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Our food system isn’t broken, it’s flourishing — and GMO crops are a big reason why

| | April 7, 2017

[Editor’s note: Randy Krotz is CEO of the US Farmers & Ranchers Alliance.]

Activists and others [say] the food system [is] broken, yet agriculture strives to continually improve with each generation. Farmers and ranchers spend every day doing their best to enhance our land, water and soil in addition to growing nutritious food for consumers across our nation and beyond our borders.

[T]ake GMO crops, which have been a lightning rod for controversy. … PG Economics found [that] if GMO crops had not been available, farmers worldwide would have needed to cultivate 45 million more acres of land to produce the same amount of corn, soybeans, cotton, and canola to maintain global production levels…. That’s 11 percent of the arable land in the U.S.

As a result, farmers are actually doing more with less. Not only are they preserving land, but they’ve also reduced water use. Field to Market [cites research showing that] between 1980 and 2011, irrigation in the U.S. has decreased for corn by 53 percent, cotton by 75 percent, potatoes by 38 percent, rice by 53 percent, soybeans by 42 percent and wheat by 12 percent.

Let’s celebrate our successes, inspire new innovation and technology for all food production practices, and avoid using fear to encourage consumers to choose one diet over another.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: National Ag Day — Our food system is flourishing, not broken

For more background on the Genetic Literacy Project, read GLP on Wikipedia

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Click the link above to read the full, original article.

269 thoughts on “Our food system isn’t broken, it’s flourishing — and GMO crops are a big reason why”

  1. 1. “Corn, soybeans and canola” do not make “nutritious food”.
    2. If our method of farming truly valued “land, water and soil”, it wouldn’t matter how much more agriculture there was in the world.

    Only toxic farms producing junk food ingredients need to shrink.

    • 1 cup of soybeans: 830 calories, 3,340 mg of potassium, 17g of fiber, 68 g of protein, and way more iron and magnesium than is probably needed per day; and no cholesterol. That is a lot of nutrition. Tell me again about soybeans not being “nutritious food”.

        • Most of what is used in animal feed?
          What are you calling “junk food”?
          Who is eating a “cup of soybeans” has nothing to do with the nutritional analysis of the food.
          Do you not understand how to do a nutritional analysis of what you eat, and how that might be useful in deciding how to purchase the lowest cost foods that still offer a reasonable level of nutrition? – or have you never needed to watch your food budget?

          • You don’t understand how to stay on topic.

            Is most gmo food people will eat used to make stuff easily and scientifically classified as “junk food” or not?

          • First, show me a scientific classification of what is “junk” food. And what does making something “easily” have to do with anything?”
            If you are trying to argue that just because some foods are made into products that some self-appointed food police says is “junk” that means the commodity is “junk”, I totally disagree, especially after you declared corn, soybeans and canola to be “junk”.

          • You obviously have a way to use a computer.
            Go look it up yourself.

            Saying there is no way to classify some food as “junk” shows a complete lack of understanding of reality and a complete lack of faith in science.

          • There are many different people and organizations who have declared that some food is “junk”. You declared corn, soybeans, and canola to be “junk food”.
            It is definitely NOT SCIENCE to say something is “junk food” – the classification of “junk food” is a political designation only. Claiming that there is “science” in the designation “junk food” is a clear case of concealing political intent under the guise of “science”.

          • No, not ideology. Just reality. I challenge you to show me any actual research that defines “junk food”. Unless you can provide evidence that I am wrong, I stand by my claim that it is a demonstrable fact that scientific research did not discover something called “junk food”.

          • I discovered that the food I was eating was tasteless artificial garbage made by rich, powerful, immortal institutions who band together in associations in order to put pressure on our government (frequently made up from the same people who benefit from the aforementioned institutions) in secret and in order to maximize a return on investment and/or stroke the ego of certain sociopaths who are held up in the highest esteem insofar as the amount of air time they get as opposed to those doing real things for pure motives.

            Are you telling me that wasn’t science which I was using?

            In case you forgot:
            1. the state of knowing : knowledge as distinguished from ignorance or misunderstanding
            2. A department of systematized knowledge as an object of study the science of theology
            b : something (as a sport or technique) that may be studied or learned like systematized knowledge have it down to a science
            3. a : knowledge or a system of knowledge covering general truths or the operation of general laws especially as obtained and tested through scientific method
            b : such knowledge or such a system of knowledge concerned with the physical world and its phenomena : natural science

            It seems as if you think 3a was the only definition or even the first or second.

          • No, you were not using science. What you “discovered” is a political / ideological opinion.
            * You make subjective claims: “tasteless”
            * you make demonstrably false claims: “immortal institutions” – there has never been such a thing in the history of the human race.
            *you make value judgments: ” pure motives”
            * you make unsupported assumptions: “or stroke the ego”
            No, nothing you said you “discovered” even approaches the stature of “science”
            I have spent 16 years of my life in colleges and universities studying physics, chemistry, and biology, and have worked on actual research projects funded by the U.S. government through NIH, NSF, and NASA. 100% of practicing research scientists in physics, chemistry, and biology who I know would disagree that you used “science” to form your political/ideological conclusion.

          • Don’t disagree with me. Disagree with Merriam Webster.
            Your definition of science is not the accepted definition.

            You want to redefine science to be what YOU do, specifically.
            Confession of my now proven claim that you are an ideologue.

            Its the expected tactic of such immortal institutions to seek ownership of everything.
            Hmmm, people seem to trust “science”. Let’s brand it.

            Sorry, but no.

