Announcing a Freemium version! Get your FREE subscription to Organic Insider today!

MUST-READ: A New Class of GMOs that Doesn’t Need Government Approval

MUST-READ: A New Class of GMOs that Doesn't Need Government Approval

Just when you thought that GMOs, as we know them today, were bad enough, get ready for something potentially worse to deal with. In a recent New York Times article, it was reported that biotech companies have discovered and exploited a loophole in government regulation that allows them to create a different breed of GMOs and market them […]

GMO USDA
LivingMaxwell.com

Researcher holding up a GMO vegetable. Genetically modified organism or GEO here transgenic plant is

Just when you thought that GMOs, as we know them today, were bad enough, get ready for something potentially worse to deal with.

In a recent New York Times article, it was reported that biotech companies have discovered and exploited a loophole in government regulation that allows them to create a different breed of GMOs and market them to the public without needing approval from the USDA.

They are doing this by inserting genetic material from a plant, instead of genetic material from a plant pest (GMOs are often inserted via a bacterium, which contains a genetic “on” switch from a plant virus). So, if it is material from a plant but not a plant pest, companies can circumvent the laws and avoid regulation, something which the USDA has confirmed.

As a result, there are several new crops using this methodology that are now in development and can go directly to market.

They include:

– A new herbicide-resistant canola

– A corn that would create less pollution from livestock waste

– Switch grass tailored for biofuel production

– An ornamental plant that glows in the dark.

Another example of this was something that I shared on Facebook the other day – a genetically-engineered grass by Scotts that does not need USDA approval.

While the EPA and FDA could potentially intervene and require this method to come under government regulation, don’t hold your breath. After all, the EPA just approved new GM-corn and soy crops resistant to the super-toxic 2,4-D.

The bottom line is that this new methodology is still genetic engineering and must be regulated by our government. Let’s hope Congress gets involved and does its best to make sure regulations keep pace with technology.

The potential environmental and health risks are too great to ignore.

—-

Want to stay up-to-date on the most important news and products in the organic food world?

If so, make sure you Like my Facebook page, follow me on Instagram and join my email list.

To join my newsletter list, please enter your email below and I’ll send you my Top 5 Inexpensive Ways to Shop Organic.


Signature: Have a great day!


6 Comments

  • Max,
    Those four instances of plants that you mention have all been around (or in development) for a long time. The only news here, if any, is that their lawyers may have found a loophole.
    Most of the arguments one way or the other come from people paid to wage the PR argument either for or against the technology (for more or less money).
    I wrote a book proposal about his in 2000 and was told “nobody cares.” Six years later I trotted it out and was told “old news.” Another 8 years and where are we?
    It makes me glad I am semi-retired…because I am certainly tired of the same old stuff being ponied up over and over and I am happy not to be whipping that dog and pony to feed my (now grown) family.
    Maybe we should all run for the US Congress, where we could really accomplish something.

  • amanda says:

    I agree with Richard. If a demand for non GMO corn is increasing why not produce more sustainable organic farms? Why do these damn companies have to make things so complicated?

  • The question is do these plants/cultivars fall under the the definition of “‘living modified organism’ as defined in the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, “which regulates international trade in living GMOs (specifically, ‘any living organism that possesses a novel combination of genetic material obtained through the use of modern biotechnology’).”

    If it is possible to naturally create these hybrids and all they are doing is essentially a short cut I fail to see the issue other than the issues facing ALL plant breeders.
    Ironically, it is the demand for non-GMO corn that has led to an upswing in 2,4D use on the agricultural side of things. One of the things lost in the noise of the labeling fight is that rather than focusing people on organic crops were are giving a free pass to crops that actually use MORE herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides. For my honeybees apples and squash are far more deadly than a GMO crop or even a non-GMO 2,4D crop. Studies recently show a massive impact on bee gut flora as a result of fungicides used in orchards.

  • A correction. 2,4D was not just approved. It has been approved for nearly 80 years. Non-GMO corn demand has led to its increased use over the years.

    • Max Goldberg says:

      Richard,

      Agreed, it has been around for a while.

      In the organic community, these new GMO crops resistant to 2,4-D are widely referred to as simply “2,4-D”, so that is why I put it in that way. I have clarified it above so there is no confusion.

      Live well,
      Max

Post a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.