GMOs not harmful to human health, but further research into farming practices necessary

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  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    June 12, 2014 1:05 a.m.

    And then even the stuff that is not pretend food at the average grocery is still full of pesticides and hormones. Or the animals were raised in pig pens and filth while they partook of a low quality diet. Bees and honey which have been a long time staple of nutrition throughout the history of the world now falls prey to shortcut capitalists, as they raise bees who don't even live off of honey. Many big brand honey options come from bees injected with high fructose sugar water. How pathetic that is. That would be like feeding cattle twinkies and slim jims, then slaughtering them for us to consume.

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    June 12, 2014 12:57 a.m.

    This is why I shop at Whole Foods. When I go to standard grocery stores, I am amazed at the endless aisles of chemical, artificial, and empty calorie junk that is labelled food.

  • LiberalJimmy Salt Lake City, UT
    June 11, 2014 2:38 p.m.

    Let me attempt to wrap my mind around this logic. GMO'S = Not natural are "Good", Marijuana = 100% natural is "Bad"...No one in this State is attempting to legislate morality. Right!

  • OneWifeOnly San Diego, CA
    June 11, 2014 1:40 p.m.

    Response to Redshirt1701:
    You are absolutely correct. I might be eating GMO foods. According to some sources 70% of the foods on the supermarket shelves are GMO foods. How would I know since the growers and sellers of these products are not required to disclose to their consumers? So I do the best I can with the information that I do have. USDA organic standards have prohibited any genetically modified ingredients. Hence, my option #3, buy organic. I just don’t understand the fight over disclosure. If there is nothing wrong with the product then why is it such a problem to stop hiding it?
    To answer your specific question, I define GMOs as plants or animals where scientists have altered their genes with DNA from a different species of living organisms, bacteria, or viruses. These things do not occur in nature and this is not the way farmers have in the past selectively breeded crops and animals.

  • Screwdriver Casa Grande, AZ
    June 10, 2014 1:31 p.m.

    I might remind conservatives that the "free market" solution is to label things correctly and let the consumer decide.

  • Hemlock Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2014 8:50 p.m.

    Labeling GMOs is an expense most of us do not want to bear. Labeling GMOs implies that there is a danger, which is not warranted on the basis of scientific fact. BTW, we eat "DNA from bacteria, viruses or other plants and animals." in virtually every food we eat. Should we label every food stuff as such?

  • Harley Rider Small Town, CT
    June 9, 2014 8:36 p.m.

    Cancer is epidemic - GMO foods are Frankenfoods - How can a plant be repeatedly sprayed with round up and not have the pesticide poison absorbed into the vegetable? Europe has banned GMO's - China has banned GMO's . The human body has the ability to heal itself from any disease including cancer , and it is one's guts that allow the immune system to attack any and all foreign invaders - but GMO foods have that roundup gene spliced into the seed and once that GMO poison is consumed the beneficial bacteria are nuked resulting in one's immune system to die off.

    GMO foods are more costly to grow & cause sickness to all humans and animals that consume it.

    Insist on honest labeling - why are they spending millions to hide labeling ? that fact alone tells all - wake up and don't buy the GMO Poison - especially if you have young ones - Shameful that this Frankenfood was ever allowed to be grown - Organic only ! or non GMO !

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2014 7:20 p.m.

    FYI, from GMO Facts:

    GMOs, or “genetically modified organisms,” are plants or animals that have been genetically engineered with DNA from bacteria, viruses or other plants and animals. These experimental combinations of genes from different species cannot occur in nature or in traditional crossbreeding.

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    June 9, 2014 4:39 p.m.

    To "OneWifeOnly" depending on your definition of GMO, you could be eating GMO foods. You see biologists have been modifying the DNA of plants for hundreds of years. Thanks to the modifications to the original plant, we now have a wide variety of tomatoes, corn, and most anything that you can grow. GMO gave us all sorts of things, from pluots to domesticated cows that will give us gallons of milk per day.

    Please define what you understand GMO to be.

  • Nighshade Acton, MA
    June 9, 2014 4:14 p.m.

    I want the choice. If I don't trust GMO food, I have the right to know what I'm eating; what is and what isn't. If GMO research goes on, fine. Maybe it will produce some good things over time. But we don't know long-term consequences do we? Years ago, Thalidomide was declared safe by the FDA. After hundreds of deformed babies, FDA had to admit it was wrong. To say GMO is safe and good for you because "it's Science" is crazy. Do you think scientists never get it wrong? Look carefully at the history of science.

