The ministers meeting in Luxembourg will get a last chance to approve the application by Swiss-based Syngenta company to introduce the Bt11 sweet corn seed product on the European market. The ministers face a May 1 deadline and several E.U. nations have blocked a deal for months.
"This is something of a pivotal decision," said a senior E.U. diplomat. "It's quite clear that there is a bloc of states which more or less hang together on this."
France, Portugal, Austria, Luxembourg, Greece and Denmark said at a meeting two weeks ago that they would block the application. The six countries have enough votes to succeed in that task.