Make exercise a habit in 5 min a day

Get Started on Monday Free

10 Reasons To Eat GMOs and Feel Grateful For It

10 Reasons To Eat GMOs and Feel Grateful For It

[Image: These are cultivated carrots. Look at how orange they are. Wanna check wild carrots? Scroll down.]

Welcome back to another article of the What We Should Really Be Eating? series. I originally planned to do another focus on dairy, however, because March Against Myths About Modification (#MAMyths) is coming up on May 23d, I could delay no further!

Just up to a month ago, before I started the What We Should Really Be Eating? series, I had no particular opinion about genetically engineered foods. Should we eat GMOs, or not? That was not an issue that was occupying my mind. However, that doesn’t mean I was not prone to forces that were pushing their agenda on me.

In fact, there a game that was being played around me, yet I had no idea about it. And as a consumer, I still had to make choices about what to buy and what to eat.

A big fight I was only mildly aware of was about genetically engineered foods and GMOs. I’m now in total awe of how food technology can help us fight poverty, malnutrition, climate change, and much more.

All the things that we’ll be fighting against as a generation, and our kids we’ll be fighting against too – Well, biotechnology will be one of the tools to use to win this fight.

Yet there’s big misinformation that targets the very tool that can save thousands of lives along with the Earth and the environment as a whole.

So if you’re wondering whether you should really be eating GMOs or not, let me start with:

10 Reasons To Eat GMOs and Feel Grateful For It

1. I’m grateful for all food. And most, if not all, food is actually genetically modified.

Let’s take it from Neil deGrasse Tyson (wikipedia page here), a science popularizer:

“What most people don’t know but they should is that practically every food they buy in the store for consumption by humans is genetically modified food. There are no wild seedless watermelons. There’s no wild cows, there’s no long stem roses growing in the wild – even though we don’t eat roses. You list all the fruit and all the vegetables and ask yourself is there a wild counterpart to this? If there is it’s not as large it’s not as sweet it’s not as juicy and it has way more seeds in it.

We have systemically genetically modified all the foods, the vegetables, and animals that we have eaten ever since we cultivated. It’s called artificial selection. That’s how we genetically modify. Now we can do it in a lab and all of a sudden you’re gonna complain? If you’re the complainer type go back and eat the apples that grow in the wild.”

[wild apples are tight, and not sweet, unlike the ones we manufacture]

Neil is right. Did you know wild carrots are not actually orange? We’ve modified that. Wild bananas? So full of seeds you cannot actually eat them (click here for a pic, yay for selective breeding). We’ve changed and altered everything to make it match our taste and needs. That’s genetic modification known as artificial selection.

wild carrot
Wild Carrots. Notice the difference in color. (credit: Josh Fecteau)

Only in the past, we could do artificial selection but had no control over what exactly would happen. Now, in the lab, we can actually be accurate and select the exact gene we want to transfer with genetic engineering.

It’s no wonder that the European Union’s biotech report states:

The main conclusion to be drawn from the efforts of more than 130 research projects, covering a period of more than 25 years of research, and involving more than 500 independent research groups, is that biotechnology, and in particular GMOs, are not per se more risky than e.g. conventional plant breeding technologies

But of course they’re equally safe! After all, if not all, most food is genetically modified!

So I’m grateful for all food. Because it keeps me and everyone else alive.

2. GMOs increase yield

It’s no secret that GMO crops can produce more with less. Talk about being efficient. So your acre will get you more fruit/veggies if it’s planted with genetically engineered seeds rather than with conventional ones.  A UK report states:

Between 1996 and 2012, crop biotechnology was responsible for an additional 122 million tonnes of soybeans and 231 million tonnes of corn. The technology has also contributed an extra 18.2 million tonnes of cotton lint and 6.6 million tonnes of canola

And this large study from the National Academy of Sciences, has found that GMOs have significantly increased farm yields while decreasing pesticide use and soil erosion. Which brings me to my next point…

3. GMOs protect the Earth

Because GMOs increase yield, we get to save on land. Think about it: You need less land to produce the same amount of food.

A UK report states:

GM crops are allowing farmers to grow more without using additional land. If crop biotechnology had not been available to the (17.3 million) farmers using the technology in 2012, maintaining global production levels at the 2012 levels would have required additional plantings of 4.9 million ha of soybeans, 6.9 million ha of corn, 3.1 million ha of cotton and 0.2 million ha of canola. This total area requirement is equivalent to 9% of the arable land in the US, or 24% of the arable land in Brazil or 27% of the cereal area in the EU (28).

Especially now, with our population rising, this is more important than ever.

4. GMOs taste better

Juicy apples, sweeter fruits, yup some of them were genetically modified through artificial selection, what we humans have been doing since forever. Still that is genetic modification and it has resulted in better-tasting fruits and vegetables (or just easier to eat – like seedless bananas!).

Imagine the flavors once we use our new engineering methods to improve taste. Take this example of a modified tomato that produces geraniol, a rose-smelling compound found in fruits and flowers. In a blind taste test, 60 percent of 37 testers preferred the flavor of the GM tomato, according to a 2007 study published in Nature Biotechnology.

The world will be so full of flavors and textures! A foodie’s paradise.

5. GMOs use less pesticides

2015 study covering the years from 1996 to 2013 discovered that:

“The adoption of GM insect resistant and herbicide tolerant technology has reduced pesticide spraying by 553 million kg (-8.6%) and, as a result, decreased the environmental impact associated with herbicide and insecticide use on these crops (as measured by the indicator the Environmental Impact Quotient (EIQ)) by19.1%. “

A UK report states:

Crop biotechnology has reduced pesticide spraying (1996-2012) by 503 million kg (-8.8%). This is equal to the total amount of pesticide active ingredient applied to arable crops in the EU 27 for nearly two crop years. As a result, this has decreased the environmental impact associated with herbicide and insecticide use on the area planted to biotech crops by 18.7%.

If you too want less pesticide use, then genetically engineered crops are your best bet.

6. GMOs help small farmers

Producing more for less and needing to buy less pesticides genetically engineered crops? Genetically engineered crops help small farmers struggle less.

In fact, a study by the African Development Bank and the International Food Policy Research Institute in 2012 concluded that under ideal conditions, the use of GM crops grown by smallholder farmers could improve gross margins by 114 per cent, reduce pesticide costs by 60 to 90 per cent, and improve yields by 18 to 29 per cent.

The UK report states:

Crop biotechnology helps farmers earn reasonable incomes for their work. The net economic benefit at the farm level in 2012 was $18.8 billion, equal to an average increase in income of $117/hectare. For the 17 year period (1996-2012), the global farm income gain has been $116.6 billion.

7. GMOs can help us win the fight against climate change

gross climate chage

A 2015 study that examined the environmental impacts of genetically modified crops from 1996 to 2013 found that:

“The technology has also facilitated important cuts in fuel use and tillage changes, resulting in a significant reduction in the release of greenhouse gas emissions from the GM cropping area. In 2013, this was equivalent to removing 12.4 million cars from the roads.”

But it’s not just about land use. To quote Amanda, an attorney who blogs at The Farmer’s Daughter USA:

But the non-GMO variety is likely to have lower yields and may require more herbicide or pesticide applications throughout the growing season. The GMO varieties offer higher yields and less applications of herbicide in the fields, which translates to less fuel, less wear and tear on equipment, and less time.

It makes sense. You need less land for the same amount of food, which means that agriculture equipment will need to “travel” less, hence require less fuel. One benefit after another. I love GMOs!

8. GMOs can fight malnutrition

golden rice vitamin A GMOs
How going blind from Vitamin A deficiency looks like. With GMOs we could have less children like her going blind. (credit: Community Eye Health)

A big example of a malnutrition problem is vitamin A deficiency. This alone is responsible for 250,000-500,000 children becoming blind every year, with half of them dying within 12 months of losing their sight.

That’s EVERY YEAR!

Now WHO is fighting this with supplementation yet this alone is not enough as its effects are time-limited. Instead food fortification works better and could help eradicate the problem. Let me repeat – that’s about half a million children EVERY YEAR.

Biofortification could end this problem. According to the Hellen Keller Institute:

“Biofortification differs from large-scale food fortification because it focuses on growing more nutritious plant food, as opposed to adding micronutrients to foods as they are commercially processed.”

Now we’ve already developed the first food that can help save the children. It’s known as golden rice. It’s a genetically engineered rice that is full of beta-carotene (hence the yellow color) and could be an effective intervention to save lives in areas where white rice is the staple food.

If children in the developing world ate golden rice instead of their conventional rice there would be no children getting blind; there would be no deaths. I’ll repeat one more time: that’s half a million kids a year. In 10 years time this number could be up to 5 million kids.

You know how many Jews did in World War II? 6 Million. That was just to give you context of the severity of the situation.

Unfortunately, golden rice is met by opposition and it hasn’t yet been introduced to the developing world, even though the science behind it is solid. This has been going on since 2002, which would give us up to 6.5 million children going blind, and about 3 million of them actually dying. I will agree with this author in Scientific American that Golden Rice opponents should be held accountable for their victims.

I’m really sad about this. This issue has become very dear to my heart (I have actually woken up in the middle of the night thinking about this), and I’m going to revisit it again.

9. GMOs help reduce world poverty

Higher yields, less pesticides, healthier people who are better-nourished, healthier soil – people in the developing world are among the first to reap benefits from this technology.

Unfortunately because of the GMO opposition we privileged Western people allow poverty to continue. Mark Lynas, a former GM opponent, and now GM advocate writes:

In Tanzania, for example, I met farmers whose families are going hungry because the key food security crop — cassava — has begun to fail under pressure from a new disease called Brown Streak Virus. This virus has already wreaked havoc in Uganda and Kenya.

Scientists have developed a virus-resistant crop, yet farmers may never get to actually use it as anti-GMO advocates hinder their progress. And that’s just one of the examples he offers. I will agree with his conclusion:

The problem with this technology is not that it has been scaled up too fast, but that it has been hampered from being able to fulfil its potential — whole continents, including Europe, Africa and much of Asia, continue to maintain de facto bans on GM crops and seeds without any scientific foundation.

10. GMOs give me faith in the future

The world population is rising. On top of that, global warming is here to make matters worse. Much worse. As Vox reports:

We recently passed 400 parts per million of CO2 in the atmosphere; the status quo will take us up to 1,000 ppm, raising global average temperature (from a pre-industrial baseline) between 3.2 and 5.4 degrees Celsius. That will mean, according to a 2012 World Bank report, “extreme heat-waves, declining global food stocks, loss of ecosystems and biodiversity, and life-threatening sea level rise,” the effects of which will be “tilted against many of the world’s poorest regions,” stalling or reversing decades of development work. “A 4°C warmer world can, and must be, avoided,” said the World Bank president.

Genetically engineered foods will be one of the tools to use to win the fight again climate change. I don’t have kids yet, but I know that climate change won’t stop at my generation. This is a fight my kids will have to tackle too.

So biotechnology gives me faith in the future. It’s not going to be the only tool used to win the fight, but it will certainly be one of the most effective ones. And that’s why I’m grateful.

So back to you. Are you excited about GMOs and genetically engineered food? Did you know they had all those benefits? Leave a comment below and let me know.

 

P.S. I started the article referring to #MAMyths?  March Against Myths About Modification is the world’s biggest protest against the myths told about Genetically Engineered (GMO) crops and foods. The goal is to do the opposite of March Against Monsanto and flood social media and traditional media with actually scientific information about the safety of genetically engineered crops, not just conspiracy theories and pseudoscience.

How can you participate? Like the MAMyths page on Facebook. Talk to your friends and family and encourage them to look up scientific information about GMOs. Share this article. If you are more educated on the subject use the #MAMyths hashtag and tag along this week on social media in educating others about the value of GMOs.

  • I am really enjoying this series. Thank you for bringing some of these issues to light. I have always been one to question my food choices and need to do a better job at educating others. Your research is really helpful.

  • Ben Schaefer

    #3-Because GMOs increase yield, we get to save on land. Think about it: You need less land to produce the same amount of food.
    How in this day and age can you not champion resource and land sustainability?!?!?
    Great list! Love it

    • Exactly! 🙂

    • Lora

      Probably because it’s not true..

      • Approv

      • Lora, I provided evidence about why it’s true. Scientific evidence, not just anecdotal stories. If you’re gonna argue for the opposite, then please back up your claims.

        • As a matter of fact Maria, the world is perfectly capable of feeding its population several times over with what we already grow on the land already in use. The problem lies not with the quantities we grow, but with our woefully corrupt and inefficient distribution system and the sheer amount of food that we waste and throw out. We don’t need GMOs to fix this problem, we need less corruption and less waste. Every year 40% of the food on sale in the US goes uneaten. That’s $165 billion worth of food a year!

          http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2012/08/22/how-food-actually-gets-wasted-in-the-united-states/

          The same is generally true in most developed countries. Case in point, France is making it illegal for grocery stores to throw away food that is still eatable, certainly a step in the right direction.

          You know farmers in the US are paid to plow under crops for subsidies for a number of reasons right? Mostly to control supply, pricing, and exports.

          And lets not mention the sheer volume of land that has been converted from crops destined for human consumption and instead turned into crops for the bio fuels industry.

          This is fact, and it debunks your point. Let’s look at the other points in your list:

          1. Most food is not genetically modified. Selective breeding is NOT the same thing in any way shape or form. Breeding particular traits into a species over generations is a natural process, and a whole lot different than sticking a pig gene, or a rose gene, into a tomato in a laboratory. Something that would never happen in the wild.

          2. GMOs may very well increase yields, but as I’ve shown, it is unnecessary. You also have to look at the history of the destruction of crop diversification, poor farming practices, subsidies, and other issues here.

          3. Goes hand in hand with 2; we already produce more than enough food to feed the planet several times over. Increasing yields only goes to serve the big bio fuels business and other corporate interests that have nothing to do with putting food on the table or saving our planet.

          4. Food already tastes great. Throughout the US there are generally TWO varieties of tomato grown commercially. Same goes for lettuce and other big commercial crops. Yes, you can find more varieties than this in some stores, and at farmers markets, etc. but two varieties make up the bulk of the country’s tomato crop. They are boring and tasteless and are simply grown for their propensity to produce large blemish free fruit and big crops, not for their flavor. Yet there are literally hundreds of varieties of tomato that can be grown, many of which are exploding with delicious flavors. The same goes for most food crops in the US. They have been reduced to only a tiny number of varieties out of the hundreds that exist purely for economical reasons and because the likes of Monsanto control the commercial seed supply.

          5. Genetically modified crops may very well use less pesticides. Crop diversification and better planting habits (mixed crops of synergistic varieties for example) also use less pesticides. There are highly effective non toxic pesticides and pest control methods available, such as Spinosad. But this goes against our mass factory farm mentality.

          6. Small farmers don’t need GMOs for help. They need Monsanto and their cronnies to quit fucking with them by suing them repeatedly. They need the US gov’t to stop screwing them over and over again by siding with big business. Bigger yields and less pesticides? Phfff, right. You mean being forced to buy their brand of poison instead. Like RoundUp Ready seeds so they can use plenty of RoundUp on their crops (which is probably responsible for far more environmental damage than any pesticide). Seeds that can’t reproduce and have to be purchased new every year at 10 times the cost of regular seed, instead traditional methods of saving seeds from your own crops, something Monsanto has made illegal.

          7. Less fuel use in food production is certainly a good thing, but GMOs are also driving the bio fuels industry which doesn’t want us to switch from using combustion engines any time soon and with more and more cars on the road burning fossil fuels, especially in developing countries, any benefit here is probably negated.

          8. Comparing a malnutrition problem with the Jewish Holocaust? Really? Instead of relying on what is essentially a vitamin supplement, something that can be supplied without modifying staple crops, why not focus on the more important issue here; the sheer number of people that subsist off nothing but rice every day? Grow and eat some carrots – problem solved! Once again, this goes to big business interests in using the land to produce as much monoculture export crop as possible with little regard given to those that grow the crops and have to survive off eating only one thing all their lives. Simple diversification of crops would help instead of modifying something that shouldn’t need to be modified.

          9. GMOs are going to help solve world poverty? You can’t be serious. GMOs only serve big business interests. Monsanto wants nothing more than to introduce their seeds into Africa, to destroy traditional, sustainable farming methods and to make the continent’s farmers reliant on them, every year, year in and year out, for their seeds. They have no interest in solving world hunger or poverty.

