Question "GMO" Myth revealed -planting standard crops less intensively sets world record yield without using toxins, GMO risks, fertilizers and is much cheaper

adam

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No publicity is given to the record rice crop yields obtained by low tech changes to the way plants are looked after, and changing to low intensivity farming, less labor and mechanization use, without GMO or pesticides and little fertilizer, less water and toxins - producing better quality and cheaper food under almost all known land conditions and demonstrated in 100,000s of cases researched by State, University, NGOs and others around the world including Cornell University.

Meeting World Food Needs by Raising the Productivity of Land, Labor, Capital and Water with less intensive agriculture and by using less Plants, Labor, Capital Machines, Fertilizers, Pesticides, Herbicides and Water - producing higher yields and better quality cheaper foods without the need for GMO, intensive agriculture and toxins

However no funding is provided to develop and roll out the proven programs for commercial farmers over different crops that would produce better quality food and yields at cheaper prices, with little or no toxins, be GMO free, using less water, labor, machinery and other inputs etc and is far better for the environment -

Why no support ..... who gains?

View: https://youtu.be/HWZa53ZUREQ


Why are we still advancing GMO alone and not also using alternative crop enhancement processes to compare results ?

Techniques could be applied to other crops from small scale to big commercial operations

The world record yield for paddy rice production is not held by an agricultural research station or by a large-scale farmer from the United States, but by Sumant Kumar who has a farm of just two hectares in Darveshpura village in the state of Bihar in Northern India. His record yield of 22.4 tons per hectare, from a one-acre plot, was achieved with what is known as the System of Rice Intensification (SRI). To put his achievement in perspective, the average paddy yield worldwide is about 4 tons per hectare. Even with the use of fertilizer, average yields are usually not more than 8 tons.

Sumant Kumar’s success was not a fluke. Four of his neighbors, using SRI methods, and all for the first time, matched or exceeded the previous world record from China, 19 tons per hectare. Moreover, they used only modest amounts of inorganic fertilizer and did not need chemical crop protection.

Using SRI methods, smallholding farmers in many countries are starting to get higher yields and greater productivity from their land, labor, seeds, water and capital, with their crops showing more resilience to the hazards of climate change (Thakur et al 2009; Zhao et al 2009).

These productivity gains have been achieved simply by changing the ways that farmers manage their plants, soil, water and nutrients.

The effect is to get crop plants to grow larger, healthier, longer-lived root systems, accompanied by increases in the abundance, diversity and activity of soil organisms. These organisms constitute a beneficial microbiome for plants that enhances their growth and health in ways similar to how the human microbiome benefits Homo sapiens.

That altered management practices can induce more productive, resilient phenotypes from existing rice plant genotypes has been seen in over 50 countries. The reasons for this improvement are not all known, but there is a growing literature that helps account for the improvements observed in yield and health for rice crops using SRI.

The ideas and practices that constitute SRI were developed inductively in Madagascar some 30 years ago for rice. They are now being adapted to improve the productivity of a wide variety of other crops, starting with wheat, finger millet and sugarcane. Producing more output with fewer external inputs may sound improbable, but it derives from a shift in emphasis from improving plant genetic potential via plant breeding, to providing optimal environments for crop growth.

The adaptation of SRI experience and principles to other crops is being referred to generically as the System of Crop Intensification (SCI), encompassing variants for wheat (SWI), maize (SMI), finger millet (SFMI), sugarcane (SSI), mustard (rapeseed/canola)(another SMI), teff (STI), legumes such as pigeon peas, lentils and soya beans, and vegetables such as tomatoes, chillies and eggplant.

That similar results are seen across such a range of plants suggests some generic processes may be involved, and these practices are not only good for growing rice. This suggests to Prof. Norman Uphoff and colleagues within the SRI network that more attention should be given to the contributions that are made to agricultural production by the soil biota, both in the plants’ rhizospheres but also as symbiotic endophytes within the plants themselves (Uphoff et al. 2012).

The evidence reported below has drawn heavily, with permission, from a report that Dr. Uphoff prepared on the extension of SRI to other crops (Uphoff 2012). Much more research and evaluation needs to be done on this progression to satisfy both scientists and practitioners. But this gives an idea of what kinds of advances in agricultural knowledge and practice appear to be emerging.

Origins and Principles
Deriving from empirical work started in the 1960s in Madagascar by a French priest, Fr. Henri de Laulanié, S.J., the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) has shown remarkable capacity to raise smallholders’ rice productivity under a wide variety of conditions around the world: from tropical rainforest regions of Indonesia, to mountainous regions in northeastern Afghanistan, to fertile river basins in India and Pakistan, to arid conditions of Timbuktu on the edge of the Sahara Desert in Mali. SRI methods have proved adaptable to a wide range of agroecological settings.

With SRI management, paddy yields are usually increased by 50-100%, but sometimes by even more, even up to the super-yields of Sumant Kumar and his neighbors. Requirements for seed are greatly reduced (by 80-90%), as are those for irrigation water (by 25-50%). Little or no inorganic fertilizer is required if sufficient organic matter can be provided to the soil, and there is little if any need for agrochemical crop protection against pests and diseases. SRI plants are also generally healthier and better able to resist such stresses as well as drought, extremes of temperature, flooding, and storm damage.

SRI methodology is based on four main principles that interact in synergistic ways:

  • Establish healthy plants early and carefully, nurturing their root potential.
  • Reduce plant populations, giving each plant more room to grow above and below ground and room to capture sunlight and obtain nutrients.
  • Enrich the soil with organic matter, keeping it well-aerated to support better growth of roots and more aerobic soil biota.
  • Apply water purposefully in ways that favor plant-root and soil-microbial growth, avoiding flooded (anaerobic) soil conditions.
These principles are translated into a number of irrigated rice cultivation practices which under most smallholder farmers’ conditions are the following:

  • Plant young seedlings carefully and singly, giving them wider spacing usually in a square pattern, so that both roots and canopy have ample room to spread.
  • Keep the soil moist but not inundated. Provide sufficient water for plant roots and beneficial soil organisms to grow, but not so much as to suffocate or suppress either, e.g., through alternate wetting and drying, or through small but regular applications.
  • Add as much compost, mulch or other organic matter to the soil as possible, ‘feeding the soil’ so that the soil can, in turn, ‘feed the plant.’
  • Control weeds with mechanical methods that can incorporate weeds while breaking up the soil’s surface. This actively aerates the root zone as a beneficial by-product of weed control. This practice can promote root growth and the abundance of beneficial soil organisms, adding to yield.
The cumulative result of these practices is to induce the growth of more productive and healthier plants (phenotypes) from any given variety (genotype).

Variants of SRI practices suitable for upland regions have been developed by farmers where there are no irrigation facilities, so SRI is not just for irrigated rice production any more. In both settings, crops can be productive with less irrigation water or rainfall because taking up SRI recommendations enhances the capacity of soil systems to absorb and provide water (‘green water’). SRI practices initially developed to benefit small-scale rice growers are being adapted now for larger-scale production, with methods such as direct-seeding instead of transplanting, and with the mechanization of some labor-intensive operations such as weeding (Sharif 2011).

From the System of Rice Intensification to the System of Crop Intensification
Once the principles of SRI became understood by farmers and they had mastered its practices for rice, farmers began extending SRI ideas and methods to other crops. NGOs and some scientists have also become interested in and supportive of this extrapolation, so a novel process of innovation has ensued. Some results of this process are summarized here.

The following information is not a research report. The comparisons below are not experiment station data but rather results that have come from farmers’ fields in Asia and Africa. The measurements of yields reported here probably have some margin of error. But the differences seen are so large and are so often repeated that they are certainly significant agronomically. The results in the following sections are comparisons with farmers’ current practices, showing how much more production farmers in developing countries could be achieving from their presently available resources.

See link for more

 
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adam

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Meeting World Food Needs by Raising the Productivity of Land, Labor, Capital and Water with less intensive agriculture and by using less Plants, Labor, Capital Machines, Fertilizers, Pesticides, Herbicides and Water - producing higher yields and better quality cheaper foods without the need for GMO, intensive agriculture and toxins

See next post
 
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adam

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Meeting World Food Needs by Raising the Productivity of Land, Labor, Capital and Water with less intensive agriculture

See next post
 
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adam

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Meeting World Food Needs by Raising the Productivity of Land, Labor, Capital and Water with less intensive agriculture and by using less Plants, Labor, Capital, Machines, Fertilizers, Pesticides, Herbicides and Water - producing higher yields and better quality cheaper foods without the need for GMO, intensive agriculture and toxins


Cornell University


Cornell University Presentation - see youtube video at end

Norm Uphoff discusses opportunities indicated by the system used for many years that multiplies yields of traditional crops by 5x or more by

Planting less intensively, with less labor, less mechanization, less other inputs like fertilizer, water and toxins that harm insects and humans

These methods can be industrialized and used on a range of commercial crops

This shows that by planting traditional grains and other plants less intensively and using simple cheap methods for improving soil management and air uptake to encourage normal root and fungal growth means yields in all types of environment (except water logged land) increased by around 5 times compared to tradtional or GMO intensive agriculture

These results were repeated in 100,000s of cases across the world and documented by a range of State, University and NGO researchers including Cornell University

Mainstream agri-business, GMO researchers and traditional academics have pushed back saying it is not possible to achieve these results despite the proven results.

Less density planting with simple land management = significantly higher yields (5x or more) and better and cheaper food

The quality of the grains produced is better and yields more flour when milled compared to the same grains of equal weight grown under traditional conditions at the same site. This is because there is less poor quality grain grown under these new methods

This can be further seen by Millers paying 10% more for rice grown using these methods

Economic, academic, business and political groups appear to be blocking the funding of this research as it could change the way farms operate - so effecting farm machinery, fertilizers & seed suppliers etc profits and business

View: https://youtu.be/HWZa53ZUREQ

 
Mar 19, 2020
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If there were a problem, with GMOs you would have a point. They can have less water demand than regular crops and grow more, no fertilizer required for the basic effect. Although, I am going to use your tips to plant my beets more effectivly this year in my garden, thanks.
 

adam

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If you watch the Cornell University video you will see how and why there are major problems with GMO crops. All food products containing GMOs should be labelled

A top GMO scientist has come out and set out why he wants the GMOs food he created at Monstanto and in his own later company pulled from the market - and why generally all GMOs are bad for people.

See post link at end about Caius Rommes who after he received his PhD went to the University of California in Berkeley and helped develop a new branch of genetic engineering and then worked for Monstanto and then set up his own GMO food developer.

It is well established that GMO crops require more water pesticides and fertilizer than regular crops, damages the environment and creates a host of long term problems that kill pollinators and other wildlife. GMOs fail to match or exceed safer and cheaper non GMO food production methods.

GMOs incease the costs of food production and the toxic chemicals present in human and animal foods.

Most GMO crops have little if any long term benefit except for their developers and create long term food production problems such as the requirement for increasing using of pesticides and fertilisers and long term contracts for farmers etc

See the post below about the failure and dangers of GMOs including FDA and EU Regulator research showing GMOs created antibiotic resistant cattle and plants which may open the human immune system to being shut down and open to viral attacks. These problems were found by chance not as a result of a formal FDA regulatory approval processes for GMOs.

