Why GMO Labelling is Ideology not Science

Processes used to achieve genetic modifications

Most people who are afraid of GMOs don’t have any real idea of what a GMO is or why some would resist labelling it but, as this post will explain, there’s no easy way to determine what a label would even say, nor what foods it should go on.

It seems reasonable that people should find out as much as possible before developing any strong opinions about the subject and that’s what Learn GMO is all about. Most people don’t realize that it’s entirely acceptable to regulatory bodies that organic food uses pesticides (primarily natural, but also synthetic where no natural sources exist), but all are designed to stop pests.

Many people also don’t realize that a lot of organic food like the Rio Red Grapefruit, organic kale and seedless watermelon are the result of things like mutagenesis, a process involving chemicals or radiation as a means of creating random genetic modifications. Strangely, genetically engineered crops go through many years of testing despite their changes being quite precise, yet there is no requirement to explain the ramifications of the “natural” random changes made through mutagenesis.

We’re not against organic food, but we’re baffled by that logical inconsistency. If we want to test because we’re worried about what the gene changes might mean for us, then why don’t we want to test all of the things that were changed?

Our page hosts a lot of really smart farmers, scientists, researchers and students. This tends to mean that our page is more useful and informative than most. Below is a lengthy post about labelling genetically altered food. In reading just this one (albeit long) exchange, you could literally get an encapsulation of the entire subject and thereby come to your own conclusions. To that end, I bring you some very nice, worried people, and some very smart, informative ones. Enjoy the discussion. It really gets amusing in places.

 

Facebook comment thread discussing all the challenges to successful GMO labelling

 

If at the end of all that you still think we should label GMOs created one way and not another, we’d need you to explain why, but we would respect and defend your right to have another opinion even if it isn’t based in science.

 

With thanks to The Genetic Literacy Project for their graphic.