Is the GMO conversation in Europe one sided?

| | February 26, 2016
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Here in Europe, we hear a lot of negative claims about GMOs. People don’t trust them, say the activist groups. Or they aren’t natural. Or they just enrich big corporations. Or they’re bad for the environment.

Ordinary people don’t hear other opinions. Even farmers like me aren’t aware of them.

It took a visit to Iowa last fall for me to learn about a different perspective. . . .

I was a guest of the Global Farmer Network, visiting Des Moines, Iowa during the annual World Food Prize celebrations. I met farmers from all over the planet. . . . .

. . . .

I was surprised to learn that the planting and harvesting of GMOs is so widespread. . . . Nine out of ten of the farmers who take advantage of this technology are smallholders in developing countries.

A farmer from India told me that GMO cotton has allowed him to cut his use of pesticides by 30 percent. . . . Now he burns less fuel, which means that his equipment has reduced the emissions that contribute to climate change. He also tills less, which means that he does a better job of protecting against soil erosion.

An American described how she grows both GMO and non-GMO soybeans, almost side by side—suggesting that new technologies can coexist with conventional methods.

. . . .

In Europe, however, we don’t hear these viewpoints.

So in Europe, we need to start a new conversation about GMOs—an open and honest one that accounts for different points of view.

Read full, original post: Europe Needs an Open Dialogue About GMOs that Includes Farmers

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