Ask Us Anything About GMOs!

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Posted On: Wednesday, 11/06/2013 4:07 pm
A: Earthworms, along with other soil macroorganisms, provide essential ecosystem services. In the most important book written on earthworms in the last 100 years, Edwards and Bohlen (Biology and Ecology of Earthworms, 1996) examined the potential impact of many agricultural products on earthworms. The authors rank the toxicity of active ingredients to earthworms using a scale of 0 (relatively nontoxic) to 3 (extremely toxic). Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup formulations, is ranked 0... Continue Reading
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Posted On: Wednesday, 7/31/2013 11:09 am
A: You won’t find one if you are talking about a randomized, blind, controlled clinical study with human subjects to establish the safety of GM crops. This model is not used to establish food safety. There are several studies of nutritionally altered GM crops with expected biological effect. These were paid for by Monsanto, and I will talk below about why these were conducted. In general, a question on human studies was answered on this site previously, but please allow me to explain the... Continue Reading
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Posted On: Friday, 8/02/2013 1:14 pm
A: Humans have been manipulating their own environment and that of other species closely related to them for thousands of years. These changes have given rise to domesticated and human-dependent animal species, such as cows and sheep, as well as the many varieties of dogs and cats. In the same manner, most agricultural food crops are very different from their “wild” ancestors because of human intervention. Intervention in the domestication of food crops has given rise to higher-yield, less toxic... Continue Reading
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Posted On: Monday, 12/09/2013 9:42 pm
A: It is not surprising that some organic farmers would like to be able to use biotech. There is a push by some academics for biotech to be part of the “green revolution,” including organics. After all, biotech, such as Bt crops, is a form of host-plant resistance, similar to traditional breeding for insect control. Moreover, Bt has been used in agriculture for over 50 years and is widely used in certified organic agriculture. So the scenario stated above, wherein an organic farmer benefits from... Continue Reading
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Posted On: Sunday, 5/04/2014 4:17 pm
A: Bt cotton is cotton that also expresses one or more Bt proteins (protein genes isolated from the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis) that are toxic to certain caterpillars when those caterpillars feed on cotton tissues; they have no observable toxicity to insects that are not caterpillars (moths and butterflies). Bt cotton has revolutionized cotton production because many of the primary insect pests of cotton are caterpillars, and therefore the Bt in Bt cotton controls these caterpillar pests so... Continue Reading