Apple Activists vs Scientists

At the 2013 Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) Conference, I had the unique opportunity to meet and interview Neal Carter, President of Okanagan Specialty Fruits, makers of the Arctic® Apple, and also attend a protest of the same apple organized by the Organic Consumers Association. I interviewed Mike Durshmid who was leading the protest, and asked him a number of questions.

Both full interviews will be up and available soon, along with more footage of the protest, but now I have a special treat for you. I pitted the statements of the two conflicting sides against each other in a dramatic fashion, to find out who knew what they were talking about. Frank N. Foode™ joined in to award points and declare a winner.

Watch Apple Activists vs Scientists!

You can also watch it directly on YouTube. If you enjoyed it, please spread this far and wide!

Karl earned his Ph.D. in Plant Breeding and Plant Genetics at UW-Madison, with a minor in Life Science Communication. His dissertation was on both the genetics of sweet corn and plant genetics outreach. He currently works as a public research geneticist in Madison, WI. His favorite produce might just be squash.

Posted in Talks & Interviews Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,
6 comments on “Apple Activists vs Scientists
  1. MaryM says:

    Ah ha ha ha ha ha!

    The kicker at the end was fabulous.

  2. Alex T says:

    The Arctic Apple is a great example. It doesn’t involve Monsanto, it was developed by small growers, it reduces waste so benefits the environment (and growers), it targets a very specific gene, it doesn’t pull from very different species, it doesn’t lead to fever-dreams of super-weeds, and the anti-browning result has a clear benefit to consumers which has nothing to do with eeeeevil pesticides. I can hardly think of a GMO that is more likely to address the concerns of anti-GMO protesters.

    Yet even when they drop all of these talking points, they still seem opposed. Very revealing. Looks like anti-GMO sentiment has little to do with the GMOs themselves, and these protests do a good job of exposing that.

  3. Chris says:

    “You’re going way over my head, I’m just an activist” Best.Line.Ever.

  4. Joel says:

    An amazing video – must have watched it at least 5 times already! While Neal isn’t technically a scientist, he is an orchardist and bioresource engineer (with over 30 years experience and 40 countries under his belt), and this video shows the tremendous knowledge gap that exists when it comes to biotech foods.

    Anti-GMO arguments may sound reasonable in a vacuum, but when they’re put up directly against the evidence-based rebuttals…not so much! This is exactly why sites like Biofortified, Academics Review, etc. are so important.

  5. cosmicaug says:

    Are the full length interviews going to be posted here on Biofortified?

1 Pings/Trackbacks for "Apple Activists vs Scientists"
  1. [...] Here is a fun video that does two things – it exposes the silliness and ignorance of the people who are opposing the Arctic Apple (read my recent post about this apple here) and it also subtly, or not so subtly, mocks the propaganda style of videos that anti-GMO activists make and circulate hither and yon.  I hope this one also gets circulated hither and yon.  Thanks for this one, Biofortified.org. [...]

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