In the past few years, there has been a lot of protest over the way most foods are scientifically altered. GMO’s, or genetically modified organisms, could possibly be the biggest agricultural topic of the 21st century. Most of GMO’s opponents argue that these foods should be labeled in grocery stores at the very least, so that consumers can recognize which foods are genetically modified. This type of labeling is already required in many countries, thus leading people to ask why it is not happening in the U.S. There’s one main explanation for this—the FDA has determined that these foods pose no risk to the American people. As Richard Schiffman, a reporter for The Guardian, states in a recent article,
“Monsanto assures us that GMOs are safe. The FDA has ruled that they are substantially equivalent to conventionally grown varieties. But we don’t have to take either the FDA or Big Ag’s word for it. There are now thousands of independent research studies published by unaffiliated scientists on the safety of genetically modified foods. And the scientific consensus is increasingly clear: there is no convincing evidence that GMOs are any more likely to be harmful than conventionally bred varieties.”
If this is all true, why do so many people seem to be convinced otherwise? Even the World Health Organization (WHO) currently claims GMO’s to be safe. Isn’t this enough to persuade the population into consuming biochemically engineered apples? The simple answer is yes, it is enough for most people. But there is still other research out there that proves GMO’s to be harmful—to animals at least. The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) has done numerous studies involving lab animals and GMO foods. The end results? According to the The Institute for Responsible Technology (IRT), the studies showed “organ damage, gastrointestinal and immune system disorders, accelerated aging, and infertility.”
Because of these results, the AAEM is supposedly telling doctors to prescribe non-GMO diets for all patients. Okay, animals react negatively to GMO’s, but does that justify telling doctors to basically scare their patients into not consuming 70-80% of foods at the supermarket? Maybe, maybe not. However, there is more to consider when choosing against these “frankenfoods” (nicknamed this because science brings them to life, like Frankenstein). The IRT, which claims to be the greatest source of GMO health risk information online, lists 10 reasons to avoid these foods on their website.
So, the bottom line: a lot of people, including myself, seem to be at a standstill on the situation. If there is enough information to prove that GMO’s are indeed safe for us to eat, why isn’t it readily available and covered by major media outlets? Are GMO’s opponents thinking about throwing in the towel? Right now, I don’t think so, but it looks like they will need to assemble greater firepower.