          10. You’re delusional if you think GMOs are going to be our salvation. Big business interests are trying to destroy traditional, sustainable, farming practices. They want to take your right to grow your own food away from you. They want to make saving non-hybrid, non GMO seed from one crop to the next illegal. They put patents on seeds, and have gone so far as to sue farmers whose non GMO crops have been cross pollinated with their filth. Slowly but surely they want to eradicate crop diversity and leave us with only their small handful of monoculture GMO varieties. They want nothing more than to own and control global food production and are doing so under the guise of the betterment of mankind.

          Now picture this: in 100 years a large natural disaster on a global scale strikes the Earth. Mankind is struggling to get back on its feet but the only seeds around are a handful of aging Monsanto stock and no production capability. No heirloom varieties are left that can be bred naturally from one year to the next because Monsanto has eradicated them all. What do you think would happen then? How does that make you feel about the future?

          • Unlike you I have provided scientific evidence to back my claims. Also about your “we have enough to feed the world argument,” please read this: http://welovegv.com/enoughfood

            Also if you’re gonna reply again in this thread please come prepared with peer-reviewed scientific data with statistical significance. I’m not going to get into more conversations on the basis of beliefs or opinions.

          • My claims are fully backed by the scientific community, I just can’t be arsed to spend 15 hours linking here. And I don’t really need to provide peer reviewed info when it’s easily referenced through a quick search. What’s with the “we’ve not got enough food” nonsense? Some friend’s blog? If you’d actually ever worked in the food industry you’d know just how much was wasted.

            You’ve not answered the questions I asked BTW.

          • Bree

            Thank you Brad, I agree with you and so do many many many others. This article is just meant to confuse and create negative energy. No more no less.

          • Funny how an article that lists 10 reasons to be GRATEFUL spreads “negative energy” in your eyes.

          • Rick R and R Marketing

            Promoting GMO foods is so detrimental to our health that you are the one propagandizing all this “Negative Energy”! it’s people like you that are polluting this world into extinction. you are sick!

          • Bree

            http://wakeup-world.com/2015/01/27/former-pro-gmo-scientist-speaks-dangers-genetically-modified-food/ Your words are nice but the message is wrong. Therein lies the negativity of it all. You should check all research before providing information to the public that is incomplete and based on one sided opinions. Obviously yours. Check out this researchers statement and there are many more. I could be doing nothing but providing proof to you all day long. However I have a life to live and it will be without GMO.

          • Peter Olins

            @Bree — Did you actually give some thought to this piece from a former scientist? Did you note that he offered no evidence or scientific literature to support his serious claims? Did you notice that he mentioned important research from Russia? I follow this field closely, and I cannot think of ANY relevant research from Russia! Did you notice that he mentions the pseudoscience entity, the “American Academy of Environmental Medicine”, rather than the National Academy of Sciences, the most prestigious organization in science?

            Yes, pieces like this may seem persuasive, but I urge you to develop your critical skills to be able to distinguish between science and activism.

          • Bree
          • Peter Olins

            @Bree — Surely you must know that Dr. Mercola is in the business of selling nutritional supplements—rather than a scientist? Did you notice that (unlike in Maria’s article), Mercola offers no actual evidence for his alarming claims? I’m intrigued: how, exactly, did you find the Mercola piece, out of all the thousands of possible informational resources available?

            The Internet is a rich source of pages that will support almost any conceivable prejudice: the challenge is to be able to distinguish sense from nonsense. What exactly are you trying to do with your comments, here? I get the impression that you may not have any background in science: that’s OK—we’re all learning— but I encourage you to do some more research before posting inflammatory accusations. Wikipedia is not perfect, but it’s a good start.

            If there is something that you don’t know, a good starting point is to ask a question, rather than declaring that you have the answer.

          • Bree

            WAKE UP people – Your thoughts have been altered to believe unjustified information. Check out the videos below, ESPECIALLY THE LAST ONE – they all refer to research and speak out against GMO. They also point out that the big Companies DO NOT feel extended research is needed…..

            JUST FOLLOW THE MONEY and you will find the truth. GMO is all about GREED and has nothing at all to do with feeding us………………………… THINK AGAIN.

            The above article clearly indicates that the author is most likely too scientifically illiterate to differentiate the difference between genetic engineering and selective breeding.”
            Here are some videos – there is many, many more articles that speak out against GMO. MANY COUNTRIES ARE BANNING GMO.
            PLEASSE WAKE UP TO REALITY

            http://althealthworks.com/5575/is-tedx-selling-out-to-monsanto-their-latest-talk-is-certainly-raising-plenty-of-questions/

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDzVBDoXpjE

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P15R44d1tZY
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gVKvzHWuJRU

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Njd0RugGjAg

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9hjy-CJlzbM

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sl0-Ds6Cioc

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T-IJikX1144

          • NecktopPC

            @Peter – Surely you too should admit that you and Gillian are in business, selling your cook book; although not as successful a business as Dr. Mercola, and perhaps this is why you attack his credibility.

            Dr. Mercola always provides sources (references) to the many statements (quotes) which are printed in his articles, and coming from others; many scientists that is.

            Monsanto even takes the time to plug your work – their reference to you can be found on ‘their’ very own, blog page.

            They like you; you like them; its glaringly obvious through your support for their glyphosate RoundUp.

            Your comments are nothing more than the obvious; typical and pompous British attempt, at whit and sarcasm.

          • kellymbray

            “I just can’t be arsed to spend 15 hours linking here”

            Translates as “I have no sources to cite”

          • And to be honest, your “scientific evidence” is rather thin, to say the least.

          • http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/may/22/uk-tops-chart-of-eu-food-waste

            89 million tons of food wasted in the UK each year. Yay!

            “In a 2010 report, the European Commission estimated annual food waste generation in the EU 27 at approximately 179kg per capita, or 89m tonnes. The chart above shows how this breaks down by member state.”

            That’s 179 kilograms PER PERSON!

          • First Officer

            Love to here the mechanics of the plan that actually will reduce that waste factor.

          • I’m not too sure, but I don’t think genetically modifying our crops so we can grow more food to throw away is the solution. Probably some combination of education and legislation (like France is doing) will help. I’m sure if given some effort things could improve. We’re smart people after all. If we can cross a pig with a tomato in a laboratory, I’m sure we can come up with some novel ways to reduce food waste.

          • First Officer

            Growing more food actually means greater yields. I.e. we’d really grow roughly the same amount on less land (for a given population). We’d want this regardless of the efficiency of our use of food after the fact of production.

            That being said, food waste is an incredibly knotty problem. That 40% roughly applies to even poor areas of the world, still growing everything the old way. If the food doesn’t get wasted in transport and storage en route to the final user, as it does in poor areas, it gets wasted at the farm and in the home, as it does in rich areas. (See UN food waste reports).

            I don’t know if edicts such as France’s new law that stores can’t throw out, “eatable”, food, will work. In this case, that implies they couldn’t sell it for some reason in the first place. The stores don’t like throwing stuff out either. So how are these stores going to use this, “eatable”, food? And how, before it spoils anyway?

          • Peter Olins

            Genetically engineering foods to reduce spoilage has already begun, and the future potential is huge. What about crops that could reduce the amount of mold toxins—something that affects both human safety and overall useable yield?

            As an aside, I like your pig/tomato idea: now all we need to add is a lettuce gene and we could pick BLT’s directly off the trees.

          • Geoff Offermann

            Yeah…like Arctic apples…courtesy of genetic modification. Thanks for stopping by.

          • cameron mckerrell

            ummm, your statement that we have been genetically modifying vegetables for centuries?
            where is the peer reviewed article on this?
            you can argue the technicality, but its not the same thing and you have just spread misinformation and lies.

          • FarmerB

            the farmers plowing up crops is not true. There was a period in the early ’80s that there was a subsidy not to plant. It lasted 3 years and never again. You are wrong—I live this, You are wrong. One last time—you are wrong.

          • US farmers plow under thousands of hectares of crops every year,

            lol. http://www.defenders.org/publications/plowed-under-how-crop-subsidies-contribute-to-massive-habitat-loss_0.pdf

            Welcome to “crop insurance”, never mind the subsidies. You can plant a bunch of bullshit, and the gov’t will pay you for it.

            There are so many issues plaguing the farming industry. GMOs are just one of them.

          • Stephanie Nelson

            Straight off, here in the USA, we don’t measure land in hectares but ACRES. Also, we do not plow under thousands of acres for crop insurance subsidies. Crop insurance, if needed, doesn’t begin to pay what a crop yield pays and no farmer prefers insurance payments over grain sales! It doesn’t make economic sense, period. As for the many issues plaguing the farming industry today, folks such as yourself and others who believe in the religion of no gmo, Monsanto is evil (you do realize Monsanto isn’t the only company that produces seeds, GMO or otherwise?), and small farms are the best are some of the biggest plagues on farming today. Everyone seems to want to believe the most sensational and horrific headlines, whether proven or not, instead of scientifically proven, peer reviewed studies concerning modern ag practices.

          • Kelly Carter

            Wow, you clearly have a hate on for large companies who are also just trying to make a living. Incidentally those same companies hire many people every year. I don’t have time today to debate your entire argument, but I dohave a few important points….

            1) GMO IS natural. Where do you think we got the technology from? Transfer of genes is a commen phenomenon in plants. We have studied the process and can direct specific genes into specific plants. Also many GMO’s are only changing gene expression (turning it on/off) of what is already in the plant. Sorry, there is no magic wand waving going on in the lab. The process is completely natural.

            2) farmers are not forced to buy anything. They buy their seed from whatever company they choose depending on their needs for their farm. some buy conventional seed, some buy GMO. Rarely they keep previous seed to replant. I am told keeping seed is no longer a common practice NOT because Monsato says you can’t, but because the bought seed is a better more reliable product. Plus there is less worry about storage of seed. Rodents can bust into most storage places.

          • Kelly Carter

            3) Monsato suing farmers is a myth

            4) there IS less land for agriculture every year as our cities grow and land gets repurposed.

            5) there is NOT enough food to feed the worlds population. Why do you think we hear of famine and starving Africans on a yearly basis. I suppose you could argue that they could import food from places with excess, but that requires money. GMO technology here is very useful. Imagine drought resistant crops that can feed a local population…..

            6)reducing the amount of fossil fuels burned in the agricultural process also keeps prices low and more affordable.

            7) you can’t just plant carrots in place of golden rice. Every plant has a REQUIRED ecology dictated by nature in order for it to grow. My guess is it is too wetting India for carrots to grow. Import carrots or supplements…. Very costly. So golden rice actually is the cheapest product available, and ost affordable for the entire population in India where it will be the poor people

          • You replied to yourself making it difficult to track down your post.

            3. Monsanto suing farmers is not a myth. Simply Google “monsanto suing farmers” to educate yourself. Here, this is the link to the page on the Monsanto website where they try to justify their actions – the very first search result…

            http://www.monsanto.com/newsviews/pages/why-does-monsanto-sue-farmers-who-save-seeds.aspx

            Here are some more links for you…

            http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2008/05/monsanto200805

            Actually, I can’t be bothered… here’s the Google search link, browse at your leisure…

            https://www.google.com/search?sourceid=chrome-psyapi2&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8&q=monsanto%20suing%20farmers&oq=monsanto%20suing%20farmers&aqs=chrome.0.0l6.6654j0j4

            4. I’m not sure where you got 4 from. We were specifically talking about the taste of food in 4. Nevertheless, there is no shortage of land on which to grow food.

            5. There’s more than enough food to feed the world’s population. The food thrown away in Europe and North America every year alone would be nearly enough to feed Africa.

            6. You are right. Less gas should mean lower prices (whether savings on gas would be passed down to the consumer is another question). Do you think the current price of vegetables is unaffordable? If not, then is was a never a problem that needed solving.

            7. Carrots are grown just about everywhere in the world. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carrot

          • Kelly Carter

            I should have been more clear…. Farmers do have to sign contracts and as such they can be subject to being sued if they break the contract. The idea that Monsato is suing farmers who have had accidental wind blown/cross pollination on their neighboring land is a myth. I forget where I was researching at the time, but I believe they tried once and the courts deemed it unconstitutional or something along those lines.

            4 was my bullet point not the articles, and yes there is less farm land available every year. Might want to look up a GIS comparison map for that.

            There might be enough food in the EU and NA to feed Africa, but you missed my point that it is too costly. If you can solve that problem then you can get the Nobel peace prize for feeding the perpetually starving.

            My current grocery bill is continually going up, so yes producing veggies at an affordable rate is a personal concern. It is low right now, but I would hate to see the price if farmers had to spend more on gas and pesticides and such. It would group quite a bit more.

          • I would love to win that Nobel prize, but clearly it’s a complicated issue with no easy solution. However, I don’t think forever genetically altering our food supply is the answer.

            Fixating on carrots isn’t normal behavior. Vitamin A can come from many sources, and places like India have no shortage of vegetables https://www.google.com/search?q=indian+vegetable+market&espv=2&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=LUdiVZ_0Nof3Us7RgLAM&ved=0CCAQsAQ&biw=2560&bih=1355#imgrc=_ and I refer back to my earlier comments about supplements which can be had for a couple cents a day. I think education is a big issue, especially knowledge about basic nutrition which a lot of people in developing countries might not have. If all you know is that a bowl of rice every day keeps the kids full with no knowledge of what vitamin A is or what can happen if they don’t get enough of it, then you don’t know how to prevent it from happening.

          • Kelly Carter

            I suspect cost is still a major issue. Rice is affordable for every family there, not so much veggies. Sure education is always helpful, but again cost becomes a problem…. Who pays these people to go and educate, and also are the people willing to listen. Education only works when the other side wants to be open minded and listen to what the other is saying. You have to want to learn to be educated.

          • hyperzombie

            7. Carrots are grown just about everywhere in the world. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C

            Yep, but they only grow in the cool seasons and or at higher elevations. The biggest problem with carrots are they dont store well and they are seasonal (expensive as well). Not many poor people have a fridge to store carrots in.

          • hyperzombie

            The biggest problem with carrots in the tropics is that they dont store well without refrigeration, and you have to grow the at higher elevations to keep them cool. Carrots also need massive amounts of pesticides in the tropics, all the bugs love carrots in the tropics.

          • Ah yes, the poor wittle corporations just trying to make a living. Yes they employ lots of people, and some of what they do is admirable, but that doesn’t mean you should just take what they say as gospel. Their number one mission is making as much money as possible for their shareholders, quite often by any means possible.

            There’s nothing natural about GMOs. That’s kind of the whole point. If what GMOs are achieving was possible through natural cross breeding then they wouldn’t exist.

            Take two humans of differing shape and colour and mate them and you get offspring sharing traits from both parents. Same goes for dogs, cats, arugula (rocket), lettuce, chili plants, etc. If you put two varieties of the same species of plant next to each other they will cross pollinate and produce a variation. Sometimes good, sometimes bad.

            What you don’t get in the wild is a dog mating with a cat, tomatoes mating with a pig or a fish, lettuce cross pollinating with potatoes, tomatoes cross pollinating with roses, etc. etc. Those are completely unnatural combinations that can only be made in a laboratory.

            I keep bringing up the tomato and the pig thing (along with the fish) because those are GMOs that have actually been created. What a conundrum for the poor vegetarian hey? Which is why GMOs should be labelled as such.

            You’re absolutely right that farmers aren’t forced to buy anything. They could just stop being farmers after all and take up a new line of work. In the meantime their choices about what to buy and who to buy from are being limited more and more every day. The ultimate goal of any company after all is to dominate their industry.

            Seed saving may not be as popular as it once was in the US, but that’s only a result of the environment in which farmers have to function. Saved seed still accounts for about two thirds of global crops.

          • Kelly Carter

            I would like to see your degree in genetics. You truely don’t have an understanding of the process that is used. It’s like saying all herbal medications are better because they are “natural” when the drugs we use come from those same herbs, just now in a purified and yes manufactured form.

            No the companies are not trying to dominate the industry. In fact until I started talking to farmers I did not know how many companies there were to choose from. Each with various products that were available for that farmers needs. In fact Monsato is one of the small companies. It is actually much more a consumer based industry. The farmer chooses the product that best suits them. And a lot of research goes into it on the farmers end.

          • You’re talking nonsense but accuse me of not understanding basic genetics? What we are talking about has nothing to do with herbal remedies or medications or the synthesis of naturally occurring substances. Do you understand anything at all about breeding and cross pollination? If you do then you would know that there is nothing natural about GMOs, that transfer of genes only happens inter species, and that a pig can’t mate with a tomato.

