Considering the three types of reasons people oppose GMO foods

| | January 9, 2015
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When it comes to arguing about genetically modified organisms (GMOs) there is a big obstacle: the name GMOs describes things ranging from bacteria producing human insulin to super-sized salmons. General claims about GMOs tend to be as crude as asserting that “All mammals are cute”.

The idea that we can support (or oppose) all GMOs as a group is naïve (or mischievous). Individually however, many GMOs can (and even should) be supported. As an example, we will pick one GMO and have a rational discussion about it. The same should be done with the rest, case by case. Only in this way we can have a truly honest debate. First however, we should recognise the different types of opposition that we will find:

a– Rational opposition. This includes concerns of the type “GMOs express foreign genes which can be toxic or cause allergies” or “they can contaminate certified organic crops” or “they promote monocultures”.

b– Anti-capitalist opposition. This includes statements of the type “GMOs are produced by big corporations trying to take over the food supply and to dominate the world”.

c– Quasi-religious opposition. “Mother Nature knows better and we mustn’t try to improve her, end of the discussion”.

Now, we can select a GMO and have a discussion about it:

We will talk about a full-blown, for-profit GM crop: Arctic Apples. These are normal apples (of the Granny Smith or Golden Delicious varieties) that have being genetically modified to prevent browning by Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc.

Read full, original blog: GMO: the pointless label

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