This article is going to go into as much detail as possible to explain; what GMO food is, where do GMOs come from and why it could affect human health. Be honest, do you know what GMOs really are, we’ve heard it mentioned but like vaccines never really looked deep enough into the health effects.
GMOs or Genetically Modified Organisms are being sold to us as the long term future of mankind. The saviour of the planet. To question the authenticity of genetic engineering puts you in the status of conspiracy nut, Luddite, an unbeliever or worse a climate change denier.
It’s like the Spanish Inquisition, you are either with us or against us. This is a very dangerous position and an extremely precarious scientific cul de sac. But for this article, I want to put all that aside, and not mix GMO Crops with other arguments. So, with this in mind, I will set out to answer these questions:
What is GMO food production and name some genetically modified foods?
Where do GMOs come from, or who manufactures them?
Why could genetically modified crops be a public health issue?
Genetic Modification of Food Research ‘The Pusztai Affair’
In 1998 a highly respected professor called Arpad Pusztai went public with research into GM crops. Specifically Genetically Modified Potatoes. He was working at the Rowett Institute which is part of Aberdeen University in Scotland. The institute is an international study base for food and nutrition for humans and animals.
Pusztai’s research started in 1995 when the institute was part of a heavily funded study. This 3-way research was a joint effort between Rowett, Durham University and The Scottish Crop Research Institute. Pusztai is a lectin protein expert. His expertise was to basically see how toxic were genetically modified crops when fed to lab rats.
His findings were astounding.
So astounding that he was fired!
The lectin he was using was CON A (Concanavalin A). The whole reason for the research was to find a pest-resistant crop. World In Action interviewed Professor Pusztai in a 1998 programme.
He said ‘The effect (on feeding trial rats) was a slight growth retardation and an effect on the immune system. One of the genetically modified potatoes, after 110 days, made the rats less responsive to immune effects”.
Later in the interview, he said that he would not personally eat GM food and expressed the view that it was “very. very unfair to use our fellow citizens as guinea pigs”.
Apparently his words upset PM Tony Blair and President Clinton. So much so that his entire staff were laid off and his work was disbanded, and the lab closed. He was vilified in the press by people who knew nothing about his work let alone GMOs. Even though his research was peer-reviewed by 20 fellow scientists.
He had a gagging order put on him. And a witch hunt was orchestrated by The Royal Society and national newspapers. Was Pusztai out there on his own? Was he the only one with GMO research that discovered possible public health issues?
In a word, NO.
Lab mice fed on GM Food have enlarged livers, kidney issues, enzyme disturbances, and issues with their immune systems. I don’t think feeding GMO products to humans has a happy ending, do you?
Is it such a huge leap into the unknown to put 2 + 2 together? That GMOs could cause harm?
Are you willing to be lab rats like Pusztai suggested?
Genetically Modified Foods in the UK
If you think the UK is escaping GMO crops think again. If it’s in your local grocery store or supermarket and doesn’t have a GMO free label, then it probably contains genetic material.
Here are are some popular brands that use ‘Frankenstein GM Crops:
Kellogg’s products e.g. Corn Flakes, All-Bran, Rice Krispies and Special K all contain at least one GMO.
Pepsi admitted that 75% of its contents come from GMOs. This includes its snacks like Lays crisps as well.
Nestle, a lawsuit proved they were labelling ‘milk’ products GMO-Free when the cows were fed on genetically modified foods.
Mars, M&Ms, & Mars Bars contain genetic material.
Dannone, use GMOs in their products, from sugar beet to soy.
Unilever uses GMOs like soy, canola, sugar beet, in fact, they use over 20 different GMO crop products.
Burger King an example of where this company is headed is in its new veggie ‘Impossible Burger’ ingredients include genetically modified yeast.
Uncle Ben’s yes even golden rice is GMO.
I could continue but I think you’ll get the point.
In 2018, Bayer the massive German Agrochemical Company completed it’s $66bn buyout of Monsanto. As I have written before, Monsanto has a very checkered past indeed. (Please read our article, What are Pesticides).
Over the years they have manufactured pesticides like DDT, Agent Orange and their now infamous Roundup Ready People Killer (Weed killer). This product has recently been found to cause cancers, in 3 liable cases.
Monsanto are also in the GMO seed business.
So what are GMO Seeds?
There is no money in naturally occurring seeds. The magic happens when genome editing takes place. The company can then apply for a patent. This patent makes them valuable without the patent zilch value. Like any business, you have to fill a gap in the market, even if you have to invent a gap. The gap then brings big investment, big sales and big profits.
The gap is called an opportunity and to sell this to the public there has to be some pain or fear. Creating a Problem, Reaction, Solution is paramount.
E.G. too many people equals a shortage of food (Problem), call in the GMO calvary (Reaction). Oh, shock horror MonSatan happen to own all the patents to all the seeds in the world (Solution). Kerching #1!
So, What is GMO Food?
A GMO or Genetically Modified Organism, plant, animal, fish or microorganism. The specimen, in this case, a seed, has had it’s DNA or genetic makeup changed in a lab. To do this it will be genetically engineered, or altered to have different characteristics.
The argument from the biotech companies is; that the product or seed is exactly the same as the natural one because it still grows a tomato for instance. However, it has now got a patent because it’s different so it’s a little grey, to say the least.
E.G. Monsatan (Monsanto) have genetically engineered seeds to be resistant to their glyphosate weed killer Roundup Ready. These crops are genetically modified. Normally a seed when planted, should naturally grow again the next year via pollination etc. Monsanto seeds are ‘STERILE’ because of the DNA changes (called TERMINATOR SEEDS). The word ‘STERILE’ should send shivers up your spine!
