Campaigns around the world are growing in numbers to ban foods contaminated with Genetically Modified Organisms. A battle is being waged by consumers who believe they have the right to know what is contained in the food they purchase. Sixty nations around the world have either banned GMO foods, or have placed severe restrictions on their sale; included are Japan, Australia, and the European Union. America considers them safe. The FDA allowed Monsanto to perform the necessary tests and submit the results. Monsanto is the primary manufacturer of GMO products, the same Monsanto which developed Agent Orange.
Studies using animals were performed by The American Academy of Environmental Medicine. The results showed organ damage, gastrointestinal and immune system disorders, accelerated aging, and infertility. The real danger is what they leave behind. The GMO product can attach itself to internal body tissue and cause long-term health problems.
Nurses and doctors believe that an increase in allergies, digestive disorders, and reproductive problems are the result of the release of GMO products since 1996. They also want a ban on a growth hormone given to cattle. It is genetically modified, and the milk produced contains a cancer causing agent.
Because of FDA approval, banning products which are produced with GMO contents would be difficult. What can be done is to label those products. There are two bills presently in Congress, but it is doubtful that passage will occur with Republicans in control; they generally support GMO use.
Legal action at the state level is more optimistic. There are 84 bills in 29 states which would require a label indicating that the food item was manufactured using genetically modified ingredients.
Another serious condition has risen from the use of GMO additives; they cross-pollinate. They are self-sustaining and will last longer than the effects of climate change and nuclear waste. In addition, because GMO products resist bacteria, increased herbicides are being used on food crops.
Support for the use of GMO additives attempts to discredit independent scientists who support the Non-GMO Project. They claim that tests ordered by the FDA were conclusive and proved that they are safe for humans and the environment. Scientists not employed by Monsanto or the FDA completely disagree. They are extremely dangerous and rightfully point to other nations in the world who agree with the results of independent research.
Who will represent American consumers? It is doubtful that any effort will be made at the federal level. Therefore state legislatures will be forced to protect the people they serve.
The American people have a right to know what they are consuming in their daily diets. Labeling will protect that right and let the consumer decide if they want to purchase GMO food or not.
It is frequently difficult to encourage all Americans to become passionate about an issue. This issue appears to be simple and the choice is clear; we should know if the food we are eating is healthy and natural or dangerous and contains potentially damaging GMO products.
By James Turnage
Institute for Reasonable Technology