          • Kelly Carter

            It is the same shit different pile, and has nothing to do with cross pollination or mating. This is also not “basic” genetics but a completely different process. You would know that if you had a genetics degree. Start doing some research into Transposons or jumping genes. This is not cross pollination, and occurs throughout the natural world. Viruses are another natural non-mating process by which there is gene transfer between species and yes between animals and plants. Bacteria also have methods of inserting genes into a genome. This occurs every day in the natural world.

          • Pigs are mating with tomatoes every day in the natural world? Who knew?

          • Kelly Carter

            If you paid attention you would understand it is not mating, but gene transfer. A completely different process, and yes pig genes can end up in tomatoes naturally, as well as any other combination you can think of

          • Jay, King of Gay

            Farmers don’t reuse seed because a lot of crops are hybrids, thus the resulting seeds aren’t quite the same, and are usually of lesser quality than simply buying the hybrid seeds.

          • Peter Olins

            I love your comment, “The problem lies not with the quantities we grow, but with our woefully corrupt and inefficient distribution system …“. By your logic, poverty is not important: it’s merely a lack of appropriate distribution of income and assets. Marxism lives on.

        • Roxanne Rockefeller

          Wikepedia is not scientific evidence…go talk to a farmer who has used gmo seeds…thats scientific evidence! The crops do not provide increased yield…weeds are growing stronger than ever (its called immunity)…more pesticides have been used, polluting the water and the soil is now nutrient defecient meaning gmo crops are not as nutritious. It has been raining glyphosate…its in breast milk and animal tissue.

          • Peter Olins

            Where are you getting such inflammatory ideas? Presumably not wikipedia. ;~)

            I have read the scientific literature on glyphosate in breast milk: levels were below the limit of detection, using the best available current assay.

            On the other hand, why wouldn’t you expect to find minute traces of the thousands of substances we are exposed to? What’s important is how high the levels are versus how inherently toxic the chemical is.

            As far as “increased yields”, I’m not aware of any GMO technology that is designed to increase the intrinsic yield of a crop. However, there’s little doubt that it improves the viability of the business—why else would hundreds of thousands of farmers continue to buy these seeds?

            Herbicide resistance in weeds (just like human antibiotic resistance) is a fact of life. It can be delayed using the best practices, but it is unavoidable.

            You claim that crops grown using pesticides are less nutritious. Any evidence?

  • mellifluous

    Define your terms: selective breeding is one thing — repeatedly selecting specimens for reproduction to promote to the expression of specific desired traits — while trans-species genetic manipulation is qualitatively different. I think what most people understand as “genetic modification” is this second technology, for instance inserting fish genes into strawberry plants in order to keep them from spoiling as quickly. Here’s what concerns me: Trans-species genetic manipulation is so new a technology that we haven’t had generations to find out whether consuming these products or growing them in the open has unforseen and irreversable consequences or not. With all due respect, industrialism — whether under capitalistic or central-planning economic systems — doesn’t have a sterling record of protecting the public from the effects of new technologies when there are temporary efficiencies to be realized and profits to be made. I think it’s disingenuous and misleading to assert that selective breeding is just the same as trans-species genetic manipulation and so, ‘We’ve been doing genetic manipulation for years. Everything you eat is genetically modified.’

    My understanding is that hunger and malnutrition in the world is currently a more matter of distribution and human overpopulation than one of production. Just as computerized robots taking over more jobs and professions may be great for business owners, but not necessarily beneficial for displaced workers, increasing numbers of whom are competing for a decreasing supply of jobs that pay less than unionized manufacuring jobs once did, there may be benefits to GMOs, but I think they will primarily accrue to patent holders, biotech, chemical and seed companies, not necessarily to the vast majority of those of us who need to eat but don’t grow most of our food.

    • hyperzombie

      for instance inserting fish genes into strawberry plants in order to keep them from spoiling as quickly.

      Well there are no animal genes inserted in any commercially available GMO crops, not that it would matter everything on the planet is related and plants contain over 50% of animal genes anyway.

      Here’s what concerns me: Trans-species genetic manipulation is so new a technology

      Well Mother nature has been doing it, well, since the dawn of time. “Horizontal Gene transfer” look it up.

      open fields have unforseen and irreversable consequences or not.

      Why would changing 1-4 genes be more of a problem that changing 1000s that other breeding methods have been doing for almost 100 years now? They have even been inserting whole chromosomes into plants, yet no one cares about that.

      My understanding is that hunger and malnutrition in the world is currently a more matter of distribution and human overpopulation than one of production.

      Well you may be right, but one thing that we do know for sure is growing less food is not going to help anyone.

      but I think they will primarily accrue to patent holders, biotech, chemical and seed companies

      Nope, the primary beneficiaries are farmers, or they would not buy them.

      • You’re awesome.

        • hyperzombie

          Thanks:) I wish my GF felt the same way, she thinks I am only slightly awesome.
          Any way I dont get it, of all the new Ag advances in the last 200 years, no other tech as ever been adopted so fast (I am sure Monsanto is even amazed).
          Tractors took about 50 years to be full adopted.
          Cultivators 50 years
          Even the internet hasn’t been adopted as fast as GMOs.
          Sugar beet farmers went from 0% to 97% in just over 4 years, getting that many farmers agreeing on a technology is totally unprecedented.

      • Joshua Curtis

        Thanks for the link on Horizontal Gene transfer. That was some interesting (if stretching) reading. My only footnote: Mother Nature doesn’t give a crap if we continue to exist or if something is good for humans. Only we care about that!

        • Anders

          footnote #2: All patents have an expiry date. Most are around 20 years.

    • Joshua Curtis

      Totally with your underlying sentiment here. I love what GMOs promise. I also fully appreciate that on average, humanity has a horrible track record of forecasting unintended consequences and hedging our bets for what we might not know.

      Is there danger in GMO? Quite possibly not. Can we know for sure right now? Nope – we can’t. Might we make irreversible changes that aren’t 100% perfect? To say “no” seems like supreme arrogance to me. Should we hold everything off until we’re totally sure? To say “yes” seems like arrogance too and certainly isn’t going to get us anywhere.

      What’s uncertain just is – I share your concern that some of the power brokers in the highest levels of this debate don’t seem to acknowledge any unknown.

      • Anders

        To the human races credit – we have learned a bunch form they days we let rabbits loose in Australia. Scientific methods especially are a lot better now – and the restrictions are a lot stricter. With regards to gene modification, probably too strict.

    • MDBritt

      Mellifluous – “trans-species genetic manipulation” as a concept implies that the genomes of different species are entirely unrelated: that fish and strawberries, for example, have nothing in common. But this is wrong: every living creature on the planet shares a common “programming language” in their DNA and there is enormous overlap. Hell, human beings and RICE – yes rice – have about a quarter of their genome in common.

      You say that you are concerned with “unforseen and irreversable consequences”. Well, consider this: one of the accepted methods for creating new cultivars – even for “organic” foods – is to blast seeds with ionizing radiation or mutagenic chemicals to scramble their DNA. Do you really want to argue that a technology that creates wildly unpredictable genomic changes and then screening for useful variants is really superior to making a precise change to achieve the exact modification you are looking for? Do you suppose that these older methods are really LESS likely to result in unforeseen outcomes? Seems silly to me…

  • Joshua Curtis

    An aside to the GMO discussion which addresses the PS – when will we start getting the hint that ‘marches against’ don’t actually change anyone’s mind about anything? They push us deeper into our own camps, less likely that ever to lead to any dialogue that might change anyone’s stance.

    By all means, join yourself a camp to get educated. Power move for those that really care: join both camps to decide for yourself which elements of each camp have substance and learn how to persuasively overcome the common arguments of the camp you find you disagree with!

    But whenever you join any camp, please do so with a view to entering discussion rather with than railing/marching against people who disagree with what you decide. It’s the only way we’ll come close to some truth and actually change our collective minds for the better.

    • Hi Joshua, thanks for commenting! I agree with you some people will never change their minds, but by going on a march or joining some other type of group you’re making a statement that influences public perception.

      E.g., before I started this series I had no particular opinion on GMOs but had heard that some people considered them dangerous. That was because of public perception. Just like I thought that organic milk was better (again public perception).

  • My2Cents

    CN- Check out http://www.danforthcenter.org/ They are research facility that does all kinds of research on plants including GM. There are a lot of techniques for GM. The gene gun uses gold particles to transfer selected genes but lacks control of where the gene gets inserted. {i like the idea of a Gene gun though} Probably the most successful technique {that I am aware of} is using the natural bacteria of the plant to insert the genes. A plasmid is made of the selected gene and inserted to the bacteria. As the bacteria does its normal behaviors in the plant the gene is shared with the plant. After a couple of generations the gene becomes part of that plants DNA. This may be an over simplification but gives you an idea. The plants are then screened and cultivated. They are then tested thoroughly. Say what you will about “evil MonSatan” but they don’t want to be sued nor does it make sense for them to endanger their clients. Its just bad for business. So they test every way they can before they release their “Horid abominations.”
    The micro-fauna or micro-biome of a plant or animal {yes humans too} has a great deal of sway on the health and life of the organism. {Check this out- https://www.sciencemag.org/content/suppl/2011/05/19/332.6032.985-b.DC1/SciencePodcast_110520.pdf}

    • Bree

      You people all need to get out of the City and back to REAL Nature……. While you are at it, check in with some of the local farmers and ask them how they feel about GMO and Monsanto and the other doctorate illuminati companies…….. Then check in with California to find out how their management of valuable resources is working out…………. Not so good.
      LEAVE MOTHER NATURE ALONE. She’s been doing a good job so far.

      • My2Cents

        Bree, Darling, I don’t think you have a true grasp of reality. Many people, especially the financially disadvantaged, don’t have the option of leaving the cities or growing their own food. In an ideal world, everyone would be self sufficient with arable land of their own. However, That’s just not the case.
        Have you spoken with any farmers? Those I have met and work with are in favor of a more bountiful healthy product that can produce more with less. They WANT produce that doesn’t require as much water to grow. They want plants that can stand up to what Ma Nature throws at them. As far as Cali… Get politicians involved and well… There you go.

        • Bree

          Thank you for the kind reply. I am a Farmer and soon to be certified Nutritionist and believe that GMO does not help the financially disadvantaged. Most of what is going on with our food right now and the mismanagement of our natural resources is based on GREED nothing else.

          • My2Cents

            Dear, we are just going to have to agree to disagree.
            The scientists I know that work on GMOs, people like myself, that work in Food Safety and Sustainability, and the social activists for the disadvantaged in far away lands are not doing any of this for greed. In fact my first wife left because she felt I was wasting my talents vs making the kind of money she thought I should earn. Most of the people conducting the research are working check to check, worrying about if their projects are going to be funded. Sure there are a couple of very large companies that are making a profit. That is because with all of the rig-a-morrow that is required to bring these things to market, only large entities can afford it. There are smaller academics and some DIYbio folks that are doing good work, but they could never afford the testing and legal requirements.

          • My2Cents

            OH BTW, As a nutritionist and a Natural advocate you may want to look into Entomophagy, There are some excellent companies that are trying to bring this into our culture of waste and ruin.
            This might make a good story Marie B.
            http://bittyfoods.com/, http://www.livescience.com/40096-eating-insects-bugs-entomophagy.html, and http://www.entomophagy.com/

          • I provided evidence about why GMOs help the poor, scientific evidence not just anecdotal stories. Can you back up your claims?

          • Bree

            I fee sorry for you Maria and yes I too am sad about the wrong information being published in a public forum. Your evidence is based on lies – check Rick’s comments.

          • Don’t feel sorry for me, feel sorry for the mothers who lose their children because of malnutrition. Children who die because privileged people like you deny them a solution that could have prevented this outcome.

          • Bree

            Yes, I am indeed privileged to be able to grow my own food through my own sweat and tears. Can you say the same???? Obviously not. If GMO is so good why are So many countries banning it? GMO food will not end world hunger.

            Here is how people truly feel.

            World Stands Up Against Monsanto: Over 400 Cities Protest GMOs

            Thousands of people across the world have joined together in a global movement, protesting against American biotech giant Monsanto. Activists from over 400 cities are speaking out against GMOs and Monsanto’s monopoly over the food supply.

            Saturday marked the third global annual March Against Monsanto (MAM). According to the organizers, 48 countries were scheduled to participate in a massive global turnout.

            Click here to see a map that shows where the protests are taking place around the globe. A total of 452 rallies have been registered with the MAM organization.

            Activists accuse the agricultural corporation of selling toxic chemicals, which are bad for people’s health, water supplies, vital crop pollinators and environment in general. The giant is also criticized for its attitude towards food safety regulations and a staunch opposition to GMO labeling. Meanwhile, small farmers blame Monsanto for monopolizing the seed market.

            One of the first protests of the day took place in Sydney, Australia, with the demonstrators holding up placards saying: “Sick of lies” and “GMO is killing our children slowly.”

            An activist at the rally told RT’s video agency Ruptly that corporations like Monsanto must be held accountable for the damage done to the planet. “This company has repeatedly committed, I would say, crimes against the Earth and what we are trying to show is accountability for corporations,” the action’s organizer said. “Also we want to promote clean food. Food that’s free of pesticides, which our grandparents just called food.”

            There were also great turnouts at rallies in Asia, Africa, and Europe.

            Demonstrators in Bangladesh formed a human chain around the faculty of fine arts at Dhaka University in the country’s capital. In India, thousands of farmers suffering the monopolistic push of the biotech giant have been protesting against Monsanto. A documentary on the rising suicide rates among Indian cotton farmers struggling to reap profits after GMO cotton replaced their crops is coming soon on RT.

            Meanwhile, crowds of activists in South Africa braved the rainy weather in Cape Town during their march against genetically engineered products.

            In France over 20 cities participated, with some central Parisian streets coming to a complete standstill. France is one of the biggest markets for Monsanto.

            Germany’s capital Berlin saw a big turnout even though Germany does not use Monsanto’s seeds. However, activists say local farmers still use Monsanto’s pesticides and herbicides, which end up leaving traces in breast milk of feeding mothers, the water supply and even urine of people who have not eaten GMO products.

            “The changes to the food supply are irreversible. And that is for the rest of human history. We are losing choice because it will all become GMO,” protester in Paris, Heidi Osterman, told RT.

            “I think the general population will not wake up until they realize that they are getting seriously ill from this,” activist and Vice President True Food Foundation, Dietrich Wittel said.

            Demonstrators in London, UK said they are concerned with GMO crops taking over their island given its isolation and size, which can potentially encourage a faster ‘takeover’ of GM crops.

            “What we believe is that GMOs are untested. These kind of pesticides and fertilizers infects our food and is going to affect us in a very negative way. This is why we profoundly disagree with GMOs,” a protester at the London rally told RT’s Laura Smith.

            Americas demand GMO labeling, end to biotech monopoly

            A wave of marches against Monsanto and GMO food hit the United States. Among the cities to join the protests were New York; Washington, DC; Los Angeles; San Franciso; Chicago; Indianapolis; Portland, Oregon; Oakland, California and dozens of others. Activists decried Monsanto’s control of 90 percent of the US seed market.

            Hundreds of protesters marched on the White House and Monsanto’s Washington, DC headquarters as part of the anti-GMO action. People in New York also seized the opportunity to voice their concerns.

            Chicago protesters have marched against Monsanto and GMO food, blocking off traffic in several streets.

            “Monsanto is the reason why GMOs are in most of our food and we are one of the countries that haven’t banned them. It is a really big deal and people need to speak out in order to make a change,” a protester from New York told RT.

            One of the central issues in the US is the battle over labeling GMO products. “Our biggest concern is that they are not labeling to begin with,” another activist stressed.

            America’s northern neighbor also showed its opposition to the agriculture giant. Toronto, Canada’s most populated city, was the center of action. Hundreds of people began their rally at Queens Park and marched through the city’s streets with banners saying: “Ban GMOs.”

            “People are here to take back control of the food system,” activist Jodi Koberinski told CBC. “We want government to hold these corporations responsible for the damage they are creating.”

            Demonstrators from the city of Kelowna in British Columbia, Canada, shouted: “Hey hey, ho ho, GMOs have got to go!” Protesters in London, Ontario, Canada shouted they want “Real food” – and that they want it “now!” Ontario beekeepers have also symbolically dumped a coffin full of dead honey bees, which they gathered from farms across the province, CBC News reported.

            Both the Hawaii and the Caribbean were protesting Monsanto’s power, with Hawaiian activists demanding “GMO-free” islands and Puerto Ricans marching along to music with signs saying “No more venom.”

            South America has seen powerful anti-GMO protests with some striking imagery on placards carried by demonstrators. Many protesters chose to stress they believe Monsanto’s pesticides and genetically modified products have been causing neurological diseases and cancer.

