A growing culinary trend for sprinkling petals on dishes has prompted a warning for the nation’s foodies that GM flowers are not edible.
Plants and flowers are increasingly being used as a garnish by chefs such as Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.
But with many food enthusiasts now attempting to emulate the experts, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) is warning that some carnations now being sold in the UK are not actually fit for human consumption, having only been licensed for ornamental use.
The warning comes after a firm applied for a licence to import carnations genetically modified to give their petals an intense violet colour and increased resistance to herbicides.
Several other types of GM carnations, modified for flower colour, are already being sold in the UK.
A Defra spokesman said: “These GM carnations are aimed at the ornamental (cut flower) market, so are not intended for human consumption.
Accordingly, the EU authorising decisions require the product label to say ‘not for human or animal consumption’.”
You can get our blog posts delivered for free by email - simply add your email address to the box below or alternatively grab the RSS feed.
Don't forget to follow Interflora on Twitter