Five Tasty Reasons To Reconsider GMO Crops

Wine+and+Chocolate

What if premium coffee, gourmet chocolate, fine California wine, bananas, or not-from-concentrate orange juice become costly or scarce? Would that matter to you?

Will Organic Apples be re-defined as “Contaminated?”

Apple+orchard

An apple orchard in bloom. Credit: Steve Savage There is an interesting new “GMO” apple nearing approval in the US and in Canada called the “Arctic Apple.”  It was developed by a British Columbia, grower-based organization called Okanagan Specialty Fruit.  Certain genes in these apples are turned off so that the fruit doesn’t  express the enzymes that make the apples turn brown after cutting.  You could slice the apples, put them in your lunch or your kid’s lunch, and they would still have full flavor, vitamins, and color when it was time to eat them.  I think this is a useful, consumer-oriented

Rogue Wheat Now Found in 127 Countries!

Wheat being loaded into a trailer from a harvester, by KJHvM

“Palouse Wheat Field Sunrise” from the Charles Knowles Gallery Rogue wheat is growing in wheat fields in 127 countries around the world! Should consumers be concerned? Ok, I’m indulging in a poor imitation of the emotive language common in sensational writings about food issues. What I said in the paragraph above is all true, it’s just misleading because of a lack of context. After the “crisis” of glyphosate tolerant wheat being found in an Oregon field, I thought it would be useful to put that event into perspective.  So… Wheat 1.0 Wheat is largely a “saved seed crop,” meaning that farmers set

Pest resistance to Bt crops

Cotton Bollworm. Source: USDA

Cotton Bollworm. Source: USDA The issue of pest resistance to insect resistant Bt crops receives regular media attention, partly because anti-biotechnology lobbies use it as an argument to vilify GM crops. The German NGO testbiotech, in a recently published report commissioned by Member of the European Parliament Martin Häuslingof the Green Party, argues that because of potential resistance development, GM crops should not be allowed for cultivation in the EU: There must be no large-scale, commercial cultivation of GE herbicide-tolerant or insecticide-producing crops. Such crop cultivation is unsustainable and will lead to a ‘race’ to step up their cultivation. The

Counting The Cost of the Anti-GMO Movement

gmo_protest

Mark Lynas’s speech has had over a quarter of a million downloads Last week, environmentalist Mark Lynas presented an articulate and painfully honest apology for his significant role in starting the anti-GMO movement in the 1990s.  He said that it was the most successful campaign in which he has ever been involved, but after finally looking into the science, he now deeply regrets what he and others accomplished.  While it is gratifying to have a figure like Lynas make such a turn-about, it does nothing to mitigate the damage of which this anti-science movement has perpetrated on humanity and the environment.  Ideally,