            Protesters in Brazil dressed up in gas masks and white uniform, carrying anti-Monsanto signs seemingly covered in blood. In Buenos Aires, Argentina, Guy Fawkes masks and placards against the biotech behemoth mixed with demands for green and real food.

            The first annual MAM action was held in 2013. It saw over two million protesters from around the globe taking to the streets to demonstrate.

            Monsanto was founded in 1901 and originally produced food additives. In over a century, it has become the world leader in the production of genetically engineered seeds and chemical herbicides. It currently employs over 22,000 people in factories across 61 countries.

            Monsanto spokesperson, Charla Lord, issued a statement in response to the global movement today: “The company is committed to making a more balanced meal accessible for everyone.”

            In light of thousands of people opposing Monsanto on Saturday, a few individuals came out in support of the agricultural giant, gathering outside Monsanto’s headquarters, with banners in favor of the use of GMOs. The pro-Monsanto demonstrators said protesters are spreading “myths” about genetically modified products.

          • Peter Olins

            Looks like you know how to cut and paste. How about just giving a link and adding your own perspective—preferably with some actual evidence to support so many inflammatory claims. Do you truly believe what you posted?

          • Bree

            Absolutely.

          • Bree

            Sure can. Come to my farm and I show you.

  • Madeleine Craig

    Maria, I think you’re bringing a great perspective to this discussion, however, you’re failing to account for arguments on both sides. It would be great if you would devote some of those 15 hours of research to the arguments on the other side. The fact that you don’t actually makes me think that someone is paying you to make these arguments. You’re definitely not offering any balance. You act like there is none to be had, which is a) patently not true, and b) not any different than the behavior of those categorically opposed to GMOs. Being so one-sided does absolutely nothing to move the debate forward. You’re making the argument that GMOs are fine, across the board, no matter how we come by them. Also not true. There is no discussion of what GMOs are doing to other species like butterflies and bees. I really like Mr. Tyson, and I generally respect his arguments, but in this case he fails to account for what gets lost, and what risks we take, when we use a lab to genetically modify food. He is conflating GMOs made in a lab with hybrid plants. They are not the same. The risks involved are not the same. Hybrid plants are genetic modifications that mother nature will actually allow. GMOs are forced. The consequences of forcing a genetic modification that a hybrid process would not successfully create are in many cases completely unknown and potentially quite serious. Getting back to bees. While their decline is partly attributed to pesticides, it is also partly attributed to lab-forced genetically modified plants. We lose the bees, and human beings are completely fucked. And all the arguments you lay out in the above article in favor of GMOs are mute. Please, Maria, I has so much respect for you, but you’re losing it from me in this series. Seriously, who’s paying you to be so one-sided?

    • Katherine Kashinsky

      One thing about science is that it’s not based in belief but fact. She presents the facts that have evidence. She doesn’t need to say anything on the other side because the other side lacks evidence.
      With science, you are either right or you are wrong. So both sides don’t need to be presented if one side is wrong.
      Shill life be getting real.
      Science at work ????????????????

      • Bree

        Not sure where you people aquired your theories but inserting chemicals into DNA of food I eat is not acceptable. That is genetically modifying an organism. Everything else is called cultivation. Check out Dr Suzuki’s detailed explanation of the difference. This article is an outright lie. If you believe it keep eating food with round up in it and see what happens.

        • Adam K Bice

          “This article is an outright lie.”

          I feel so sorry for you.

        • GerradDowns

          where is your proof that round up is being injected into food. I’d like to see your source.

          • Bree

            My proof is in reality………….. Real life farming – you should come to the Mother Earth News Show in Oregon June 5th and 6th. You can find all the proof you need right here. Good Show, good People, good information

          • Martin Fike II

            Why should we journey to your trade show to find evidence you cannot provide here? Journal articles are easy to link, if you have them. If you don’t have them, it’s unlikely you know what you’re talking about.

          • Bree

            I don’t communicate with people that hide behind cartoon characters and innocent animals. Your comments have no value.

          • GerradDowns

            so what you’re saying is you don’t have any.

        • We don’t speak with “theories,” we speak with scientific facts. And as for where we got the facts, at least for me, it’s all cited in the article (e.g., the EU Biotech report summarizing over 10 years of research and hundreds of independent studies.) That’s our difference Bree. The studies are there for you to read if you’re up for it.

          • Bree

            Maria – you should check out all the studies in detail – most of them are inconclusive and not conducted long enough. What is your end game? Your statements and claims don’t make sense.

          • Really which one? Because the science for GMOs is solid. And you still docked providing peer-reviewed scientific evidence with statistical significance to support your claims. That’s right, you don’t have any.

          • Martin Fike II

            Shifting the goal posts is a dishonest technique used to cover for the fact that you cannot provide evidence of sufficient weight to counter scientific consensus. Your barb about an endgame is a pathetically transparent attempt at poisoning the well. It gives you a pretext to claim any evidence contrary to your talking points is ” corrupt,” ” bought,” or some other form of ad-hominem unrelated to its quality as evidence.

            Thus far, you’ve yet to provide evidence supporting your accusations, and have repeatedly advanced fallacious arguments rooted in an ignorance of biology, please, if you have evidence, whip it out.

        • Martin Fike II

          Sweetie, you need some science education badly. All matter is chemicals. All of it. There is no such thing as ” bad chemicals,” just chemicals.

          You’re making an appeal to nature, an argument rooted in ignorance of the fact that our food hasn’t been natural for ten thousand years.

          If you object to genetic alterations, well, it’s too late for that, that happened millions of years ago as soon as the first mutation occurred.

          If you object to man made genetic alterations, again, too late, as that happens to be how grey wolves became Chihuahuas. It’s how bitter and toxic root vegetables became potatoes and carrots.

          If you object because of ” strange dna from unrelated species,” again too late. Horizontal gene transfer happens all the time. The sweet potato is an example of this.

          If you’re claiming the ” testing isn’t done,” you’re just moving the goalposts. Here’s a meta analysis that looks at twenty years of feed data:https://dl.sciencesocieties.org/publications/jas/articles/92/10/4255

        • Katherine Kashinsky

          It’s not inserting “chemicals” into DNA. It’s altering a base or two to change the DNA itself. Clearly you have been misinformed. And when you ingest GMOs, the DNA, RNA, and proteins from that GMO are broken down. They pose no threat to anyone because when they’re broken down into their components, they are either absorbed by the body and used for the body’s own purposes (for example, certain amino acids need to be ingested for the body to use it). Whatever the body doesn’t need is excreted. Nothing about GMOs is toxic. There is no proof beyond word of mouth from someone who has not taken a genetics and physiology class. I am a double major in Molecular and Cellular Bio and Physiology and Neurobio. I do research in a lab. I know what I’m talking about. No one can even explain why GMOs are bad and the mechanisms behind them.

          • Bree

            Perhaps you should spend some time outside your lab. But its ok you are entitled to your opinion and just keep eating it then and see what happens. Guess this article and the discussion following it might change your mind.
            http://www.naturalnews.com/049887_Washington_Post_Monsanto_propaganda_quack_science.html

          • Katherine Kashinsky

            What? Do you honesty think I spend all of my time in a lab? I do other things. Go to class, have a social life, volunteer in places to help feed the hungry (something GMOs help with), etc. I base my facts (this is not an opinion by definition) on evidence. Natural news is not written by someone who actually has a degree in anything that would give them
            The knowledge and tools to give information. It’s not reliable. Being for GMOs is not opinion based. It’s something with proof. There is literally no scientific evidence that shows GMOs are bad. If a specific modified organism was not safe, it would not be sold. That is a fact. I explained why GMOs are safe in my comment above. And I also want to point out as an example, that my grandfather are GMOs and non-organic food his entire life. He wasn’t sick until a month before he died at 93. And he only got sick because he was old. Don’t criticize something without having all of the facts. I have read through the natural news and food babes claims, and then cross referenced them with articles from pubmed, BMJ, NEJM, etc. nothing. Those claims have no evidence. No evidence, no fact, false statement. In science, it is not fact until multiple people spend years or even decades doing tedious, repetitive, and sometimes boring work to show that it is a fact.
            Don’t confuse my statement of fact with YOUR OPINION.

          • Geoff Offermann

            Natural News…bwahahahaha…get real!

          • Bree

            You’re too late

          • Geoff Offermann

            Late for what, pray tell?

            Natural News is a crock of nonsense. If you put any stock in it whtsoever, it’s no wonder you are so hopelessly lost.

      • Bree

        Katharine, please check this video.
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T-IJikX1144

        • Geoff Offermann

          Argumentum ad youtubus.

          • Bree

            Your too late

          • Geoff Offermann

            Better late than never and certainly better than hopelessly ill informed.

          • Christa

            You’re

    • Katherine Kashinsky

      Also, she’s not being paid!! Geeze. How come people who use science are “being paid” and people who are anti-GMO (aka anti-science, aka anti-fact) aren’t? Many of these sentiments are fads that actually make people lots of money! (Food Babe for example). It’s so annoying that people always claim that I’m getting paid! I wouldn’t be in debt from all of the science that I learn if I was! Also, every time you claim someone is getting paid by Monsanto or whatever is just as crazy as saying that aliens are doing experiments on humans. It’s a conspiracy. Get your facts straight before you listen to what people with no credentials say.
      The first thing I learned in school was to be able to differentiate between a creditable source and one that isn’t.

    • Bob Akimbo

      Medeleine, what you seem to be asking for is false equivalence. It’s the same argument that creationists make when they say “teach the controversy.” Since there is no scientific evidence for creationism, there is no reason to cover it in a science class. Same here. The evidence we have on genetic engineering is that it poses no greater risk than conventional techniques. In fact, since modern genetic engineering only changes one or a couple genes, as opposed to thousands with artificial selection, the risks of an unwanted outcome are actually mathematically MUCH smaller with modern genetic engineering. Artificial selection is also a “forced” agricultural technique. That’s why it’s called “artificial selection.” And on your point about bees, there is some evidence that pesticides may be harmful, but absolutely zero than the genetically modified crops are harmful. I hope that you have an open mind, and are willing to follow the evidence wherever it leads, but this seems to be an example of concern trolling. I hope I am wrong. Cheers!

    • lolaswolf

      There is no evidence that GMOS are responsible for CCD. None.

      • Bree

        What about inserting pesticide into the DNA of our food. Do you find that acceptable? You are sooo misinformed. WOW you will be surprised when you find our food sources gone because we tampered with Mother Nature.

        • Adam K Bice

          Yes, it is acceptable. Do you know anything about BT? The mechanism by which it kills pests? It’s a specific protein tailored for specific pH levels and receptors in the insect’s gut. It does not affect humans or beneficial insects in any way.

          Your arguments are based in outright ignorance of the subject being discussed.

          • Bree

            Being out there, living it, seeing it is not ignorance it is Knowing. Your arguments are not valid. GMO is not meant to be consumed by humans period.

          • Martin Fike II

            Bree, you are arguing fundamental misapprehensions about biology. You have thoroughly demonstrated that you suffer from thr Dunning-Krueger effect.

            This is where your ignorance of a subject is so profound you lack the very knowledge necessary to understand why you are wrong.

            This doesn’t make you a bad person, just profoundly wrong.

            Reasserting your claim, in the absence of any evidence, even low quality evidence, is just throwing a tantrum.

          • Bree

            World Stands Up Against Monsanto: Over 400 Cities Protest GMOs

            Thousands of people across the world have joined together in a global movement, protesting against American biotech giant Monsanto. Activists from over 400 cities are speaking out against GMOs and Monsanto’s monopoly over the food supply.

            Saturday marked the third global annual March Against Monsanto (MAM). According to the organizers, 48 countries were scheduled to participate in a massive global turnout.

            Click here to see a map that shows where the protests are taking place around the globe. A total of 452 rallies have been registered with the MAM organization.

            Activists accuse the agricultural corporation of selling toxic chemicals, which are bad for people’s health, water supplies, vital crop pollinators and environment in general. The giant is also criticized for its attitude towards food safety regulations and a staunch opposition to GMO labeling. Meanwhile, small farmers blame Monsanto for monopolizing the seed market.

            One of the first protests of the day took place in Sydney, Australia, with the demonstrators holding up placards saying: “Sick of lies” and “GMO is killing our children slowly.”

            An activist at the rally told RT’s video agency Ruptly that corporations like Monsanto must be held accountable for the damage done to the planet. “This company has repeatedly committed, I would say, crimes against the Earth and what we are trying to show is accountability for corporations,” the action’s organizer said. “Also we want to promote clean food. Food that’s free of pesticides, which our grandparents just called food.”

            There were also great turnouts at rallies in Asia, Africa, and Europe.

            Demonstrators in Bangladesh formed a human chain around the faculty of fine arts at Dhaka University in the country’s capital. In India, thousands of farmers suffering the monopolistic push of the biotech giant have been protesting against Monsanto. A documentary on the rising suicide rates among Indian cotton farmers struggling to reap profits after GMO cotton replaced their crops is coming soon on RT.

            Meanwhile, crowds of activists in South Africa braved the rainy weather in Cape Town during their march against genetically engineered products.

            In France over 20 cities participated, with some central Parisian streets coming to a complete standstill. France is one of the biggest markets for Monsanto.

            Germany’s capital Berlin saw a big turnout even though Germany does not use Monsanto’s seeds. However, activists say local farmers still use Monsanto’s pesticides and herbicides, which end up leaving traces in breast milk of feeding mothers, the water supply and even urine of people who have not eaten GMO products.

            “The changes to the food supply are irreversible. And that is for the rest of human history. We are losing choice because it will all become GMO,” protester in Paris, Heidi Osterman, told RT.

            “I think the general population will not wake up until they realize that they are getting seriously ill from this,” activist and Vice President True Food Foundation, Dietrich Wittel said.

            Demonstrators in London, UK said they are concerned with GMO crops taking over their island given its isolation and size, which can potentially encourage a faster ‘takeover’ of GM crops.

            “What we believe is that GMOs are untested. These kind of pesticides and fertilizers infects our food and is going to affect us in a very negative way. This is why we profoundly disagree with GMOs,” a protester at the London rally told RT’s Laura Smith.

            Americas demand GMO labeling, end to biotech monopoly

            A wave of marches against Monsanto and GMO food hit the United States. Among the cities to join the protests were New York; Washington, DC; Los Angeles; San Franciso; Chicago; Indianapolis; Portland, Oregon; Oakland, California and dozens of others. Activists decried Monsanto’s control of 90 percent of the US seed market.

            Hundreds of protesters marched on the White House and Monsanto’s Washington, DC headquarters as part of the anti-GMO action. People in New York also seized the opportunity to voice their concerns.

            Chicago protesters have marched against Monsanto and GMO food, blocking off traffic in several streets.

            “Monsanto is the reason why GMOs are in most of our food and we are one of the countries that haven’t banned them. It is a really big deal and people need to speak out in order to make a change,” a protester from New York told RT.

            One of the central issues in the US is the battle over labeling GMO products. “Our biggest concern is that they are not labeling to begin with,” another activist stressed.

            America’s northern neighbor also showed its opposition to the agriculture giant. Toronto, Canada’s most populated city, was the center of action. Hundreds of people began their rally at Queens Park and marched through the city’s streets with banners saying: “Ban GMOs.”

            “People are here to take back control of the food system,” activist Jodi Koberinski told CBC. “We want government to hold these corporations responsible for the damage they are creating.”

            Demonstrators from the city of Kelowna in British Columbia, Canada, shouted: “Hey hey, ho ho, GMOs have got to go!” Protesters in London, Ontario, Canada shouted they want “Real food” – and that they want it “now!” Ontario beekeepers have also symbolically dumped a coffin full of dead honey bees, which they gathered from farms across the province, CBC News reported.

            Both the Hawaii and the Caribbean were protesting Monsanto’s power, with Hawaiian activists demanding “GMO-free” islands and Puerto Ricans marching along to music with signs saying “No more venom.”

            South America has seen powerful anti-GMO protests with some striking imagery on placards carried by demonstrators. Many protesters chose to stress they believe Monsanto’s pesticides and genetically modified products have been causing neurological diseases and cancer.

            Protesters in Brazil dressed up in gas masks and white uniform, carrying anti-Monsanto signs seemingly covered in blood. In Buenos Aires, Argentina, Guy Fawkes masks and placards against the biotech behemoth mixed with demands for green and real food.

            The first annual MAM action was held in 2013. It saw over two million protesters from around the globe taking to the streets to demonstrate.

