Viewpoint: ‘Consumer activist’ concerns over Florida proposal to use gene drives to extirpate Zika-carrying mosquitoes is thinly veiled anti-biotech attack

Credit: CHD
Credit: CHD

Now that their nemesis Monsanto is no longer a thing, [the Organic Consumers Association and the Center for Food Safety] must be falling on hard times. Their most recent targets?  Biotech mosquitoes.

The genetically engineered mosquitoes by Oxitec are a modern version of sterile insect technique… The males mate with local female pests, and the next generation of larvae are inviable. Mosquito populations crash. The target is a non-native invasive mosquito so it poses no threat to natural ecosystems.

These disease-transmitting mosquitoes are clearly the most lethal animal on the planet. With Zika, Dengue, chikungunya, malaria and other mosquito-borne diseases on the rise, these tools could have great human health implications.  They are to be released in the Florida Keys shortly.


Yes, the Center for Food Safety spends their budget on expensive billboards that oppose human health initiatives.

In social media, OCA has bots that spam the interwebs, blasting a common, repeated message over and over again.  The goal?  To make it look like there is widespread concern about a safe and effective strategy to limit numbers of disease-causing mosquitoes.

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Here we have organizations that present as food advocacy groups that really are anti-biotechnology groups. I can’t wait for the day that these insect-limiting strategies are widely lauded for their success in curbing transmissible disease.

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