Consumers must Pressure FDA to Label Genetically Modified Foods

Genetically modified (GM) foods have been part of the food supply chain since 1994. They have stirred up controversy, especially against one of its manufacturers, Monsanto. Critics of GM foods point to studies conducted on animals that show GM foods change metabolic rates, cause inflammation, kidney and liver malfunction, and impaired fertility. In one experiment, hamsters were given a GM soy diet. They bred at normal rates for the first two generations, but by the third breeding rates dropped about 50%, in comparison to the non-GM soy control group.


Another distressing problem for allergy sufferers' concerns transfer of genes occurring between plants issuing from allergic proteins like peanuts or wheat surfacing in random foods such as sugar or soy. But a Monsanto representative assures critics seed storehouses use high-tech equipment to analyze the seed genome. On the other hand, when modifying a seed genome, it is not always a fail-safe method, and the outcomes not guaranteed. One example is the chance new allergens will be produced.

In spite of potential health dangers, GM products are on the rise. The FDA is rumored it will approve a short-growth cycle salmon, but by the same token it will not regulate it. It is up to informed consumers to pressure the FDA to label GM foods. Fifty countries have already done so, and a U.S. media poll shows 96% of 45,000-plus of those, who responded, want labeling. Eighteen states have bills in their legislatures awaiting passage.

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