Requesting changes to your GMO licence​

How to make a request for the variation, suspension, surrender or transfer of your licence for dealing with a genetically modified organism (GMO).

Vary or Surrender a Licence

You can also apply using a downloadable form:

We have instructions on how to complete the application form to vary a DNIR licence.

Variations and surrenders for DIR licences require discussion with the OGTR, please contact the OGTR using the details below.

Our policy on scope for variation of GMO licences provides information on:

  • the scope of changes a licence holder can make to an existing GMO licence
  • how the Gene Technology Regulator considers applications to vary conditions of a GMO licence
  • guidance on the types of changes the Regulator is likely to authorise as a variation
  • guidance on the types of changes that are likely to need a new GMO licence application.

How long approval takes

The Regulator has 90 working days from receiving the application to approve or refuse the variation.

The Regulator may ask for more information from the licence holder. The Regulator will only approve a variation if satisfied that the:

  • risks are manageable, and
  • requested variation meets the requirements in the Gene Technology Act 2000 (Section 71).

The Regulator will notify the licence holder of the decision on the variation application. If the Regulator approves the variation, they will issue a varied licence.

When the varied licence commences

The requested variation must not commence unless notification of its approval has been received. People covered by the licence must be informed of the varied conditions. They must comply with the varied licence.

The Regulator may vary a licence without an application

The Regulator may also vary a licence on their own initiative. In this case the Regulator must give notice to the licence holder before making the variation, except in an emergency.

Transferring a licence

An organisation may transfer a licence with the consent of the Regulator. The Regulator will approve the transfer if satisfied that the transferee is a suitable person to hold the licence. Licence holders wanting to transfer a licence should contact us.

Surrendering a licence

A licence holder may surrender a licence, with the consent of the Regulator, if:

  • dealings with the GMOs have ceased; or
  • another licence covers those dealings.

The licence holder must apply to the Regulator to surrender the licence. 

Licence holders must continue to comply with the licence until the Regulator has notified them that they have approved the surrender.

Suspending a licence

A licence holder may, with the consent of the Regulator, suspend a licence. The licence holder should apply to the Regulator for consent and must provide reasons for applying for suspension. 

In certain circumstances, the Regulator can suspend a licence without an application, such as following non-compliance with licence conditions.

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