The Alarming Truth about GMOs
The addictive and health-harming nature of sugar and processed food has been repeatedly confirmed through the years, and genetically engineered foods rank equally high on the list when it comes to foods that do more harm than good.
Monsanto, as most of you may already know, has long been referred to by those in the know as “the most evil company on the planet.” But it has stiff competition. Before there was Monsanto, junk food companies were already hard at work influencing American politics to further their own agenda.
The processed food industry has a lot to answer for when it comes to the general health of Americans, who spend upwards of 90 percent of all their food dollars on processed convenience foods.
The latest developments in the fight for GMO labeling actually makes a strong case for giving the title of “Most Evil Organization on the Planet” to the Grocery Manufacturer’s Association of America (GMA), which represents the processed food leaders, including Pepsi, Coke, Kraft, Kellogg’s, and General Mills.
The Grocery Manufacturer’s Association also lists Monsanto as a member, so it would make sense that the sum would be greater than the parts.
This organization is no stranger to stooping way down low to protect their members’ interests-your health and human rights be damned. And that is, in my opinion, evil.
A genetically modified organism (GMO) is an organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques. Organisms that have been genetically modified include micro-organisms such as bacteria and yeast, insects, plants, fish, and mammals. GMOs are the source of genetically modified foods, and are also widely used in scientific research and to produce goods other than food. The term GMO is very close to the technical legal term, ‘living modified organism’ defined in the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, which regulates international trade in living GMOs (specifically, “any living organism that possesses a novel combination of genetic material obtained through the use of modern biotechnology”).
This article focuses on what organisms have been genetically engineered, and for what purposes. The article on genetic engineering focuses on the history and methods of genetic engineering, and on applications of genetic engineering and of GMOs. Both articles cover much of the same ground but with different organizations (sorted by organism in this article; sorted by application in the other). There are separate articles on genetically modified crops, genetically modified food, regulation of the release of genetic modified organisms, and controversies.
The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) is an online and grassroots non-profit 501(c)3 public interest organization campaigning for health, justice, and sustainability. The OCA deals with crucial issues of food safety, industrial agriculture, genetic engineering, children’s health, corporate accountability, Fair Trade, environmental sustainability and other key topics. We are the only organization in the US focused exclusively on promoting the views and interests of the nation’s estimated 50 million organic and socially responsible consumers.
The OCA represents over 850,000 members, subscribers and volunteers, including several thousand businesses in the natural foods and organic marketplace. Our US and international policy board is broadly representative of the organic, family farm, environmental, and public interest community.
The Organic Consumers Association was formed in 1998 in the wake of the mass backlash by organic consumers against the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s controversial proposed national regulations for organic food. Through the OCA’s SOS (Safeguard Organic Standards) Campaign, as well as the work of our allies in other organizations, the organic community over the last eight years has been able to mobilize hundreds of thousands of consumers to pressure the USDA and organic companies to preserve strict organic standards. In its public education, network building, and mobilization activities such as its Breaking the Chains campaign, OCA works with a broad range of public interest organizations to challenge industrial agriculture, corporate globalization, and the Wal-Martization of the economy, and inspire consumers to “Buy Local, Organic, and Fair Made.”
OCA’s overall political program is the Organic Agenda 2005-15, a six-point platform calling for:
- The conversion of American agriculture to at least 30% organic by the year 2015, including major reforms in agricultural subsidies and appropriations to help family farmers make the transition to organic, develop local and regional markets, and adopt renewable energy practices.
- Fair Trade and economic justice, not so-called corporate-driven “Free Trade” as the global norm.
- A global moratorium on genetically engineered foods and crops.
- A phase-out of the most dangerous industrial agriculture and factory farming practices.
- Universal health care with an emphasis on prevention, nutrition, and wellness promotion.
- Energy independence and the conversion of US and global agriculture, transportation, and utilities to conservation practices and renewable energy.
Our website, publications, research, and campaign staff provide an important service for hundreds of thousands of consumers and community activists every month. Our media team provides background information, interviews, and story ideas to television and radio producers and journalists on a daily basis – from national television networks to the alternative press.