Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Canada: Soft on GMOs

CD in Play: The Beatles, Rubber Soul

I received this article from my the other day. Given my tendency to fume and get angry while watching the evening news, I have stopped watching it altogether. I still read newspapers when I have the chance, but this bit of news about Greenpeace carving out a sort of crop circle on an Abbotsford farm seems to have eluded my eye until now.
CBC reported that Greenpeace craved out a question mark in a circle on an Abbotsford farm that grows a genetically modified form of corn, which Monsanto refers to as NK603 corn. (Greenpeace is apparently prepared to compensate the farmer for his spot of lost crop) According to Greenpeace's spokesman, Josh Brandon, they had previously shown a report to BC provincial health minister, George Abbott, about the harmful effects of genetically modified crops. Brandon stated:
""These data were from a rat feeding study," he said. "They showed that the rats that were fed with [genetically engineered] corn NK603 showed statistically significant differences compared to the rats that were fed the non-[genetically engineered] corn." The corn proved toxic to the rats' liver and kidneys, and impaired their growth, he said."
Personally, I take the view that if a rat can't stomach it, neither can a human. Canada does require genetically modified food to be labelled as GMO as long as it is proven to safe and nutrious. However, crops such as NK603 are feed to livestock. What enters our food chain enters us, a lesson most of us learned in elementary school. We are eating harmful GMOs be default and the Federal Government requires no labelling as such. Read the issues and decide for yourself, but ask yourself: is the Federal Government's protection of corporate welfare really more important that your own?

3 Comments:

Blogger Glen McKay said...

I did find an EU study that didn't find anything wrong with it. When was the Greenpeace-mentioned study published?

http://www.efsa.europa.eu/etc/medialib/efsa/science/gmo/gmo_opinions/176.Par.0001.File.dat/opinion_gmo_03_final_en1.pdf

16 August, 2007 07:50  
Blogger Geosomin said...

I'd also be curious to read the study in question. If it was a valid study it would have been published. If it was hidden Monsanto would be liable.

The thing about GMOs...is well...canola is a GMO. Having been a geneticist for a while I don't condone GMOs but I do wonder what info is being used for and against the arguments of GMOs being good or bad. While I"m not surprised a toxic substance could enter the food chain unstopped (throw money around and it'll get there) I do want to read the study in question. A GMO often is just more pesticide resistant. How a resistance gene would make it toxic to humans/rats would baffle me. Although if it was treated with sh*tloads of pesticides while growing THAT wouldbe a good reason.

I'm forced to be skeptical of "studies" that "prove" things. Everyone seems to be able to have proof for things...but I can never find or see them reproduced.
Cynical I know, but as a geneticist I'm tired of being told how awful I am. I'd like the proof first. And I want to expose the crackpots whenever possible...plus I'm just bitter after arguing science with a few hippied over my holidy. Solid facts don't seem to hold up to good sounding arguments when you need "proof" for a point....but I digress.

16 August, 2007 09:15  
Blogger Magnus said...

Actually, CBC did not provide a link to the report. Greenpeace may have a copy up on its website.

16 August, 2007 21:14  

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