QI want to know more about the chemicals that are poured on GM crops by the ton. What studies have been done to prove the surfactants used in Roundup are safe for human consumption? Same question applies to your proprietary "inert" ingredients.

I want to know more about the chemicals that are poured on GM crops by the ton. What studies have been done to prove the surfactants used in Roundup are safe for human consumption? Same question applies to your proprietary "inert" ingredients.

AExpert Answer

If you’re interested in learning more about agriculture chemical use over time, please see an earlier response I drafted, posted here.

 

Pesticides in use today have been thoroughly evaluated for environmental and human safety. The Environmental Protection Agency regulates the sale and use of pesticides and requires robust studies and lengthy testing to demonstrate safety before any product reaches the market. Many products on the market today have specific modes of action for a target pest. An example of a class of crop protection chemistry that is marketed by DuPont and remains popular is sulfonylurea herbicides. These herbicides are used at very low rates (often less than one-tenth of a pound per acre) and disrupt an enzymatic pathway found only in plants, and therefore have minimal impact on other organisms (e.g., humans, birds, insects). For all products, strict handling requirements are implemented to limit potential farmworker exposure and also to limit products’ potential exposure to the environment and other non–target organisms.

 

As for surfactants and inert ingredients that are used in these crop protection products, government regulators maintain tight control and oversight. Ingredients used in any product have undergone a similar level of scrutiny, as has the active ingredient in any product. A substantial number of studies for toxicity and non–target organisms are required before an inert ingredient is approved for use.

Posted on April 11, 2018
Interesting question - that's a good example of how the term "GMO" (genetically modified organism) is too vague to be really useful. In a sense, yes, your genes are modified compared to both of your parents. And you're definitely not genetically identical to your parents (unless you're a yeast, or a starfish, or a willow tree, or some other organism that can reproduce asexually).   But in common usage, the term GMO refers to an organism containing a gene... Read More
Posted on March 1, 2018
I don't see organic foods becoming obsolete in the future, but I could see what qualifies as certified organic changing over time. There is some debate right now about whether or not the meaning of organic is being diluted. For example, look at growing produce hydroponically. There are some who do not want hydroponics to fall under the organic label. They believe organic should be about taking care of the soil as much if not more than growing the crop, and when there's no soil involved... Read More
Posted on March 1, 2018
GMOs are crops - and like any other version of the same crop, where you grow them and how you grow them is far more important than whether they are GMOs. No known system of agriculture can promise that it is sustainable forever; much agricultural research is being devoted to improving the sustainability of agriculture. In this regard, it appears likely that using GM technologies may improve sustainability of a particular crop cultured in a specific manner and place. Other... Read More
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