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I’ve never received more hate male from SCIQ fans than that one time I talked about Bernie Sanders and GMO labeling. So before I start – please try not to hate me, and try not to throw anything at the screen.
Ok, so Bernie Sanders home state of Vermont introduced a law in 2014 – that requires labels on products containing genetically engineered ingredients. This law is effective July 1, 2016.
Bernie’s argument is that consumers have a right to know what’s in their food, and that’s true. People should be conscious and responsible with the choices the food choices they’re making. We have a right to know what ingredients are in there, how many calories, how much sodium, how much fat, how many vitamins.
There’s other questions we as smart consumers may have.
[We asked some people in New York what additional information should be on a label]
What breed of chicken is this?
is it fresh or was it once frozen?
What pesticides were used on this apple?
Are these bananas contributing to civil unrest in latin America
Are the cows who make this product being treated fairly?
I think whether or not a product is genetically modified falls into the same group of concerns as whether it is from ethical sources. Good to know. But it’s not more important than other information.
So why do we get so upset by GMOs? Why do we pass a law labeling GMOs food and not one for food that causes deforestation, or food that comes from inhumane animal conditions?
I think the reason we get so worked up is because we don’t really understand the science.
Putting a label on something suggests it’s a warning, that the product is not as good – otherwise why would we need a label. But GMO crops are nutritionally the same – or they would never have been approved by the FDA.
And they’re far safer than a lot of other stuff we do in agriculture – Testing of a new GM crop variety takes over 10 years, and is the most rigorous testing of any food on the market. There’s no research to show that a crop is less healthy, has more toxins, or is more likely to cause allergies, just because it is genetically modified – a basic knowledge of how DNA works will show us this.
Even Bernie agrees with me. He says on FeelTheBern.org that
Bernie supports allowing states to require labels on foods containing “genetically modified organisms” (GMOs) based on the consumer’s right-to-know, but does not believe that GMOs are necessarily bad.
I get really distressed when otherwise intelligent, rational people come out swinging when it comes to GMOs so I hope you’ll keep an open mind
So we do have a right to be informed, and we are being informed. But by ignoring all the other issues with agriculture so we can demonize GMOs, we’re actually confusing the public, not informing them.
Before you start sending me one off studies about bees or glyphosate, just remember to check – Is your study from a peer reviewed, reputable academic source,
Let us know what you think about GMO labelling in the comments below.
GENETIC LITERACY PROJECT
GMO STATE LAWS
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT GMOS
This video is presented by Jayde Lovell, produced and edited by Yohana Yoshe, at Youtube Space NYC.
SCIQ ON THE YOUNG TURKS
Produced by Jayde Lovell and Bec Susan Gill. ScIQ is a partner of the The Young Turks Network.
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