A recent article from French scientist about the devastating effects long-term consumption of GMO foods may have in animals, has set off a hotly contested debate. On one side of the debate, you have giant GMO friendly agricultural businesses like Monsanto, Syngenta, and CropLife International, who produce genetically modified foods (GMO) or advocate for GMO crops. On the other side of the debate, you have the people who don't want to eat GMO foods, and the scientists from all around the world, who are finding GMO foods, are toxic and possibly cancerous.
I'm not sure about you, but I like all natural things, my food included. Call me old-fashioned, but what the earth produces naturally is alright with me. The need to genetically modify foods to "resist" drought, diseases, and invasive species is not needed here in America, and really only of value if you are going to corner the market with your "superior strain" of engineered seeds.
Our regulators like the Food, and Drug Administration (FDA), which handles food labeling, has been captured by Monsanto. Monsanto planted agents inside our regulatory institutions over the past twenty years, and those agents have prevented the labeling of GMO foods in your local grocery stores.
Not having GMO labels on foods, takes the consumer's choice away, slanting the "free market" towards GMO products, which appear in about 80-90% of all products not labeled organic and GMO-free. Why is it important? Well, if you don't care about cancer, liver and kidney disease, local farmers using sustainable planet friendly growing methods, or taste - it's not of any importance to you.
However if you do care about those things, you can take three simple steps to help ensure you have the choice of choosing non-GMO, versus GMO foods. The first step is to only buy products labeled non-GMO, this will send a signal to the marketplace that these items are what are preferred by consumers.
Secondly, call your local representatives and bitch; tell them you want GMO labels on the food you are spending your hard-worked for money on. It's only a phone call, and these people work for you, use them. You can also try to comment with the FDA, but they will just instruct you to file your comments online, where it will disappear into the void.
The last step involves a bit more work, but well worth it. Whenever you read any studies relating to GMO foods, trace its lineage find out where it spawned from, who funded the study, and who conducted the study. Monsanto and Syngenta have many agents on the boards of many Universities and Colleges around the globe. It's what big corporations do to help send their messages through the echo chamber. Seven out of the eight "expert" scientists that came out against the French study, happen to be genetic crop scientists. Two of those seven genetic crop scientists have developed products for Monsanto and Syngenta, presenting a huge conflict of interests.
Finally, if GMO foods are so safe, label them as such ' transparency always trumps secrecy, especially in a free market.