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January 30 2019

Can you identify which of the following is NOT true about GMOs?

by Julie Gunlock

A: Crops that are grown with GMO seeds use less agrochemicals.

B: GMO technology is used to create life-saving medicines.

C: Scientists don’t know if GMOs are safe to eat.


Let’s take these statements one at a time:

A: TRUTH! Genetically modified crops give farmers higher yields, which means they don’t have to use as much land to make up for lost crops. Also, because GMOs are engineered to resist pests, farmers use fewer agrochemicals on their crops. According to a study published in PloS One, GMO seed reduced pesticide use by 37% and pesticide cost by 39%. That’s great for land preservation and the environment.

B: TRUTH! Numerous organisms—bacteria, yeasts, mammalian cells, and others—are engineered to produce different drugs. Among the over 100 GE drugs on the market today are insulin for diabetes, treatments for hemophiliacs, recombinant hepatitis B vaccine, tissue plasminogen activators which are used for cardiovascular patients, and medicines still in development, like “edible vaccines.” These drugs, many of which have been used for decades, are injected directly into a human’s blood stream and have helped millions of people manage deadly diseases.

C: LIE! One persistent myth about GMOs is that they cause a variety of diseases. In reality, to date, 2,000 studies have been conducted on GMOs to ensure their safety. Not one study has shown any harm associated with eating GMOs. Not one! In a landmark 2014 study, researchers examined nearly three decades of health data on over 100 billion farm animals and found not one animal became ill from eating GMO feed. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, The American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Medical Association, and the National Academy of Sciences have all declared GMOs safe for human and animal consumption.

The bottom line is that genetic modi?cation is simply a process by which food can be made better, more nutritious, and easier to grow with less impact on the earth. That’s great news!

Independent Women's Forum is an educational 501(c)(3) dedicated to developing and advancing policies that aren’t just well intended, but actually enhance people’s freedom, choices, and opportunities. IWF is the sister organization of the Independent Women’s Voice.​
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