          • Most people eat highly processed forms of a very few foods: corn, fructose, soy, wheat, cane sugar, salt, plus a very long list of added dyes, preservatives and other chemicals. There you go, a definition of “junk”.
            Or look at it the other way around: science DOES more or less agree on what is healthiest: 9 servings of FRESH vegetables and fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts/seeds, unrefined oils with balanced lipid profiles, and a relatively small amount of animal protein such as from eggs, lean chicken, fish.
            You can argue details, but not essence.
            Coincidentally (NOT), highly processed foods are mostly made up of GMO foods. They are cheap at the register, expensive as hell in the body and in the fields. You will pretend not to know what this means, of course and be utterly outraged at anyone daring to criticize the American food industry, and how it’s the best in the world and saving so many lives and blah blah.
            All the while, just look at the overall health of the average American who is eating a HP diet of GMO food-products.

          • No argument from me about dyes – unneeded eye candy.
            But preservatives are essential to shelf life – and preventing food poisoning, spoilage, and even more food waste than there is.
            >>> we use a significant amount of petroleum to have fresh fruits and vegetables all year round, whether it is to fly them 10,000 miles, or keep green houses @80 degrees in the middle of the New England winter. My view is that we should use preservation technology to reduce the carbon footprint of the food supply, and not try to have all that fresh produce all the time. This having fresh fruit and vegetables all year round was until recently an expensive luxury of the upper class.. <<<
            Other chemicals – we would have to discuss them one at a time.
            Corn, and wheat have been staples in the human diet for thousands of years- they are not intrinsically"bad".
            Your "science diet" is a bit specific for me, but sure, its fine.
            the disagreement would be over the statement "expensive as hell in the body and in the fields". As a retired farmer, I understand the value of gm crops to reducing fuel use, soil erosion, and improving yields. As someone with more – than – average college training in physics, chemistry, and biology, and experience working in scientific laboratories, I am keenly aware of how chemicals can and do interact at the biochemical and cellular level . And, I try to stay in good physical shape, which my doctor tells me I do , as I am the top %1 in terms of physical fitness for my age. I will not eat things that are or could be harmful: alcohol, and all those foods that frequently carry diseases that disable or kill, such as raw milk, uncooked vegetables, and any food that has been left exposed at room temperature (unless thoroughly cooked). So, you see, I am pretty much fussy about what I eat.
            But I can find nothing that suggests that eating a food derived from a GMO product is any different than the same food derived from a non-GMO product, except that the GMO product has been reviewed for potential allergens. I know that my diet is heavy on GM-derived food, and it has not hurt me after 20+ years.
            The fact is, people eat too much of whatever they eat, GMO or non-GMO: same calories, same nutritional content (read the labels). Let's use GMO technology to produce the most nutrient-packed plants that we can develop; let's use GMO technology to develop plants that can survive drought, grow in a wider range of temperatures, and will use less water to produce a crop. All those things are desirable, right? AND, let us do what we can to convince people to eat less of whatever they eat. (The estimates I have seen are that the "average" American consumes or wastes 2,700 calories a day, but only needs 1,600, which means if everyone ate only what they needed,and threw nothing away, we could feed an additional 230 million people. And, of course, several hundred million more if we were not growing corn for ethanol. )
            So, I have a question for you – I want to hear the view of someone with a very different perspective than mine, and I promise not to dispute your answer!
            Did you notice that the steep increase in obesity coincides with the U.S Government's first release of "Dietary Guidelines for Americans" (1980)? Question:
            did the government's attempt to influence what people eat have the opposite of the intended goal?
            Here is another question: is the ethanol program, overall, doing more good than harm, or more harm than good?
            I will appreciate your answers, whatever they are.


          • Your comment is what is called “deflection”: you side-step my point completely and return to your pro-GMO message.

          • No, actually, my comment is what’s called a “question”. And speaking of deflection, I can’t help but notice you didn’t answer.

          • I did not answer what? We were talking about the definition of “junk food” and the “coincidence” that GMOs are almost entirely ingredients of same. The connection between GE and the food industry is not a compassionate response to hunger, it’s a corporate-driven business that ends up pushing low-nutrition highly processed foods for profit. Non GE foods cannot be patented! No exclusive profits there.
            A healthy diet is made up of unprocessed, nutrient dense not-patentable, foods like walnuts, spinach, oranges, not branded “products” made up of grains, sugar, salt, fat and chemicals.

          • Roy Williams, Nice try. But you have a better chance of turning me into a Buckeye fan than teaching Wegotta anything. BTW. I grew up in Michigan.

          • Thanks. Sometimes I think “WeGotta” is just some grad student’s research project on on-line behavior – some of the statements are just beyond what any sane adult would say, but certainly not out of reach of some imaginative 20-something creative grad student. :)

        • Thanks for the reference.

          I would argue that the specific interaction that is discussed in that paper (and many thousands more before and after that paper) does not diminish the nutrient content of soybeans. Phytate production is significant in several crops (I think).
          In certain populations, iron deficiency is significant, and should be addressed in manners appropriate to the specific dietary geographic, and cultural aspects of that population.
          It might not be the case always, but taking broad public policy measures to address a nutritional deficiency in one population can cause a nutritional excess in another population.
          I applaud any and all well-executed research that identifies specific interactions between food components, but labeling any specific food as “good” or “bad” is not helpful, when the reality of nutrition is that the only thing that matters is your total nutrient intake each day, over the span of years. In cases of clinical nutritional deficiency, those cases need to be addressed individually, and not impose guidelines, policies, or other measures upon the entire population to benefit a few.

      • Most Americans are eating a cup of plain soybeans? And not soy-product (soy extract, soy protein isolate, etc) with added this and that unpronounceable chemical, plus sugar and or salt?

    • Corn and soybeans yield more calories and nutrients per acre than most any other crop and they are both adapted to grow in a wide range of climates. There are also hundreds of useful products that are made from them.
      Basically it is common sense to grow more and more of these crops..

