I don’t watch a lot of tv… my kids make sure of that! But the other day I sat down to do laundry and was looking for a show on Netflix when I came across a documentary called GMO OMG that peeked my curiosity! It’s 90 minutes long, but thanks to being a mother of three boys, I took me about 4 hours to finish it. The joys of parenting! All kidding aside, this movie really started getting me thinking, and I would like to share some of the facts from the movie with you to get you thinking too!
So, what is a GMO? A GMO is a genetically modified organism, meaning people (scientists) are altering the genes of plants, animals, or other organisms. To me, it feels like people are really trying to “play God” too much these days, and nothing good can come out of it!
Facts From the Movie: GMO OMG
- Monsanto, DuPont, and Syngenta control over 53% of the seed market.
- After the earthquake in Haiti, Monsanto donated genetically modified seeds to Haitian farmers, which they burned in protest to the GM seeds.
- Pesticides used on crops are getting in our foods.
- In 1980, it became legal to patent living organisms, meaning people now own living organisms.
- Weeds and insects are becoming resistant to herbicides and pesticides.
- Genetically modified plants (like corn) are modified to product it’s own pesticides. It is labeled as a pesticide, then harvested for food.
- The justification for using chemicals and GMO’s was that it is the only way to produce enough food to feed the world. BUT, after 30 years of comparison, organic farming performed the same as “conventional” farming.
- Monsanto (the #1 leading seed company in the world) threatened to sue many states for trying to pass a bill that would require food containing GMO’s to be labeled.
- 60 countries around the world require GMO labeling.
- 6 million people voted to label GMO’s in California. Then, the biotech industry spent over $45 million to shut down the bill and won by 3%.
- GMO’s are in over 80% of processed foods.
- 93% of soy is genetically modified.
- The health risks are unknown, because these companies refuse to test the effects of GMO’s.
- In 1992, under heavy pressure, the FDA stated that GMO’s are Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS), after zero studies or research.
- Fish in the Sequoia National Forest contain GMO’s.
- Gilles-Eric Seralini, a French scientist and professor at the University of Caen, conducted a 2 year study on rats with GMO’s (specifically Roundup ready corn and Roundup herbicide). The studies showed that females were prone to mammary tumors. They longer or more GMO’s were consumed, the more tumors the rats had. Males showed significant kidney and liver damage.
- In comparison to a rat’s life, humans may start seeing implications of GMO’s after 30-40 years.
- Scientists linked to the biotech industry discredited Seralini’s study.
This movie really got me thinking, but what can we do if GMO’s aren’t even labeled in most states? People around the world stay away from GMO’s, so why are we being forced to eat them? Our food has been genetically altered since 1990 [Source 1], so it hasn’t been long enough to really see the risks of consumption. 93% of Americans have chlorpyrifos (a neurotoxic insecticide) in their urine [Source 2]. It’s really scary when you think about it. It would be very hard to avoid GMO’s altogether, unless you have your own garden or strictly buy organic (but you still have to make sure it’s truly organic)!
At this point, I’m not sure what to do about GMO’s, but I am more aware of them, and I will be trying to buy more organic foods when possible. And I will make more things from scratch to get away from processed foods and preservatives. I can’t believe this country thinks it’s ok to experiment on people, like this. Hopefully, GMO’s will do nothing to us, but there probably will be some long term effects that we won’t be aware of until it’s too late.
We need to get the word out about GMO’s and try to get our food labeled, at the very least! That way, we have a choice on whether or not we want to put them in our bodies!