There are serious issues with the regulation of GMO research including the failure to ensure it is carried out properly and that the regulators are controlled by the very industry that creates GMOs (in some countries this control is direct - see Argentina)


 

adam

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If there were a problem, with GMOs you would have a point.
GMO editing has created problems in the edited plant and animal cells including antibiotic resistant cattle and papaya open to infection by both animal or plant viruses.

The GMO processes are pretty much the same for plants and animals.

Plant and animal DNA can be and are inserted into each other. The problems are often only discovered by other researchers later, not by the regulators or those doing the initial editing.

Some problems may not be found for a long time or not at all. Some GMO editing has left open reading frames in the edited DNA which means that viruses can use these as a vehicle to enter and disable the immune system of a plant or animal - see example below discovered by European Food Regulators researching Hawaiian GMO papaya in which an open frame was discovered which is very dangerous and leaves the plant or animal open to further later insertions by viruses etc at anytime

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=yNvLhjalJMY


GMO editing to cut out DNA can be precise and is called tweaking
but as soon as you add anything into the edit then the problems can start as the genetic damage is repaired by the cell

The DNA repair process cannot be controlled and ends up creating unknown mutations by the random insertion of any non-host DNA included along with the edited material inserted during the gene editing. See youtube video above

Japanese researchers looking at mouse cell DNA recently edited found e-coli, bovin and goat DNA to have been inserted during the repair process.

A range of foreign and unintended DNA has been found inserted in fruitflies, fish, mice, yeast, the nematode C. elegans and various plants

The gene editors appear not to know that this had happened and regulators also seem to have failed to pick up most of these issues as part of any approval process

GMO editing can have major problems.

In general, viral genes expressed in plants raise both agronomic and human health concerns (reviewed in Latham and Wilson 2008). This is because many viral genes function to disable their host in order to facilitate pathogen invasion. Often, this is achieved by incapacitating specific anti-pathogen defenses.

Incorporating such genes could clearly lead to undesirable and unexpected outcomes in agriculture.

Furthermore, viruses that infect plants are often not that different from viruses that infect humans. For example, sometimes the genes of human and plant viruses are interchangeable, while on other occasions inserting plant viral fragments as transgenes has caused the genetically altered plant to become susceptible to an animal virus (Dasgupta et al. 2001). Thus, in various ways, inserting viral genes accidentally into crop plants and the food supply confers a significant potential for harm


Watch Dr Latham's presentation in the video below from 45 minutes on and you will see how the GMO editing is flawed and foreign DNA, bacterial, viral, plant and animal DNA can be randomly added in gene editing with unknown and sometimes obviously dangerous results.

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=p-c33wZGs74&feature=youtu.be


In 2015 Japanese researchers showed that DNA edits made to mouse zygotes using the CRISPR method of gene editing are also vulnerable to unintended insertion of non-host DNA (Ono et al., 2015).

Since then, similar integrations of foreign DNA at the target site have been observed in many species: fruitflies (Drosophila melanogaster), medaka fish (Oryzias latipes), mice, yeast, Aspergillus (a fungus), the nematode C. elegans, Daphnia magna, and various plants

The same Japanese group showed that DNA from the E. coli genome can integrate in the target organisms’ genome (Ono et al. 2019). Acquisition of E. coli DNA was found to be quite frequent. Insertion of long unintended DNA sequences occurred at 4% of the total number of edited sites and 21% of these were of DNA from the E. coli genome. The source of the E. coli DNA was traced back to the E. coli cells that were used to produce the vector plasmid. The vector plasmid, which is DNA, was contaminated with E. coligenome DNA. Importantly, the Japanese researchers were using standard methods of vector plasmid preparation.

Even more intriguing was the finding, in the same paper, that edited mouse genomes can acquire bovine DNA or goat DNA (Ono et al., 2019).


By training, I am a plant biologist. In the early 1990s I was busy making genetically modified plants (often called GMOs for Genetically Modified Organisms) as part of the research that led to my PhD. Into these plants we were putting DNA from various foreign organisms, such as viruses and bacteria.

I left science in large part because it seemed impossible to do research while also providing the unvarnished public scepticism that I believed the public, as ultimate funder and risk-taker of that science, was entitled to.

Criticism of science and technology remains very difficult. Even though many academics benefit from tenure and a large salary, the sceptical process in much of science is largely lacking. This is why risk assessment of GMOs has been short-circuited and public concerns about them are growing. Until the damaged scientific ethos is rectified, both scientists and the public are correct to doubt that GMOs should ever have been let out of any lab.


Transparency

Another example of problems with GMO editing is shown via the USA Company Cibus a gene editing seed company, which announced its SU Canola is a rapeseed engineered with oligonucleotide-directed mutagenesis (ODM), a gene editing technique, to withstand spraying with certain herbicides.

Products of gene editing fall within the scope of EU GMO law, according to a European Court of Justice ruling of 2018.

When the company launched SU Canola on the North American market, it touted it as its “first commercial seed product developed using its rapid trait development system (RTDS), a patented gene-editing tool”.

When Cibus went to investors in 2019, Cibus said in a preliminary prospectus filed with the US Securities Exchange Commission that SU Canola was gene edited.

Consequently, the rapeseed was listed as a GMO in the EU GMO databaserun by German regulator BVL and Wageningen University, and in the Clearinghouse of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity.

However Cibus said in 2020 the product was not a result of gene editing after it was informed that its GMO canola could now be detected by a test and so could excluded from being improted for sale and use in the EU

On 7 September 2020, an open source detection test became available for the first gene-edited crop on the market, SU Canola, developed by US company Cibus. The test was published in the peer-reviewed scientific journal, Foods.




Discussion with Dr Latham on Regulatory Structural Failings

 
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GMO started with the first bite of a predator. Every new generation of growth is GMOed. Plant disease and insects have done thousands of years of GMO. Whenever you shop, harvest or hunt, you are participating in an GMO event. We can just do it faster now....in a lab.

Other than water and rock salt, what foods do you consume that has not been GMOed? Do you have any idea of what our crops and stock looked like and tasted like before thousands of years of GMOing?

Cloning and growing in a sterile environment, would be the only non GMO solution. If GMO scares or worries you.
 

adam

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I am not saying nature has not improved crops and animals over time ..... or that man cannot help by breeding techniques or certain types of GMO editing to remove DNA

However the natural / wild breeding selection process of plants and animals do not involve animal, fish, viral or plant etc DNA being mixed with each other as part of any natural process.

Also with GMOs sometimes markers are added to identify the GMO crop from control plants - for example an anti-biotic DNA is added just as a marker. This could have unknown dangerous consequences

I quoted previously and below from Caius Rommens a Berkeley Phd GMO researcher who developed a new field of GMO processes, then worked for Monsanto and then set up SIMPLOT a commercially successful GMO developer.

He has around 200 GMO patents to his name and has said in a book that all his GMO foods should be withdrawn

"Pandora’s Potatoes.’ This book, which is now available on Amazon, explains why I renounce my work at Simplot and why the GMO varieties should be withdrawn from the market"

He now breeds plants and animals using conventional techniques to improve them

In 2013 Caius Rommens concluded GMO processes were dangerous. He has reviewed his patents and says the lessons apply to all GMO work for plants and animals etc

GMO editing that inserts DNA is not the same as what happens in nature and cannot be compared as it often involves different life forms being combined

So simple cross breeding of species to improve a wheat corn, livestock etc or cutting out DNA is not the same as inserting DNA

There are 2 parts the initial cutting out and insertion of required DNA. This can be relatively easy to control

However the primary long term effects are unknown.... as Caius Rommens has shown he refers to assumptions about DDT etc as an example. See later on

However the secondary DNA repair process cannot be controlled and this is where secondary additional unknowable side effects and other DNA additions take place separate to any primary inserted DNA and unknown primary side effects.

GMO processes involve foreign DNA in solution.

This solution contains both the selected required DNA and other foreign species DNA separate from the required DNA. This is a high risk area

The known results to date have included

1. antibiotic resistant cattle

2. Japanese researchers looking at mouse cell DNA recently edited found e-coli, bovin and goat DNA to have been inserted during the repair process.

3. A range of foreign and unintended DNA has been found inserted in fruitflies, fish, mice, yeast, the nematode C. elegans and various plants

4. Open reading frarmes in DNA

This is what has been found mostly by accident not from any approval process or by the GMO editor

This does not address the creation of toxin resistant plants or toxins in plants etc

The research papers about all this are set out in the previous posts and in links below

Please watch the video from 45 minutes in to see the secondary risks in gene editing healing process for plants/animals

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=p-c33wZGs74&feature=youtu.be


Also note GMO work has left edited organisms open to further unknown modification by errors in the GMO editing process - termed leaving an open reading frame in the DNA.

This is very dangerous and is not allowed by regulators but is also not typically checked for.

An open reading frame could even allow humans to become compromised by viruses, which could use such open reading frames in the GMO food humans eat to infect humans via bacteria or viruses

Note also that Caius Rommens the GMO Phd developer who previously worked for Monsanto and at University of California in Berkeley helped develop a new branch of genetic engineering and had said that all his SIMPLOT GMO potatoes should be withdrawn from the market says that the SIMPLOT lessons apply to all GMO products...

[Quotes]

The GMO potatoes are likely to accumulate at least two toxins ..
...

......I renounce my work at Simplot and ..... the GMO varieties should be withdrawn from the market.

It is a warning and a call for action: a hope that others will step forward with additional evidence, so that the public, with its limited financial means, has a chance to counter the narrow-mindedness of the biotech industry.

My book describes the many hidden issues of GMO potatoes, but GMO potatoes are not the exception. They are the rule.

I could just as well have written (and may write) about the experimental GMO varieties we developed at Monsanto, which contains an antifungal protein that I now recognize as allergenic, about the disease resistance that caused insect sensitivity, or about anything else in genetic engineering.

........They don’t understand the level of bias and self-deception that exists among genetic engineers.

Indeed, anyone who is pro-science should understand that science is meant to study nature, not to modify it—and certainly not to predict, in the face of strong evidence, the absence of unintended effects..........

The real anti-science movement is not on the streets. It is, as I discovered, in the laboratories of corporate America....

Another strange assumption was that I had felt able to predict the absence of unintentional long-term effects on the basis of short-term experiments. It was the same assumption that chemists had used when they commercialized DDT, Agent Orange, PCBs, rGBH, and so on.

The true scope of my errors became obvious to me only after I had relocated to a small farm in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest.

By this time Simplot had announced the regulatory approval of my GMO varieties. As the company began to plan for quiet introductions in American and Asian markets, I was breeding plants and animals independently, using conventional methods.

And since I still felt uncomfortable about my corporate past, I also re-evaluated the about two hundred patents and articles that I had published in the past, as well as the various petitions for deregulation.