            Monsanto was founded in 1901 and originally produced food additives. In over a century, it has become the world leader in the production of genetically engineered seeds and chemical herbicides. It currently employs over 22,000 people in factories across 61 countries.

            Monsanto spokesperson, Charla Lord, issued a statement in response to the global movement today: “The company is committed to making a more balanced meal accessible for everyone.”

            In light of thousands of people opposing Monsanto on Saturday, a few individuals came out in support of the agricultural giant, gathering outside Monsanto’s headquarters, with banners in favor of the use of GMOs. The pro-Monsanto demonstrators said protesters are spreading “myths” about genetically modified products.

          • Angus MacDonald

            Argumentum ad populum doesn’t mean you are correct. It means that you have nothing but fallacies in your debate stable and are not worth listenign to.

          • Bree

            Then why reply. 🙂

          • Adam K Bice

            You’re so adorable I could just pinch your ignorant, uninformed cheeks.

          • Bree

            Actually I am neither ignorant nor uninformed and don’t in the least appreciate cheek pinching by strangers. As I mentioned in another reply, I could be sending you proof for the next few days but I have a life to live and it will be without GMO food.

          • Anders

            Being out where? Seeing what?

            Please back it up with actual sources.

          • Bree

            Check this out. Are these people and countries all wrong? If your information is so solid why then are the GMO products not advertised and promoted as such??? Why are so many countries banning GMO? I participated in the March yesterday.

            World Stands Up Against Monsanto: Over 400 Cities Protest GMOs

            Thousands of people across the world have joined together in a global movement, protesting against American biotech giant Monsanto. Activists from over 400 cities are speaking out against GMOs and Monsanto’s monopoly over the food supply.

            Saturday marked the third global annual March Against Monsanto (MAM). According to the organizers, 48 countries were scheduled to participate in a massive global turnout.

            Click here to see a map that shows where the protests are taking place around the globe. A total of 452 rallies have been registered with the MAM organization.

            Activists accuse the agricultural corporation of selling toxic chemicals, which are bad for people’s health, water supplies, vital crop pollinators and environment in general. The giant is also criticized for its attitude towards food safety regulations and a staunch opposition to GMO labeling. Meanwhile, small farmers blame Monsanto for monopolizing the seed market.

            One of the first protests of the day took place in Sydney, Australia, with the demonstrators holding up placards saying: “Sick of lies” and “GMO is killing our children slowly.”

            An activist at the rally told RT’s video agency Ruptly that corporations like Monsanto must be held accountable for the damage done to the planet. “This company has repeatedly committed, I would say, crimes against the Earth and what we are trying to show is accountability for corporations,” the action’s organizer said. “Also we want to promote clean food. Food that’s free of pesticides, which our grandparents just called food.”

            There were also great turnouts at rallies in Asia, Africa, and Europe.

            Demonstrators in Bangladesh formed a human chain around the faculty of fine arts at Dhaka University in the country’s capital. In India, thousands of farmers suffering the monopolistic push of the biotech giant have been protesting against Monsanto. A documentary on the rising suicide rates among Indian cotton farmers struggling to reap profits after GMO cotton replaced their crops is coming soon on RT.

            Meanwhile, crowds of activists in South Africa braved the rainy weather in Cape Town during their march against genetically engineered products.

            In France over 20 cities participated, with some central Parisian streets coming to a complete standstill. France is one of the biggest markets for Monsanto.

            Germany’s capital Berlin saw a big turnout even though Germany does not use Monsanto’s seeds. However, activists say local farmers still use Monsanto’s pesticides and herbicides, which end up leaving traces in breast milk of feeding mothers, the water supply and even urine of people who have not eaten GMO products.

            “The changes to the food supply are irreversible. And that is for the rest of human history. We are losing choice because it will all become GMO,” protester in Paris, Heidi Osterman, told RT.

            “I think the general population will not wake up until they realize that they are getting seriously ill from this,” activist and Vice President True Food Foundation, Dietrich Wittel said.

            Demonstrators in London, UK said they are concerned with GMO crops taking over their island given its isolation and size, which can potentially encourage a faster ‘takeover’ of GM crops.

            “What we believe is that GMOs are untested. These kind of pesticides and fertilizers infects our food and is going to affect us in a very negative way. This is why we profoundly disagree with GMOs,” a protester at the London rally told RT’s Laura Smith.

            Americas demand GMO labeling, end to biotech monopoly

            A wave of marches against Monsanto and GMO food hit the United States. Among the cities to join the protests were New York; Washington, DC; Los Angeles; San Franciso; Chicago; Indianapolis; Portland, Oregon; Oakland, California and dozens of others. Activists decried Monsanto’s control of 90 percent of the US seed market.

            Hundreds of protesters marched on the White House and Monsanto’s Washington, DC headquarters as part of the anti-GMO action. People in New York also seized the opportunity to voice their concerns.

            Chicago protesters have marched against Monsanto and GMO food, blocking off traffic in several streets.

            “Monsanto is the reason why GMOs are in most of our food and we are one of the countries that haven’t banned them. It is a really big deal and people need to speak out in order to make a change,” a protester from New York told RT.

            One of the central issues in the US is the battle over labeling GMO products. “Our biggest concern is that they are not labeling to begin with,” another activist stressed.

            America’s northern neighbor also showed its opposition to the agriculture giant. Toronto, Canada’s most populated city, was the center of action. Hundreds of people began their rally at Queens Park and marched through the city’s streets with banners saying: “Ban GMOs.”

            “People are here to take back control of the food system,” activist Jodi Koberinski told CBC. “We want government to hold these corporations responsible for the damage they are creating.”

            Demonstrators from the city of Kelowna in British Columbia, Canada, shouted: “Hey hey, ho ho, GMOs have got to go!” Protesters in London, Ontario, Canada shouted they want “Real food” – and that they want it “now!” Ontario beekeepers have also symbolically dumped a coffin full of dead honey bees, which they gathered from farms across the province, CBC News reported.

            Both the Hawaii and the Caribbean were protesting Monsanto’s power, with Hawaiian activists demanding “GMO-free” islands and Puerto Ricans marching along to music with signs saying “No more venom.”

            South America has seen powerful anti-GMO protests with some striking imagery on placards carried by demonstrators. Many protesters chose to stress they believe Monsanto’s pesticides and genetically modified products have been causing neurological diseases and cancer.

            Protesters in Brazil dressed up in gas masks and white uniform, carrying anti-Monsanto signs seemingly covered in blood. In Buenos Aires, Argentina, Guy Fawkes masks and placards against the biotech behemoth mixed with demands for green and real food.

            The first annual MAM action was held in 2013. It saw over two million protesters from around the globe taking to the streets to demonstrate.

            Monsanto was founded in 1901 and originally produced food additives. In over a century, it has become the world leader in the production of genetically engineered seeds and chemical herbicides. It currently employs over 22,000 people in factories across 61 countries.

            Monsanto spokesperson, Charla Lord, issued a statement in response to the global movement today: “The company is committed to making a more balanced meal accessible for everyone.”

            In light of thousands of people opposing Monsanto on Saturday, a few individuals came out in support of the agricultural giant, gathering outside Monsanto’s headquarters, with banners in favor of the use of GMOs. The pro-Monsanto demonstrators said protesters are spreading “myths” about genetically modified products.

          • Michael McCarthy

            “Also we want to promote clean food. Food that’s free of pesticides, which our grandparents just called food.”

            So, so funny. We’ve been using pesticides in agriculture for 80 or so odd years. Unless you grow it yourself and don’t use pesticides, or if you can find a magic store that carries food labeled pesticide free, it has pesticides (yup, organic farms use them too). The pesticide diatribe by the anti-GMO activists is stale.

          • Anders

            Activists are protesting equal sex marriage all across the world too. That doesn’t make them right.

            And Monsanto doesn’t have monopoly (though it’s arguably an olgliopoly) when they have a 5% market share (30% market share with regards to corn), and have roughly the same annual revenue as Whole Foods.

            The reason it isn’t promoted as such are the same reason vanilla ice are labeled as vanilla ice even if it isn’t any vanilla in it (most vanilla ice are made with vanillin, because proper vanilla is way to scares).

            And if gene modification should be labeled – so should seeds made from mutagenesis (radiation blasting of seeds to force mutations).

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mutation_breeding

            Hell, even organic food can be developed by mutagenesis.

          • Kelly Carter

            Best stop eating then. There really isn’t a food item out there that has not been modified in some way.

        • Martin Fike II

          How are you going to insert pesticides into DNA? Do you even know what either are?

    • MDBritt

      Madeleine – you are confused about GMOs and butterflies/bees. There is discussion about whether certain pesticides are impacting these populations but this is an entirely different issue (and it seems likely that parasites are a more important factor than pesticides). There is simply no *real* evidence whatsoever that any specific GM organism has ever had any impact on these populations. Pseudo-scientific fear mongers have said that this is so but they have absolutely no evidence on their side. Seriously, how is breeding additional pro-vitamin A into rice going to affect local insect populations? It makes no sense.

      Second, crossing two plants (“hybrid plants”) is *exactly* the same thing: it is modifying the genome to produce a desired trait. It is just less predictable and precise. The anti-GMO crowd does this all the time: trying to make a distinction that simply doesn’t exist in reality in the hopes of inducing a disgust response (“ewww, fish DNA in my strawberries! Sound like Frankenfoods!”). Again, this is silly: DNA is like a programming language and the idea that “fish DNA” is an entirely different thing than strawberry DNA is just wrong. Heck, human beings and *rice* actually share about 25% of their DNA! That is why your statement that “forcing a genetic modification that a hybrid process would not
      successfully create are in many cases completely unknown and potentially
      quite serious” is just laughably wrong. Indeed, the entire idea that “mother nature” has strict rules about what she will “allow” is just pseudo-scientific cant.

      • Thank you so much for clarifying the questions Madeleine posted.

    • Adam K Bice

      “…[bee population decline] is also partly attributed to lab-forced genetically modified plants…”

      That is a wild generalization. The category of pesticides thought to be involved in honeybee population decline are neonicotinoids. Yes, these pesticides have been engineered into plants, but making the statement that “genetically modified plants” are causing the decline is missing the point. The pesticide is causing the decline. If we engineer a bee-safe pesticide into plants, the problem is solved.

      “Hybrid plants are genetic modifications that mother nature will actually allow.”

      I don’t believe I’m debating this, but “mother nature” isn’t an entity which exists. You’re personifying your lack of scientific understanding. Lab-conducted genetic modification is far MORE precise, far LESS risky, and far EASIER to control than cross-breeding. We can adjust the specific allele of the gene which expresses a function of the plant in a lab. You can’t do anything that specific via cross-breeding. It’s like comparing a wheelbarrow to a cargo jet in terms of carrying capacity. The primitive, thousands-year-old version is so much worse at its job it’s not even in the same category anymore, and comparing the two is – to anyone with the intelligence and knowledge to grasp the subject – completely idiotic.

      You’re not afraid of GMOs, you’re afraid of what you don’t know.

      • Thanks Adam for clarifying the superiority of engineering versus the now primitive selective breeding technique.

        • Adam K Bice

          I do what I can to save humanity 😛

          Thanks for writing this article! Yesterday was a pretty fun day on Facebook.

          • Was it? I don’t know, I don’t enjoy all the meanness that exploded because of the article. I actually feel disappointed.

          • Adam K Bice

            That’s the danger of the internet. The loudest, most abrasive voices are the ones that want to be heard the most. To add to that, you have echo chamber forums set up where even the most insane opinions (vaccines cause autism) find support. Not scientific support, but when you believe something like “climate change is a hoax” or “all GMOs will give you cancer and make you grow a third arm,” you don’t need science. You just need a couple people who agree with you and make you feel good about your uninformed opinion. They all link the same pseudoscience blogs written by unqualified individuals which support their incorrect theories, and then they feel right.

            What’s that?! Dissenting research, facts or information?! SHILL!

            So don’t be sad because of the Internet, be sad because of how the human mind works. Man, I’m really bad at making people feel better…

          • Adam, I’m actually sad for both. I’m sad about their way of thinking, sad that they are so loud about their “opinions,” sad that they listen to others’ opinions and think this is science, sad that most people have never read a scientific paper, sad that their loud voices affect public perception, sad that they’re quick to accuse me without knowing anything about me, and even sadder when seeing some people who I thought liked me actually turning against me (again with uninformed opinions, accusations, etc).

            Also sad because as I say in the article millions of people are dying every year because of them. That’s a cost that we Western privileged people are responsible for. But for many of us, again sadly, since it’s not our children, then who cares? Of course cognitive dissonance kicks in (after all, we all are good caring people right?) and many people justify it by again – rejecting the science. But still regardless of how people justify it, the facts are facts.

            I think this is the first time ever I used the word “sad” so many times in a row!

          • Adam K Bice

            Well, you set a new personal record. Be happy about that! *high five*

      • First Officer

        I believe Bt has been tested on bees and found to have no effect.

        • Adam K Bice

          Correct. Only toxic in very specific pH levels and usually tailored to specific insects. It’s a very controlled pesticide.

      • Peter Olins

        Correction, Adam: neonicotinoids are synthetic insecticidal chemicals: no engineered crop plants produce them. They would be toxic to humans, just like the original nicotine in tobacco. I think you are referring to the protein, Bt toxin.

        I agree that many folks have a romantic notion of “mother nature”—not realizing that it is typically either a brutal war between species, or at best, a truce.

        • Adam K Bice

          No, I was referring to neonicotinoids. Information I’d had was that they had been engineered into the plant itself, but after a couple minutes’ research, all I can find are “coated with.” This is actually great news, as that was the one link between GE products and colony collapse disorder (CCD) that I thought existed. So now we’re down to zero!

          And I would also argue the definition of “toxicity” used. LD50 of nicotine is far higher than can ever possibly be delivered to a normal person in this manner (eating vegetables), even if they never washed their produce. Not that I support the pesticide, considering it’s likely playing a major role in CCD, but it’s toxic in the same way water is toxic. If you go out of your way to consume far too much, it’ll kill you.

    • GerradDowns

      didn’t take long for the “paid shill” accusations to come out…

    • Bryan

      You played the shill card!

      • First Officer

        The SAS, Shill Accusation Syndrome, is strong in that one!

    • Peter Olins

      Ah, the reliance on “mother nature” as an argument. I don’t understand nature, but I value the morsels of insight that result from the process of scientific investigation.

    • First Officer

      “paying you”

      SAS, Shill Accusation Syndrome, strikes again!

    • Jason

      How are genetically modified plants impacting bees?

  • Lajuana Towns

    Yeal great,and people are still starving,right here in the greatest bitch USA talk to me when people can feed their families on talk.

  • JustSumGuy

    I do not mean to come off sounding ignorant, but there will always be some person or party claiming that such-n-such kills you because some hooligan made some sourceless claim, and the corporations will never admit to any faults (including potential faults) since the PR in doing so would sink faster and deeper than the titanic. So both parties end up shoveling deforesting-propaganda down our throats (or rather used to before the internet) to rally-up troops and the nobody ever gets straight facts until decades later.

    What needs to happen is for both parties to come together at the 50, put their money where their mouths are and split the cost to fund a true, unbiased study into thes supposed health-risks for GMOs. Only in such a manner will anyone get some credible results either supporting or not-supporting their cause.

    But until that day, i’ll keep to my opinion on the matter: Since everything supposedly kills us anyways, at least GMOs make food more affordable

    • MDBritt

      JSG – the thing is that there have been literally *thousands* of unbiased studies on GMOs. To buy the anti-GMO crowd’s argument, you’d have to believe that ALL of academia, ALL of the independent labs and ALL of the government regulatory agencies are colluding in the greatest conspiracy theory in the history of the world. And why? Because Monsanto, a company whose total sales are less than 1/5th that of the Organic foods, paid them all off?

      So, what you are proposing has been done over and over and over again to no avail: the anti-GMO crowd simply sticks its fingers in its ears and screams.

      • Thank you explaining what a small player Monsanto is and the extent of independent studies that have been done on GMOs.

  • MDBritt

    Excellent piece!

  • Matt Enns

    I am okay with GMO technology as a grower that uses it and sees a number of benefits. The general public has a negative attitude towards GMO, but the level of understanding of what GMO’s actually do is lacking. It’s like when Jimmy Kimmel asked people if they were going Gluten free and then asked them what Gluten was. Very few knew anything much about it. The benefits we see include reduced weed pressure using less herbicides amongst many others. We also use no-till farming effectively which decreases our passes over the land, thereby decreasing fuel costs and CO2 emissions and decreasing topsoil erosion. I do however have concerns about the US agribusiness industry. Corn and Soybeans are so incredibly prevalent in the agrifood industry and it becomes very difficult to avoid eating A LOT of them. Within these two crops the prevalence of Monsanto’s Round-Up resistant varieties does give them significant sway in terms of the products coming to our grocery stores.

