Where will genetically engineered food place in history?
Posted: May 17th, 2007 - 6:48am by Doug PowellI'm working on a book chapter about genetically engineered foods while sitting in the shadows of a First century, AD, still functioning Roman coliseum in Nimes, France, while Amy is off working on her research.
In reviewing the past decade of apocalyptic predictions related to all foods genetically engineered, I can only conclude, what a massive waste of well-meaning time, energy and money that could have been instead devoted to fewer people sick from microbial foodborne illness.
A story out of Canada once again fawningly reported that all things organic were booming.
What caught my eye was the statement by the spokesthingy for Loblaw Companies Ltd., who said, "As long as you are in the business of giving consumers choice, I think you have to have organics as part of your offering."
This from the same company who, when asked in 1999, and 2000, if they would be interested in giving consumers choice and offer a genetically-engineered Bt sweet corn -- the benefit being significantly reduced pesticide use -- responded with, no, we can't tell consumers that pesticides are used to grow sweet corn.
Whatever kinds of food production, processing and distribution system we humans come up with, what matters is not the technology, but whether the results make people sick. There's lots of food-related things that sicken 30 per cent of all citizens in developed countries each and every year -- genetically engineered food isn't one of them.