 
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adam

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Please note this original post was not about the risks from GMOs but how non GMO farming yields can yield 5x or more than GMOs and use less water, toxins, fertilizers, labor and finance etc plus can be used on both industrial farms and small holdings and poor quality land without damaging the environment and insects wildlife and plants as GMO farming does

The GMO Myth is clear - we do not need GMOs and they have been shown in some cases to have dangerous or negative long-term effects set out in the previous posts above on humans, plants, wildlife and the world we live in

For Cornell University backed benefits of non-GMO over GMO see info below from previous posts and Cornell video

Cornell University Presentation - see youtube video at end

Norm Uphoff discusses opportunities indicated by the system used for many years that multiplies yields of traditional crops by 5x or more by

Planting less intensively, with less labor, less mechanization, less other inputs like fertilizer, water and toxins that harm insects and humans

These methods can be industrialized and used on a range of commercial crops

This shows that by planting traditional grains and other plants less intensively and using simple cheap methods for improving soil management and air uptake to encourage normal root and fungal growth means yields in all types of environment (except water logged land) increased by around 5 times compared to tradtional or GMO intensive agriculture

These results were repeated in 100,000s of cases across the world and documented by a range of State, University and NGO researchers including Cornell University

Mainstream agri-business, GMO researchers and traditional academics have pushed back saying it is not possible to achieve these results despite the proven results.

Less density planting with simple land management = significantly higher yields (5x or more) and better and cheaper food

The quality of the grains produced is better and yields more flour when milled compared to the same grains of equal weight grown under traditional conditions at the same site. This is because there is less poor quality grain grown under these new methods

This can be further seen by Millers paying 10% more for rice grown using these methods

Economic, academic, business and political groups appear to be blocking the funding of this research as it could change the way farms operate - so effecting farm machinery, fertilizers & seed suppliers etc profits and business

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=HWZa53ZUREQ&feature=youtu.be
 

efarina96

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Oct 17, 2020
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Please note this original post was not about the risks from GMOs but how non GMO farming yields can yield 5x or more than GMOs and use less water, toxins, fertilizers, labor and finance etc plus can be used on both industrial farms and small holdings and poor quality land without damaging the environment and insects wildlife and plants as GMO farming does

The GMO Myth is clear - we do not need GMOs and they have been shown in some cases to have dangerous or negative long-term effects set out in the previous posts above on humans, plants, wildlife and the world we live in

For Cornell University backed benefits of non-GMO over GMO see info below from previous posts and Cornell video

Cornell University Presentation - see youtube video at end

Norm Uphoff discusses opportunities indicated by the system used for many years that multiplies yields of traditional crops by 5x or more by

Planting less intensively, with less labor, less mechanization, less other inputs like fertilizer, water and toxins that harm insects and humans

These methods can be industrialized and used on a range of commercial crops

This shows that by planting traditional grains and other plants less intensively and using simple cheap methods for improving soil management and air uptake to encourage normal root and fungal growth means yields in all types of environment (except water logged land) increased by around 5 times compared to tradtional or GMO intensive agriculture

These results were repeated in 100,000s of cases across the world and documented by a range of State, University and NGO researchers including Cornell University

Mainstream agri-business, GMO researchers and traditional academics have pushed back saying it is not possible to achieve these results despite the proven results.

Less density planting with simple land management = significantly higher yields (5x or more) and better and cheaper food

The quality of the grains produced is better and yields more flour when milled compared to the same grains of equal weight grown under traditional conditions at the same site. This is because there is less poor quality grain grown under these new methods

This can be further seen by Millers paying 10% more for rice grown using these methods

Economic, academic, business and political groups appear to be blocking the funding of this research as it could change the way farms operate - so effecting farm machinery, fertilizers & seed suppliers etc profits and business

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=HWZa53ZUREQ&feature=youtu.be
When I worked in a produce department in a grocery store, I was encouraged to educate myself about our products and inform our customers.
After reading that braising older veggies is often a good way of bringing out a depth of flavor and enhancing the quality of older products, I posted a handwritten sign by the cabbage, which was never close to fresh (we usually had to peel layer after layer of rotten leaves just to display the product), saying just as much. I was immediately reprimanded by a manager. "What kind of message does that send to the customer?"
You wanna know why nobody changes the way we (particularly big companies) manage crops, even though we all know it would be to our benefit?
Because every defineable sector of our society has empowered people to be liars. Not only do we not care, we are happy to play along.
 

adam

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Another aspect of the GMO myth relates to Glyphosate herbicides and other chemicals and pesticides used with GMO crops. The info below is all set out in the video docu at the end of this post - titled

Poisoned Fields - Glyphosate, the underrated risk?

This video sets out the medical studies, reports and sources of other tests and findings quoted below

At the end of the Poisoned Fields - Glyphosate video below from around 40.14 mins on it sets out that Glyphosate has been found in human breast milk in various locations in Germany and also in the USA, including Virginia, Florida etc. at very high levels far above those allowed by various regulatory agencies.

Glyphosate was also found in adults and childrens urine.

How this can happen needs to be fully researched as a range of serious human health issues are linked to Glyphosate

In Germany the regulators have confirmed they have not tested the other 20 chemicals used in GMO related herbicide products like Roundup and admit that some of these products are up to 1000 times more toxic than Glyphosate alone

Glyphosate based herbicides like Roundup are used on a range of human and animal foods have been shown in animal studies and real use on farms to be linked to lower fertility rates, higher still births and other defects and serious issues and gets into human water supplies and food

These Glyphosate related effects have been evidenced by farmers switching from animal food with glyphosate-based herbicide to foods without glyphosate. They saw animal fertility rates rise by 100%. In at least one case a farmer tested the results by switching back temporarily to animal foods with glyphosate and found the previous animal health problems then returned

Long term (24 months) university studies of rats fed on food with glyphosate at levels allowed for humans showed huge tumors and other toxicity of organs. The studies by the GMO companies of glyphosate products were for only 3 months and showed no ill effects. The same types of rats and accepted processes were used in both long and short term studies

It is also noted that glyphosate has antibiotic properties and has been patented as an antibiotic. However it was never used in this role because it was shown to kill beneficial gut bacteria but not harmful ones.

This has serious implications for human food health and that of the land on which glyphosate is sprayed as it destroys bacteria needed to maintain soil quality and life.

There are indications that long term use of GMOs and their glyphosate linked products can lead to a decline in crop yields of up to 40% as harmful soil bacteria not effected by glyphosate take over and allow the spread plant diseases through the soil

Additionally glyphosate was first developed as a pipe cleaner. Glyphosate binds all the minerals in the pipe to it and removes them. This same effect may also happen on the land glyphosate is sprayed on

Given the negative impact of glyphosate on animal health and the soil humans should have a strong desire to have independent glyphosate studies conducted.

A WHO panel reviewed medical studies on glyphosate and found the herbicide produced by Monsanto, Syngenta and BASF to be absolutely toxic and probably carcinogenic.

Bayer and others led a campaign against the WHO findings even before the WHO panel had begun its review. This was shown in court documents see the video Monsanto's Toxic Tricks

It appears that national regulatory agencies are unwilling to conduct studies on glyphosate even though some regulatory scientists have refused to sign off on glyphosate being safe to use or as non carcinogenic and studies used to support glyphosate paid for by chemical firms have been shown to to have been fabricated with court action taken

My conclusion is please have independent studies done on all these matters its in all our interests

See video below on Glyphosate

Poisoned Fields - Glyphosate, the underrated risk?

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=XDyI10Z8aH0

Monsanto's Toxic Tricks


Very interesting presentation by a very humble Canadian farmer who was NOT seeking financial compensation from Monsanto for damages suffered due to his non GMO crop being contaminated by Monsanto but was taken to court by Monsanto

'The Farmer Who Took on Monsanto' -
Western Washington University

When Monsanto's 'Round-up Ready' GMO canola seeds were found in his fields, Monsanto sued the Schmeisers for patent infringement and sought $400,000 in damages. Monsanto offered to withdraw the suit if the Schmeisers signed a contract to buy the company's seeds in the future and to pay its associated technology-use fee. The Schmeisers contested the case to the Canadian Supreme Court, which ruled that Monsanto did own the "Round-up Ready" gene, but that the Schmeisers owed no damages to Monsanto. When Monsanto's seeds again found their way into Percy's fields, he sued the company for cleanup costs. The case was settled when Monsanto agreed to pay to clean the Schmeisers' fields and dropped its demand that Percy not speak publicly about the matter.

From his experience, Percy has developed 12 principles for food and agriculture in an age of biotechnology. Schmeiser's story is one of the first and most prominent cases of a corporate claim to own patents on life.



Biology of Soil Health

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ntJouJhLM48


The docu below raises some very troubling GMO issues and interviews a lady member of the UK House of Lords about her own medical issues she says are related to glyphosate

The Peril on your Plate: Genetic engineering and chemical agriculture, what's in your food?

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=VCmZJtztAvI


Finally it seems that there is an interesting slick and co-ordinated effort to soft promote GMOs through easy to watch videos promoted as addressing environmental issues in a clear way.

These videos do not address the known risks like the anti-biotic resistant GMO cattle that were accidentally developed and only found out about by accident, the lack of regulation and independent checking of GMO work or issues with accidentally inserting potentially human harmful virus or bacteria or other DNA in GMOs that resist insects and these effecting people.

Below are 2 of these slick GMO videos as you will see much of the content is similar or the same and aimed at the younger audience

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=LLhrUYtbCi0


View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=h4_t4Xgd4CA
 
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adam

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University Koblenz-Landau, Germany study and Uni of Bern Switzerland and other studies

indicate that in real terms more herbicides and pesticides are now being used with GMOs or GE crops than before GMOs as the newer toxins are much more leathal in smaller doses than the older toxins plus insects and weeds are becoming resistant and that pesticide use is growing as much in various GMOs as non GMO crops.

We fail to take on board that these insect and plant toxins are getting into human food and water supplies as a direct result of GMOs via the animals, plants, milk, water and drinks we consume

 
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University Koblenz-Landau, Germany study and Uni of Bern Switzerland and other studies

indicate that in real terms more herbicides and pesticides are now being used with GMOs or GE crops than before GMOs as the newer toxins are much more leathal in smaller doses than the older toxins plus insects and weeds are becoming resistant and that pesticide use is growing as much in various GMOs as non GMO crops.

We fail to take on board that these insect and plant toxins are getting into human food and water supplies as a direct result of GMOs via the animals, plants, milk, water and drinks we consume

So is it the GMOs to blame or pesticide use? "Overall, pesticide toxicity for terrestrial plants is highest regardless of whether fields are conventional, non-GE, or GE," Is what the article says, and you say that pesticides are being used more because of growing resistance, which is true. So it would seem that it is not related to GMOs and simply a farming practices issue.
 
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Another aspect of the GMO myth relates to Glyphosate herbicides and other chemicals and pesticides used with GMO crops. The info below is all set out in the video docu at the end of this post - titled

Poisoned Fields - Glyphosate, the underrated risk?

This video sets out the medical studies, reports and sources of other tests and findings quoted below

At the end of the Poisoned Fields - Glyphosate video below from around 40.14 mins on it sets out that Glyphosate has been found in human breast milk in various locations in Germany and also in the USA, including Virginia, Florida etc. at very high levels far above those allowed by various regulatory agencies.

Glyphosate was also found in adults and childrens urine.

How this can happen needs to be fully researched as a range of serious human health issues are linked to Glyphosate

In Germany the regulators have confirmed they have not tested the other 20 chemicals used in GMO related herbicide products like Roundup and admit that some of these products are up to 1000 times more toxic than Glyphosate alone

Glyphosate based herbicides like Roundup are used on a range of human and animal foods have been shown in animal studies and real use on farms to be linked to lower fertility rates, higher still births and other defects and serious issues and gets into human water supplies and food

These Glyphosate related effects have been evidenced by farmers switching from animal food with glyphosate-based herbicide to foods without glyphosate. They saw animal fertility rates rise by 100%. In at least one case a farmer tested the results by switching back temporarily to animal foods with glyphosate and found the previous animal health problems then returned

Long term (24 months) university studies of rats fed on food with glyphosate at levels allowed for humans showed huge tumors and other toxicity of organs. The studies by the GMO companies of glyphosate products were for only 3 months and showed no ill effects. The same types of rats and accepted processes were used in both long and short term studies

It is also noted that glyphosate has antibiotic properties and has been patented as an antibiotic. However it was never used in this role because it was shown to kill beneficial gut bacteria but not harmful ones.

