A food revolution has been underway for decades, but it hasn’t been “of, by and for the people”. It has been described in some circles as a corporate takeover of the global food system designed to concentrate profits at multinational corporations, all under the guise of feeding the world. The biotech industry has systematically transferred ownership of seeds from the world’s people to corporate entities through a very legal patenting process. The effect of these actions has created a serious reduction of food options across the globe, an increase in energy costs, and symptoms of global warming from factory farming and transportation of foods across thousands of miles.
So, what is GMO? Genetically Modified Organism is the end result of manipulating the genetic characteristics of everyday products that you and I consume or use, such as wheat, soy, corn, potatoes, papaya, sugar beets, canola oil, apples, salmon, cotton, and squash, among others. Based on independent research that shows serious health risks to animals and humans, more than 30 other countries have banned or require labeling of food and products grown with or contaminated by GMO seeds. The United States is the largest producer in the world of GMO foods and products, and presently more than 70% of the foods consumed by the U.S. public contain GMO’s.
Most critically, foods grown from GMO seeds are shown to require increasing amounts of pesticides, insecticides and herbicides during the growing season, mostly applied during aerial and ground spraying, but also by engineering the “harmful” qualities directly into the seeds themselves.
Personal and global health begins at the grocery store and extends to the home. By reading labels, buying products that don’t contain GMO’s, and by shopping wisely, we can decrease the incidence of GMO’s and chemicals in our bodies and our homes.
Image: Natalie Maynor