In a serious setback for genetically modified foods, EU environment ministers today agreed to place tough new labeling and monitoring rules on the foods. The decision means that the EU is unlikely to authorize any new genetically modified crops before 2002. The new proposed measures would require stricter risk assessments before genetically modified products are licensed, monitoring of the foods once they were on the market, and relicensing every 10 years. The proposal from the ministers still needs to be voted on by the European Parliament, which may not happen for a year. The U.S., which produces most of the world’s genetically modified crops, has vigorously objected to plans for more strict monitoring.