This has serious implications for human food health and that of the land on which glyphosate is sprayed as it destroys bacteria needed to maintain soil quality and life.

There are indications that long term use of GMOs and their glyphosate linked products can lead to a decline in crop yields of up to 40% as harmful soil bacteria not effected by glyphosate take over and allow the spread plant diseases through the soil

Additionally glyphosate was first developed as a pipe cleaner. Glyphosate binds all the minerals in the pipe to it and removes them. This same effect may also happen on the land glyphosate is sprayed on

Given the negative impact of glyphosate on animal health and the soil humans should have a strong desire to have independent glyphosate studies conducted.

A WHO panel reviewed medical studies on glyphosate and found the herbicide produced by Monsanto, Syngenta and BASF to be absolutely toxic and probably carcinogenic.

Bayer and others led a campaign against the WHO findings even before the WHO panel had begun its review. This was shown in court documents see the video Monsanto's Toxic Tricks

It appears that national regulatory agencies are unwilling to conduct studies on glyphosate even though some regulatory scientists have refused to sign off on glyphosate being safe to use or as non carcinogenic and studies used to support glyphosate paid for by chemical firms have been shown to to have been fabricated with court action taken

My conclusion is please have independent studies done on all these matters its in all our interests

See video below on Glyphosate

Poisoned Fields - Glyphosate, the underrated risk?

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=XDyI10Z8aH0

Monsanto's Toxic Tricks


Very interesting presentation by a very humble Canadian farmer who was NOT seeking financial compensation from Monsanto for damages suffered due to his non GMO crop being contaminated by Monsanto but was taken to court by Monsanto

'The Farmer Who Took on Monsanto' -
Western Washington University
When Monsanto's 'Round-up Ready' GMO canola seeds were found in his fields, Monsanto sued the Schmeisers for patent infringement and sought $400,000 in damages. Monsanto offered to withdraw the suit if the Schmeisers signed a contract to buy the company's seeds in the future and to pay its associated technology-use fee. The Schmeisers contested the case to the Canadian Supreme Court, which ruled that Monsanto did own the "Round-up Ready" gene, but that the Schmeisers owed no damages to Monsanto. When Monsanto's seeds again found their way into Percy's fields, he sued the company for cleanup costs. The case was settled when Monsanto agreed to pay to clean the Schmeisers' fields and dropped its demand that Percy not speak publicly about the matter.

From his experience, Percy has developed 12 principles for food and agriculture in an age of biotechnology. Schmeiser's story is one of the first and most prominent cases of a corporate claim to own patents on life.



Biology of Soil Health

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ntJouJhLM48


The docu below raises some very troubling GMO issues and interviews a lady member of the UK House of Lords about her own medical issues she says are related to glyphosate

The Peril on your Plate: Genetic engineering and chemical agriculture, what's in your food?

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=VCmZJtztAvI


Finally it seems that there is an interesting slick and co-ordinated effort to soft promote GMOs through easy to watch videos promoted as addressing environmental issues in a clear way.

These videos do not address the known risks like the anti-biotic resistant GMO cattle that were accidentally developed and only found out about by accident, the lack of regulation and independent checking of GMO work or issues with accidentally inserting potentially human harmful virus or bacteria or other DNA in GMOs that resist insects and these effecting people.

Below are 2 of these slick GMO videos as you will see much of the content is similar or the same and aimed at the younger audience

View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=LLhrUYtbCi0


View: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=h4_t4Xgd4CA
Could you link to anything on the cattle? And couldn't we just... kill them?
This video does emphasise the correct point, it is our farming systems that cause the problem, and you say it too. Companies like mosanto and our heavy use of various -icides are the problem, if GMOs simply enable the system, they aren't the problem.

And the House of Lords video, do you want to use a Russian propaganda conglomerate as a source?
 

adam

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So is it the GMOs to blame or pesticide use? "Overall, pesticide toxicity for terrestrial plants is highest regardless of whether fields are conventional, non-GE, or GE,"
This is really about why we do not need GMOs. We can have cheaper better food and environment without GMOs.

Yes its GMOs that are to blame for increased toxin use - there is

1. GMOs DNA are specifically designed to be used with large amounts of toxins (which would kill most non GMO plants)

Plant GMO DNA designed to kill pests results in pests getting resistant and so more pest toxins are used

2. high toxin usage builds up resistance in other exposed plants and also in insects / fungi etc to the toxin

3. GMO cross pollination of related species some of which are weeds or not wanted (ie cereals are grasses as are some weeds etc etc) creates toxin resistant weeds / plants

4. we know all toxin usage creates resistance in other plants and pests etc over time.

This cycle keeps going - also these toxins have been shown to effect human fish insects and animal hormones and health etc

So more powerful toxins are needed to kill the GMO resistant weeds / plants and pests - thus even if the same volume of toxins is used as before there is a much higher toxicity level. However we are seeing both greater volumes and stronger toxins

Next

Allowing cross pollination of natrual species or removing DNA are probably less risky or good processes, but inserting foreign DNA is very different as multiple foreign species DNA is introduced through the processes used -

See GMO accident creates antibiotic resistant cattle

Note the wide use of antibiotics as markers just to identify a GMO plant not for any improvement in yield etc

This is really wrong

GMOs may also create serious long term health risks, do not seem properly regulated and lack long term studies - same for GMO toxins see previous posts above.

The same GMO firms pay the regulators fees and own both plant / animal GMO patents and GMO toxin patents

Same firms want to control seeds via patents even seeds that get cross pollinated from GMOs - see above to my post on Canadian farmer Percy Schmeiser - plus his video on his GMO seed experience and unreasonable demands made

Lets be really clear

We are now consuming much more of these GMO related toxins in our food and liquids - milk water juice etc.

GMO Toxins are even appearing in human breast milk in Germany and the USA at levels unsafe in water.

The weed killer traces in breast milk were found to be between 0.210 and 0.432 nanograms per millilitre (PPB). Drinking water is allowed to have no more than 0.100 nanograms of glyphosate.

Irene Witte, professor of toxicology at the University of Oldenburg, described the findings as “intolerable.”




University lab studies show these GMO related toxins do effect human cells and cause tumors in animals when given over time at adjusted doses "safe" for humans. Rats fed on GMO plants have also become ill and there are repeated efforts to cover up and discourage research.


The EPA and FDA do no long term studies on GMOs or toxin effects. Most studies sponsored by GMO developers are limited to 90 days

Independent Universities have done long term toxin studies.

See previous posts.

Huge tumors have grown in the same type of rats used in short term studies, even though the short term studies show no toxin problems etc

These GMO related toxins have been shown to kill wild and farmed fish and mammals from water runoff - ie species they are not not supposed to effect.

Next

There is a better way to farm that does less damage to the land and produces much higher yields and removes human health risks and its CHEAPER.

Monsanto patented Glyphosate as a human antibiotic but it was not used because it killed off only good human gut bacteria and caused negative health effects - it has now been shown to kill off good bacteria in the soil and so allow disease to spread and also seriously degrade soil quality


If there were no GMOs the use of toxins would be much much less and also toxins would not be sprayed during the plant growing stage etc.

Herbicides can not be used in the same way with non GMO crops as with GMOs

We know all these GMO methods result in much greater use of herbicides and pestcides because the GMO uses are creating toxic resistance in weeds and pests.

As far as the House of Lords video goes RT was the only place I could find it -

You can see in the link the lady is Margaret, Countess of Mar and is the holder of the original Earldom of Mar, the oldest peerage title in the United Kingdom. She is also a farmer and former specialist goats cheesemaker in Great Witley, Worcestershire.

You will have to decide why other news services would not report questions regularly raised by this very neutral member of the House of Lords who focuses on asking for better regulation on the use of organophosphates.

Margaret, Countess of Mar
She was a crossbenchmember of the House of Lords from and was one of 92 hereditary peers elected to remain in the Lords in 1999.

In the summer of 1989, while dipping her sheep through a tank of organophosphorous chemicals, Lady Mar was subjected to chemical exposure on her foot, and three weeks later developed headaches and muscular pains. She was eventually diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome.[14][15][16] Since then Lady Mar has used her seat in the House of Lords almost exclusively to press the government to provide suitable care and support for patients with similar long-term and poorly understood medical conditions, and to better regulate the use of organophosphates. This also led to her membership on the EU sub-committees listed above.

As a consequence of her illness, Lady Mar founded the organisation Forward-ME to co-ordinate the activities of a fairly broad spectrum of charities and voluntary organisations working with patients with chronic fatigue syndrome, which is also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME).


GMO Anti biotic resistant cattle

See link below from my earlier post above ref Dr Latham or a media search.

https://jonathanlatham.net/regulators-discover-a-hidden-viral-gene-in-commercial-gmo-crops/


What people do not understand is these GMO risks are only found by accident. Regulators generally just accept what they are provided by the GMO developer.

Also researchers found a range of foreign and unintended DNA inserted in fruitflies, fish, mice, yeast, the nematode C. elegans and various plants. See previous posts above.

Japanese researchers looking at mouse cell DNA recently edited found e-coli, bovin and goat DNA to have been inserted during the repair process.

Please review my previous posts for videos by Drs Latham PhD and Wilson PhD both are biologist/virologist whose work focused on creating GMOs at University

How many risks are already out and not discovered is the question.

However the basic point is that traditional farming on industrial or small holding scale can be improved by cheap simple updates to create long term solutions using much less water almost no fertilizer and creating record breaking crop yields and quality

GMO crops yield less, are more expensive and create a range of problems linked to the use of toxins and cross polinatio - these risks include serious human health issues and environmental problems and damage plus a range of other issues


 
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adam

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As questions about agri-toxins have come up below are links to additional info showing how these are being found in human food at levels above those legally allowed or temporary increases in allowed levels have been extended for over 20 years

Additionally there are links to research showing how academics have been working secretly to debunk information showing the damage GMOs are doing has been funded by GMO firms -

Key points below FOIA emails show how bad this is with the academics job acknowledged openly in emails:

"We are all bad-ass shills for the truth. It's a pleasure shilling with you."

Or, as Folta himself put it:

"I'm glad to sign on to whatever you like, or write whatever you like."

"I am grateful for this opportunity and promise a solid return on the investment"
, Folta wrote after receiving the $25,000 check, thereby showing both a clear understanding of his role and the purpose of the money.

Kevin Folta, Chair of the Dept. of Horticulture at the University of Florida secretly took expenses and $25,000 of unrestricted money from Monsanto to promote GMO crops.

However, the money Folta received is insignificant besides the tens of millions his university was taking from Syngenta (>$10million), Monsanto(>$1million), Pioneer (>$10million), and BASF (>$1million) - money that it's hard to believe did not have a role in protecting Kevin Folta as he roamed zealously (and often offensively) over the internet, via his twitter account, blog, podcast, and OpEds, squelching dissent and ridiculing GMO critics wherever he went.

