GMO’s – it’s what’s for dinner
By now, most of us have heard the term GMO, short for Genetically Modified Organism.
Basically, GMO’s are organisms injected with genetic material from other species. They are also sometimes referred to as GE, genetically engineered, and/or herbicide-tolerant, HT. This science, introduced commercially in 1996, injects DNA from one species into another species creating gene combinations of plant, animal, bacterial and viral which do not occur in nature. Repeat: DO NOT OCCUR IN NATURE. Doesn’t sound like food to me.
Yet, most of the United States’ corn, soybean, cotton, sugar beet, and canola are GE. This means so are ingredients derived from them: corn syrup, soy lecithin, sugar, vegetable and cottonseed oil. These ingredients then make up food; according the CA’s Department of Food and Agriculture, 70% of processed foods in this country now contain GE ingredients. GMO’s aren’t limited to just food ingredients, there are GE tomatoes, potatoes, squash and cantaloupe, to name a few. Plus, GMO’s feed many agribusinesses’ animals, which in turn end up on dinner tables, as meat, eggs, cheese, etc.
Now the really scary part, NONE of these products require any labeling. That means that NONE are labeled as genetically engineered.
How can this be when over fifty other countries require labeling? How can this be when thirty other countries ban and/or restrict GMO production? In these countries, GMO’s are not proven safe. Yet, the U.S. FDA approved commercial GMO production based on studies conducted by the same companies who create then profit from their sale. So in the U.S., GMO’s are safe?
There are many health concerns for people ingesting these crops, as well as the effect the process has on wild plants and wild and domestic animals. Several human health concerns include: potential increased allergic reactions; gene transfer from the GMO food to the gastrointestinal tract; and outcrossing, where the genes from the GMO’s move to other crops and/or wild plant species.
Initially, GMO’s were designed to increase crop production via GE introductions that increased resistance against plant diseases caused by insects, viruses, or through increased tolerance towards herbicides. These gene introductions altered genetic DNA and made plants less susceptible thus created higher crop yields. And now, agribusiness is creating and introducing more GMO’s into our food chain, into our supermarkets, and into our bodies without evidence proving their safety, and without labels.
Right now, our food is suspect. GMO’s might be in that cereal box, that candy bar, that tomato puree, that dinner. We need to know what’s in all of our food. We deserve the right to make informed choices about what we buy and what we eat. Labeling is the answer. What you can do right now?!: http://justlabelit.org/
Let’s take a stand against GMO’s
Let’s demand GMO labeling
Let’s eat real food
Wondering about some of your food, search: http://www.nongmoproject.org/take-action/search-participating-products/
GMO documentary: http://movies.netflix.com/Movie/The-Future-of-Food/70038794
“The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” Alice Walker