I’m so grateful to Ryan Merck for sharing his knowledge with us!
Watch the video and review the summary below of what you need to know about GMOs (also called Genetically Modified Organisms or GE/Genetically Engineered Organisms).
It’s a complex issue! The technology behind genetic engineering has the potential to create very beneficial outcomes.
Humans have been selecting and hybridizing crops for a long time to grow crops with the best attributes.
Genetic engineering is different because it involves gene splicing, multiplication, insertion and other technologies that can only be done in a laboratory. Genetic engineering has a legal federal definition.
A large percentage of genetically modified organisms are plants that are designed to withstand the application of synthetic herbicides. This contributes not only to a large percentage of food items which are sprayed with chemicals, but also to a shift in our ecosystems. Pests and bugs can also adapt to become more pesticide-resistant, which leads to the need for more pesticides.
“Genetic drift” refers to the danger of genetically engineered seeds and pollen drifting in air to other farms. Pine trees are the world’s largest GMO-crop, and the one that led to the development of a “terminator gene,” which means the plant seeds cannot be resown, nor can they drift and sow themselves naturally. Not all GMO crops have terminator genes.
The US has equivalency agreements with some countries. If a product on the shelf in the US is labeled organic, even if it comes from a country that is not on our equivalency list, it has been approved by the USDA.
Products labeled USDA Organic and Non-GMO Project are not genetically engineered. The USDA label also ensures that the farm has completed an organic system plan, to protect and improve neighboring woodlands, wetlands, and wildlife.
Here’s a TIME Magazine article which shows you the most common genetically modified foods. (Ahem, do you need one more reason to stop eating sugar?)
Would you like to make food choices that are good for your body AND good for the planet? Check out the six week program Five Star Eating! I‘d love to help you learn more about food and start making changes for the better.