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Labeling GMOs in the US

ENGINEERED EATS Labeling GMOS in the U.S. Cloning, DNA modification, gene splicing: These radical processes used to be mere science fiction. But with the advancement of our understanding of genetic code, they are now possible. Genetically modifying food to last longer or to grow more quickly has helped feed thousands of hungry people all over the globe. But if you were eating engineered food, would you want to know it? WHAT ARE GMOS? GMOS, or genetically modified organisms, are scientifically engineered foods with altered genes. Most often, they refer to crops modified for longer shelf lives or stronger resistance to pesticides. But GMOS can also be processed or canned foods and certain livestock products. Some examples include: (1) Sugar beets Animal feed Corn Potatoes Tomatoes Soybeans Salmon What's the big deal? (2,3) Lab-created food is off-putting to a lot of consumers. Perceived risks include human health and ecosystem and wildlife damage due to gene modification. 70% 93% The percentage of Americans, according to a New York Times poll, who support labeling for all genetically modified foods. 75% worry about the health effects of some GMOS, (4) of American produce contains GMOS. But not all GMOS are properly labeled on consumer products. THE NUMBERS GMOS are extremely common in the U.S. and their numbers are growing. Crops are typically tampered with to be made to withstand large amounts of herbicides and pesticides. = 1 million 433 million 80% The number of acres of GMOS grown worldwide in 2013(5) The percentage of processed foods in the U.S. containing GMOS(6) GMOS as percentage of U.S. crops (6) 88% 93% 94% 90% 75% Soy Cottonseed Canola Corn 50% Papaya Sugar beets FACT OR FICTION? With genetically modified crops as common as they are, it's important for consumers to know the truth about what they're eating. Here are some common myths regarding GMOS and the facts behind them. (7) Myths: Facts: GMOS are new technology and there's no way to know if they're dangerous. GMOS have been studied for 30 years and more than 1,700 peer-reviewed safety studies have been published. It is theoretically possible that GMOS could introduce new proteins into people that evoke an immune response. But the biotech companies that create GMOS and the FDA perform extensive allergy and toxicity testing. GMOS cause allergies and cancer. GMOS create chemical-resistant super-weeds. | If evolution plays out as it should, then weeds will become resistant to herbicides. With GMOS that have been modified to withstand herbicides, then stronger chemicals will eventually be used; and this has people worried about the environment. But all that is needed is a healthy crop rotation by farmers. Modified genes spread to other crops, disrupting the ecosystem. There is some truth here, as pollenating plants could spread their genetic material to nearby crops. But the modified traits will only be adopted if they give those plants an evolutionary edge. GMOS hurt beneficial insects like butterflies and bees. Most pesticides are created to specifically target certain bugs using particular proteins. LABELING LAWS Right now there are some major legal battles regarding the labeling of GMOS. Colorado GMO Labeling Initiative (8) Colorado legislature has attempted to pass Proposition 105, which would force all companies and restaurants to label genetically modified food. Companies like Monsanto, Kraft, and Pepsico have attempted to defeat the measure; but the co-CEO of the popular Mexican restaurant Chipotle is urging that the proposition be passed. Monsanto spent $4.7 million in an attempt to defeat the measure, stating that there is no evidence these foods are harmful. Foreign governments are taking GMOS much more seriously. (9) Bans or restrictions on GMOS exist No bans or restrictions Canada Russia U.K. Spain Japan U.S. France Italy China Mexico Saudi Arabia Brazil Australia SOURCES 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. INFO GRAPHIC WORLD DESIGNED BY

Labeling GMOs in the US

shared by igwdir on Nov 20
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GMOs are a constant source of debate in the United States. With science and corporations on one side of the fence, and John Smith and local farmers on the other. has created a...




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