On behalf of the biotech industry, or via the PR firm Ketchum, Folta wrote on websites and attended public events, trainings, lobbying efforts and special missions.

Parts of this were already known, but Lipton digs up further damning evidence and quotes from Folta. They include an email to Monsanto that solidly contradicts Folta's previous denials of a relationship with Monsanto and the biotech industry:

Folta rarely acted alone. His networks are filled with economists, molecular biologists, plant pathologists, development specialists, and agronomists, many of them much more celebrated than Kevin Folta, but all of them in a knowing loop with industry and the PR firms.

Their job was acknowledged openly in emails: "We are all bad-ass shills for the truth. It's a pleasure shilling with you." Or, as Folta himself put it: "I'm glad to sign on to whatever you like, or write whatever you like."

The article goes on to similarly expose Bruce Chassy (Prof Emeritus, University of Illinois) and David Shaw (Mississippi State University). It also discussses, presumably for 'balance', agronomist and GMO critic Charles Benbrook, then at Washington State University, who unlike the others openly acknowledged his funding.

What Lipton missed

But readers of the emails can find facts that are much more damaging to perceptions of academic independence than that contained in the main article.

Also missing from the main Timesarticle is a sense of the extensive and intricate networking of a small army of academics furthering the interests of Monsanto and other parts of the chemical, agribusiness and biotech industries.



the emails are proof positive of active collusion between the agribusiness and chemical industries, numerous and often prominent academics, PR companies, and key administrators of land grant universities for the purpose of promoting GMOs and pesticides.
In particular, nowhere does the Times note that one of the chief colluders was none other than the President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).
All this is omitted entirely, or buried in hard-to-notice side bars, which are anyway unavailable to print readers. So, here is the article Eric Lipton should have written.
First, the Lipton story
The Lipton article seems, at first sight, to be impressive reporting but
What Lipton missed
Readers of the emails can find facts that are much more damaging to perceptions of academic independence than that contained in the main article.
For one thing, the money Folta received the others include
Naming the names
The academics identified by these emails as cooperating with industry and PR firms include:

Profs. Bruce Chassy (University of Illinois) and Alan McHughen(University of California, Riverside) who worked together to destroy the credibility of Russian scientist and GMO critic Irina Ermakova.
They persuaded the journal Nature Biotechnology to interview Ermakova about her research and describe it. This interview was followed by a detailed critique of her research (about which none of the authors were expert). Ermakova was neither told of the critique nor given a chance to answer it. This whole elaborate subterfugerequired her to be sent a dummy proof of the article she thought she was publishing in the journal.
Prof. Calestuous Juma (Harvard University) longtime advocate of GMOs for Africa.
Prof. Wayne Parrott (University of Georgia) a serial intervener in academic GMO debates.
Prof. Roger Beachy (Danforth Center, formerly USAID). Beachy is the principle living exponent of a classic biotech strategy: to respond rapidly to a report or publication critical of some aspect of the technology with a multi-author 'rebuttal'.
Thus the inaugural report of the Bioscience Resource Project on the genome damage caused by genetic engineering (A. K. Wilson, J. R. Latham and R. A. Steinbrecher 2006) was met, even before formal publication, with both barrels from 23 professors, including Roger Beachy (Altpeter et al 2005)].
Prof. Ron Herring (Cornell) who has helped to promote GMOs in India and fought to defuse the farmer suicide debate in India.
Prof. C S Prakash (Tuskegee University) is the convener of the influential listserv AgBioWorld. AgBioWorld was the all-important conduit for a petition signed by 3,000 scientists calling for the retraction of a 2001 scientific paper showing GMO contamination of Mexican corn (Quist and Chapela 2001).
As detailed in an article called 'The Fake Persuaders', the scientists who initiated the petition, and made inaccurate and inflammatory statements about the authors, were not real people. However, their emails could be traced back to servers belonging to Monsanto or Bivings, a PR company that was working with Monsanto at the time.
Prof. Nina Fedoroff (Penn State) is the most prominent of all of the scientists looped into all of the Times emails. Nina Fedoroff was the 2011-2012 President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The AAAS is the foremost scientific body in the US.
During her Presidency, Fedoroff, who is also a contributor to the NY Times, used her position to coordinated and sign a letter on behalf of 60 prominent scientists. This letter was sent to EPA as part of an effort to defeat a pesticide regulatory effort.
The real coordinator was Monsanto but Fedoroff participated in phone conferences and email exchanges with them (including with the prominent lobbyist Stanley Abramson) and gets credit in the emails for "moving the ball far down the field". Yet Nina Fedoroff is not once named in the main article and nowhere at all is her position noted.
So the story that academia's most vocal GMO defenders, and some of its most prominent scientists, are copied into these emails is missing. The focus on individuals like Folta occludes a demonstration, for the first time ever, of long-suspected and intricate coordination and cooperation among them.
Also looped in to various of the emails are supposedly independent individuals and organisations who speak in favour of biotechnology, self-reportedly out of personal passion. These include Dr Steve Savage, Karl Haro von Mogel of Biofortified, Mischa Popoff (of the Heartland Institute) and Jon Entine(then affiliated with George Mason University and now head of the Genetic Literacy Project and a Forbes Magazine columnist). All are revealed, by the emails but not the article, as biotech insiders.
Others Professors cc'd into emails include Peter Davies (Cornell), Carl Pray (Rutgers), Tony Shelton(Cornell), Peter Phillips (University of Saskatchewan), Prabhu Pingali(Cornell), Elizabeth Earle (Cornell), Peter Hobbs (Cornell), Janice Thies(Cornell) and Ann Grodzins Gold(Syracuse), Martina Newell-McGloughlin (UC Davis).
Cooperation among academics is not a crime. But these emails show, as in the EPA letter example, that a company (usually Monsanto, but also Dow and Syngenta and a PR firm, often several of them, plus sometimes the biotech lobbyists BIO or CropLife America) were invariably looped in to these emails, and further, that initiatives usually began with one of these non-academic entities, and were shepherded by them.
Only rarely is there even a suggestion from the emails that the various academics were out in front, though that was always the intended impression of the result.
Connivance of top university staff
But perhaps the biggest of all revelations within these emails is the connivance of senior university administrators, especially at Cornell University. The NY Timesarticle focuses on the misdeeds of Mississippi State University Vice President David Shaw.
But, looped into one email string, along with the PR firm Ketchum and Jon Entine are various Cornell email addresses and names. These are ignored by Lipton, but the email addresses belong to very senior members of the Cornell administration. They include Ronnie Coffman (Director of Cornell's College of Agriculture and Life Science) and Sarah Evanega Davidson (now director of the Gates-funded Cornell Alliance for Science).
The Alliance for Science is a PR project and international training center for academics and others who want to work with the biotech industry to promote GMOs. It is funded ($5.6 million) by the Gates Foundation.
Its upcoming program of speakers at Cornell for September include Tamar Haspel (Washington Postreporter), Amy Harmon (New York Times reporter) and Prof. Dan Kahan (Yale Law School). These speakers are the exact ones mentioned in a proposal worked out between Kevin Folta and Monsanto in a series of email exchanges intended to enhance biotech outreach.
These email exchanges also propose setting up 'Ask Me Anything' events to be held at universities around the country with Kevin Folta as of the panelists. On Sept 10th the Cornell Alliance for Science is hosting an event in downtown Ithaca (home town of Cornell). It is called 'Ask Me Anything About GMOs' and Kevin Folta is a panelist.
Somehow or other Davidson's Cornell Alliance for Science read Monsanto's lips, perfectly.
Your right to know
Let me speculate at what is really going on behind the scenes of Lipton's article. Earlier this year, a newly-formed US group called US Right to Know (USRTK) set in motion Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests directed at 14 (now 43) prominent public university scientists it suspected of working with (and being paid by) the biotech industry and/or its PR intermediaries.
Now, if these 43 academics had nothing to hide, this request would not have attracted much attention and hardly any emails would have been forthcoming. However, the USRTK FOIA requests triggered a huge outcry in various quarters about the "harassment" of public scientists.
The outcry has led to OpEds in the LA Times and the controversial removal of scientific blog posts defending USRTK, and much else besides, as reputedly tens of thousands of emails (from these FOIA requests) have landed on the desks of USRTK.
What would a good PR company to recommend to its clients in such a situation? In order to preempt the likely upcoming firestorm, it might recommend that various media outlets run ahead of USRTK to publish a version of events in which academic small-fry like Kevin Folta, Bruce Chassy and David Shaw (of Mississippi State) are the villains.
Making them the fall guys lets others off the hook: high-profile scientists like Nina Fedoroff and Roger Beachy; the pro-biotech academic community in general; and prestigious Ivy League institutions like Cornell University.
These much bigger fish are who the NY Times should have harpooned. Since they did not, or perhaps would not, let us hope that USRTK will make better use of those emails, ideally by posting all of them online.

See link below




EWG Tests of Hummus Find High Levels of Glyphosate Weedkiller By Alexis M. Temkin, Ph.D., Toxicologist and Olga Naidenko, Ph.D., VP for Science Investigations TUESDAY, JULY 14, 2020 UPDATE, July 21, 2020: Report updated with data from an additional round of tests commissioned by EWG. The tables in this report have been updated to include results from the new samples.

In 1997 the EPA increased the allowable amount of glyphosate in chickpeas from 200 ppb to 5,000 ppb (more than 30 times what EWG says is safe). (9) This was supposed to be temporary – but it was extended and has been in effect for the last 23 years (1) .








Food Industry Enlisted Academics in G.M.O. Lobbying War, Emails Show

Monsanto Asgrow brand soybeans. Monsanto, the world's largest seed company, and its industry partners have relied on academics to push their case for genetically modified crops.Credit...Daniel Acker/Bloomberg
By Eric Lipton
  • Sept. 5, 2015
WASHINGTON — At Monsanto, sales of genetically modified seeds were steadily rising. But executives at the company’s St. Louis headquarters were privately worried about attacks on the safety of their products.
So Monsanto, the world’s largest seed company, and its industry partners retooled their lobbying and public relations strategy to spotlight a rarefied group of advocates: academics, brought in for the gloss of impartiality and weight of authority that come with a professor’s pedigree.
“Professors/researchers/scientists have a big white hat in this debate and support in their states, from politicians to producers,” Bill Mashek, a vice president at Ketchum, a public relations firm hired by the biotechnology industry, said in an email to a University of Florida professor. “Keep it up!”
And the industry has.
Corporations have poured money into universities to fund research for decades, but now, the debate over bioengineered foods has escalated into a billion-dollar food industry war. Companies like Monsanto are squaring off against major organic firms like Stonyfield Farm, the yogurt company, and both sides have aggressively recruited academic researchers, emails obtained through open records laws show.