    • Well, some of us really like to see millions of acres of wild, undeveloped land. If we were using the farming methods of my grandfather’s time, we would be starving, and there would be no undeveloped land left. There is a lot of data that shows that organic farms get less yield per acre. It should be obvious to anyone who can do arithmetic that our population cannot survive by farming only fruits and vegetables. True, in some areas of New England, there can be no large farms, which is why agriculture left New England about 150 years ago. The farms that are there now produce only a very small fraction of the food requirements of that part of the country.
      The last thing I want to see is the vast open areas of this country cluttered up with more houses, more sheds, more yards full of equipment. I don’t want more forest cleared to make farm land – not here not anywhere. Open land is one of the great cultural treasures, it is not worth sacrificing for some political ideology.

      • Your whole premise is based on your ideology.
        Old world agriculture that destroys land and is unsightly.

        So which is it?
        1. You lack the imagination.
        2. You lack the faith in our science to deliver it.

          • You think it’s “bad” when more land is used for agriculture.

            You can’t even imagine agriculture that’s healthy and beautiful to be around.
            You can’t fathom that land could provide multiple desirable things AND give us food at the same time.
            Or, you think such things are beyond our reach.

            So which is it?

          • Yes, absolutely, without qualification, using more land for agriculture is bad, bad, bad. Clearing trees for agriculture is very bad. Any new land that is cleared for agriculture is automatically less efficient that what we already have, or it would already be cleared.
            I am a retired farmer, and I love to see vast expanses of land covered with “golden waves of grain”, but when I drive across the western US, I hate seeing houses, hobby farm suburbia, and commercial development – and that includes windmills and solar panels. A nearly barren landscape being utilized for food production by a beef herd is good to see – cattle in some form have been part of the western landscape for tens of thousands of years. So absolutely – we need to stop urban encroachment on existing farm land, and we need to not open up any more farm land. Yes, there are a few farms that are beautifully maintained and attractive, but to my eye over 90% of small farms look terrible. So no, I don’t want anymore farms or new farm land.

          • Because you can’t imagine a farm can be beautiful.

            That’s your limitation, not science’s.

          • There is no “science” in a subjective evaluation of appearance. “Science” does not play a role in making a farm “beautiful”.
            I said ” few farms that are beautifully maintained and attractive”. Why did you say “Because you can’t imagine a farm can be beautiful.”? Can you not comprehend what is written???

          • So you think there’s no science as it relates to what humans find “beautiful”?

            More proof.

          • You need to “prove” your claim that there *is* “science” in what humans find as beautiful.
            Go ahead, show me a whatever leads you to make that claim. You are the one making a claim about the existence of something. What “science” provides a biological explanation for your choice of “beautiful”.
            You fell into the trap of believing that “proof” of the absence of something is possible.
            At most you can get what amounts to a “vote” as to what is “beautiful” – people vary widely in their opinions as to what constitutes “beautiful”. But that is an opinion poll, not “science”.

          • First, I don’t need to prove anything. I don’t care what you think.

            Second, science can and is used to understand all kinds of things like opinions.

            For instance, observation can be made as to what most people find beautiful on a landscape.
            Tests can be done to discover which specific things are contributing and which are not.
            Definitive answer can be given such as “most people like trees” and “all people like that the water is not poisoned”.

            Honestly, you seem really confused about science.

          • You are confusing surveys with “science”. Surveys explain nothing. It probably the case that people, when asked, would agree with the statement “I want water that is not poisoned”. That does not explain anything. It is just a survey of opinion. We can apply statistical analyses to that survey, but that still does not explain anything or provide any causality.
            Knowledge that meets the test of “science” is based on experiments that provide positive and negative controls, explicit control of confounding factors, and provide evidence of causality. Surveys of opinions are none of that.

          • No, there is not. I can’t “prove” the absence of something. You need to “prove” the positive, by showing me a body of literature from neurological research that provides a plausible causal explanation as to why different people have very differing feelings about what is beautiful. My view is that such research does not exist, but I cannot “prove” that.

          • That post-card image of the idyllic New England farm in a valley, with a few cows on a green patch of grass, and a freshly painted red barn and silo, is not a picture of a commercially relevant farm in the 21st century. It is certainly not the picture of a financially successful farm. I’m sure that it is hard to comprehend that living in some mega-city on the east coast.
            Here is a suggestion: take a month-long road trip to the west coast and back – do not get on any freeways. (Yes that can be done.) Stop and see the Sandhill cranes in Nebraska. Eat breakfast, lunch, and diner in locally-owned mom-and-pop diners. Visit with the local people. Just once, leave the synthetic, artificial, plastic reality of the East Coast behind, and try to learn how the people live who supply 70% of the food on the grocery shelves in this great country.

          • Again, it’s your lack of imagination, your ignorance and underestimation of science.

            Goal: Grow healthy food in ways that improves land, water, soil, air, the economy while improving aesthetics wherever possible.
            Roy: Waaa, not possible.

          • 1. What do you mean by “healthy food”?
            2. Extensive data has been collected that informs us as to what agricultural methods do the least damage to land, soil, and water resources. The main barriers to applying those techniques to a larger share of agriculture is ideological resistance
            3. Your idea of “improving aesthetics” and someone else’s idea of “improving aesthetics” may be quite different. Making “improving aesthetics” a public policy is pretty close to imposing a state religion. You can specify specific, measurable quantities of performance, as in zoning laws.
            4. Again, aesthetics has zero relation to “science”. Microbiologists and pathologists are qualified to make a determination if my barn is clean enough to maintain the health of my cattle. Neither you nor anyone else is qualified to dictate the aesthetics of my barn.

          • So because something was one way in the past, it must be that way now?

            You’re wrong.

            Most corn humans will eat by far is in the form of HFCS.

          • I’m wrong? I said corn is a nutritious staple crop in large parts of the world. You’re saying it’s not? You might want to check some statistics on that.

            And Mexico sweetens very little with HFCS. They still use sugar. Europe too, for that matter.

          • Not relevant to nutrition. If we grew a million acres of corn and then burned it. It would still have been nutritious. So would the soy.

          • Hahahahaha!!!

            No officer, I left the house to get milk, not run over a pedestrian. So I’m innocent.

          • Hey, quit knockin HFCS. It’s just sugar. You don’t want to suffer the consequences of eating too much sugar, then don’t.

          • I’m not knocking it.
            I’m saying it’s a big contributor to our biggest health problems.

            I’m not saying someone who is sick from eating junk food is innocent.
            I’m saying people spend lots of money and use sophisticated science to get us to eat more of it in many ways.

          • So don’t develop technologies that produce cheap ingredients because people can’t control themselves?

          • Do whatever you want.
            -don’t expect people to make “good” food choices when billions are spent getting us to make “bad” ones.
            -don’t complain about health care costs when our largest crops are tax subsidized and used to make junk food.
            -don’t put all the blame on some people who have addiction (food, drugs, sex, money, power) when our whole society is consumerism.
            -don’t claim our “food system” isn’t broken when most of the food being produced is the same food contributing to our greatest health problems.

          • You forgot one:
            -don’t exercise personal responsibility when you can find a bogeyman to blame, especially one that validates your ideology.

          • No. That was in there too. A national food system would necessarily be complex.

            You forgot one:
            -the condition of having one quality does not exclude the possibility of having others.

          • I don’t know about all places, but I know that in the US, the answer is yes. It is also yes in places like Japan, Mexico & Brazil.

            So if one is just asking about “places” then the answer would have to be yes.

          • Corn is prohibited on Passover which is celebrated now. Coke and Pepsi have Kosher for Passover bottles (yellow cap for Coke, white cap for Pepsi) that use sugar instead of corn syrup. A friend of mine from Peru (who does not observe the holiday) told me that he and other South Americans look for the Passover Coke and Pepsi and stock up now as they prefer sugar varieties to which they are accustomed.

          • Ever notice how whenever a pro-GMO propagandist gets cornered, they say “not relevant”, even if what you’re saying is completely relevant, to the point of being the crux of the argument? It’s as if they can’t reason at all, but are just reading from a flow chart.

          • Right!?

            It’s almost as predictable as when they accuse you of doing the EXACT SAME THING they literally just did.

          • Their goal isn’t really to spread information and good cheer like they claim. They have 3 ways to “win”. 1: control the narrative on any comments section on any article on GMO tech. 2: If #1 fails, derail the conversation in order to prevent any information that disagrees with their propaganda from being stated or read by others. 3: failing #1 and #2, make the whole comments section so unpleasant that no polite person in their right mind would want to engage with it.

          • Yep, yep and yep.

            Man, some of the things they say…..

            I think it should be illegal to misrepresent yourself like they do.
            Not illegal like “send the cops after them”. More like if anyone finds proof, they can sue for douchebaggery or something.

          • Back up and come correct “Damo”. You don’t know me like that. However, your corporate shill credentials are not in doubt. (Cue talking point #7: “shill gambit” – which only a shill would say)

          • Yes, I do know you like that. You claim to be an ecologist, then say things that show you aren’t. The fact that you are even stating the things you are stating show your character. The claim that HFCS is used in junk food has nothing to do with the nutritional content of corn–even less to with the nutrition of soy. You hope to further blur the argument by throwing accusations. It is a pretty regular tactic of those with no argument (such as yourself) to do things like use the shill claim or insult rather than provide evidence to support your argument.

            So, you “back up and come correct” or I will continue to call you clowns out when I see it. Now, provide evidence that I am a shill or shut up.

          • Literally every comment you make confirms your shill status. Your efforts to promote GMO tech are utterly counterproductive because of your combative tone and insulting nature. The GMO industry would be far better off if you just stepped out of the debate entirely.

          • Insult me but don’t provide any evidence. I could care less about the GMO industry, I am interested in truth and integrity–and calling you out when you demonstrate your lack of those things.

            You make my job (which actually includes an understanding of ecology) harder when you lie. So stop doing it. You are not helping the environment. You are not helping people, you are spreading fear for either profit or ideology.

          • You should just butt out while you’re behind, Damo. I wasn’t even talking to you. I was talking to “We Gotta”, and you felt the need to butt in, probably because you felt like we had your number. Buh bye.

          • Nope, this is a public forum. You lie in public, expect to be called out in public.

            Why not provide evidence to your claims, instead of just mindlessly insulting and generalizing about “shills”?

          • .

            You should follow that flow chart, for instance, in reply to the first box: Of course there is something you can do to change my mind, present quality evidence in the quantity it takes rival the current evidence. Since you won’t provide evidence, I guess we are at a standstill.

            Oh wait, farther down the line, “Do not introduce any new arguments while another argument is yet to be resolved” you did just that, right here in this thread.

            “Provide evidence for your argument” Yep, you broke that rule.

            “Do not argue that you do not need evidence” Once again, guilty.

            So, maybe you should practice what you preach. And stop making accusations about me using proof that actually proves the your guilt of said accusation.

            Now, move along.

          • Been there, done that. I’ve seen how you operate, and you’re not worth the time. You have repeatedly demonstrated that you are not capable of honest debate or discussion, so I will not attempt one with you. Now, move along. I’m sure the rest of the team needs your help berating someone on another thread somewhere.

          • Yep, you’ve seen me operate: insisting that you back up your claims with evidence, not letting you lie about facts, making sure you represent science accurately. Must be hell for you and others that have relied on dishonesty for so long.

