June 4, 2009–Today’s Way: More than 60% of the foods sold in American grocery stores are Genetically Modified Organisms, or GMOs.  And not one of them has to be labeled as such. The three biggest GMO crops grown in the United States are Soybeans, Wheat and Corn, and just try to find a processed food that doesn’t contain one, all or the other—they’re in your cereal, your tacos, your tortilla chips, your ice cream, your soda (high fructose corn syrup), your sauces, your mac ‘n cheese, your tofu, your bread, your cookies, your crackers and heck, they’re even in your energy shakes. The reasons that this franken-food has been allowed to infiltrate our food culture without sufficient research, public comment or even labeling laws are many, and far too involved for my little blog, but suffice it to say that the GMO corporate machine is big, it’s powerful, and its political influence is awesome.  Likewise, the arguments against GMOs are plentiful, but beyond the scope of this entry.  And though there are some great consumer watchdog groups fighting for labeling and other restrictions on these foods, as of now, we are bereft of meaningful change.

The one thing consumers can do is to buy organic foods.  Organic crops are grown from seeds which have not been genetically modified; in fact, they’re usually heirloom vegetables which have been adored and handed down from generation to generation, and can be saved from harvest for the next year’s crops—unlike GMOs, which have been genetically programmed to “terminate”, requiring them to be purchased each year by farmers.  Organic crops are also grown with fewer or no pesticides, fertilizers or herbicides.  The single biggest threat to organic crops are GMOs, which have already escaped into the world, mingling with natural crops despite all the claims made by the GMO corporations that they could contain them.  In turn, organics are the single biggest threat to GMOs, because the corporations cannot patent, restrict or otherwise control their growth, sale or consumption, and therefore, they cannot make money off of them.  The only way that we can preserve our right to grow and eat our own foods, and protect the biodiversity of our planet, is to vote with our dollars by buying organic foods, or better yet, growing organic gardens from organic seeds.

To learn a great deal more about GMOs, or to add your voice to the millions who want to see proper labeling and disclosure of GMOs in our foods, visit organicconsumers.org or Seeds of Deception.  Also, there’s a very interesting review on a recent paper on “The Failure of Science” from Ethicurian.

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