The emails provide a rare view into the strategy and tactics of a lobbying campaign that has transformed ivory tower elites into powerful players. The use by both sides of third-party scientists, and their supposedly unbiased research, helps explain why the American public is often confused as it processes the conflicting information


The push has intensified as the Senate prepares to take up industry-backed legislation this fall, already passed by the House, that would ban states from adopting laws that require the disclosure of food produced with genetically modified ingredients.
The efforts have helped produce important payoffs, including the approval by federal regulators of new genetically modified seeds after academic experts intervened with the United States Department of Agriculture on the industry’s behalf, the emails show

Kevin Folta, the chairman of the horticultural sciences department at the University of Florida, is among the scientists who have been recruited in the debate over bioengineered foods.Credit...Tyler Jones/University of Florida
Charla Lord, a Monsanto spokeswoman, said the company’s longstanding partnership with academics helped demystify the science. “It is in the public interest for academics to weigh in credibly, not only to consumers but to stakeholders like lawmakers and regulators as well,” she said.

But even some of the academics who have accepted special “unrestricted grants” or taken industry-funded trips to help push corporate agendas on Capitol Hill say they regret being caught up in this nasty food fight.
“If you spend enough time with skunks, you start to smell like one,” said Charles M. Benbrook, who until recently held a post at Washington State University. The organic foods industry funded his research there and paid for his trips to Washington, where he helped lobby for labels on foods with genetically modified ingredients.
On the other side, the biotech industry has published dozens of articles, under the names of prominent academics, that in some cases were drafted by industry consultants.
Monsanto and its industry partners have also passed out an undisclosed amount in special grants to scientists like Kevin Folta, the chairman of the horticultural sciences department at the University of Florida, to help with “biotechnology outreach” and to travel around the country to defend genetically modified foods.
“This is a great 3rd-party approach to developing the advocacy that we’re looking to develop,” Michael Lohuis, the director of crop biometrics at Monsanto, wrote last year in an email as the company considered giving Dr. Folta an unrestricted grant.
Dr. Folta said that he had joined the campaign to publicly defend genetically modified technologies because he believes they are safe, and that it is his job to share his expertise. “Nobody tells me what to say, and nobody tells me what to think,” he said, adding, “Every point I make is based on evidence.”

A Florida Professor Works With the Biotech Industry
Kevin Folta, chairman of the horticultural sciences department at the University of Florida, began to correspond regularly with executives at Monsanto in early 2013. He soon teamed up with the company and other industry representatives to defend their genetically engineered crop technologies as they lobbied Congress and other government authorities. Dr. Folta has said he worked as an independent scientist. But Monsanto helped cover his costs.

But he also conceded in an interview that he could unfairly be seen as a tool of industry, and his university now intends to donate the Monsanto grant money to a food pantry. “I can understand that perception 100 percent,” he said, “and it bothers me a lot.”
Players in a Safety Debate
The moves by Monsanto, in an alliance with the Biotechnology Industry Organization and the Grocery Manufacturers Association, are detailed in thousands of pages of emails that were at first requested by the nonprofit group U.S. Right to Know, which receives funding from the organic foods industry.
The New York Times separately requested some of these documents, then made additional requests in several states for email records of academics with ties to the organics industry.
There is no evidence that academic work was compromised, but the emails show how academics have shifted from researchers to actors in lobbying and corporate public relations campaigns.
The fight between the competing academics is not focused on questions about the safety of genetically engineered seeds themselves. The sides are fighting mainly over the safety of herbicides used in so-called genetically modified organism, or G.M.O., crops. The organic food proponents argue that herbicide use has surged, and that some of these herbicides may be unsafe. The biotech companies say that data relating to herbicide use on genetically engineered crops is being misinterpreted — and that these new crops, more resistant to pests and disease, are helping to feed the world

So far, the anti-G.M.O. community has been winning the public relations war. Major brands like Chipotle and original Cheerios have moved to reduce or eliminate their use of genetically engineered ingredients, based in part on a marketing judgment that this is what the American public wants. That poses a threat to companies like Monsanto, which had $15.9 billion in global sales last year.
“Misinformation campaign in ag biotech area is more than overwhelming,” Yong Gao, then Monsanto’s global regulatory policy director, explained in an April 2013 email to Dr. Folta as the company started to work closely with him. “It is really hurting the progress in translating science and knowledge into ag productivity.”


Charles M. Benbrook's research at Washington State University was supported by organic food companies.Credit...George Robinson

Dr. Folta is among the most aggressive and prolific biotech proponents, although until his emails were released last month, he had not publicly acknowledged the extent of his ties to Monsanto.
He has a doctorate in molecular biology and has been doing research on the genomics of small fruit crops for more than a decade. Monsanto executives approached Dr. Folta in the spring of 2013 after they read a blog post he had written defending industry technology.
“We really appreciate independent scientists working to educate the public,” Keith Reding, a microbiologist who helps Monsanto manage its relations with regulatory agencies, wrote in an April 2013 email to Dr. Folta.
A few weeks later, the Council for Biotechnology Information — controlled by BASF, Bayer, Dow Chemical, DuPont and Monsanto — asked Dr. Folta and other prominent academics if they would participate in a new website, GMO Answers, which was established to combat perceived misinformation about their products. The plan was to provide the academics with questions from the public, such as, “Do GMOs cause cancer?”
“This is a new way to build trust, dialogue and support for biotech in agriculture that will help explain in an independent voice what GMOs are,” an executive at Ketchum wrote to Dr. Folta.
But Ketchum did more than provide questions. On several occasions, it also gave Dr. Folta draft answers, which he then used nearly verbatim, a step that he now says was a mistake.
“It was absolutely not the right thing,” he said, adding that he now insists that he write his own responses.

A Mississippi State Administrator’s Ties to Monsanto and Dow
David R. Shaw, vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University, has received a steady stream of research support from Monsanto, as well as grant money. Monsanto and Dow Chemical have asked him to help move their agendas in Washington, emails show.

Kate Hall, a spokeswoman for the biotechnology council, said that the scholars were free to revise the scripted responses, and that the group offered these draft answers in only a few dozen cases, compared with the nearly 1,000 responses on GMO Answers to date.
Dr. Folta, the emails show, soon became part of an inner circle of industry consultants, lobbyists and executives who devised strategy on how to block state efforts to mandate G.M.O. labeling and, most recently, on how to get Congress to pass legislation that would pre-empt any state from taking such a step.
While Dr. Folta was not personally compensated, biotech companies paid for his trips to testify in Pennsylvania and Hawaii. “I should state upfront that I have not been compensated for any testimony,” he said at a public hearing in Hawaii, before adding, “The technology is safe and is used because it helps farmers compete.”
Dr. Folta routinely gave updates on his travels — and his face-to-face encounters with opponents of genetically modified crops — to the industry executives who were funding his efforts.
“Your email made my day!” wrote Cathleen Enright, an executive vice president of the Biotechnology Industry Organization, after Dr. Folta gave her a written update on the October 2014 legislative hearing in Pennsylvania. “Please send all receipts to us whenever you get around to it. No rush.”
In August 2014, Monsanto decided to approve Dr. Folta’s grant for $25,000 to allow him to travel more extensively to give talks on the genetically modified food industry’s products.
“I am grateful for this opportunity and promise a solid return on the investment,” Dr. Folta wrote in an email to one Monsanto executive.



Image
A soybean chipper placing soybeans into cells at a Monsanto research facility in Creve Coeur, Mo. Monsanto engineers designed the chipper to shave a tiny tissue sample off a seed to analyze its genetics.

A soybean chipper placing soybeans into cells at a Monsanto research facility in Creve Coeur, Mo. Monsanto engineers designed the chipper to shave a tiny tissue sample off a seed to analyze its genetics.Credit...Tom Gannam/Reuters
Dr. Folta is one of many academics the biotech industry has approached to help it defend or promote its products, the emails show.
The company, in late 2011, gave a grant for an undisclosed amount to Bruce M. Chassy, a professor emeritus at the University of Illinois, to support “biotechnology outreach and education activities,” his emails show.
In the same email in which Dr. Chassy negotiated the release of the grant funds, he discussed with a Monsanto executive a monthslong effort to persuade the Environmental Protection Agencyto abandon its proposal to tighten the regulation of pesticides used on insect-resistant seeds.
“Is there a coordinated plan to maintain pressure and emphasis on EPA’s evolving regulations?” Eric Sachs, the chief of Monsanto’s global scientific affairs group, wrote in a related email to Dr. Chassy. “Have you considered having a small group of scientists request a meeting with Lisa Jackson,” referring to the E.P.A. administrator at the time.

In an interview, Dr. Chassy said he had initiated the fight against the E.P.A. plan before Monsanto pressed him. But he conceded that the money he had received from the company had helped to elevate his voice through travel, a website he created and other means.
“What industry does is when they find people saying things they like, they make it possible for your voice to be heard in more places and more loudly,” he said.
Dr. Chassy eventually set up a meeting at the E.P.A., with the help of an industry lobbyist, and the agency ultimately dropped the proposal.

A University of Illinois Professor Joins the Fight
Bruce M. Chassy, now a professor emeritus at the University of Illinois, is another academic who was recruited to help out with GMO Answers.

In 2013, Monsanto also asked David R. Shaw, the vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University, to intervene with the Department of Agriculture to help persuade the agency to approve a new type of genetically modified soybean and cottonseed designed by Monsanto.
Organic farmers argued against this move, convinced that approval of the new seeds would lead to an increase in potentially harmful herbicide use. Monsanto wanted Dr. Shaw, whom the company has supported over the last decade with at least $880,000 in research grants for projects he helped oversee, to refute these arguments, the emails show.
“Our Regulatory Affairs and Government Affairs groups feel it is important that USDA hear from folks like you on the key issues since there is a high probability that many negative voices will be heard during these calls,” said a June 2013 email from John K. Soteres, then Monsanto’s head of weed resistance programs. “Your voice not only counts from the standpoint of presenting scientifically based viewpoints but also to a degree from a numbers standpoint.”
Dow Chemical made a similar pitch this year, with one company executive first reminding Dr. Shaw in an email about the industry’s financial support for the university. Then the executive asked Dr. Shaw to intervene with the Agriculture Department to urge it to approve Dow’s new genetically modified cottonseed, which was designed to be treated with a Dow-produced herbicide.
Dow’s and Monsanto’s requests to the Agriculture Department have since been approved. Dr. Shaw declined to comment. But a university spokesman, Sid Salter, described Dr. Shaw as “a highly ethical researcher.”
Why Not ‘Mommy Farmers’?
At times, the scientists themselves questioned whether they were the best advocates for the companies.
“What the situation requires is a suite of TV spots featuring attractive young women, preferably mommy farmers, explaining why biotech derived foods are the safest & greenest in the history of ag and worthy of support,” wrote L. Val Giddings, a senior fellow at Information Technology & Innovation Foundation, a nonprofit food policy research group in Washington, in an October 2014 email to a Monsanto lobbyist. The company was debating how to defeat labeling campaigns last year in Colorado and Oregon.

Washington State Professor Allies With Organics Industry
Charles M. Benbrook, formerly the chief scientist at the Organic Center, left the nonprofit organization in 2012 after concluding that he could get more traction for his research, which has questioned G.M.O. crop safety, by joining a university.

