GMOs Are Safe

May 26, 2016

Hello everybody out there in farm country.  This radio commentary is brought to you by John Deere and the National Corn Growers Association.  They are all friends, supporters, and allies of a healthy farm economy and prosperous rural America.  Thank you.  

And now for today’s commentary—  

Hopefully, we are beginning to set the record straight.  We have heard so much misleading information criticizing biotechnology that we could go down the European road.  In Europe, GE food is not on the plate.    

The National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine with more than 60 experts has released a landmark study which confirms that GE crops are safe for humans and animals to eat.  The approach they took to make the case is interesting.  

The Committee compared disease reports from the U.S. and Canada with Western Europe and the United Kingdom.  The difference is, in the U.S. and Canada we have been eating GE foods for more than 20 years. But in Europe and the U.K., GMOs are not on the table.  The review found no long-term pattern of increases in health problems in the U.S. and Canada.  So, we are not poisoning ourselves.  In fact – no increase in cancer, obesity, kidney disease, autism, or allergies according to the National Academies of Science.  

This is an opportunity to take the offensive on this issue.  More than 50% of Americans think that GE foods are a possible health hazard.  Not true.  Unfortunately, I don’t expect everyone to buy into this new research. You can expect the producers and marketers of GMO-free products to continue to infer that there just might be some risk.  “We better not take a chance.”  We have already eaten our weight in GMO food and we didn’t get sick.  

The Grocery Manufacturers Association reports that 70% of packaged food in the U.S. contains GMOs, as does 92% of our corn, 94% of cotton, 94% of soybeans, and 99% of sugar beets.  

In spite of the science of safety, GMO critics are able to successfully pass state legislation to label GMO foods.  Look at Vermont’s law –the label is clearly designed to infer that there is some risk.  But, there is more. GE crops are less expensive to grow and give the consumer a better bargain.  They require less labor, resist pests, and require less chemicals to kill the weeds.  

Hopefully, this new research can help to reassure the doubters.  

If you would like to review my radio shows going back more than 20 years, just go on-line to http://www.johnblockreports.com  .;Have a great weekend.    Until next week, I am John Block from Washington, D.C.