            So you don’t want to debate? Then why lay down the rules for debate? Here I am actually following the rules that you posted but refuse to follow yourself. Let’s start with box one, what will change my mind? Evidence. So present some and we will go from there.

          • You’ve already been skipped to “You cheated. This discussion is terminated.” Do you not recall that I was never trying to engage you in the first place, troll? I wasn’t talking to you. (but you seem to think I was talking about you, which is quite telling. If the shoe fits…)

          • You weren’t talking to me, that is right, but you were lying about me and others though a false generalization. Afterwards, you decided to engage me. I merely proved that you didn’t follow your own rules.

            Where did I cheat? By defending myself and others from your lies?

          • I never “decided to engage you” (another lie from you). You decided to butt in. Google: Terminated. as in: This discussion is terminated.

          • Why do you keep lying? I merely corrected your lie. Then you addressed me. This is a public forum, no interrupting here. Also, you keep saying this conversation is terminated but then you keep posting.

            Geez, you can’t seem to be truthful at all, can you?

          • Wow, terminated twice. We never had that in math class. I suppose he just lied the first time. Shill gambit users do that quite often.

          • You just said “you don’t bother debating..” yet you continue to do exactly that! You have no credibility.

          • “Literally every comment you make confirms your shill status”

            You have ZERO evidence that he is a shill and still make the claim.

          • Wrong as usual. You can drown in all kinds of other things, but without calories to power your body, you will die.

            Hey, and a funny fact. One of the leading causes of death from starvation is pneumonia, where you drown in your own fluids.

          • Wrong.
            No water and there’s no “fluids” in your lungs. In fact, there’s no people on earth.

          • That was your original comment to which I replied.

            There is water, there are calories and there are people.

            Just like there are foods that promote health and foods that promote disease.

            A food system that takes our money and uses it to make the latter more plentiful and less costly is a broken system.

            But then that’s a value judgement and people have different values.

      • An agricultural system based on junk food ingredients and meat for humans at the expense of our transparency, liberty, and environment is a STUPID system.
        Not very debatable.

        • The agricultural system is NOT “based on junk food ingredient” – you are making a statement that is completely unsupportable. So you wish to deny that humans have the capacity to digest meat? Or are you saying sometimes we have to be “natural”, but not other times? How can you possibly come up this stuff about the “agricultural system” being at the “expense” of “our” transparency and liberty? There is ample evidence that modern agricultural practices are more environmentally friendly than older methods. And just how many thousands of acres of land do you farm that you know so much about it? How many thousands of head of cattle have you managed to know anything about the resource requirements of beef?
          The “agricultural system” is NOT “based on junk ingredients” just because you say so. How about you offer data and verifiable facts to back up your accusations?
          Personally, I have consumed much refined sugar, flour, corn products, soybeans and soybean products for most of 70 years and I absolutely avoid anything with the “non GMO” or “organic” label. And by the way, I am a lot more physically fit than many people my age – my doctor said told me I was in the top 1%, so I don’t think eating all those commodities you call “junk” have hurt me much. – I just stay out of restaurants so I don’t get food poisoning, and I essentially never eat fresh uncooked vegetables or fruit, or cold cuts of meat, for the same reason.
          So I’m a fanatic “foodie” – about things that really matter: (1)avoid pathogens as far as possible, and (2) buy products that just might have been produced on farms and ranches that are using the latest technology to reduce environmental footprint.

          • Not reading any more of your novels.

            Our food system is what it is. Not what you think it is or what you wish it is.
            We subsidize the very same foods that cause our biggest health problems while at the same time the largest food producers get secrecy laws that forbid the public from finding out how their crops and animals are provided.
            The regulatory system is headed by special interests.
            That’s a broken system.

          • I’m sorry you have no interest in rational exchange of information. I 100% disagree with your view of the “food system”. Your statement “Our food system is what it is. Not what you think it is or what you wish it is. ” makes absolutely no sense – I am the one giving out data,not you. You simply throw out ideologically based claims with no evidence.
            Our biggest health problems are NOT due to “foods”. That is a giant cop-out for refusing to admit that only *you* can decide what to put in *your* mouth, and if you refuse to be responsible for what *you* eat, then *you* suffer the resulting bad health.

          • This seems to be a problem with these people. As soon as facts enter the argument, they abandon any rational argument and insist they are telling the truth, despite the evidence to the contrary.

          • Don’t pretend you are arguing rationally.

            Our food system delivers mostly the very same foods that cause our greatest health problems.
            Yes or no?

            Again you want to talk about consumer choice.
            You’ve already said science knows there are vulnerable people out there who are susceptible to marketing.
            Science is used to manipulate our choices.

            It’s not a free choice when billions of dollars and the most sophisticated science is used to manipulate our human weaknesses.

          • foods do not cause health problems.
            People cause health problems.
            You confuse science with marketing.
            It is the people trying to take political control of what we eat who are trying to create fake science to justify their attempted political power play.
            What you claim is “sophisticated science” is not “science” at all – it is just marketing – the stuff that is taught in business schools.
            You ALWAYS have a choice to say “NO” – you do not have to buy a product that is advertised. NO ONE FORCES YOU TO BUY ANYTHING. EVER.

          • “People cause health problems.”

            Some people cause them by making junk food cheap and widely available because it enriches them.
            Some people cause them by making sure opiates are cheap and widely available because it enriches them.
            Some people cause them by restricting access to health care because it enriches them.

            You are confusing science for some thing you just made up.

            There is a whole field of science dedicated to finding out ways to force consumers’ choices.

          • WRONG.
            People choose to eat too much food.
            People choose to take opiates.
            Access to health care is a problem way beyond people trying to make money.
            Finding ways to “force” consumer’s choices is NOT SCIENCE. It is MARKETING – use of surveys, prior experience, and the use of social media.

