Genetically Modified News?

Guest blog by Dan Gogerty, Communications editor for CAST

Information comes at light speed and in bulk proportions through websites, news releases, and social media outlets.  This can be good and bad. For example, the topic of genetically modified food – plant and animal – becomes mind numbing with the barrage of articles and opinions.  Maybe we consumers of news need a bit of genetic modification ourselves in order to handle it all.

Most, not all, seem to agree that GMO plants used in food have not been a research-proven hazard, but some say there are other problems with the concept, and they speculate that problems could surface. Food from biotech animals brings up a similar mix of opinions, but the tone is even more edgy.

The following links show a wide variety of opinions, but many other sources are available:

  • The FDA provides a questions & answers page about food from genetically engineered plants.
  • This agri-journalism site by Ag Professional gives a top-ten list of positives about biotech crops.
  • This Farm Aid site provides opinions and links about GMO crops, some of them questioning the practice.
  • A blog from the “Chicks on the Right” favors the new law supporting GMO crops, and it provides a link to the Mark Lynas’ speech. The “chicks” also have a DDT problem with Rachael Carson.
  • Maybe this writer could be called “Dude on the Left.” He opposes the new GMO law, and he seems skeptical of the wide use of biotech food products. This letter is a farmer’s pro-GMO response.

SIDEBAR by Shannon Latham
From Dan Gogerty’s guest post, it is evident there are two sides to every (news) story.  “Dude on the Left” obviously believes the “Farmer Assurance Provision” was put in place to protect Monsanto.  “Why do GMOs need protection?” he asks.  Here’s why…

It’s farmers who need the protection!  The so-called “Monsanto Protection Bill” doesn’t protect Monsanto.  The true name is the “Farmers Assurance Provision.”  This provision was added to a bill that was signed into law on March 26 for the express purpose of protecting farmers!  The intention of the provision is to mitigate the effects of repeated and future litigation from anti-biotech activists, who have been using the courts to impede the use of biotech crops.

My hope is that, by providing several articles with points and counterpoints, today’s blog post will help set the record straight.  For additional background information on GMOs and why they’re planted, read: