What is a GM?
GMs, or “genetically modified,” are plants or animals created through the gene splicing techniques of biotechnology (also called genetic engineering, or GE). This experimental technology merges DNA from different species, creating unstable combinations of plant, animal, bacterial and viral genes that cannot occur in nature or in traditional crossbreeding.
Are GM foods healthy?
It will suffice to say that this is not considered safe by 60 other countries in the world, as they have completely or substantially banned GM’s. They continue to have them in certain countries. Monsanto essentially is the leader of GM and they have the money to lobby and fight to continue the madness they are part of creating.
The USDA National Organic Standards prohibit the use of GMs.
The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) urges doctors to prescribe non-GM diets for all patients. They cite animal studies showing organ damage, gastrointestinal and immune system disorders, accelerated aging, and infertility. Human studies show how genetically modified (GM) food can leave material behind inside us, possibly causing long-term problems. Genes inserted into GM soy, for example, can transfer into the DNA of bacteria living inside us, and the toxic insecticide produced was found in the blood of pregnant women and their unborn fetuses.
Numerous health problems increased after GMs were introduced in 1996 in the USA. The percentage of Americans with three or more chronic illnesses jumped from 7% to 13% in just 9 years; food allergies skyrocketed, and disorders such as autism, reproductive disorders, digestive problems, and others are on the rise.
Are GMO’s farmer & earth friendly?
Because GMs are novel life forms, biotechnology companies have been able to obtain patents with which to restrict their use. As a result, the companies that make GMs now have the power to sue farmers whose fields are contaminated with GMs, even when it is the result of inevitable drift from neighbouring fields. GMs therefore pose a serious threat to farmer sovereignty and to the national food security of any country where they are grown. Farmers are loosing their lands, homes, and lives defending their own seed from the GM giants.
Over 80% of all GMs grown worldwide are engineered for herbicide tolerance. As a result, use of toxic herbicides like Roundup has increased 15 times since GMs were introduced. GM crops are also responsible for the emergence of “super weeds” and “super bugs:’ which can only be killed with ever more toxic poisons like 2,4-D (a major ingredient in Agent Orange). GMs are a direct extension of chemical agriculture, and are developed and sold by the world’s biggest chemical companies. The land is being polluted with intense chemical spraying which will have long term effects on the soil fertility. Few lands in Punjab have become so dense and hard that no living organism could be found after digging four feet of soil. Lands are already turning barren due to the after effects of chemical agriculture.
Few Non-GM foods in India – “forgotten foods”
- Millets are one of the best Non-GM foods since their genes have never been modified till date and have been preserved intact. They were forgotten and removed from from the staple diets of millions after the advent of green revolution in India.
- To name a few, traditional varieties of rice like Maapillai Saamba, Aduthurai, Akshayadhan, Ambasamudharam, Kavuni & Ponni from Tamil Nadu, Chak-hao Black rice from Manipur, Rajmudi & Navara from Karnataka, Chitti Mutyalu & Bangaru Theegalu from Andhra Pradesh, Arikirai & Aryan from Kerala and many varieties of red rice, brown rice & bamboo rice. The list goes on, India was home to more than a lakh of rice varieties until 1960’s green revolution began.
Several reasons for electing organic and non-GM are as follows:
1. Organic non-GM foods are nutritionally superior.
2. They are relatively free of toxins.
3. Organic non-GM food is earth supportive and supports sustainability, organic farming is environmentally friendlier.
4. Supports independent small farmers – it goes along with buying local and supporting your own community.
5. Organic non GM foods taste better – many chefs from around the world say there is a fresher more pure flavor to non-GM foods that in their experience is superior.
6. There is additional evidence that strongly points to less cancer risk with organic non-GM foods.