Posts Tagged ‘moral’

GMO – their money or your life? Sustain.. what?

Saturday, November 17th, 2012

GMO or genetically modified organisms are getting a bad name. Development of GMOs is very expensive, only the big companies can do it so we risk monopolistic practices. The modifying being performed is also high tech, the companies are not very forthcoming with what they are doing as the important thing is to make money.

In some cases the big companies even try to hide what they are doing. Bad effects on animals, plants and food have been seen, there is patenting  and IP practices, there is lobbying in the US to prevent good information about the effects and use of GMO being used. There is good reason to ask for lots of information about GMOs.

GMO foods were commercialized in the US in 1995, but there is no information about it for consumers given on product labels. Some of the foods were approved based on the companies own research.

Some countries have now outlawed the use of GMO for human consumption, e.g. some European countries.

There are lots of safety concerns: Rats being given corn of the variety NK603 have developed tumors and liver ailments. People eating this corn for a long time may also suffer these conditions. Independent researchers should investigate these matters. Public systems to strengthen approvement, follow up, regulations shiould be put into place everywhere.

GMO varieties of plants have been spreading in nature knocking out local varieties, and putting the farmers into the hands of big companies. The bees can not see the difference as they are carrying pollen here and there as before.

The sustainability of GMO plants is also being questioned. Putting some genes into some plants seem to be a shortsighted practice as resistances of various kind develop all the time. Increasing resistance leads to use of more chemicals, with a risk of  introduction into the ecosystems of plants and humans, animals.

The GMO plants of today are fully pesticide based as they are pesticide tolerant by design or developing their own pesticides.

Diversity is another matter. What makes more money will be used, so we may end up with a few large crops, the local small varieties being forced out.

The moneymaking also involves pesticides, the big one being Roundup with glyphosate as the active ingredient. GMO plants tolerating certain chemicals like Roundup are thus planted, and tolerating the spraying will make them grow well while everything else is being destroyed.

Many insects are involved, as they first die, then develop resistance, then more spraying, then …..

The big companies must start to see sense. Only independent testing and follow up can possibly give us the required knowledge, fix the situation and provide acceptable practices. The situation today is not acceptable.

GMO clearly has theoretical promise of good things to come, but the industry is shooting itself  in the leg with present practices. We are being thoroughly put off, turning sceptical and in the end making a no acceptance stand.

Agricultural practices is what it really is about. Large scale, GMO, pesticide based agriculture must be stopped ASAP. It can not just be about making money, it must be about safety as well, and in the end about morals – what do you do to others.

Sustainability, no risk, reasonable practices is what counts in the end. The new catchwords of openness and moral sentiment will lead us in the right direction.

And what about local small scale production, permaculture, ecological systems, biodynamics? Just watch them grow! Good food is coming to an orchard near you, or from your own garden, maybe?