GMOs May Be Safe to Eat, But Some Are Still Bad for the Planet
For years, one of the major arguments that has been made against genetically engineered crops is the fear that, by tampering with a plant’s DNA, it could potentially cause health issues for consumers. It’s an understandable worry, however, the scientific consensus now seems to be undeniable: Whatever faults GMO crops may have, they are safe for human consumption.
A new, incredibly comprehensive 400-page analysis from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine argues very persuasively that the past two decades of research have revealed no increased ill effects in populations that have consumed GMOs. And it’s important to be clear about one thing: This is not simply another industry study bankrolled by Monsanto or Dupont. Most of the 20 experts involved in putting together this review are academics.
It is, instead, the result of a review of more than 1,000 studies on the effects of GMOs, testimony from more than 80 expert witnesses, and more than 700 public comments. It’s basically a summary of everything the scientific community has learned about GMOs over the past two decades.
While some of the researchers involved have served as consultants for bioengineering companies in the past, the fact that the report pulled data from thousands of different sources makes any claims of direct industry influence on the results implausible. At most, environmental organizations have accused the authors of this study of watering down their findings to avoid taking a firm stance one way or the other on the issue.
The researchers compared disease reports from the U.S. since the ’90s with those from Europe, where GM crops are not widely eaten, and found absolutely no long-term pattern indicating an increase in disease coinciding with the introduction of GM crops. There was no demonstrable correlation between GMO consumption the development of cancer, obesity, Type II diabetes, celiac disease, food allergies or autism.
Continue reading at ENN affiliate, Care2.
Image credit: NightThree via Wikipedia.