Adventures in Ethical Consumerism

Sunday, December 19, 2004

GM debate continues

Here’s an interesting wee story about GM (genetically modified) food safety from the Organic Consumers Association in America.

“The glufosinate herbicide, used in large quantities on Bayer's GM herbicide-resistant crops, has been found to have adverse effects on the brain.”

The story is a bit of an anomalous one for ethical consumers. On one hand, it strengthens the argument of those who favour organic and GM-free farming techniques. On the other hand, sadly, the information was obtained from experiments on lab rats.

Click here for an explanation (from the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection) of why animal experimentation is an unreliable method of gathering scientific information.

As for GM, the debate is far from over. Anti-GM campaigners have had a tendency to whip up hysteria about the subject, successfully convincing many people that GM foods will never be completely safe. With the European Union now saying that decisions about GM crops should be based on science instead of public opinion, the road ought to be clear for proper experimentation. The problem is that in the absence of public outrage, the biotechnology companies are likely to walk all over our governments, who will be either powerless or unwilling to stop them from doing whatever they want. This could have some very nasty consequences for you and me.

Visit the Soil Association’s pages on GM.

GM Watch doesn’t mess around. This is especially interesting.

Here’s a good story from the BBC on GM.


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