Dr. Folta, included in the email chain, agreed.
“We can’t fight emotion with lists of scientists,” Dr. Folta wrote to Lisa Drake, the Monsanto lobbyist. “It needs a connection to farming mothers.”
But Ms. Drake flatly rejected their arguments. Monsanto had already run television ads with mothers who were farmers. They fell flat.
“Doesn’t poll as well as credible third party scientist,” she said. “I know hard to believe, but I have seen the poll results myself, and that is why the campaigns work the way they do.”
Emails and other documents obtained by The Times from Washington State, where Dr. Benbrook served until earlier this year, show how the opponents of genetically modified foods have used their own creative tactics, although their spending on lobbying and public relations amounts to a tiny fraction of that of biosciences companies.
The organic foods industry has a direct financial interest to raise consumer concerns, because federal law requires that any product labeled organic in the United States be free of ingredients produced from genetically modified seeds. So if consumers move away from G.M.O.-based sources, they sometimes switch to organic alternatives.
Like the biotech companies, organic industry executives believed they could have more influence if they pushed their message through academics.
“I am a business guy, not a scientist,” said Gary Hirshberg, the chairman and former president of Stonyfield Farm, which produces organic yogurt, who leads an industry lobbying effort called Just Label It. “So of course it helps to have an academic scientist explain it.”
That is why Dr. Benbrook, who had served as chief scientist at the Organic Center, a group funded by the organic foods industry, resigned his job and sought a university appointment, he said.
“I was working for an organization affiliated and funded by the industry, and people were just not listening,” he said.
At Washington State, Dr. Benbrook was supported by many of the same financial backers, including Organic Valley, Whole Foods, Stonyfield and United Natural Foods Inc. The companies stayed closely involved in his research and advocacy, helping him push reporters to write about his studies, including one concluding that organic milk, produced without any G.M.O.-produced feed for the cows, had greater nutritional value.
At least twice, Mr. Hirshberg’s group also paid for Dr. Benbrook to go to Washington so he could help lobby against a federal ban on G.M.O. labels. And his research suggesting that herbicide use in G.M.O. crops has surged has been a central part of the organic industry’s argument for mandatory labels.
Dr. Benbrook, whose research post at Washington State was not renewed this year, said the organic companies had turned to him for the same reasons Monsanto and others support the University of Florida or Dr. Folta directly.
“They want to influence the public,” he said. “They could conduct those studies on their own and put this information on their website. But nobody would believe them. There is a friggin’ war going on around this stuff. And everyone is looking to gain as much leverage as they can.”

A version of this article appears in print on Sept. 6, 2015, Section A, Page 1 of the New York edition with the headline: Emails Reveal Academic Ties in a Food War


 
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adam

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Some additional follow up info

The FDA itself has confirmed it does not itself test whether GMO / genetically engineered foods are safe and never sees the methodological details, but rather only limited data and the conclusions the company has drawn from its own research….the FDA does not require the submission of GMO data

The FDA permits companies to submit their own safety studies, but does not require independent ones.......in fact, companies have failed to comply with FDA requests for data beyond that which they submitted initially.......

....... the evidence regarding pharmaceutical studies strongly suggests that industry-funded studies are more likely than independent ones to be favorable to industry. Here’s Ben Goldacre’s review of this evidence:

in 2010, three researchers from Harvard and Toronto found all the trials looking at five major classes of drug........... measured two key features: were they positive, and were they funded by industry? They found over five hundred trials in total: 85 per cent of the industry-funded studies were positive, but only 50 per cent of the government funded trials were. That’s a very significant difference.

Most of the animal safety testing prepared for the FDA is merely short-term. A study in the International Journal of Biological Sciences summarizes the typical testing regime: “The most detailed regulatory tests on the GMOs are three-month long feeding trials of laboratory rats, which are biochemically assessed.” Such tests may well be too brief in duration to uncover pathologies that develop more slowly, such as many types of organ damage, endocrine disturbances and cancer.[7]

In recent testimony before Congress, the FDA stated that it is “confident that the GE foods in the U.S. marketplace today are as safe as their conventional counterparts.”[1]

However, FDA does not itself test whether genetically engineered foods are safe. The FDA has repeatedly made this clear. As Jason Dietz, a policy analyst at FDA explains about genetically engineered food: “It’s the manufacturer’s responsibility to insure that the product is safe.”[2] Or, as FDA spokesperson Theresa Eisenman said, “it is the manufacturer’s responsibility to ensure that the [GMO] food products it offers for sale are safe…”[3]

Nor does the FDA require independent pre-market safety testing for genetically engineered food. As a matter of practice, the agrichemical companies submit their own studies to the FDA as part of a voluntary “consultation.” Moreover, the FDA does not require the companies to submit full and complete information about these studies. Rather, as the FDA has testified, “After the studies are completed, a summary of the data and information on the safety and nutritional assessment are provided to the FDA for review.”[4]

That the FDA does not see the complete data and studies is a problem, according to a Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering Reviews article by William Freese and David Schubert:

the FDA never sees the methodological details, but rather only limited data and the conclusions the company has drawn from its own research….the FDA does not require the submission of data. And, in fact, companies have failed to comply with FDA requests for data beyond that which they submitted initially. Without test protocols or other important data, the FDA is unable to identify unintentional mistakes, errors in data interpretation, or intentional deception…[5]

At the end of the consultation, the FDA issues a letter ending the consultation. Here is a typical response from FDA, in its letter to Monsanto about its MON 810 Bt corn:

Based on the safety and nutritional assessment you have conducted, it is our understanding that Monsanto has concluded that corn products derived from this new variety are not materially different in composition, safety, and other relevant parameters from corn currently on the market, and that the genetically modified corn does not raise issues that would require premarket review or approval by FDA…. as you are aware, it is Monsanto’s responsibility to ensure that foods marketed by the firm are safe, wholesome [emphasis ours] and in compliance with all applicable legal and regulatory requirements.[6]

This testing regime is insufficient for several other reasons.

Most of the animal safety testing prepared for the FDA is merely short-term. A study in the International Journal of Biological Sciencessummarizes the typical testing regime: “The most detailed regulatory tests on the GMOs are three-month long feeding trials of laboratory rats, which are biochemically assessed.” Such tests may well be too brief in duration to uncover pathologies that develop more slowly, such as many types of organ damage, endocrine disturbances and cancer.[7]

There are too few peer-reviewed studies on the health risks of genetically engineered food. In their 2004 article in Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering Reviews, William Freese and David Schubert wrote that, “Published, peer-reviewed studies, particularly in the area of potential human health impacts, are rare. For instance, the EPA’s human health assessment of Bt crops cites 22 unpublished corporate studies, with initially only one ancillary literature citation.”[8] Similarly, a 2014 review in Environment International of 21 studies of the effects of genetically engineered foods on the digestive tracts of rats found an “incomplete picture” regarding “the toxicity (and safety) of GM products consumed by humans and animals.”[9] In other words, it concludes that there is not enough evidence to say that genetically engineered foods are safe to eat.

The FDA permits companies to submit their own safety studies, but does not require independent ones. However, the evidence regarding pharmaceutical studies strongly suggests that industry-funded studies are more likely than independent ones to be favorable to industry. Here’s Ben Goldacre’s review of this evidence:



Update on long-term toxicity of agricultural GMOs tolerant to roundup
Environmental Sciences Europe volume 32, Article number: 18 (2020)

Agricultural genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are plants obtained by gene transfer or more recently by gene-editing. Their major common phenotypic trait for which 99% have been modified is that these are designed to be grown with pesticides, which may bioaccumulate in the plants and/or the consumer, and/or express insecticides in their cells. Examples of both types are Roundup-tolerant soy and corn and Bt insecticidal plants. Recently, Steinberg et al. concluded that there were no adverse effects in rats from consumption of a GM corn tolerant to Roundup, called NK603, and that no other long-term studies are justified. This contradicts several of our in vivo studies on the short- and long-term toxicological effects of either the same GMO, other GMOs, or the pesticide Roundup itself. Our results were attributed in particular to the long-term in vivo effects of Roundup residues, which also present toxic and endocrine-disrupting effects in vitro. These effects were clearly linked to the formulants of the pesticide, such as petroleum residues and heavy metals, and not to glyphosate alone. In fact, the treated rats in Steinberg et al.’s experiment showed many adverse effects, some of which, including increased mortality in males fed GM corn + Roundup, were statistically significant. Other adverse effects affected both treated and control groups. The latter trend may be due to contamination of the feed of the control animals by many carcinogenic pollutants, including pesticides, but also by Roundup residues and Roundup-tolerant GMOs. For instance, glyphosate contained in Roundup was found to be 300–1400 times more elevated in their control feed than in our treated group. In conclusion, Steinberg et al.’s study is invalidated by the contaminated feed, biased interpretations, and major undeclared conflicts of interest.

 
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adam

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The more I read the more it seems that GMO research is being deliberately withheld and human health and welfare put at risk.

Additionally GMO crops have created reduced yields when compared to non GMO

The original Roundup Ready used with GMO seeds had a major yield drag, one of several unanticipated consequences of this GMO insertion

The original version of Roundup Ready resulted in 95% of the soybean crop of the United States yielding 7-11% less than non GMO, and Roundup Ready soybeans also contained up to 40% less Mn than contained in isogenic lines (Gordon, 2007). Neither of these traits can reasonably be called insignificant.

Other consequences may remain unknown due to lack of meaningful regulatory oversight. The FDA places safety responsibility on the GMO firm and accepts the trial reports submitted without doing its own testing for adverse GMO consequences etc

Monsanto claims that already its “advanced seeds… significantly increase crop yields…” is not true and fails to address the increased costs of use or increased costs related to human and wildlife health and agriculture and the ecology.

According to Failure to Yield, a new report by the Union of Concerned Scientists, that promise has proven to be a mirage. Despite 20 years of research and 13 years of commercialization, genetic engineering has failed so far to significantly increase U.S. crop yields.

“Failure to Yield” reviews two dozen academic studies of corn and soybeans, the two primary genetically engineered food and feed crops grown in the United States. Based on those studies, UCS concludes that genetically engineering herbicide-tolerant soybeans and herbicide-tolerant corn have not increased yields, while insect-resistant corn has improved yields only marginally. The increase in yields for both crops over the last 13 years, the report found, was largely due to traditional breeding or improvements in agricultural practices.

The UCS report therefore debunks the current yield claim, but it also concludes that genetic engineering is unlikely to play a significant role in increasing food production in the foreseeable future.

In addition to evaluating genetic engineering’s record, “Failure to Yield” considers the technology’s potential role in increasing food production over the next few decades. The report does not discount the possibility of genetic engineering eventually contributing to increase crop yields. It does, however, suggest that it makes little sense to support genetic engineering at the expense of technologies that have already proven to substantially increase yields, especially in many developing countries. In addition, recent studies have shown that organic and similar farming methods that minimize the use of pesticides and synthetic fertilizers can more than double crop yields at little cost to poor farmers in such developing regions as Sub-Saharan Africa and are also effective in industrial farming

[See Cornell University study and video in previous posts above by Prof Norman Uphoff]

The report recommends that the U.S. Department of Agriculture, state agricultural agencies, and universities increase research and development for proven approaches to boost crop yields. Those approaches should include modern conventional plant breeding methods, sustainable and organic farming, and other sophisticated farming practices that do not require farmers to pay significant upfront costs. The report also recommends that U.S. food aid organizations make these more promising and affordable alternatives available to farmers in developing countries.

Charles Benbrook of the The Organic Center says that a low contribution of GMOs to yield is perhaps anyway to be expected. Firstly, yield is a complex trait which probably will prove difficult to manipulate directly, but also that “although increases in yield are usually credited to plant breeders, actually many factors contribute to yield, such as soil quality and water management improvements and it is to these we should be looking for future agricultural improvements”.