    • hyperzombie

      Within these two crops the prevalence of Monsanto’s Round-Up resistant varieties

      Switch to liberty link soy and corn if you have a problem with Monsanto.

      • Matt

        hyperzombie. I rotate my acres between clearfield, liberty link and non-GMO to manage against resistanc as well as to enable myself to ht different markets. Although I’m not a “Monsanto hater” they are the easiest target. My issue lies within the typical Americana diet and its reliance on corn and soy and secondarily on the control Agribusiness has on producers and end-products. What is your background hyper zombie I’ve seen you on a number of forums.

        • hyperzombie

          . My issue lies within the typical Americana diet and its reliance on corn and soy

          Isnt that more to do with what you grow and what is the least expensive starch, or oil.

          Here in Canada we don’t grow much corn, so things are a bit different. If you want ethanol in your gas, you may have to pay extra and find someone that sells it. Most Canadian processed foods have canola oil in it, and the starches are most likely from cereals, not corn, because that is what we grow here and its less money. Even our cattle are fed out using far less corn, they use canola mash, wheat, rye, oats, field peas and barley cause it is less money.

          I think that this would be true all around the world, people eat what is plentiful in their own country or region.

          Look at the Ukrainians, they most likely have 800 ways to prepare and eat cabbage, not because it is a delicacy, it is because it grows like a weed there.

          This is just my opinion, I have no real evidence, other than Ukrainian neighbors.

          control Agribusiness has on producers and end-products.

          But that is not the seed suppliers, unless something is different where you live.

          What is your background hyper zombie I’ve seen you on a number of forums.

          Well, I just grow forage crops, mostly alfalfa. A few growers and I pelletize it and sell it as pet feed. The rest of my crop is mostly sold to recreational horse owners and horse stables as premium horse feed. I have tried field peas and oats a few times without much success. I haven’t been farming long I am only 36.

  • Stephen Cappuccia

    Here is one counter point. This is why you need to show both sides of the argument and let people decide of there own free will. If GMOs where perfect in every way then they would not fight so hard to not be labeled GMOs in stores. You would promote how great you are and say this is why you should buy GMOs and let people make the choice for themselves.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-22411737/How-GM-crops-increased-use-danger-pesticides-created-superweeds-toxin-resistant-insects.html

    • hyperzombie

      This is why you need to show both sides of the argument and let people decide of there own free will.

      Nope, would you ask the author to consider both sides about climate change, evolution, how about gravity?

  • This is satire right ???? WOW ignorance truly is bliss .

    • Bree

      Sure sounds that way. wow these people are absolutely ignorant of what actually is happening here. In sll of this discussion nobody mentions that All seeds will be the property of one company and that us called progress??????That the Monsanto police can come on to your property and conduct a search anytime they choose and up to 3 years after you stopped buying their seeds…… If all is so well why such drastic measures?????? Mother Nature did not intent this nor did the creator.

      • Adam K Bice

        Do you have any idea how many companies besides Monsanto create genetically modified organisms and food? Your hatred for one company should not influence your opinion about a scientific technique. Unless your only information comes from downwithmonsanto.org and naturalhealthnews.org, in which case carry on, please don’t breed.

        • Bree

          I have been very polite in my response, you on the other hand are off topic and way too personal in your last comment. Actually rude. Hopefully the others also see it and how it discredits your earlier comments.

          • Adam K Bice

            “you’re mean, that makes you wrong.”

            Not the way it works in the real world. This isn’t a popularity contest, it’s about science, research, and facts. Which is why GMOs are (thankfully) allowed and encouraged in this country, at least outside of the “I don’t know what I’m talking about” subset to which you belong.

            At least you’re nice, though? I guess?

      • hyperzombie

        Mother Nature did not intent this nor did the creator.

        How do you know? Did she post something on her Facebook page?

        • Bree

          Your comment just shows how FAR removed from reality you are. You should get out more.

      • hyperzombie

        In sll of this discussion nobody mentions that All seeds will be the property of one company and that us called progress??

        Really??? You can just patent new traits, not all seeds. Second new plant patents expire in 20 years, and you have been able to patent plants since 1932 or so.

        Monsanto police can come on to your property

        There are not going to visit your place unless you are planning on selling their technology.

        Mother Nature did not intent

        Mother nature doesn’t have any intent, it is just random mutations controlled by selection pressure. You sound like an Agriculture creationist.

    • lucyrose1222

      I couldn’t agree more. It just reads as a big, fat joke! And all the supportive clueless comments. I don’t believe the writer of the article even believes what she wrote. I hope in the two years that have passed many of people commenting on here are better informed, well except the paid Monsanto shills.

  • larry

    are you serious? you know that those corporations just want to monopolize the food industry? “GMO’s give me faith in the future” really?!?!? proves ignorance really is bliss

    • hyperzombie

      you know that those corporations just want to monopolize the food industry?

      They dont make any food, they just sell seed to farmers.

      • You say that like it’s no big thing. Think about it. By controlling the seed, they control the world’s food supply.

        • hyperzombie

          By controlling the seed, they control the world’s food supply.

          LOL, they sell seed, that is it. They cant control anything really, if farmers don’t want the product they will simply not buy them anymore. Do you have any idea how many GMOs disappeared from the market?

          • Thankfully right now there’s still choice. Ultimately though these corporations would like it very much if all farmers had to buy all their seed every year through their licensing programs. You want to grow corn? Well the only corn seed available comes from these 3 manufacturers. You can’t save your seeds and replant them, or they terminate themselves making that impossible anyway, so you have to buy them new every year.

          • hyperzombie

            You want to grow corn? Well the only corn seed available comes from these 3 manufacturers.

            Hardly, there are 100s of companies that sell corn seed. Stine, land o lakes, and many others.

            You can’t save your seeds and replant them

            Most crops are Hybrids so you cant save the seed anyway. it has been this way for corn since the mid 30s. The vast majority of farmers never save seed, it is a pain in the ass, and it is easier, cheaper (in most cases), and far better to buy certified seed.

          • Monsanto has been buying up tons of independent seed companies. They are now the largest seed supplier in the US. Fast forward 20 years and there will be far fewer choices. Fast forward another 20 and there will be even less. The company’s goal here is to dominate the seed distribution business.

            http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2008/05/monsanto200805

            Perhaps US corn was a bad example because of hybridization, but seed saving is not an uncommon practice for many crops. Farm saved seed accounts for two thirds of global crops. We’re also not just talking about the US here, but other countries where seed saving is more common (it makes up 80-90% of crops in developing countries).

            It should be clear why the likes of Monsanto are pushing so hard on the Asian and African continents to adopt these new seeds.

            http://www.nfu.ca/issues/save-our-seed

            https://www.gov.uk/farm-saved-seed

            http://www.ghorganics.com/SeedGiantWanttoBanFarmSavedSeed.htm

          • hyperzombie

            They are now the largest seed supplier in the US.

            Nope that would be Pioneer (DuPont) for corn and soy. Monsanto is still number on for Canola, but BASF is catching up fast with Liberty Link crops, I dont know much about cotton so Monsanto could still be number one.

            Fast forward 20 years and there will be far fewer choices.

            There is far more chioce today than ever, Pioneer sells over 300 varieties of just GMO corn, Monsanto over 100, Stine over 100, Basf over 100. Like come on have you never looked at a seed catalog?

            but seed saving is not an uncommon practice for many crops.

            It is very uncommon in the first and second world. Seed is one of the lowest input costs for a commercial farm, and it is a pain in the ass to save seed. There are 10s of thousands of professional seed growers here in NA, and they are very good at what they do. It almost always pays to buy seed.

            Many crops you cant even save seed, cotton (unless you buy a cotton gin), forage crops, many veggies, hay. Hey and lets not forget seedless watermelon, seedless grapes, seedless oranges.

            We’re also not just talking about the US here, but other countries where seed saving is more common (it makes up 80-90% of crops in developing countries).

            And that is why the get horrible yields of major crops. Africa is pitiful, the average yield is only 32 Bu/ac, we were getting that back in 1920s. If they could get there yield up to at least half of what the EU gets, they would be a major exporter of corn and other crops. It is sad really.

            It should be clear why the likes of Monsanto are pushing so hard on the Asian and African continents to adopt these new seeds.

            Most Asian countries already use them.

          • Peter Olins

            As a kid we used to sell all the largest potatoes in the crop, and keep the smaller ones for seed. Looking back, I suspect that we might have been imposing a strong genetic selection for smaller and smaller potatoes.

    • Bree

      Thanks Larry – you got it – how better to control people then to control their food, eh

  • Lena

    GMO’s can be a crazy topic, with most people unsure of why they promote or oppose them. This article shines a great light on the “pros”. One outlook I think may have missed by this article is the health concerns of consuming GMO’s. And the widespread greenwashing of these GMO companies such as Monsanto. We’d like to think they are engineering this food to be more nourishing, healthy, and sustainable but they are only engineering it to look good and last longer so they can make money. Food that wont spoil as quickly, that wont get eaten by bugs, that will have more sugar and more flavor so we continue to pay to fill our bodies with chemicals that have never been properly researched. If you want to learn more about where this GMO food is coming from.. I would suggest watching GMO OMG on Netflix.

    Canada and the US have the highest usage rate of GMO foods which directly correlates with our rate of “western diseases”. Yes, you do need to spray less pesticides on a GMO crop of corn than a non-GMO crop of corn.. but that is because GMO corn in itself is classified AS A PESTICIDE. Not even as food! Of course you wouldn’t need to spray pesticides on a pesticide! Corn was genetically modified so the pesticides are inside the core of the vegetable itself. Companies like Monsanto have told us our bodies would break that down and it would be obsolete by the time of ingestion.. but studies on pregnant women have found large quantities of those pesticides in their stomachs and breast milk. We supposedly have the best healthcare, the cleanest living conditions, and the least poverty.. but somehow we have more cancer, disease and death than the countries that cant afford, or oppose GMO farming.

    We think that because our yields from these crops are so high, that we are using less land.. but 44 feet of quality topsoil are destroyed and rendered unusable for every foot of GMO crops that go into the ground. Sustainable? I think not. Environmentally friendly? Guess again. We will never “feed the world without soil. And don’t even get me started on what this all does to our ground water. Many researchers have attested to the fact that we have a limited number of years that GMO crops can even be a feasible option for the earth.

    GMO’s do not help farmers.. especially not poor farmers! A bag of GMO seeds can cost up to 10 times the price that seeds used to. Because these seeds are patented, the farmers cannot cultivate any seeds to use the following years or they will be sued.. whereas before, they would pick the best seeds and save them to use in the years to come which is how they also achieved the best looking and tasting produce. GMO pollen can also travel miles and miles and taint organic crops (Monsanto has sued multiple organic farms and bullied them into paying for their GMO seeds just because of pollen contamination from other farms). Monsanto has also admitted to having an entire department dedicated to abolishing anti-GMO research, no matter the validity.

    I always hear people say “there are no studies saying GMO’s are harmful” but that is because the only companies who have funded research on GMO’s are the GMO companies themselves.. and only over a period no longer than 3 months.. I bet those results didn’t swing in their favor at all.. especially since dozens of highly paid Monsanto employees are also members of the US government (FDA, USDA and even the senate, that regulates GMO use in our society). Research has now been done testing children and families on a “regular diet” for a week and then an organic diet for a week and the levels of pesticides in their bodies on the organic diet dropped from anywhere up to 90%… If pesticides are meant to harm everything else they come in contact with.. how are they not supposed to harm us? Well.. they are! Studies following the brain development in children on a GMO food diet vs. and organic diet have shown major differences in brain development and cognition. Even our plants are fighting back, as there are now many “super” weeds and insects that have become immune to pesticides like glyphosate, and the genetically modified BT corn.

    GMO’s are not saving the world from poor nutrition, climate change or global poverty. They are making good looking, good tasting food-like products and creating a slow chemical build up in our organs until we succumb to disease. Countries like Haiti have even protested and turned down Monsanto’s offer for free seeds in their times of crisis to avoid poisoning their land with chemicals.

    It is up to the consumer to vote with their dollars and consume whichever foods they deem edible, and if GMO’s were only being used for good, and creating more nutritious and sustainable food sources, I would be up to my eyeballs in GMO produce. But alas, after trudging past all of the GMO propaganda we are fed by big media, I no longer feel convinced that GMO’s are a scientific miracle, here to save the planet and its people. The science itself behind genetic modification IS AMAZING. There is no denying that. But is this technology truly safe the way we are using it right now across the globe? Do your own research people and decide for yourselves!

    • Lena, thank you for the comment. I backed up all the points made in this article with evidence, scientific evidence, not anecdotal stories. Can you also back your claims with peer-reviewed data?

      • Why do you just keep parroting the same thing over and over again? There’s this great thing called Google. If you don’t believe something someone has posted here it’s really simple for you to do a search to find out if it’s true or not. There are lots of educated people in this world that know lots of things. When they quote a fact in conversation, they don’t also need to link you to the wiki page or some Harvard study to back up what they are saying.

        • Brad this is ridiculous. I’m going to do the work for them to find studies that don’t actually exist? They have the burden of proof. If you don’t want to do the work, then you can’t participate in the discussion as an equal.

          • You’d know there’s nothing ridiculous about it if you hadn’t done a half assed job researching this article.

        • Peter Olins

          Brad — For areas that are unfamiliar, Wikipedia is a surprisingly solid starting point. For more detail and rigor, I would encourage you to use Google Scholar. For more detail, I would recommend PubMed (but this database is biased towards biomedical and molecular sciences, and seems to lack some Ag-related information).

          Personally, I treat anything I find in a simple Google search with considerable skepticism (unless it’s just for shopping or the weather).

  • Rick R and R Marketing

    Maria, you are so uninformed that you are playing into the hands of Monsanto which is the biggest destroyer of crop health the world has ever seen. This article is loaded with miss information and it seems that you and your ignorant readers have no clue about GMO’s and the danger that they pose on our world.

    Why is it that 14 countries have banned GMO crops just in the last 5 years. Why is it that the US won’t allow US farmers to grow GMO wheat? If it was so good for us none of this could be true. And why is it that since 1996 US farmers have increase the use of Roundup by over 1000% and your stupid article claims that GMO’s use less pesticides which is garbage and the very reason why it is so irresponsible for anyone to be allowed to grow GMO.

    Niel DeGrasse is clueless about the difference of natural selection and GM plants! He spends his whole rant talking about natural selection and then trys to claim that GM is the same process, how stupid is he and does he really think people don’t see through his scam?

    Obviously doesn’t know that when you eat GMO’s you are mixing hormones and non plant DNA with food which your body can’t recognize the difference which will damage our hormones and eventually destroy our DNA thereby exposing us to all kinds of ill health the likes none of us could have even imagined.

  • Rick R and R Marketing

    Maria, You claim it is helping to feed the world because of it’s higher yields. What utter nonsense. US farmers have switched back to non GMO corn in record numbers because they have found that GMO was costing them more to produce.

    And you claim it reduces Global Warming, really? NASA just released the latest stats on Polar Ice and it is right now 5% higher than the average mean over the last 40 years. So it’s you that has all your facts wrong. Every farmer should know that as Co2 increases so does the yields in crops as crops need Co2 to grow! No one is telling you that are they?

    In Africa and in India many farmers who had been lied to about GMO’s and planted their fields with them ended up losing their land because crop yields were so poor. It was such a disaster that many comitted suicide.

    • Bree

      Thank you Rick for clarifying – I’ll be marching tomorrow morning

    • Rick, global warming is getting worse and that’s why we need all the help we can get. Also I provided scientific evidence for all my claims. If you’re gonna continue commenting on this thread, then please bring your own peer-reviewed scientific evidence with statistical significance to back up your claims.

      I’m not going to have a conversation on the basis of “beliefs” or “opinions.”

      • I love it. “I’m not having this conversation with you, because I’ve read some shit and now I’ve got this massive superiority complex. I’m right, you’re wrong, so unless you spend 15 hours reading stuff on the Internet too, you should stop commenting now.”

        Get a grip.

        • Your sense of entitlement has reached a whole new other level. Funny how you excuse yourself from having to do actual research.

          • When you’ve spent another 15 hours researching the opposing views to your claims, then we can talk.