    It's interesting that the GMO industry fights hard to not label their food. Think about that! They don't even want you to KNOW. When a company is withholding information about our food supply, that needs to be STOPPED. And NOW.

    Europe doesn't allow GMO food into the EU. Ever wonder why?

    So let those who want GMO food have it and label it. We have a right to know what we're buying and what we're eating.

    I hope Massachusetts very soon adopts this kind of law. Good for you Vermont!

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    June 9, 2014 3:38 p.m.

    @ 2 bits, how could you oppose disclosure so people can make their own decisions? That's all.

  • Wonder Provo, UT
    June 9, 2014 2:50 p.m.

    I think fear of GMOs is similar to fear of vaccines. Both unfounded.

  • OneWifeOnly San Diego, CA
    June 9, 2014 2:49 p.m.

    I have been following @2 bits advice for a while now, with a bit of modification so that as he points out my family won’t get hungry.
    1. I eat food grown in my own garden to the extent I am able. No pesticides, no herbicides. I supplement the soil with worm castings. The worms are fed vegetable scraps from my kitchen.
    2. I purchase food from my local farmer. Local is better for the planet, sustainable and tastes best since it can be picked closer to when it is ripe.
    3. Organic, Non-GMO
    4. Processed, manufactured foods
    I’ve eaten very little processed manufactured foods this year and most of last year. I’m feeling healthier and losing weight. I should also point out my parents and grandparents followed this same method but took it one step further. They purchased food from local farmers while in season, canned and preserved it, and we ate well all winter.

  • merich39 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2014 1:48 p.m.

    To me, there seem to be two separate concerns: First, are GMOs safe for human consumption? As of today, there is not yet enough empirical evidence to definitely state one way or the other. Second, should food packaging clearly indicate that GMO content is included? Why not? I believe that consumers have a right to know what they are consuming. Artificial colorings and preservatives have been deemed safe by the FDA but are still included in product labeling. Let's do the same with GMOs and let consumers decide for themselves what they will or will not consume. I can't see any benefit to consumers from withholding this information. Why not provide full and open disclosure of a product's contents?

  • Tyler D Meridian, ID
    June 9, 2014 1:39 p.m.

    I think most of us can agree that independent, well-designed scientific studies are key to deciding this issue. What I can’t understand is the anti-labeling argument.

    Free market capitalism is built on the free flow of accurate information – without this it simply doesn’t work and we may as well consign ourselves to living in an oligarchy or dictatorship.

    All food should have clear & complete labels at the source of consumption, leaving consumers free to make up their own minds.

    Really, unless you are a shill for business (which ALWAYS fights any regulation no matter how sensible and miniscule the cost of compliance) or in lock step with a political ideology, I don’t know why anyone would be against this.

  • Mr. D SLC, UT
    June 9, 2014 1:28 p.m.

    The title to this article is good-"In our opinion..." The fact of the matter is that nobody knows for sure one way or the other. That's what the whole pro-labeling movement is all about--giving people the choice as to whether or not to gamble with something that seems safe in many peoples' opinion. Or, perhaps it doesn't always revolve around whether or not GMOs are safe--I, for one don't like the idea of our whole food chain being controlled by a very small group of bioengineering companies that have demonstrated time and again that the only thing that matters is money.

    Speaking of opinions, why is it that D News keeps pushing this "Let's not bother labeling GMOs" opinion on us? I don't mind hearing your opinion once or twice, but this is starting to look like propaganda.

  • rtn Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2014 1:06 p.m.

    Unlabeled GMO's are condemned by the Jewish faith because you get things like the Salmon (a clean fish) that have had genes from eel (an unclean fish according to the dietary law in old testament) unnaturally inserted into the Salmon for quick, unnatural growth.

    LDS claim to be of house of Israel! LDS claim that choice through free will is God's will for man. Then why would they be against labeling of GMO food as a means to make a choice, also a choice which if one adheres to the Word of Wisdom they would avoid items that are detrimental to health as some studies would indicate GMO's are detrimental and are banned in some countries.

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    June 9, 2014 12:53 p.m.

    What needs to happen first is to define what the government considers to be a GMO food.

    For example, I can buy a pluot (aprium, apriplum, or plumcot) that is a modified plum or apricot. It did not originally exist in nature, but people have modified the original DNA to create the new fruit. Is that a GMO?