          • You can’t redefine science to fit your ideology.

            Maybe that’s how you sleep at night. But I’m not buying it.

          • You have said nothing that refutes what I said. You have offered no fact, no data.
            You can deny what I have said about working on research projects. You can deny what I said about scientists’ view of your claim to “using science”, Pretending that your ideological / political view of agriculture is “science”, while claiming someone with much experience in agriculture and research knows nothing is harmless – until you try to impose your ideology on the rest of us.

          • I don’t need to deny, offer fact, offer data or anything else other than an accepted definition of “science”.

            It’s you who won’t agree to accept commonly held definitions.

            How can we have a real conversation about anything important when you feel free to redefine things for your own self interests?

          • You are so wrong – and wrong.
            1. Subsidized foods do not, in and of themselves, cause health problems. We used to eat way more corn, processed flour, soy products, and meat than we do now – and health has gotten worse.
            2. NO, you do not get to go where food is being processed – for the sake of everyone’s health. NO – you should not be allowed to randomly wander around a farm – that is a clear safety issue. There are farms that have special provision for visitors – go there if you really want to learn something. Don’t whine about not knowing how your food is made when you spend many hours telling anyone who will listen how bad things are .

            3. Well, I sure don’t want a regulatory system controlled by a bunch of people like you who simply want to advance your own ideology that openly disdains the products of scientific inquiry and continually denies that the mountains of data that we have about agriculture is valid.
            A food system that provides the safest, least expensive, and most abundant food in the world is NOT broke. That is exactly what a food system should do. Our food system is the reason you have the time to sit in front of a computer screen and throw rocks at the very hand that feeds you. You may idolize small family food plots, but that is an elitist, arrogant, unrealistic goal when at least 1/3 of the population does not own a plot of land. An it is completely unrealistic to expect an ordinary modern household, in which all adults work at least one, and often two jobs, to take on an additional job of raising their own food.

    • “Of more than 50 000 edible plant species in the world, only a few hundred contribute significantly to food supplies. Just 15 crop plants provide 90 percent of the world’s food energy intake, with three rice, maize and wheat – making up two-thirds of this. These three are the staples of over 4 000 million people.” Why is food energy or calories important? Three letters. ATP. Try living without it. From the FAO report on staple foods.

      • If someone could use many different things but chooses only to use a few, that’s all that happened.

        The fact that one can derive all desired effects from the use of just a few of the things which are available doesn’t automatically mean:
        1. Any one thing is any better than any other.
        2. There is no other choice.
        3. Other choices are worse.
        4. All needs of another could be met with a similar small set of similar things.

        But, you could say that using just a few of the things which are available does mean:
        1. You are limiting your choices.

        If I wanted to tackle world problems I wouldn’t limit my choices.

        • We Gotta: “If someone could use many different things but chooses only to use a few, that’s all that happened.”
          Marie Antoinette: “Qu’ils mangent de la brioche”—doesn’t exactly translate as “Let them eat cake.” It translates as, well, “Let them eat brioche.”
          Sorry Marie, your record stood for a long time, but you only frivolously dismissed your French subjects for depending on bread to stay alive. We now have a quote that disses about 4 billion people for not being able to afford the variety of food we take for granted in the developed world.

          • Swing and a miss: strike 1
            You went for the fences on that one and wound up in the dirt instead.

            The statement
            “If someone could use many different things but chooses only to use a few, that’s all that happened.”,
            literally spells out that no meaning or judgement should be ascribed to that statement of fact.
            Someone chose only a few out of the many. That’s all that happened in this context. No judgement can be given either way. It’s just a fact.

            How and why you decided to think “that’s all that happened” could translate into something relevant to some quote by a historical figure in the past is way beyond my understanding.

          • Maybe you should be looking up instead of down if you think that didn’t fly right over your head. You looked at the fact that 4 billion people rely on the 3 staples of rice, corn (maize) and wheat, and commented how people choose only a few things when there are many different ones available. That completely ignores the reality that those people are not making choices.They rely on those 3 crops to fill their stomachs because other foods are not available or beyond their means. Just before the French revolution, the average working man was spending over 80% of his daily income on the only thing that he could afford to fill the stomachs of him and his family: bread. Your dismissal, in light of how much information is available from sources like the FAO, is worse than the careless attitude of the French aristocracy.

          • Strike 2!

            What in the hell are you talking about?

            When did I ever say anything like that?

            You sound absolutely insane rambling on and on about nonsense

          • How about focusing on the facts you are ignoring instead of calling non-existent strikes. You: “Most corn humans will eat by far is in the form of HFCS.”
            “Maize accounts for more than 40 percent of total cereal production in sub-Saharan Africa. Africans use maize almost entirely to feed themselves. Eighty-five percent of the maize produced in eastern and southern Africa is used to feed people.”

          • Gmo corn?

            And how does that make my statement incorrect?

            40% of a certain fraction of the world plus 85% of another fraction of the world doesn’t mean most people of the world.

          • We will never find a tool, bit of knowledge or plant that can “feed the world” until humanity faces its collective insanity.
            Because humans are insane, any crop, bit of knowledge, or tool that shows such promise will be corrupted for greed.

            We have all we need right now to solve hunger. But we don’t.
            It probably won’t be one crop. The solutions will be as varied as the individual situations.

    • NO, Robert!
      You want to sell these GMO aberrations, YOU prove their safety – – – which you can’t!
      And then, to defend this crap – – excuse me, crops – – you malign top scientists like Seralini who, by the way, just recently received an award for scientific excellence form German scientists ( – – as seen by scientists all over the world as a clear message to the GMO ElToroPooPoo-ers.