          • So I will have spent 30 hours and you will have spent 0. Man, how brilliant!

          • I can assure you that I’ve spent way more time than you have researching the subject over the years. I’ve read both sides of the argument extensively. I can say with no uncertainty that GMOs will be a contributing factor in the downfall of mankind, not its salvation as you claim. You and I probably won’t be here to see it, but you can rest easy knowing you helped spread the lies and deceit that made it a reality.

          • Peter Olins

            @Brad — It’s nice to hear your conclusions, but if you are truly interested in persuading others, it would help if you would share your evidence and logic. I’m a little alarmed by your *certainty*: there are very few things in the past that are certain, let alone in the future. This kind of statement fits better in the framework of a religion that science (I don’t claim to be an expert theologian, though).

            Perhaps this thread isn’t the most effective way for you to do that. If not, how about creating a free blog account somewhere and laying out the evidence? You have made several radical claims in your posts, and I think it would be informative to learn how you have selected the information you consider to be most credible.

      • Rick R and R Marketing

        I did provide the evidence, we are in a global cooling cycle as per Government reports like NASA that has published figures on the polar ice packs which are at a 5% increase over the mean which they began monitoring in 1979. Where is your studies? You don’t have any that couldn’t be exposed as a fraud within minutes because you have no clue what your talking about.

        Who is paying you to promote this nonsense? Obama or some other idiot like Al Gore?

    • Michael McCarthy

      “Every farmer should know that as Co2 increases so does the yields in crops as crops need Co2 to grow”

      Except that theory doesn’t work in practice, plants need more than CO2 to grow and fruit. Excess CO2, in the absence of essential nutrients and sufficient water, decreases yields in many crops, especially wheat.
      Get yourself an aquarium and aquascape it, then do max CO2 injection and see what happens. It won’t be what you think.

      • hyperzombie

        Excess CO2, in the absence of essential nutrients and sufficient water, decreases yields in many crops, especially wheat.

        Do you have any evidence of this? Seems strange that an increase in one plant nutrient would cause a decrease in yield.

        • Michael McCarthy

          here’s a couple links for you:

          http://www.skepticalscience.com/Increasing-Carbon-Dioxide-is-not-good-for-plants.html

          http://grist.org/news/too-much-carbon-dioxide-can-have-a-negative-effect-on-some-crops/

          http://news.stanford.edu/news/2002/december11/jasperplots-124.html

          We saw the same things in aquatic plant culture, too much CO2 and the plants literally stopped growing and algae took over.

        • Do you grow anything? Even a houseplant? Basic plant growing knowledge says that if you over feed they will suffer or die.

          • hyperzombie

            Basic plant growing knowledge says that if you over feed they will suffer or die.

            Hmmm, well not really. Greenhouses commonly artificially raise CO2 to 1200ppm, because it makes the crops grow way faster. So once again you have no idea what you are talking about.

          • Yes, CO2 helps plants grow but you specifically mentioned an increase in plant nutrients decreasing yields and thought that strange. Go dump a whole bottle of fertilizer on one of the plants in your garden and see what happens.

          • hyperzombie

            increase in plant nutrients decreasing yields and thought that strange.

            CO2 is a plant nutrient. You can kill plants with any nutrient, but that is not the point, increasing one nutrient by 10% is not going to reduce yield. It may stay the same but it will not go down,

  • Rick R and R Marketing

    Maria, the blood of these innocent farmers is on the hands of the GMO’s and to some extent on people like you that ignorantly support the evil agenda behind the GMO’s. Please study this and repent from supporting such an evil agenda.

    • You should repent for the kids that go blind and die every year because of uniformed people like you, people who “just believe,” or “just know,” or read something on the internet, and think that’s science.

      • Pot meet kettle. Where did you read all the source material for your article here my dear? The Internet perhaps? And now you’re an expert.

        • Many of my links go back to the source studies. If only you had done the work to at least follow up on my sources.

          • I’ve read your links. I’ve also read dozens more to opposing views. Something you haven’t done.

      • Rick R and R Marketing

        There are a lot of educated people in Communism and Marxist philosophies. What they are is ignorant idiots like you. You jump to conclusions assuming that all stats support your vain positions when i can make stats say whatever I want. I’m a horticulturist and we add Co2 to green houses so that the plants grow faster. Malnutrition is never going to be solved by chemical giants like Monsanto and Pharmaceutical companies. There is enough food in the world today that world hunger could be solved just by recovering all the wasted food just here in the US alone.

        The US has spent 5 billion to topple the Ukraine government and to prevent the Russians from gaining control over it because Monsanto wants the Ukraine because it has 25%+ of the worlds fertile farm land and Russia has band your insidious GM crops. GM crops will become so abhorrent to all educated people of every country that it most likely will spell the end of Monsanto and that day can’t come to quickly.

        • Peter Olins

          Hi Rick, what exactly are you marketing? Does it have anything to do with Maria’s piece, or are you just seeking Internet visibility by any means possible?

        • I’d normally delete this as I don’t allow any swearing in the comments. However, because your comment about Ukraine and Monsanto is so ridiculous, I’m gonna leave it be for the amusement of people who happen to read it.

  • Rick R and R Marketing
  • Nik Ki

    My biggest problem with the “feed the world” argument is that there is already enough food. The world currently produces enough food for each individual to have over 3,000 calories. The problem has never been production, but rather the problem has been distribution. Producing more food won’t feed starving children.

    • hyperzombie

      Producing more food won’t feed starving children.

      But producing less is not going to help at all either.

    • Bree

      Valid point.

    • Peter Olins

      That’s a bit like saying that there is plenty of money to go around, if only we would share it equally. How do you propose to implement such a model?

    • Anders

      It’s less the total amount, but where it is grown. In the western world, we do produce «too much», but Africa, South Asia and other poverty stricken parts of the world, don’t produce enough. They are the ones who would benefit the most from GMOs.

    • Geoff Offermann

      Increased production is only one objective of GM. Others include reduced spoilage and increased nutritive value which will both reduce the pressure for increased production.

  • Martin Fike II

    Here is an FAQ that discusses qestions abot GMOshttp://welovegv.com/gmo-faq

  • I love #8. “OH GOD, WHY WON’T SOMEONE THINK ABOUT THE CHILDREN!”. Blind children really tugs on the heartstrings no?

    250,000 is 0.00018% of China’s population. But hey, let’s adulterate the world’s largest food crop for the benefit of, what amounts to, a small handful of people. You don’t think education and perhaps supplementing their diets would be smarter?

    You’re obviously a cruel and insensitive bastard if you don’t think we should be replacing the world’s rice crops with GMOs to save these children’s eyesight. That’s what big business would lead you to believe, despite their supposed humanitarian cause. And make no mistake, while the likes of Monsanto might be handing out free licenses to sustenance farmers, those growing commercially still need to pay up.

    If you can’t see why Monsanto and others like them would want to patent and control the world’s number one food crop, then you are the one that is blind.

    • “But hey, let’s adulterate the world’s largest food crop for the benefit of, what amounts to, a small handful of people.” You’re cruel and non-sensical. You wouldn’t even dare talk like that if this was you child.

      But for people in the developing world who cares, right?

      Again, if you’re gonna comment on this thread, then please provide peer-reviewed scientific evidence with statistical significance to support your claims. I’m not arguing on the basis of “beliefs” or “opinions.”

      • You must be a Monsanto shill. I’ve provided plenty of evidence. You too can read all the statistics with a simple Google search, which you clearly haven’t done. If you’re going to publish an article and make such bold claims, it’s best that you research both sides of the argument so as to not look like a fool.

        Vitamin A supplements can be had for just a couple cents per day http://www.unicef.org/immunization/23244_vitamina.html. We don’t need to forever genetically change the world’s rice supply, putting it’s license and ownership in the hands of mega corporations, to solve what is a simple problem.

        • First Officer

          SAS, Shill Accusation Syndrome, is treatable.

        • hyperzombie

          Vitamin A supplements can be had for just a couple cents per day

          And do you know what is even less money? Rice with vitamin A already in it.

          • Yes, but it’s completely unnecessary. You’re also not addressing the more serious point, which is putting the ownership of the world’s most important food crop in the hands of megacorporations. Do you not see a problem with that?

          • hyperzombie

            which is putting the ownership of the world’s most important food crop in the hands of megacorporations.

            Hmmm, I don’t get this? Big Ag owns lots of rice varieties now and I don’t hear you complaining.

            Do you not see a problem with that?

            Nope.

          • Skeptologist

            Brad, allowing Golden Rice to be patented won’t put ” the ownership of the world’s most important food crop in the hands of megacorporations”. Golden Rice is a single rice variety. There are literally thousands of varieties of rice. Try using that Google search you’re so fond of accusing others of neglecting.

        • Skeptologist

          Classic shill accusation syndrome. When you can’t form a rational argument, it always comes down to “you’re a shill!!!!!!”

          • Peter Olins

            Yup. There are still a few folks out there under the delusion that throwing out the ‘shill’ accusation is an effective and meaningful response.

            Personally, I would be glad to hear some more official responses from some of the relevant corporations. Chances are, these responses would be supported by actual, credible information. Perhaps we need Disqus profiles for Syngenta#1, BASF#1, Dow#1, and Monsanto#1? My hunch is that the respective corporate attorneys would nix such as concept. Even national Presidents and Prime Ministers tweet, these days, and perhaps it’s time for some chem/biotech executives to step up to the plate?

    • hyperzombie

      And make no mistake, while the likes of Monsanto might be handing out free licenses to sustenance farmers, those growing commercially still need to pay up.

      Monsanto has nothing to do with Golden Rice, it is owned by a non profit NGO. And of course commercial farmer would have to pay for the right to grow it, it is designed for small subsistence farmers and they don’t want the market flooded with cheaper commercial GR, once again to protect the smaller farmers.

      • Of course Monsanto has something to do with Golden Rice. Their research and patents were integral to its development and they hold licensing power over it. The give permission for it to be gifted upon small subsistence farmers, permission that they could revoke at any time.

        • hyperzombie

          Of course Monsanto has something to do with Golden Rice.

          Never did have anything to do with it, it was Syngenta.

          Their research and patents were integral to its development and they hold licensing power over it.

          All the patents are owned and held by IRRI (International Rice Research Institute).

          • Really? Then why does it specifically say at the end of the Golden Rice wiki…

            “Monsanto Company was one of the first companies to grant free licences.”?

            The International Rice Research Institute is funded by Monsanto, Bayer and Syngenta.

            The lead researcher on the project worked for Monsanto for 20 years.

            Key parts of the technology behind Golden Rice are owned by Bayer AG, Monsanto Co, Orynova BV, and Zeneca Mogen BV, They have licensed these technologies to Syngenta free of charge for humanitarian reasons, but they still make money on commercial licensing if that ever happens.

            Give your head a shake if you don’t think Monsanto has anything to do with Golden Rice.

          • First Officer

            On the techniques used to then develop the Golden Rice. I don’t think a fastener patent holder can claim such integral involvement over a product that happens to use a few of its screws.

            As far as funding, i give to charities too. Doesn’t mean i control them in any fashion.

          • You clearly don’t know how technology patents work then.

    • Jason

      I like how other people’s famine problems are just the result of poor education. If only the world were as enlightened as you.

      • How else do you really make change in this world if not through education? Why did AIDS spread through Africa with such efficiency? Because the people there didn’t understand it’s a virus that can be prevented with a simple condom. Instead they think it’s witchcraft or something the white man inflicted upon them. Slowly but surely they are learning otherwise through education programs.

        • Jason

          And so that must be the reason they can’t feed themselves?

    • Skeptologist

      That’s what big business would lead you to believe, despite their supposed humanitarian cause.

      What do you mean “supposed humanitarian cause”? Do you have any rational justification for believing Golden Rice is not being offered for free for humanitarian uses? Or is it just something you don’t belief based on ideology?

      while the likes of Monsanto might be handing out free licenses to sustenance farmers, those growing commercially still need to pay up

      And why shouldn’t they? Do you have any clue how expensive it is to develop new crops, both GE and non-GE?

      If you can’t see why Monsanto and others like them would want to patent and control the world’s number one food crop, then you are the one that is blind.

      If you don’t realize that crops can already be patented, then it’s pretty darn clear who’s blind.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plant_Patent_Act_of_1930

  • Dear Farmer, really an “ad hominem” attack? How cheap.

    if you’re gonna comment on this thread, then please provide peer-reviewed scientific evidence with statistical significance to support your claims. I’m not arguing on the basis of “beliefs” or “opinions.”

    • LoL. He’s a farmer with first hand experience in the industry. What do you think “RoundUp Ready” means?

  • Peter Olins

    @Maria B — Thanks! It refreshing to come across a well-researched science article that is also readable and compelling. I will definitely point people to this since it covers so many of the myths and misperceptions in this field. I look forward to reading more of your work!

    • Thank you Peter! I really appreciate you being in the comments and help clarify some myths as well.

      • Casey Morrissey

        I think that this is a very well done article. however, it does show flaws. Some (and most) points are very one sided, and the cons strongly oppose the pros in some cases. P.S. (a bit of punctuation and spelling proof reading could do). over all, this was a really good article.

    • cameron mckerrell

      This is untrue, statement that we have been genetically modifying vegetables for centuries?

      where is the peer reviewed article on this?
      you can argue the technicality, but its not the same thing and you have just spread misinformation and lies.

      • Peter Olins

        Is your concern a semantic one? To me, a gene is a gene, and we have been fiddling with them for centuries; we just happen to be able to this faster and more precisely than we used to. Do you think there is something inherently different about modern approaches, and if so, so what?

  • First Officer

    Ironically, a RR crop may actually have less RR residue at the time of harvest than a non-RR crop. You can’t use RR for dessication on RR crops. That said, any residue in either case are negligible and there’s little evidence they actually still there by the time they make it to your plate.

  • hyperzombie

    and are still being modified to resist more chemical herbicides in the name of weed control. Just read any farm magazine or watch any farm news program.

    Oh, like the Ads for Odyssey Ultra, Beyond. Banvil II, and Post Ultra? Oooops those are herbicides for herbicide tolerant NON GMO crops…

    • Michael McCarthy

      man, you should really give up farming and just do stand up because damn you make me laugh. 🙂

  • Bree

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WKnrKWIHNCw The mother that speaks out against GMO says it all. And yes Peter I do know how to use a computer.

    • Skeptologist

      So it’s about pesticides, not genetic engineering?

    • Peter Olins

      Yes, it looks like you can re-post pictures as well as text. I totally get that you value other people’s opinions, but rather than asking us to wade through 4 minutes of video, could you put the key points in your own words, so that we could have something to discuss?

  • Skeptologist

    If you love GMO crops then you like crops sprayed with chemicals.

    False. Conventionally grown crops use chemical sprays as well. It’s not unique to GMO’s. If you really are a “farmer”, you should know this.

  • J. Randall Stewart

    I spray less chemicals and less harmful chemicals on my GMO crops.

    I farm both GMO and non-GMO (30/70 split).

    Why do you think GMO means more chemicals? I sincerely question your ag knowledge.

  • Peter Olins

    Please tell us more about what you grow and what chemicals you use in your business.

  • Bree

    Just wanted to clarify that this article is a classic case of the author being too scientifically illiterate to differentiate
    the difference between genetic engineering and selective breeding.” This world does not need GMO.

    • Geoff Offermann

      The world doesn’t need agriculture at all. We can all go back to hunting and gathering.

      • Bree

        Good luck with that. There will be nothing left to gather as the Big Seed Companies have developed seeds that do not reproduce. Just one more reason to NOT support GMO.

        • Geoff Offermann

          Missing my sarcasm aside, hybrid seeds that do not germinate have nothing directly to do with GMO and have been commonplace for decades. Moreover, many crops don’t produce any seed at all. As a supposed farmer, you should know this.

    • Stephen Holland

      Bree, I am not a scientist, I am however a student of rational argument. Firstly let us define Selective Breeding and Genetic Engineering. (source for the definitions below is dictionary.com)

      Selective Breeding – n. the intentional breeding of two animals in the hope of producing off-spring with a desirable trait or to eliminate an undesirable trait.

      Genetic Engineering – n. the development and application of scientific methods, procedures, processes and technologies that permit direct manipulation of genetic materials in order to alter the hereditary traits of a cell, organism or population.

      Selective Breeding is low tech Genetic Engineering – Selective breeding operates on a wing and a prayer. Just remember next time you talk about hip displays and other genetic defects in pets, these are the result of Selective Breeding. Remembering that Selective breeding relies on a hope of producing the desired outcome.