    Or is GMO only when non-compatible DNA is added to a plant or animal? An example of this is bacteria that have been modified to produce insulin for diabetics.

    First define what a GMO is, then lets have a discussion about the effects that it may have.

  • 2 bit Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 9, 2014 12:48 p.m.

    If it's really that complex.... then you better not put ANYTHING in your mouth. There's no way to empirically PROVE that ANY food doesn't do some harm.

    There's no proof organic food doesn't cause any health problems. Cancer has been around as long as man has been around (didn't start with GMOs). Scientific consensus is that GMOs to not cause cancer. That doesn't mean we stop research. But we also don't panic (based on somebody's fear campaign).

    Without GMOs many more people would be dieing from starvation. There's been no link between GMOs and Cancer. So I'm comfortable with the risk, until SCIENCE finds a link (not the granolas).

    This is a campaign of fear. No harm has been linked to GMOs. Until science finds a link... keep your fear to yourself... and grow your own food if you don't trust what the corporate food complex is growing.

    The only solution is for you to grow it yourself (IF you don't trust American farmers).

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2014 12:33 p.m.

    @2 bits
    "who are the "Deniers" of "Science" and "Consensus" this time???"

    You are correct, this is totally the subject matter where liberals are often on the side of science denial. I, on the other hand, am not going to ignore what the data says on the matter of GMOs, climate science, vaccinations, etc.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2014 12:30 p.m.

    OK Hemlock, but don't people have a right to know if they are consuming GMO foods, as per the Vermont law?

  • Hemlock Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2014 12:11 p.m.

    Perpetuating disinformation about possible ill effects of GMO's, as some of the comments have, is not in the publics' interest. "Research" by the French biologist Gilles-Eric Seralini has been retracted from the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology. His flawed paper on the oncogenic (cancer causing) effects in rats of GMOs has been discredited by the European Food Safety Authority, Germany's Federal Food Safety Authority and slammed by numerous scientists. Calling for more research is fine, but it must use valid scientific methodology and it will never satisfy the GMO conspiracy theorists. Thus far there is no documented harm from GMO's in the human food chain. It is ironic that more than 1000 people die prematurely each day from tobacco use, about 400,000 per year, and some people are worrying about GMOs that have caused no deaths.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2014 11:55 a.m.

    re: 2bits "We insist people accept "Scientific Consensus" on Climate Chaos... but on this one... the same people who are pushing Climate Chaos DENY Scientific Consensus on GMOs...

    You raise a very interesting point. Just speaking for myself, I place the bar for GMO's higher than for climate change because I am sticking the GMO's in my mouth. I've worked in epidemiology so I know how complex the etiology of cancer is. This has made we extremely wary about what I eat.

    Frankly, the science of climate change is a whole lot easier than most of epidemiology.

  • Shaun Sandy, UT
    June 9, 2014 11:27 a.m.

    @2bits. How can you prove it is safe? Just because people do not die instantly from gmo foods doesn't mean it is safe. Cigarettes were also deemed safe 50 years ago.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 9, 2014 10:59 a.m.

    jcobabe 8:56 a.m. has a good point. We may want to compare the number of people who have died from eating GMO crops yearly... with the number that die every year in this world from starvation.


    Quote from "2013 World Hunger and Poverty Facts and Statistics"...

    "The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that nearly 870 million people of the 7.1 billion people in the world, or one in eight, were suffering from chronic undernourishment in 2010-2012. Almost all the hungry people, 852 million, live in developing countries, representing 15 percent of the population of developing counties. There are 16 million people undernourished in developed countries (FAO 2012)".

    We live in America... so we don't suffer as much as people in other nations (because of our Evil "corporate food industry". But starvation is still a problem (worldwide).

    Should we go back to the agricultural methods used in other countries?... I say "NO"!

    We make sure what we are doing is safe (and it is) and we keep insuring our food supply is safe... We do NOT give in to these granolas and move backwards!

  • TilleySue South Weber, UT
    June 9, 2014 10:39 a.m.

    Baron Scarpia, You are naive to consider this a conservative vs. liberal issue. This is a big government in cahoots with with big business issue, that includes scientists being paid, coerced or encouraged to give the "correct" answer. I am a conservative who has marched against Monsanto and believe in freedom of information, including the freedom to know whether I am eating GMOs. Please don't label this fight as something it is not.

  • Cowboy Joe Encampment, WY
    June 9, 2014 10:26 a.m.