          • Ok, apparently you misunderstood what I was getting at.

            Are you under investigation right now for misleading consumers? That seems to be your thing.

          • Misleading consumers? Are you talking about the phony “Established 90-day GMO safety studies?”
            View what happens if you go longer than 90 days – – as done by prof. Seralini, Caen U, France:
            pictures at p. 1 and 3 at

            Oh, why did I mention this – – – now some science ignoramus will come back and demonstrate his ignorance about longevity studies with
            “these animals would get tumors/cancers anyway.”

          • Correct, These tumors would occur anyway. Where you are wrong is that the intelligent folks are the ones who realize this. The dishonest deny that truth. Serralini is a quack. Kinda like you.

          • Are you aware that quackwatch’s list of alternative health professionals (not big pharma yodel-alongers) lists literally every leading doctor in this field? – – – and (according to published inside information) is run by a de-licensed MD?

          • That just might be because that much of “alternative health is run by quacks that need watching. “Big Pharma” recently saved my life. So, take that crack and shove it. “published inside information?” That usually =rumors started by quacks. Now, tell us all about those chemtrails. My Grandmother had a term she used for people like you. Well, several, but the one that can be posted is “educated fools”

          • Well done hans simply wouldn’t apply to you. The phrase that applies to you is disgusting waste of an education.

          • How about when you sued a little old lady so that she would pay for you to have sheep cells injected into your heart?

            “Defense counsel did not revisit Ms. Batson’s background at any time during closing argument. He did argue that “Dr. Kugler testified that when he took those cell extracts before the October ’03 [sic] accident, it didn’t work; he didn’t notice any difference. [¶] Well, then why after this car accident, the October ’03 car accident, would you take cell extracts that cost you almost $20,000 if they were not working and then try to get my client to pay for it?” Counsel also argued that “And yet Dr. Ghaly treated him, to the tune of almost $20,000, with 55 to 60 sessions of E.E.C.P. and admitted — admitted that the recommended course was 35 sessions. Great way to make money. `I’m treating him for a-fib [atrial fibrillation]. This treatment doesn’t do anything for a-fib, and I’m going to give almost twice the amount of the recommended course of treatment anyhow and charge him $20,000 for the pleasure.’ And then Dr. Kugler wants my client to pay for that.”

            You are a clown and scam artist.

          • Nice find. This guy is even lower than I realized. The phrase “gutter scum” occurs to me.

          • Yes, they would. Notice how the control group also got tumors. Also notice how there are no pictures of the control. Why is that? Because Seralini knows that by releasing those images, he undermines his own lie.

          • Just like some quack ignoramus sued a little old lady for heart treatment after he crashed into her car?

          • Wrong again!
            They only went up to 90 days sot that they (real scientist’s explanation) proclaim “SAFE!”
            Go past 90 days and you’ll find an ever increasing difference in tumors/cancers between “treated” (GMO-fed), and untreated (no GMOs).

          • You are getting to me with your repeating of the same – wrong – longevity ElToroPooPoo..
            I explained this before! Are you – in real life – a mule??
            So, one more time:
            a) When choosing a type of animal for a study that is aimed at giving you results that reflect on any people’s condition/disease what animal do you use? One that is cancer-prone like humans, or one that is not cancer prone?

            NOW THINK!
            Is the human species cancer/tumor-prone?
            Answer: Yes.
            So we chose a cancer-prone lab animal – – as in the GMO lab animals, the Seralini lab animals, or the ones I used.

            Now for the total science-lacking ignoramuses that nodded their heads reading your post: Why DON’T we use lab animals that don’t get cancer?
            Think harder!
            Think even harder!
            Tell me in a response post!

            Back to the 90-day studies:
            Q.:why would I define them as phony?

            A. Because (approximately, depending on animal cancer genetics) up to 90 day an even hampered immune system could handle insults like low-dose glyphosate, and there would be no real differences, and the ignoramus that chose this lab animal would proclaim: “NO difference between treated (GMO corn-fed) and untreated, THEREFORE SAFE!” (which is bullshit).

            However, if you go longer than 90 days (OR if you would INCREASE the glyphosate in the treated group) you WILL see real differences IN THE NUMBER AND SIZE OF CANCERS, (ever increasing with the length of the study!!!

            So, if (let’s say after 150 days) you find that in the glyphosate-treated group you find 10 times more cancers than in the untreated (no glyphosate) group DOES THAT SHOW A NEGATIVE – CANCER-CAUSING – EFFECT OF GLYPHOSATE?

            And the answer is “YES”!

            Do such results show that GLYPHOSATE IS SAFE AND YOU CAN EAT AS MUCH AS YOU WANT?
            – – – – and if you didn’t respond with “NO” I will come to where you live and slap you behind the ears!!!!!

            KAPISH??? Get the basic idea?
            Now find the re-published Seralini study and confirm what I said with the real results of the (longer than 90 day) studies.

            Still not completely understanding what the problem with phony GMO studies is?
            Check out

            GMO Industry Harassment against esearchers.

          • Why did Seralini paste pictures of lab rats that get tumors 81% of the time on his web page, and in his study? And why do you keep plastering rats with tumors pictures whenever you are online?
            Because both you and he have a pre-determined conclusion and agenda.
            Glyphosate has been proven to be a cancer cell growth inhibitor.
            Peer reviewed science has proven this.

      • The lack of risk of GE crops as compared to any other breeding method is documented well enough to be accepted by over 275 scientific bodies. The long and impeccable safety record backs this up. You have lost.

        • You must be kidding(?) “lack of risk of GE crops.”
          Start with Seralini’s (past 90 days) studies, on which alone I – – having done many such real longevity studies – – would not touch GMOs.

          GMO STUDIES: Half of the Studies Find Cause For Concern … The Other Half Are Studies By the GMO Food Industry itself.

