syngenta has withdrawn two applications for genetically modified products in the European Union following a re-evaluation of their commercial potential, a spokeswoman said on Tuesday.

The company applied for approval to cultivate maize in the EU with the MIR604 trait for rootworm control in 2010.

Syngenta said there was a linked application for approval to cultivate maize stacked with three traits, MIR604, Bt11 (insect resistant and herbicide tolerant) and GA21 (for herbicide tolerance).

That application has therefore also been withdrawn.

Syngenta still has pending requests for approval related to the other two traits.

The company said the decision to withdraw the applications was not related to requests from the majority of EU governments to opt out of the approval of the only GMO crop commercially cultivated in the EU.

Nineteen EU member states have requested opt-outs for all or part of their territory from cultivation of the Monsanto crop, the European Commission said on Sunday.

Although widely grown in the Americas and Asia, public opposition is strong in Europe to GMO crops, which have had their DNA altered, often by introducing genes from a different species to boost their resistance to pests or herbicides. (Reporting by Nigel Hunt; editing by Adrian Croft)

Originally Published: Reuters