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Are GMOs Tested for Safety and/or Regulated?
One of the biggest problems with GMOs is that currently there are no regulatory agencies that really have any power over biotech companies to control, test, or even know whether or not a certain GMO crop is safe for either humans or animals. But, as this GM experiment takes place, problems have occurred. It’s becoming clear that GMOs can be dangerous economically and environmentally, and more and more we’re learning that they can also be dangerous medically.
FDA, EPA & the USDA
These are the regulatory agencies responsible for ensuring our safe food supply. It is currently being led by Michael R. Taylor who worked 18 months for the main supplier of GMOs, Monsanto Company. Currently (and this is the same for drugs, too) the FDA doesn’t do any of their own tests on any GMOs. They rely completely on the research of the company in question regarding the safety of their products.
The one bright shining light is the fact that the FDA under the auspices of the USDA does offer USDA Certified Organic Labeling and decides what qualifies as organic – and currently GMOs cannot be certified organic. But, oddly, there is absolutely no law that requires GM food to be tested to find out if it’s truly safe for humans or animals to eat. They are assumed healthy, and there even is stated to be a “wide consensus” among scientists that GMOs are safe.
No one can argue that chemical herbicides are dangerous. Due to fact that GM crops are resistant to chemicals, more and more of these herbicides are being used in farming practices with GM crops. This is proving to be a problem for the EPA which regulates the environment.
However, they still don’t bother regulating whether it’s safe for people to ingest these crops. Studies have been conducted in other countries such as Quebec, Canada. They studied rats fed GM corn. The rats developed tumors and organ damage. The FDA has stated that due to the lack of labeling of GMOs it would be difficult to do an appropriate study to find out whether or not GMOs are truly safe.
Even so, in other countries, more studies have been conducted and accidents have even occurred showing the potential dangers of GMOs, such as sheep in India eating GM cottonseed plants and dying. These issues have caused many developed countries to outlaw GMOS.
Countries, Cities and Counties That Have Outlawed GMOs
This list is probably not comprehensive because it’s changing all the time. GMOs are a highly controversial and political with a lot of money from the biotech companies to lobby and pay off governments to allow their GMO crops.
* Australia – South Australia has a ban on GM crops but it might be lifted at the end of 2014.
* Brazil – The state of Parana has banned GMOs and GMO imports.
* France – No GMO cultivation.
* Germany – No GM cultivation or sale of corn.
* India – Banned GM eggplant, but they did plant GM cotton which didn’t produce well, with sheep dying from eating it, leaving the famers in great debt. In fact, over 125,000 of these farmers have committed suicide.
* Ireland – No GM crops allowed, and voluntary labeling for products that include GMOs is in effect.
* Japan – No GM crops allowed but they are a major importer of canola, which has caused a problem with GMO canola growing wild in ports and other areas the canola was shipped.
* Madeira – This Portuguese island has banned the cultivation of GM crops.
* New Zealand – No GM foods are permitted.
* Peru – 10-year ban on GMO crops.
* Switzerland – No GM Crops, animals, plants at least until 2015.
* USA – Mendocino, Trinity and Marin counties have banned GM Crops.
As consumers become more aware of the potential problems with GMO crops, they are demanding labeling and action. Until more research is done there can be no guarantee of the safety of GM crops. When you think about it, it’s an outrage that the assumption is that they’re safe considering the issues that have popped up in recent years.