          Weed-whacking herbicide deadly to human cells: Scientific American

          Responding to claims from the GM industry and some journalists, and commentators that there is a “scientific consensus” that GM foods and crops were generally found safe for human and animal health and the
          environment, 230 scientists responded, calling these claims “misleading”, adding, “This claimed consensus on GMO safety does not exist.” – – –

          Genetically engineered crops, glyphosate and the deterioration of health in the United States of America. Nancy L. Swanson, , Andre Leu, Jon Abrahamson, and Bradley Wallet, Abacus Enterprises, Lummi Island, WA, USA , International Federation of Organic Agricultural M govemments, Bonn, Germany, AND MORE:
          Glyphosate disrupts the endocrine system and the balance of gut bacteria, it damages DNA and is a driver of mutations that lead to cancer.

          Roundup damages sperm. An acute exposure to glyphosate-based herbicide alters aromatase levels in testis and sperm nuclear quality. Environmental Toxicology and Pharmacology. Volume 38, Issue 1, July 2014, pp. 131–140

          AND AT LEAST 30 MORE!

          Now stand in front of a tall mirror and claim again “”lack of risk of GE crops.”
          Ooooops! The mirror just cracked up laughing!

          • The consensus exists. I am familiar with serralini’s crap. Whereby he kills cells in vitro and then makes stupid speculative claims. I have read Latham’s garbage. Glyphosate is not an endocrine disruptor. Your lies are quite dated. Your outliers disreputable. As long as you are posting complete nonsense. Why did you leave out the Indian farmer suicide lie. The truth is that the crops are as safe as any. The studies are no longer needed for already approved crops. They are only needed as a safe guard for new ones about to be released. The safety record speaks louder more truthfully and is more clearly understandable than your dishonest bunk.

          • Aware of Seralini getting an award for “scientific excellence” from German scientists? (- – supporting him, and indirectly telling the $$ special interest ElToroPooPoo-ers “we have your science-facts-distorting number” and “shame on you!”).

          • I am aware that you made this claim earlier. Also that you posted no link. Why? Well likely because you are not wanting folks to know that this is just a few loons such as yourself. Now, explain why all those scientific groups disagree with you. Then I really want to hear all about those chemtrails.

  2. Something’s broken when a country’s most dangerous maladies and most expensive health problems are diet related.

    Oh ya, save your “consumer choice” replies. Billions of dollars are spent manipulating people into eating poorly which is more proof it’s all broken.

    And besides, you don’t care about consumers having a choice really.

    • “and most expensive health problems are diet related.”

      Isn’t that a good thing? Could be far worse, Virus related, Weapons related, Starvation related, Radiation related, Blunt force trauma related, Cancer related, War related, Fire related, Auto accident related, Parasite related, Gang violence related, and hundreds of other problems that could be plaguing society.

      Like really, WeGotta, cant you find a Non first world problem to champion? Is starvation, war, pestilence, not cool anymore?

      Why spend your days fighting against plant traits? Are there too many people in the other first world problems comment boards? Did you get frustrated with “My clicker doesn’t work anymore and I have to use my key like an animal to open my car door” , “Fridge light is burnt out and I don’t know how to replace it ” comment sites?

      I don’t get your motivation?

      • I don’t need a “motivation”. I can spend my day as I please.

        The choices we make in the first world are directly related to the suffering of the third world.

        It’s not “plant traits” that are causing troubles for poor people. It’s the venture capitalists, billion dollar corporations and their blind sanctimonious followers that are causing troubles.

        Our worst health problems are diet related. Whether or not that’s a “good thing” like you suggest, it sort of means our food system is broken.

        If we can’t get our own house in order, we will continue to be more a cause of the world’s problems.

        • “It’s not “plant traits” that are causing troubles for poor people. It’s the venture capitalists, billion dollar corporations and their blind sanctimonious followers that are causing troubles.”

          Wow, really? You do know that billions of people have been lifted out of poverty in the last 30 years, right? Thanks to capitalism.
          This is not a political opinion, it is just a simple fact.

          If our worst health problems are diet related, and it is not due to a shortage of food, it is a good thing. Inexpensive, affordable, accessible food is a modern miracle, ask the folks in DRC, or Zimbabwe if this is not a good thing.

          ” it sort of means our food system is broken.”

          It would be like you complaining that the transportation system is broken, because we have far too many inexpensive ways to travel. It makes no sense.

          How are “We” causing any of the worlds problems. Seems to me that they cause there own problems.

          • Tools are tools. They are not good or bad all by themselves.

            But to try and argue that all uses of a tool are okay because some uses of that tool are “good”, is a “political opinion”.

            Powerful tools are being misused for greed and vanity. This doesn’t mean we vilify the tools.

            A system that makes the foods which are directly responsible for our greatest health problems both cheaper and more accessible is not a “good system”.
            If that system is that way because those who benefit from it being that way are the ones who made it that way in the first place, then it’s arguably a “broken system”.

            Try to remember which things get a value judgement (like “broken” or “good”), and which things are free from value judgements like facts and tools.

          • No one is saying that all uses are OK.

            Our food is produced by mother nature, are you saying that she is broken?

          • That’s the intent of your whole argument. Corporations are great because they can be used in beneficial ways.
            Stabbing people with a knife is okay because knives are really useful.

            Mother Nature just is.
            Humans are the ones who bring in value systems.

          • I never said anything about corporations or stabbing people.

            I believe that Monsanto is still working on the “Stab people” plant trait, it has not been released yet.

            I course humans bring values, Mother nature has none.

  3. blame MONSANTO and the farmers for caving to the greed!!! poisoning human beings are NOT the way to succeed in this world you will pay for it at the pearly gates!!

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