The learning curve
In principle, much could be learned from this story. The first, and perhaps the most significant, is to lay to rest the notion that unintended traits in transgenic plants are invariably unimportant and rare. Not only was 95% of the soybean crop of the United States yielding 7-11% less than it should, Roundup Ready soybeans can contain less than 40% of the Mn contained in isogenic lines (Gordon, 2007). Neither of these traits can reasonably be called insignificant.

Monsanto claims that Roundup Ready 2 Yield produces a 7-11% superior yield than the original Roundup Ready. This ought to be rather surprising since herbicide resistance is not a yield trait. But the answer is in fact simple: the introduction of Roundup Ready 2 Yield is an admission that the original Roundup Ready had a major yield drag, one of several unanticipated consequences of this insertion event.

What we argued
Many groups and individuals have argued that transgenic plants may be prone to unanticipated consequences, either due to pleiotropy or to effects of transgene insertion (Schubert 2002). Our review papers on the molecular characteristics of transgene insertion sites and the associated genetic consequences of plant transformation techniques provided the first, and still only, review of the mutagenic nature of plant transformation and the consequences for the biosafety of transgenic plants (Wilson et al. 2006; Latham et al. 2006).

Our analysis reached two principal conclusions. The first was that transgene insertions, especially those resulting from particle bombardment, are frequently complex and frequently disruptive, often of multiple coding regions. Secondly, current plant transformation techniques are typically associated with very large numbers of mutations, some of which will inevitably be closely linked to the transgene and therefore hard to separate genetically.


 
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Most anti-GMO folk I come across are against the tech because of the practises of these large multinational corporations, your objections appear more targetted against the tech itself rather than corporation... Other than that your comment is just copy-paste from blogs and websites, unless you yourself are the author? The references also quite suspect... What gives?
 

adam

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I am not anti GMO however the long term risks are not clear and there is no proper regulation.

My concern is the lack of independent review and regulation. Those who profit pay for the research which makes it very problematic.

Read the Poison Papers which uses internal company memos and court papers to show how much is knowingly hidden


I have included the info about GMOs so people can read and see for themselves that even people who have worked successfully with GMOs and sold their businesses now consider the risks very significant

GMOs do not increase yields as you can read in my posts that show conventional farming techniques produce better food more cheaply with less capital water labor toxins and fertilizers and do not damage the environment or the soil like GMO farming techniques - both via industrial and small scale farms.

There are very serious human medical risks

Record corp yields are produced via traditional farming not GMO but this is not publicised neither is the fact that there is an excess of food produced.

The only people who benefit from traditional farming are the consumer who gets cheaper better food with less health risks.

There is no one commercially who promotes something that's better than their own products or will pay for the independent research

I quoted previously and below from Caius Rommens a Berkeley Phd GMO researcher who developed a new field of GMO processes, then worked for Monsanto and then set up SIMPLOT a commercially successful GMO developer.

He has around 200 GMO patents to his name and has said in a book that all his GMO foods should be withdrawn

"Pandora’s Potatoes.’ This book, which is now available on Amazon, explains why I renounce my work at Simplot and why the GMO varieties should be withdrawn from the market"

He now breeds plants and animals using conventional techniques to improve them

In 2013 Caius Rommens concluded GMO processes were dangerous. He has reviewed his patents and says the lessons apply to all GMO work for plants and animals etc

GMO editing that inserts DNA is not the same as what happens in nature and cannot be compared as it often involves different life forms being combined

Its worth looking into the subject of mice Telomeres.

Mice are often used to test drugs and GMOs.

However some believe that lab mice may in fact be more toxin resistant than humans or wild mice making the very short studies done not meaningful and may be even misleading

Below are some links that give the other side. If only part of it is true them there are even bigger problems than we could have expected

View: https://youtu.be/ve4q-1D_Ajo



 
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No publicity is given to the record rice crop yields obtained by low tech changes to the way plants are looked after, and changing to low intensivity farming, less labor and mechanization use, without GMO or pesticides and little fertilizer, less water and toxins - producing better quality and cheaper food under almost all known land conditions and demonstrated in 100,000s of cases researched by State, University, NGOs and others around the world including Cornell University.

Meeting World Food Needs by Raising the Productivity of Land, Labor, Capital and Water with less intensive agriculture and by using less Plants, Labor, Capital Machines, Fertilizers, Pesticides, Herbicides and Water - producing higher yields and better quality cheaper foods without the need for GMO, intensive agriculture and toxins

However no funding is provided to develop and roll out the proven programs for commercial farmers over different crops that would produce better quality food and yields at cheaper prices, with little or no toxins, be GMO free, using less water, labor, machinery and other inputs etc and is far better for the environment -

Why no support ..... who gains?

View: https://youtu.be/HWZa53ZUREQ


Why are we still advancing GMO alone and not also using alternative crop enhancement processes to compare results ?

Techniques could be applied to other crops from small scale to big commercial operations

The world record yield for paddy rice production is not held by an agricultural research station or by a large-scale farmer from the United States, but by Sumant Kumar who has a farm of just two hectares in Darveshpura village in the state of Bihar in Northern India. His record yield of 22.4 tons per hectare, from a one-acre plot, was achieved with what is known as the System of Rice Intensification (SRI). To put his achievement in perspective, the average paddy yield worldwide is about 4 tons per hectare. Even with the use of fertilizer, average yields are usually not more than 8 tons.

Sumant Kumar’s success was not a fluke. Four of his neighbors, using SRI methods, and all for the first time, matched or exceeded the previous world record from China, 19 tons per hectare. Moreover, they used only modest amounts of inorganic fertilizer and did not need chemical crop protection.

Using SRI methods, smallholding farmers in many countries are starting to get higher yields and greater productivity from their land, labor, seeds, water and capital, with their crops showing more resilience to the hazards of climate change (Thakur et al 2009; Zhao et al 2009).

These productivity gains have been achieved simply by changing the ways that farmers manage their plants, soil, water and nutrients.

The effect is to get crop plants to grow larger, healthier, longer-lived root systems, accompanied by increases in the abundance, diversity and activity of soil organisms. These organisms constitute a beneficial microbiome for plants that enhances their growth and health in ways similar to how the human microbiome benefits Homo sapiens.

That altered management practices can induce more productive, resilient phenotypes from existing rice plant genotypes has been seen in over 50 countries. The reasons for this improvement are not all known, but there is a growing literature that helps account for the improvements observed in yield and health for rice crops using SRI.

The ideas and practices that constitute SRI were developed inductively in Madagascar some 30 years ago for rice. They are now being adapted to improve the productivity of a wide variety of other crops, starting with wheat, finger millet and sugarcane. Producing more output with fewer external inputs may sound improbable, but it derives from a shift in emphasis from improving plant genetic potential via plant breeding, to providing optimal environments for crop growth.

The adaptation of SRI experience and principles to other crops is being referred to generically as the System of Crop Intensification (SCI), encompassing variants for wheat (SWI), maize (SMI), finger millet (SFMI), sugarcane (SSI), mustard (rapeseed/canola)(another SMI), teff (STI), legumes such as pigeon peas, lentils and soya beans, and vegetables such as tomatoes, chillies and eggplant.

That similar results are seen across such a range of plants suggests some generic processes may be involved, and these practices are not only good for growing rice. This suggests to Prof. Norman Uphoff and colleagues within the SRI network that more attention should be given to the contributions that are made to agricultural production by the soil biota, both in the plants’ rhizospheres but also as symbiotic endophytes within the plants themselves (Uphoff et al. 2012).

The evidence reported below has drawn heavily, with permission, from a report that Dr. Uphoff prepared on the extension of SRI to other crops (Uphoff 2012). Much more research and evaluation needs to be done on this progression to satisfy both scientists and practitioners. But this gives an idea of what kinds of advances in agricultural knowledge and practice appear to be emerging.

Origins and Principles
Deriving from empirical work started in the 1960s in Madagascar by a French priest, Fr. Henri de Laulanié, S.J., the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) has shown remarkable capacity to raise smallholders’ rice productivity under a wide variety of conditions around the world: from tropical rainforest regions of Indonesia, to mountainous regions in northeastern Afghanistan, to fertile river basins in India and Pakistan, to arid conditions of Timbuktu on the edge of the Sahara Desert in Mali. SRI methods have proved adaptable to a wide range of agroecological settings.

With SRI management, paddy yields are usually increased by 50-100%, but sometimes by even more, even up to the super-yields of Sumant Kumar and his neighbors. Requirements for seed are greatly reduced (by 80-90%), as are those for irrigation water (by 25-50%). Little or no inorganic fertilizer is required if sufficient organic matter can be provided to the soil, and there is little if any need for agrochemical crop protection against pests and diseases. SRI plants are also generally healthier and better able to resist such stresses as well as drought, extremes of temperature, flooding, and storm damage.

SRI methodology is based on four main principles that interact in synergistic ways:

  • Establish healthy plants early and carefully, nurturing their root potential.
  • Reduce plant populations, giving each plant more room to grow above and below ground and room to capture sunlight and obtain nutrients.
  • Enrich the soil with organic matter, keeping it well-aerated to support better growth of roots and more aerobic soil biota.
  • Apply water purposefully in ways that favor plant-root and soil-microbial growth, avoiding flooded (anaerobic) soil conditions.
These principles are translated into a number of irrigated rice cultivation practices which under most smallholder farmers’ conditions are the following:

  • Plant young seedlings carefully and singly, giving them wider spacing usually in a square pattern, so that both roots and canopy have ample room to spread.
  • Keep the soil moist but not inundated. Provide sufficient water for plant roots and beneficial soil organisms to grow, but not so much as to suffocate or suppress either, e.g., through alternate wetting and drying, or through small but regular applications.
  • Add as much compost, mulch or other organic matter to the soil as possible, ‘feeding the soil’ so that the soil can, in turn, ‘feed the plant.’
  • Control weeds with mechanical methods that can incorporate weeds while breaking up the soil’s surface. This actively aerates the root zone as a beneficial by-product of weed control. This practice can promote root growth and the abundance of beneficial soil organisms, adding to yield.
The cumulative result of these practices is to induce the growth of more productive and healthier plants (phenotypes) from any given variety (genotype).

Variants of SRI practices suitable for upland regions have been developed by farmers where there are no irrigation facilities, so SRI is not just for irrigated rice production any more. In both settings, crops can be productive with less irrigation water or rainfall because taking up SRI recommendations enhances the capacity of soil systems to absorb and provide water (‘green water’). SRI practices initially developed to benefit small-scale rice growers are being adapted now for larger-scale production, with methods such as direct-seeding instead of transplanting, and with the mechanization of some labor-intensive operations such as weeding (Sharif 2011).

From the System of Rice Intensification to the System of Crop Intensification
Once the principles of SRI became understood by farmers and they had mastered its practices for rice, farmers began extending SRI ideas and methods to other crops. NGOs and some scientists have also become interested in and supportive of this extrapolation, so a novel process of innovation has ensued. Some results of this process are summarized here.

The following information is not a research report. The comparisons below are not experiment station data but rather results that have come from farmers’ fields in Asia and Africa. The measurements of yields reported here probably have some margin of error. But the differences seen are so large and are so often repeated that they are certainly significant agronomically. The results in the following sections are comparisons with farmers’ current practices, showing how much more production farmers in developing countries could be achieving from their presently available resources.

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