This means even more value for the Frankenseed manufacturers, why I hear you ask. Well here’s the kicker. Monsanto sign deals with farmers to sell them sterile seeds year after year. In business, it’s called ‘RESIDUAL VALUE’. Kerching #2
Once the farmers land has grown GMO crops they are contracted to continue, because of the patent they can’t grow anything else or they are infringing the rights of the patent and could be held accountable for this. So it is a neverendum contract. Kerching #3
What is GMO, the Gift that Keeps on Giving.
On August 6th 1998, biotech giant Monsanto, sued a small farmer in Canada. The farmer was called Percy Schmeiser, he was sued for patent infringement for Roundup Ready Canola. Why? Did he steal something from them?
See what you think.
In the 90s Monsanto signed up or planted their patented seeds on the opposite farm. These seeds blew onto the land of farmers who were not using Monsanto products. Monsanto being a nice understanding family business, NOT! Sued these farmers for theft of their property.
More to the point they stopped the farms earning a living by putting injunctions on their land. They then settled with about 700 farmers out of court and sued another 100. A lot of these farmers went out of business and guess who bought their land? Kerching #4.
Worldwide, Monsanto uses or owns 282 million acres of land that have their patented seeds planted. Nearly half of U.S. crops are GM Crops. Monsatan owns 1676 plant and seed patents. Kerching #5.
Back to Percy Schmeiser; What bullies don’t expect is a fightback. If you have nothing to lose you are very dangerous. That’s what Percy did. He didn’t win, but he didn’t lose either. The judge made each side pay their own costs.
What Monsanto did though is shine the light on GMOs and themselves. Percy is now called the ‘The Man Who Beat Monsanto’.
Monsanto’s GMO Crops in India
In India, farmers have really been stitched up by Monsanto. Sold sterile seeds as the future of farming, when these seeds fail the farmers start losing their farms. Having borrowed heavily from Monsanto, there is only one winner here, and it’s not the Indian peasant farmer.
But the laws are different in India, farmers who have used or owned their land for generations, passed down time after time. Big corporation lawyers do not care about these people. But Indian law is very different from the laws here. Thousands of Indian farmers are committing suicide, killing themselves to free the family of their debt. Over 10,000 farmers commit suicide each year, a lot of them ironically by drinking Pesticides.
Growth Modified GM Crops with Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt)
This bacterium is found naturally in the soil. However, Bt GMO crops are anything but natural. Bt crops are plants that are genetically engineered to contain toxins of the bacterium. They are made to be resistant to certain insects.
These Genetically Modified crops were designed as bug fighting plants. They were developed by moving genes from the bacteria into plants like corn. The corn is infused genetically with the bacteria that was used as a pesticide.
The toxin is now concentrated in every cell of the plant. These toxins basically destroy the gut of the insect, eventually killing it. Now call me a cynic, but how many people these days have bad digestive issues like; Acid Indigestion, Candida, Reflux issues, Constipation, Diarrhea, IBS, Crohn’s Disease, or Food Allergies and Intolerances.
On the face of it, insect control sounds like a reasonable thing to do doesn’t it. But is making hybrid disease-carrying insects really the way forward. Well in the UK a company does just that. Oxford Insect Technologies develops genetically modified insects. Oxitec is funded by population control philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates.
They produce male insects that breed with their females and the GMO bacteria then wipes out their offspring before they reach adulthood. On the face of it great if it gets rid of a few stinging critters, right. But what happens when these male GMO mutant super fly’s bite humans.
Oxitec plans to produce 1bn gene modified mosquitoes per week. The part I don’t like the sound of is; Wipes out the offspring before adulthood.
In China, like their Growth Modified Plant cousins, these little GMO assassins are themselves infected with a virus-killing bacteria then they are zapped with radiation, which sterilises them. There’s that word again. ‘Sterile’. 200 million ‘Super-Mozzies’ were released.
AquAdvantage Salmon; genetically modified Atlantic Salmon developed by AquaBounty Technologies. Developed to grow quicker it has now passed the FDA in the U.S. They are already on sale in Canada. Yippee!
Sold and marketed as sustainable fish. This really is the future of food production. But is it a step too far? If it grows quicker what happens to us, when we eat GMO Frankensalmon?
I for one am not a fan of mutant food, no real surprise there. For one it’s made and designed by the same companies that have poisoned us with chemicals for years. BASF, Bayer/Monsanto, Syngenta, DOW Chemicals and the likes. These companies will lie, and cover up adverse effects of their products to protect value first.
So, why would you trust them?
They spend millions every year just to disrupt people trying to warn society of the dangers. Massive advertising budgets to spin bad news for a sales advantage. Monsanto has just lost a third liable trial, the judge has awarded over $2bn to a couple. The plaintiffs proved Roundup Ready caused their terminal cancer. There are about 30,000 other victims waiting in the wings.
People say to me, the things we talk about are just too vast to take in. I agree, but what is the answer just carry on like the Titanic’s Band, playing music pretending nothings happening? While everything sinks?
Accept that we are surrounded by things that are toxic to humans, in fact, we are being poisoned by things we apparently enjoy.
We have to wake up and smell the Glyphosate. All this GMO stuff sounds like a SCI-FI film, I Am Legend springs to mind. That was about a genetically modified virus.
Watch the film: Seeds of Deception by Jeffery E Smith or read the book.
Another Read: Seeds of Destruction: Hidden Agenda of Genetic Manipulation by F. William Engdahl