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Are Genetically Modified Organisms Safe In Our Common Food Supply

882 words - 4 pages

GMO stands for genetically modified organism; Today, Health and local.com explain that a genetically engineered food is a plant or meat product that has had its DNA artificially altered in a laboratory by genes from other plants, animals, viruses, or bacteria, in order for the plant/meat product to take on the positive qualities of the added DNA. This process produces a new plant that can be more resistant to pests, able to grow in harsh weather conditions, or contain an improved nutritional profile (Today Health). GMOs are surrounded by a lot of controversy in areas from long term safety, to labeling issues: Are genetically modified organisms safe in our common food supply? Should consumers be worried about their health? Because GMOs are here to stay, it’s important to take a close look at the science on their safety. Another key question is not concerning their safety, but about labeling of them on food packages. Currently, the FDA doesn’t mandate approval of genetically modified foods, while food packages aren’t labelled to tell consumers if they have been genetically modified (Genetically Modified Foods).

As Mark’s Daily Apple stated, many well-known (molecular) biologists recognize that DNA is a complex system, and that splicing foreign genes into the DNA of a food(-producing) organism can cause unpredictable side effects; this, in turn, could harm the health of the human consumer. Yet, as they also claimed, this genetic engineering of our food/food source, and the widespread presence of such foods in American supermarkets, is based on the presumption that the effects of gene-splicing are “so predictable” that all bioengineered foods can be assumed safe (unless proven otherwise). To this day, there have been no long-term human safety studies conducted on GMOs. Because GM foods aren’t labelled, people don’t know what they’re eating enough to give an accurate account of their food intake. Also, there have been no human feeding trials, so studies on the effects are almost impossible to conduct. To assume that GMOs are safe defies common sense, because we lack any scientific evidence to prove that they aren’t harmful to our health. In fact, more research points towards potentially harmful effects of consuming GMOs (Mark’s Daily Apple). For instance, according to the AAEM (American Academy of Engineering Medicine), animal studies indicate serious health risks associated with GM food, such as reproductive problems and compromised immunity. Furthermore, the public has a right to know if GMOs are in a food they are buying, and to opt out of eating it if they choose. Therefore, the GMOs in foods should be labelled.

Monsanto, and other large agricultural companies are trying to prevent the required labelling of GMOs. They insist that studies proving its safety have been taken. Then why would they want to withhold this information from the public? The only simple answer is that nobody would eat or purchase their food. In multiple...

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