    Environmental Idiot you are mixing up GMO's and crop breeding. Crop breeding is a natural process where the desired traits are selected an used for breeding to make genetic improvement naturally. GMO's are not done naturally, the plant is altered genetically. It is like playing God with crops.

  • Laura Ann Layton, UT
    June 9, 2014 10:05 a.m.

    I just hope that people don't come to some conclusions without true facts. They might blame GMOs for autism, ADHD, and a host of other illnesses. They did the autism thing with vaccinations, and now children are dying because of this paranoia. Using the scientific method is the way to prove if some things are correlated.

  • Ace Farmington, UT
    June 9, 2014 10:03 a.m.

    Mister J - You hit the nail on the head. GMO's, along with herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers, have one purpose--increase the amount of food that can be produced by an acre of land. For much of history, mankind has been afflicted by starvation and famine across the vast majority of the world. Today these problems have been largely eliminated in most of the world, and are mostly limited to areas where they farm without GMO's, herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers. So yes--our waistlines are increasing because we have more food. For the first time in history, mankind is not starving. We need to stop the witch hunt and start recognizing these modern miracles of science for the blessings that they are.

  • Tyler D Meridian, ID
    June 9, 2014 9:28 a.m.

    @2 bits – “So... who are the "Deniers" of "Science" and "Consensus" this time???”

    These two (climate change and GMO’s) are not analogous for a couple of reasons.

    First, GMO is a word like “drug” – there’s aspirin and there’s heroin. What these have in common is only that each affects our physiology. After that, the commonalities largely disappear.

    GMO’s are like this and are rapidly changing all the time. Just because one genetic modification may be safe doesn’t say anything about all the others.

    Second, and most importantly – no one has a patent on the climate so it can be studied by disinterested scientists from around the world without the corrupting influence of tremendous financial gain.

    This distinction makes all the difference in the world when it comes to science, which is not to say that GMO’s are unsafe – only that they have not been studied with anywhere near the objectivity & rigor that climate change has.

  • Evets Eagle Mountain, UT
    June 9, 2014 9:12 a.m.

    cjb states
    "I've read that several genetically modified crops are made to have their own pesticides. Now bees are dying off so much so that it is a significant concern. Could it be that the pesticides in genetically modified crops are the cause of bees dying off?"
    What you are referring to is the recent reports that neonecotinacides are killing bees. that "research" has really made it's rounds in the press BUT it is seriously flawed and does not prove anything. Dosages given to bees were 50 to over 100 times what they should of been. Bees were made to directly digest it which is not the way bees get it in nature. Many, many independent variables were not factored in the research. Actual bee researchers are reviewing it and totally disagree with the conclusions.

  • jcobabe Provo, UT
    June 9, 2014 8:56 a.m.

    It might put things in better perspective to understand exactly how many people have died because of GMO technology, and compare that number with estimates of how many people would have died of starvation or been killed in wars and social unrest that would have resulted without the added food produced from technology. My thinking is that the ratio would weigh vastly in favor of technology.

    The world has a food surplus today thanks to improvements in the technology of food production. Changes introduced by scientists ever proved to be a mixed blessing, but the downside of feeding a world of billions of starving people is not quite as clear. The further science investigation that is needed should not be aimed at condemning the technology, but rather with a focus on continuing to improve it for the benefit of a hungry world.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 9, 2014 8:52 a.m.


    I have a suggestion. If you don't trust the "corporate food industry"... and you want to know for sure everything that's in your food... grow it yourself!

    Then you would know for sure what's in it. And you wouldn't have to trust the evil "corporate food industry". And you wouldn't be contributing your $$$ to the advancement of the "corporate food industry".

    The evil "corporate food industry" that made America great, insures Americans are well fed, and allows us to help feed the world, I might add.

    But if you don't trust these corporations... the solution seems obvious to me. Just plow some land in your back yard and grow your OWN food! Totally organic... no fertilizers or weed killers... I'll bet you'll get pretty hungry though...

  • Baron Scarpia Logan, UT
    June 9, 2014 8:39 a.m.

    How it works is that a patented GMO is aligned with a specific patented pesticide so that they must be used jointly. The problem then is two-fold: One, we no longer can use basic "free" seeds from nature for food; seeds are now patented by the major food companies so that the farmer (and we as consumers) must continue to pay those patents, and the seeds of our food supply increasingly are dependent on a few massive seed providers who control them. And two, changing the genetic properties of the seeds and food removes them from nature, so that basic natural processes that have evolved over millions of years are now disrupted.