      Do you believe that the scientific method that brings us Global Warming theory is good? If you do, then you can’t honestly turn around and say that same scientific method when used in the production of food products must be wrong. You either believe that the scientific method is reliable or you believe it is unreliable, you can not just pick and choose when it is good and when it is bad.

      For those of you with a background in argument and discussion we are involved in “confirmation bias” here, those of us arguing hard on the goodness and benefits of Genetic engineering to produce better and higher quality food outcomes for the world are simply reinforcing the beliefs of the Bree’s of this world and vice versa.

      Confirmation Bias – also known as myside bias is the tendency to search for, interpret and recall information in a way that confirms one’s beliefs or hypotheses. It is a type of cognitive bias and a systematic error of inductive reasoning. People display this bias when they gather or remember information selectively, or when they interpret it in a biased-way. the effect is stronger in emotionally charged issues and deeply entrenched beliefs. (Source – wikipedia.com)

      • Anonymous

        Wrong! You stated that Selective Breeding is low tech Genetic Engineering. But in one of your statements you generally state that Genetic Engineering is performed using synthetic scientific means and in another you state selective breeding is using natural means. Ergo, selective breeding cannot be a subset of Genetic Engineering.

        • Stephen Holland

          @disqus_m4X9J25GtO:disqus ah, no I didn’t. What are “synthetic scientific means” ? I did not state that selective breeding is using natural means. I stated that Selective Breeding is the intentional breeding of two animals in the _hope_ of producing the desired outcome. What this says, I’m going to ease the comprehension load for your here:
          > A breeder takes two distinct animals that exhibit blue eyes (blue eyes are the recessive gene), where the rest of that species has brown eyes;
          > breeds them together in the hope that the offspring will have a dominant gene for blue eyes (1st generation);
          > What happens is the litter produces 6 offspring (2nd generation);
          > 3 of the offspring produced have the blue eyes the breeder desires, while the other 3 offspring have the more “normal” brown eyes.
          > The breeder takes the 3 normal eye colour animals and discards them from the breeding program;
          REMEMBER: The outcome being sought in this selective breeding program is to produce animals with blue eyes.

          The breeder has 5 animals with Blue eyes and breeds them with each other, again in the hope of producing more animals with blue eyes. out of the 5 animals in the pool, 2 are male and 3 are female.
          > 3 litters are produced in the 3rd generation;
          > in the third generation there are 15 offspring, 7 males, 8 females.
          > 5 of the males and 6 of the females have the desired blue eyes, we now have 16 animals exhibiting the desired blue eye trait – great news, a higher percentage yield of blue eyes in the 3rd generation.
          > the bad news is the animals in the 1st generation had recessive genes for a particular genetic anomaly, when they breed 2nd generation, 50% of the offspring now had the switched flipped on the recessive genetic anomaly and it has no become dominant.
          > This anomaly is hip displaysia

          If the breeding program used genetic engineering to produce the blue eyes the hip displaysia gene would not have been switched on….

    • Peter Olins

      You say, “This world does not need GMO“. Can you explain? GM is simply a TOOL that can be applied under different circumstances. A package can be delivered either by the US Postal Service or FEDEX. Each approach has pros and cons, and while we certainly don’t absolutely “need” FEDEX, what gives you the right to make this decision for other people?

  • Bree

    JUST FOLLOW THE MONEY and you will find the truth. GMO is all about GREED and has nothing at all to do with feeding us………………………… THINK AGAIN.

    The above article clearly indicates that the author is most likely too scientifically illiterate to differentiate the difference between genetic engineering and selective breeding.”

    Here are some videos – there is many, many more articles that speak out against GMO. MANY COUNTRIES ARE BANNING GMO.

    PLEASSE WAKE UP TO REALITY

    http://althealthworks.com/5575/is-tedx-selling-out-to-monsanto-their-latest-talk-is-certainly-raising-plenty-of-questions/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDzVBDoXpjE

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P15R44d1tZY

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gVKvzHWuJRU

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Njd0RugGjAg

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9hjy-CJlzbM

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sl0-Ds6Cioc

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T-IJikX1144

    • Peter Olins

      Bree, Have you ever noticed that libraries are full of books and journals, not youtube videos? If you don’t understand something, just politely ask questions, and someone will probably respond.

    • hyperzombie

      Way to go bree, you found every nut job on the internet.

  • Geoff Offermann

    Gotta admit, I didn’t even read the article as I’m pretty familiar with the benefits of GM and the shrill pseudoscience opposed to it. I just jumped right into the comments. One sided as expected and as usual.

  • Lauren M

    5. GMOs use less pesticides.

    This is 100% false in the U.S. Ever heard of Round-Up?

  • Charlie Evans

    Umm, actually, I’ve lived in the Carribean, where bananas grow naturally, and they are not at all full of seeds. Organic, non-GMO, and unprocessed, they looked about the same (no more blemishes than GMO bananas), were not full of seeds, and tasted far better than GMO bananas.

  • Rome Cruci

    People have destroyed everything in its natural state…killed off the animals, trash space, contaminate the waters, manipulate the weather…and you’ve killed hundreds of millions of people and always point your finger at others…I pray for the day christ come back to punish you for it all.

  • Johnny

    Where’s the science??? Down with gmo’s!

  • Wes Renouf

    Go ahead an eat all the gmo’s you want, just answer why the GMA and GMO companies spend millions defeating GMO labelling bills. What do they have to hide? People have a right to know whats in their food. GMO’s have been around for about 20yrs this is no where near long enough to properly assess impacts of these foods on our health and if in fact you look at the incidences of cancer and dietary related illness in the US it hasn’t gone since GMO’s were introduced. On the topic of scientific studies of GMO’s look at how many were fund by GMO organisations. We will look back in history at the likes of Monsanto and Bayer in the same light as we do about the tobacco companies who poisoned and killed hundreds of millions over the last 60 years

  • Mary
  • Dustin!

    Hey there! Just wanted to add that many studies have been conducted where it was proven that GMOs do not increase yield. It is typically about equal. In some cases, organic even outperforms. Small farmera do not benefit because thwy are locked into deals with Monsanto and cannot switch seeds without extreme financial consequence. They have to pay every year for these seeds and are essentially bullied by the company to purchase their product in the forst place. Also, since the introduction of GMO crops, pesticide demands have actually increased 200%. A common GMO crop, corn, actually produces its own pesticide, so even though the crop may not be sprayed with chemicals, the food itself is actually a chemical, producing glyphosate chemicals which are present in just about every American’s body and is starting to increase in volume in our blood, our soil, and mothers’ breastmilk. This substance is linked to cancer and premature death. GMOs are not healthy and it has been shown that organic farming leads to a much safer and more sustanable future.

    • Peter Olins

      Stunning!

      Where did you get this bizarre list of false claims? Do you truly believe them, or are you just being a provocative jerk?

      Provide source information, or STFU.

      • Dustin!

        Hi there Peter, I would love to discuss with you but I’m not sure which part you are having trouble wrapping your head around or believe to be ‘false.’ I’m not sure what you’re angry at when I was just adding information to this feed. It seems that you are in fact trying to provoke me, not the other way around…

        Crop yield:
        http://www.ewg.org/agmag/2015/03/claims-gmo-yield-increases-don-t-hold

        Here is also an excerpt from
        http://www.justlabelit.org/do-gmo-crops-really-have-higher-yields/ :

        ‘And in a new paper (PDF) funded by the US Department of Agriculture, University of Wisconsin researchers have essentially negated the “more food” argument as well. The researchers looked at data from U-Wisconsin test plots that compared crop yields from various varieties of hybrid corn, some genetically modified and some not, between 1990 and 2010. While some GM varieties delivered small yield gains, others did not. Several even showed lower yields than non-GM counterparts. With the exception of one commonly used trait—a Bt type dessigned to kill the European corn borer—the authors conclude, “we were surprised not to find strongly positive transgenic yield effects.”’

        Usually it is common knowledge that Monsanto requires farmers to pay for seeds year after year but just in case here you are :
        http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=15825

        Herbicide usage increase:
        http://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2015/gmos-and-pesticides/

        Excerpt: “Herbicide-tolerant genetically modified (GM) crops have led to an increase in herbicide usage”

        Insecticide infiltrating our bodies:
        http://foodintegritynow.org/2011/05/19/gmo-study-omg-you’re-eating-insecticide/

        Excerpt: “Scientists from the University of Sherbrooke, Canada, proved the validity of these concerns when they detected the insecticidal protein, Cry1Ab, circulating in the blood of both pregnant and non-pregnant women. They also detected the toxin in fetal blood, suggesting that the toxin can be passed on to the fetus. The research paper has been peer-reviewed and accepted for publication in the journal Reproductive Toxicology.”

        ‘Bizarre’ claim that the corn produces insecticide (this is in fact what the crop is modified to do):
        http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/09/10/monsanto-bt-corn.aspx

        Excerpt: “But there’s a major difference between spraying it on plants, where it biodegrades in sunlight and can be carefully washed off, and genetically altering the plant to produce it internally.
        Remember this: the GMO Bt toxin is not sprayed on the plant, the plant is genetically altered to produce it in EVERY cell in the plant. It is simply impossible to wash off. And if you eat any GMO Bt crops, such as corn or cottonseed oil, you will most definitely have this toxin enter your body. Remember, it was never designed to be in your body and there have been no studies performed that confirm its safety in this setting.”

        More on pesticide usage from http://water.usgs.gov/nawqa/pnsp/usage/maps/show_map.php?year=2012&map=GLYPHOSATE&hilo=L

        (From 1987 to 2012, fams in the U.S. went from using under 11 million pounds a year to nearly 300 million pounds, due largely to the fast adoption of corn & soybeans genetically modified to withstand the chemical)

        Glyphosates in breastmilk: http://www.momsacrossamerica.com/glyphosate_testing_results

        Glyphosate as a carcinogen:
        from US Center for Food Safety Files
        Excerpt: “The World
        Health Organization’s (WHO’s) cancer authorities – the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC)
        – recently determined that glyphosate is “probably carcinogenic to humans” (Group 2A). Glyphosate is
        the most heavily used pesticide in the world thanks to widespread planting of Monsanto’s Roundup Ready crops”

        More fun diseases linked to glyphosate:
        http://sustainablepulse.com/2014/11/07/new-study-huge-increase-us-chronic-diseases-linked-glyphosate-herbicides/#.V3B64stlDqA

        Excerpt: “In the most detailed analysis yet performed on the correlation between the use of glyphosate-based pesticides and rates of chronic diseases, a team including Dr. Nancy Swanson and the President of the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM), Andre Leu, identified a serious link between the increase in the use of glyphosate in the U.S. and diseases such as diabetes, obesity, lipoprotein metabolism disorder, Alzheimer’s, senile dementia, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis and autism.”

        Thanks.

      • Ness Steadman

        Found this page, and thought I’d help out Dustin: “Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) is a protein produced by common soil bacteria that has some insecticidal properties. It has been used as a pesticide spray for decades, including in organic farming. In the past 15 years or so, the gene for Bt has been engineered into corn and cotton seeds such that the plants produce the protein themselves.” from http://westernfarmpress.com/management/traditional-plant-breeding-vs-genetic-engineering-primer

  • David Chase

    Greeting my deceptive, non-friend. I am only going to address your first burden of “proof”. Yes, carrots have been genetically modified by humans…”OVER THOUSANDS OF YEARS BY SELECTIVE BREEDING” not by “DRASTICALLY CHANGING/SPLICING THE GENETIC STRUCTURE IN JUST UNDER A COUPLE OF DECADES” . NO long term studies on the effects on human physiology. But sure…if bugs don’t want to eat it, im sure its ok for us…right?

  • haloninenine

    This is sick. How easily can we deny what we know in our hearts is not right. It’s because we’re so.. damn intelligent.

  • De Oppresso Liber

    Anyone who supports GMO foods is a mental moron, or on the payroll of Monsanto.
    Eat up……..it will lead to your early demise. Do the rest of us a favor.
    You might want to explain as to why the majority of countries have ‘outlawed’ GMO foods.
    I can not believe the degree of ignorance in these comments. Only in a country like the US, where the criminal corporate and criminal government collude for big profit, at the expense of the American people.
    EAT UP!

  • Bella Butterworth

    *reads article*
    HOLD UP CARROTS AREN’T ORANGE
    *does research http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2010/04/carrots-used-to-be-purple-before-the-17th-century/*
    YUP CARROTS USED TO BE PURPLE WHY
    Alright, now that I’m done obsessing over carrots, I want to tell you that I love the facts you pointed out. I was beginning to think that GMOs are really dangerous, but then I read this and realized that EVERY SINGLE CARROT I’VE EVER EATEN IS A GMO. Thank you!

    • Haha, love that the carrot example drew your attention. Yup, genetic modification is nothing new. It’s just that now with genetic engineering we can do it with a lot more precision and by affecting a lot fewer genes than with traditional cross breeding. Thanks for the comment!

    • Anonymous

      What this article does is continue with the misconception that people have between products from selective breeding and products from Genetically altering the genes of the product. GMO IS NOT THE SAME AS SELECTIVE BREEDING. Your orange carrots were cultivated using selective breeding techniques that have been around for ages. Genetically altering genes of products is very new and the ill health affects from them have not all yet been made yet apparent.

  • Joe p

    Look up monsanto.

  • Anonymous

    First of all there is a great discrepancy between GMO food and selective breeding. GMO seed is genetically altered so that the new plant will be resistant to the pesticides sprayed on them. What is done is a specific gene from one organism is spliced into the DNA of another organism. The new organism is designed to withstand the pesticides sprayed onto it. The pesticides eventually infiltrate the ground water and hence damage the ecological cycles of the region. But if you people think you can fight Monsanto, think again, as Monsanto and other giants that produce the GMO seeds and pesticides have some of the best Law professionals in the industry. I have personally decided that since it is a fight that we cannot win, I do not bother even though I am very much against GMOs.

    • Peter Olins

      Focusing on ecological impact, do you have one or two pesticides that you are most concerned about?

      Where do you stand on genetically-engineered crops that reduce the use of toxic pesticides?

  • Anne C.

    I would highly recommend the documentary ” The World according to Monsanto” . You will see that all the 10 arguments have been proved wrong.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zfOSFaaLx_o

  • 2019Reed B383

    I am against the usage of GMOs because of gene pollution and.Lets say that here are two farmers,farmer brown and farmer white.Farmer brown uses gmo’s in his crops so he can yield more produce at the end of the season and also resist the frosts that could potentially harm his crops.But farmer white has heard that natural is better and that gmo could be harmful so he decides to keep everything like nature indeed. So one day there’s a lot of wind and the pollen from farmer brown’s crop(GMO)glides on to farmer white’s crops(Non-GMO) and fertilizes his plants.When this happens Farmer white’s crops are now all ruined and he could end up being sued by farmer brown for stealing his gmos but in fact it wasn’t his intentions or his fault. This is why I am aganist the usage of gmos because gene pollution.

    • lucyrose1222

      Yes, this is a big problem right now- contamination from the GMO crops. Honestly reading though the comments on this page I am baffled. Maybe some do not even truly know what a GMO is. I even read a comment further up asking “how do you know they are injecting pesticide into the DNA of crop?” JEEZEZ! That right there tells me something is not only seriously wrong with this article and the supportive comments but a basic lack of understanding of what a GMO crop is.

  • Darrell Riffel

    LMAO!!!! You should get your “facts” from places other than those institutions that develop and/or pay for the “research” done on GMO’s. I don’t even know where to start pointing out your ignorance… I guess firstly, taking one type of apple tree and polinating it with another type of apple isn’t really a GMO as this could happen naturally. When people speak of GMO’s they are usually speaking of the ones made in a lab; ones who posses genes that could not possibly possess them any other way than a human physically inserting them at the molecular level. Secondly, GMO’s DO NOT save farmers from anything. The seeds that companies produce for farmers are only good for one season, any seed that is produced by the crop is STERILE! forcing the farmer to buy more seed from the supplier. Thirdly, the crops that need less pesticides actually produce man made pesticides that are absorbed into the soil killing the microbes that produce healthy plant life. Therefore chemical fertilizer needs to be used. This makes the soil arrid. Fifth, (and this will be my last point because I do not feel the need to go on) Malnourishment is NOT a lack of vitamin A, it is a lack of protein. Lack of vitamin A is simply called vitamin A deficiency. I hope that this has sorted some things out for some people. But don’t take my word, and don’t take the as author’s word either. Do your own research and come to your own conclusion. Ignorance may be bliss but it is also irresponsible and the reason the world is in the mess it is in.