The debate rages. It isn’t simply scientists versus the agriculture community as their are proponents for GMOs on both sides. Today the hype is dying out and more and more non-farmers are trying to get healthy and are becoming better informed as to the dangers of genetically modified organisms. Admittedly, we don’t know a lot, but what we do have are solid reasons that non-GMO is the way to go.
1. GMOs Increase Pesticide And Herbicide Use
The entire point of creating GMOs was to make hardened plants that could withstand attacks from the chemicals we use to kill pests and weeds that hurt our crops. In reality, this end has been achieved. The GMO crops have stood strong against these chemicals, and as a result, nature has volleyed. Now we have even stronger pests and weeds fighting against the pesticides and herbicides making it completely necessary to use even more of the chemicals.
Why is this such a big problem? Well, for starters, pesticides and herbicides were designed to kill living things. A more appropriate question would be, why did we think that this wouldn’t be a problem? The main ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup Weed Killer is glyphosate, a toxin that is known to cause damage to both people and animals alike.
So while the intention behind the creation of GMOs was admirable, they are causing more harm than good, more problems than solutions.
2. GMOs Are Forever
Genetically modified organisms, are by definition, living things. Now that we have them, there’s no way to get rid of them. These organisms naturally mingle with our non-GMO crops and create new crops that have the genetically modified genes. Drift causes cross contamination across human boundaries, so just because a farm is non-GMO today doesn’t mean that it will stay that way by tomorrow.
The only chance we have to be completely GMO free is to stop buying GMO products—it’s basic supply and demand. If no one is purchasing GMO-ridden foods, the companies who produce them will be forced to meet the demand for healthy, GMO-free options or go broke.
3. GMOs Won’t Help Us Feed More People
Contrary to popular belief, GMOs won’t help us farmers feed the masses as the world’s population grows. As stated above, GMOs were created to keep the pests away so farmers could produce higher yields. What has happened, however, is another disruption of nature.
What is going to help us feed more and more people is sustainable farming. Through nutrient rich soil and smart farming practices, we’ll be able to raise healthier animals for our local communities without ravaging the earth around us. The mass production of unhealthy food isn’t the answer—farming in harmony with nature is.
4. GMOs Are Bad For Animals, Bad For People
Through scientific studies we have discovered that the DNA from genetically modified organisms passes from the plant, to the animal, to the human as each product is consumed. There is much debate about the safety of GMOs for human consumption, but what isn’t up for debate is the fact that glyphosate—that ingredient in herbicide—is not ok for people or animals to ingest—yet they do because GMOs makes their use possible. This chemical kills bacteria needed for health gastrointestinal function and promotes breast cancer. It’s just the tip of the iceberg.
5. GMOs Are Bad For The Environment
We know that GMOs are promiscuous little things, but have we ever considered what effects they actually have on the world around us? In addition so spreading the love, they encourage herbicide use. What does that mean exactly? Herbicides affect all living things they come into contact with by reducing biodiversity, polluting the water supply, and causing birth defects in the local wildlife. GMOs are the fuel that keeps this wildfire alive.
6. We Can’t Trust All The Studies
It’s not fair to say that we can’t trust science. Through science, we have a better understanding of the world around us which inevitably tells us that nature knows best. Furthermore, it’s good science that has helped us develop technology to aid in safe, sustainable farming.
However, not all scientific studies are conducted with the goal of reaching a rational conclusion. When the companies who produce GMOs and herbicides are the ones conducting all the studies around GMOs and herbicides, we have to ask ourselves if their published findings are to be believed.
7. In Truth, We Don’t Know Enough About GMOs
GMOs haven’t been around that long, so there’s plenty that we don’t understand. What we do know about them is that they aren’t natural and the people who are telling us they are perfectly safe are the people who benefit from their use. Only time—and more comprehensive studies conducted by parties with nothing to gain—will show what the true dangers of GMOs are. We believe that nature’s way is best, and we’ll always keep non-GMO livestock feed available for farmers who agree.