    Will we as a society then have to rely on paying Monsanto to combat weeds and pests and replace God's natural order?

    I'm so afraid conservatives, in their zeal for anti-science and anti-intellectualism for the all mighty short-term dollar, will bypass research and promote GMOs at the peril of our children and grandchildren.

  • Mister J Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2014 8:37 a.m.

    It may just be coincidence and there may or may not be any correlation but...

    Isn't it interesting as GMO's are becoming more common place that obesity rates are skyrocketing?

  • environmental idiot Sanpete, UT
    June 9, 2014 8:33 a.m.

    Dear Marxist, please research the true facts. The GMO Study By Gilles-Eric Seralini retracted. David Spiegelhalter, a professor of the Public Understanding of Risk at the University of Cambridge, said it was "clear from even a superficial reading that this paper was not fit for publication".

    We have been eating GMO foods since Gregor Johann Mendel stated it in 1800's. GMOs are generally crops that are made from plants with superior genetics found in the nature already. Using modern techniques these traits are isolated and then seed with the trait is bread more efficiently that waiting for the randomness of nature. Roundup resistant crop exist in nature already and we eat them without knowing which ones they are and have no problem with that ignorance. When a company tells us they are resistant then someone throws a fit before researching the facts.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 9, 2014 8:19 a.m.

    Of course scientific research should continue, but I'd like to point out one thing... The "scientific consensus" is that GMOs have no greater risk than other foods.

    What happened to accepting "Scientific Consensus"??? We insist people accept "Scientific Consensus" on Climate Chaos... but on this one... the same people who are pushing Climate Chaos DENY Scientific Consensus on GMOs...

    If you Google "GMO" or "Genetically modified organism" (wikipedia) and read the "Controversy" section... it states "There is broad scientific consensus that food on the market derived from GM crops poses no greater risk than conventional food. No reports of ill effects have been proven in the human population from ingesting GM food."

    So... who are the "Deniers" of "Science" and "Consensus" this time???

  • Semi-Strong Louisville, KY
    June 9, 2014 7:42 a.m.

    When we naturally cross breed one strain of plant with another we are pushing mother nature along - not changing things up entirely. Genetic modification can be quite a bit more radical. The possible effects are much harder to model accurately as often there is no precedent.

    Does this mean we should not do it? No. But caution and study first should be the rule.

    The law of unintended consequences has never been rescinded (and never will be). We should text exhaustively and over the long term before allowing GMOs into the food supply.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    June 9, 2014 7:16 a.m.

    I've read that several genetically modified crops are made to have their own pesticides. Now bees are dying off so much so that it is a significant concern. Could it be that the pesticides in genetically modified crops are the cause of bees dying off?

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    June 9, 2014 7:09 a.m.

    In your opinion, GMOs are OK. But you don't know. Neither do I. What I do know and believe is that it is a good thing to label and then let consumers make their own decisions. Can't you come out and say that, and push back on the corporate food industry to allow consumers to be informed?

  • Tyler D Meridian, ID
    June 9, 2014 6:13 a.m.

    Question – are we even able to conduct control group, peer reviewed studies designed by scientists with no conflict of interest on most of these products?

    My understanding is most of these (GMO’s) are patent protected and therefore cannot be studied by anyone but the companies who own them, a situation which calls to mind Upton Sinclair’s truism –

    "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it"

    With the proliferation of GMO’s over the last 30 years, we are conducting an enormous experiment on our population – except without proper controls to isolate other variables from a single independent variable, it may be difficult to make cause and effect connections.

    However, since many countries have already banned these products, this may have the unintentional result of setting up the experimental group we need - namely, us – with much of Western Europe acting as the control group.

    Don’t experimental subjects typically get paid to play the guinea pig?

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    June 9, 2014 12:31 a.m.

    "Scientific American published an article discussing research on the inert ingredients in herbicides like Roundup in 2009."

    Scientific American said "'This clearly confirms that the [inert ingredients] in Roundup formulations are not inert,' wrote the study authors from France’s University of Caen. 'Moreover, the proprietary mixtures available on the market could cause cell damage and even death [at the] residual levels' found on Roundup-treated crops, such as soybeans, alfalfa and corn, or lawns and gardens."

    In our commercial system we rush products to market before we know their carcinogenic effects. Half of all cancers have an environmental component, but we don't know the mechanisms.