Genetically modified seeds now account for more than 85% of the world’s seed supply. Despite release of data that shows that many genetically modified (GM) seeds do not provide additional yield, many pseudo-scientists are urging governments to permit the patenting of GM seeds.
In addition, studies indicated severe adverse health risks from the residue of pesticides on grains that are specifically modified to withstand pesticides like Monsanto’s Roundup, the world’s largest selling herbicide. Monsanto’s “Roundup Ready” seeds are specifically bred to live despite beings sprayed with Roundup. The Roundup is then washed into the ground, into the water supply and into the foods produced from the seeds.
US studies have typically been 90 day trials. European studies are extended beyond one year. This is an abstract from a European Study. As you can see, the European studies do not conclude that Roundup Ready GMO products are safe.
“Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize
The health effects of a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize (from 11% in the diet), cultivated with or without Roundup, and Roundup alone (from 0.1 ppb in water), were studied 2 years in rats. In females, all treated groups died 2–3 times more than controls, and more rapidly. This difference was visible in 3 male groups fed GMOs. All results were hormone and sex dependent, and the pathological profiles were comparable. Females developed large mammary tumors almost always more often than and before controls, the pituitary was the second most disabled organ; the sex hormonal balance was modified by GMO and Roundup treatments.
In treated males, liver congestions and necrosis were 2.5–5.5 times higher. This pathology was confirmed by optic and transmission electron microscopy. Marked and severe kidney nephropathies were also generally 1.3–2.3 greater. Males presented 4 times more large palpable tumors than controls which occurred up to 600 days earlier. Biochemistry data confirmed very significant kidney chronic deficiencies; for all treatments and both sexes, 76% of the altered parameters were kidney related. These results can be explained by the nonlinear endocrine-disrupting effects of Roundup, but also by the over expression of the transgene in the GMO and its metabolic consequences.”
Séralini, G.-E., et al. Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize. Food Chem. Toxicol. (2012), http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.fct.2012.08.005”
The USDA is in the process of increasing the allowable amount of glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, by 30 times for potatoes. The oversight of the USDA with Monsanto and other seed producers has been somewhere between lax and criminal. There have been hundreds of acres of GMO rice permitted in open fields by the USDA for a farm in Kansas. There has been unauthorized GMO wheat found in Oregon.
If the USDA is not concerned for our safety, perhaps the banning of some strains of GMO corn by Russia, great concern by the European Union with regard to GMO soy and corn, and the return of cargo shiploads of grain from China, Japan and South Korea will wake up the farmers that their export livelihood is in danger.
Soon we will see who has the better payoff system in Congress through their lobbyists and PACs. Who will prevail among the interests of Monsanto, DuPont, and the other big seed companies versus the US Farm Bureau with its thousands of farmers that support one of the largest export markets in the US?
Neither agribusiness companies nor seed suppliers appear to be concerned with food safety, and Congress and the government agencies are not looking out for consumer interests. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is not focused on the prevention aspects of the impact of GMO and pesticides on the food supply. The CDC should raise objections to the USDA, EPA and FDA for their laxity with regard to the threats of GMO foods and residual pesticides. We need objective long-term studies on the health effects of GMO seeds and pesticides on consumers.
One of the largest seed suppliers is Producers Hybrids. They are the major seed supplier in the Midwest, which has the largest portion of the US production of corn, wheat and soybeans. Of 65 corn seeds offered by Producers Hybrids, 60 were genetically modified to be either “Roundup Ready” or they were Bt genetically modified to kill corn pests that attempted to eat the corn plants. You can see the complete list of their products at http://www.producershybrids.com/products.
LG Seeds is another major supplier. Their Genuity ® VT Double PRO® RIB Compete™ provides a blend of Roundup ready and Bt GMO modified seeds. Their announcement of their new corn product is:
“Genuity® VT Double PRO® RIB Complete™ has received registration from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), completing federal regulatory authorization in the United States. Commercialization is pending individual state authorizations and notifications.
Genuity® VT Double PRO® RIB Complete™:
• Is a blend of 95 percent Genuity VT Double PRO and 5 percent Roundup Ready® refuge (non-Bt) seed – a single bag system with the lowest percent refuge in the Corn Belt for above-ground insect protection.
• Provides dual mode of action above ground protection for European corn borer, southwestern corn borer, fall armyworm and corn earworm, and tolerance to Roundup® agricultural herbicides.
The LG Seeds lineup of Genuity VT Double PRO corn products includes eleven elite hybrids from 86 to 114 day maturity. The VT2PRO trait is in the best genetics we have to offer.”
There are now GMO hybrids for sweet corn and cucumbers that are directly consumed by human beings. It is time to contact Senator Sherrod Brown and Senator Rob Portman and let them know that you want tighter oversight of GMO seeds and extensive long-term testing of the effects of residual Roundup in plants, the water supply and the air.
You can contact Senator Portman at http://www.portman.senate.gov/public/. Senator Brown can be reached at http://www.brown.senate.gov/contact/. If you want to make a call to either Senator’s local or Washington offices, the websites have the telephone numbers. Tell them you want the USDA, EPA and FDA to control the spread of GMO seeds and to tighten the environment and food safety laws to limit exposure to pesticides in the food supply.