Unbiased science has clearly gone out the window when it comes to the GMO discussion. A somewhat recent pro-GMO editorial in Scientific American takes aim at labeling laws for genetically engineered foods, calling them “unscientific.” But proponents of non-GMO food and people’s right to know are saying that Scientific American is the one without a scientific leg to stand on.

The debate is over an article in the September 6th edition of the magazine wherein the editors claim that ‘it would be unsafe to give consumers the false impression that GMOs are unsafe.’ This comes at a time when labeling laws are being considered in 20 different states. The editors go on to say:

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has tested all the GMOs on the market to determine whether they are toxic or allergenic,” the editorial states. “They are not.”

Before I retort with the obvious – that the U.S. FDA is completely corrupted with Monsanto and biotech’s funny money, and therefore have no right to declare GMOs or any other drug or product as safe – have the editors not read the reports of numerous other scientists, including individuals from the biotech industry who say that GMO foods are highly toxic and incredibly damaging? Genetic engineers Dr. John Fagan, Dr Michael Antoniou, and researcher Claire Robinson have released a very exacting study of just how toxic these GE crops are – perhaps they should have a look-see.

Scientific American Blasted for Supporting GMOs

Many scoff at the ridiculous claims of the editorial staff of Scientific American. Stacy Malkan, the former director for Yes on 37 (the campaign to pass California’s failed ballot initiative to mandate foods containing GMO ingredients) is one of them:

“The editorial is sloppy and unscientific,” Malkan told the Daily News. “Saying the FDA has tested all the GMOs on the market is patently false. Each individual company is responsible for testing its own products, and they then decide if they want to voluntarily report it to FDA. But they aren’t required to test or report.”

A second point made in the article, which seems to come straight out of the Grocery Manufacturer’s play book, is that labeling foods as GMO will make food prices sky-rocket since GE seeds produce higher yields while using less pesticide.

This is perhaps the most ludicrous statement any magazine claiming to be ‘scientific’ could possibly make. There is absolutely no evidence that GE crops increase yields, and in fact there is a growing set of problems which farmers face when trying to use biotech seed.

Issues with Biotech GMO Seeds

  • Indigenous seeds which are already well adapted to the climate and soil of specific areas are wiped out through cross-pollination with biotech seed.
  • Many biotech seeds are turning out to be duds. In India, 75 percent of farmers who bought Bt cotton seeds noticed that 35 percent of these seeds failed to germinate. This has happened in numerous countries, yet the facts are swept under the rug. More BT and GMO crops are pushed on farmers as some sort of savior, when in fact, it will literally men the death of their farms and families. This, and Monsanto’s monopoly on seeds, is why so many farmers are committing suicide in India.
  • Herbicide-tolerant and Bt-transgenic crops did initially result in some reduced pesticide use, but they are causing elevated levels of herbicide use. Further, they are leading to the creations of ever more toxic versions of herbicides such as 2,4-D since glyphosate has failed so completely to do what its makers promised – increase crop yield and reduce pests. GMO seed is not making it easier for farmers to farm. The super-weed epidemic shines some serious light on the failure of GMO crops. In parts of the country, weeds resistant to the world’s most popular herbicide, glyphosate, now grow in the vast majority of soybean, cotton, and corn fields, many of which were planted with seeds resistant to the weedkiller.

The Falsified Facts Continue

The Scientific American editorial goes on, though, telling lie upon lie:

“Private research firm Northbridge Environmental Management Consultants estimated that Prop 37 would have raised an average California family’s yearly food bill by as much as $400.”

Interesting that the article speaks nothing of the cost for treating cancer, infertility, or chronic kidney disease – all potentially linked to GMOs.

“Let’s get the facts straight,” Malkan said. “Scientific American got seduced into using this bogus report.”

Like most people with a modicum of intelligence, Stacie Orell, the campaign director for GMO Free N.Y. (a group pushing to pass a bill in the New York Legislature to mandate labels for genetically engineered foods) was also shocked by the claims of the editorial.

Orell points out the fallacy in the failed GMO golden rice project (funded largely by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, who are known eugenists) touted as savior to the world in the article.

 “While I’m not against the idea of golden rice, its benefits in practice remain unkonwn,” Orell said. “These are theoretical ideas that the bio-tech industry often uses to green-wash the issue.”

It was found that golden rice was ‘not so golden,’ however. As Dr. Marcia Ishii-Eiteman has said, “So far, Golden Rice has swallowed up millions of research dollars over the past two decades and filled our media outlets with hype — but has failed to deliver.”

Public health lawyer Michele Simon agrees that the Scientific American piece had a familiar ‘biotech policy’ ring to it. In an email, Simon said, “It reads like the biotech industry handed Scientific American its talking points.”

If half of the ‘respected’ journals and magazines are going to do nothing more than promote biotech propaganda, we need to boycott those who are so obviously telling us lies. As more truly independent studies come out decrying the perils of GM, they’ll have fewer places to publish their steaming, hot excrement.

This article originally appeared at Natural Society.


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