Viewpoint: On GMOs, energy production, ‘fear of progress’ is Europe’s main attribute

germany greenpeace actrvists
Credit: Dan Volgelsong

Shale gas, GMOs: here are two topics that usually arouse the public’s worst fears. [Europe] has managed to ban the production of these products … which, paradoxically, does not prevent it from importing them. How did we get there?

Europe: new global store of fear of progress

If we were asked to define the European specialty in terms of new technologies, without a doubt, the fear of scientific and technical progress is becoming the main attribute of the old continent.

ISAAA, the International Service for the Acquisition of Biotechnological Agricultural Applications, [recently] published its annual report on the global crop of genetically modified plants for the year 2018 …. This year, 2.3 billion hectares of GM crops were cultivated worldwide. By 2018, 26 countries (including 21 developing) had grown 191.7 million hectares of biotech seeds. According to the authors, this has yielded positive environmental impacts.

Related article:  'Why use dangerous pesticides when GM maize can help us fight fall armyworm?' Ugandan farmers ask government

Nevertheless, Europe, which was once on the cutting edge (especially France, one of the pioneers in terms of field trials) is now at the bottom of the pack in terms of crops. Only Spain and Portugal grow [insect-resistant] BT maize …. Here again, we see a paradox in which the European citizen does not want to hear about [GMO] crops but is rather indifferent to their importation.

[Editor’s note: this article was published in French and has been translated and lightly edited for clarity.]

Read full, original article: Export the fears of progress, import the fruits …. a European destiny?

Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
Talking Biotech
Genetics Unzipped
can you boost your immune system to prevent coronavirus spread x

Video: How to boost your immune system to guard against COVID and other illnesses

Scientists have recently developed ways to measure your immune age. Fortunately, it turns out your immune age can go down ...
mag insects image superjumbo v

Disaster interrupted: Which farming system better preserves insect populations: Organic or conventional?

A three-year run of fragmentary Armageddon-like studies had primed the journalism pumps and settled the media framing about the future ...
dead bee desolate city

Are we facing an ‘Insect Apocalypse’ caused by ‘intensive, industrial’ farming and agricultural chemicals? The media say yes; Science says ‘no’

The media call it the “Insect Apocalypse”. In the past three years, the phrase has become an accepted truth of ...
globalmethanebudget globalcarbonproject cropped x

Infographic: Cows cause climate change? Agriculture scientist says ‘belching bovines’ get too much blame

A recent interview by Caroline Stocks, a UK journalist who writes about food, agriculture and the environment, of air quality ...
organic hillside sweet corn x

Organic v conventional using GMOs: Which is the more sustainable farming?

Many consumers spend more for organic food to avoid genetically modified products in part because they believe that “industrial agriculture” ...
benjamin franklin x

Are most GMO safety studies funded by industry?

The assertion that biotech companies do the research and the government just signs off on it is false ...
gmo corn field x

Do GMO Bt (insect-resistant) crops pose a threat to human health or the environment?

Bt is a bacterium found organically in the soil. It is extremely effective in repelling or killing target insects but ...

Environmental Working Group: EWG challenges safety of GMOs, food pesticide residues

Known by some as the "Environmental Worrying Group," EWG lobbies for tighter GMO legislation and famously puts out annual "dirty dozen" list of fruits and ...
m hansen

Michael Hansen: Architect of Consumers Union ongoing anti-GMO campaign

Michael K. Hansen (born 1956) is thought by critics to be the prime mover behind the ongoing campaign against agricultural biotechnology at Consumer Reports. He is an ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend