Of course not. But that is what the US government has been pretending. Action Alert!
A new study states authoritatively, in scientific terms, that GMOs (genetically modified organisms) and conventional crops are different and explains why. This is a critical first step toward making it easier for you to have a choice about whether GM (genetically modified) plants and animals will end up on your dinner table.
For years we’ve been told with a straight face by regulators that GM food is the same as natural food. But using in-depth genetic analysis, a team of researchers has revealed significant differences in plant metabolism—differences that also translate into nutrient imbalances and loss. For instance, the researchers found that GM corn had less vitamin E than its conventional counterpart.
It’s not as if the government has been entirely denying what should be obvious to anyone. There have been a few admissions from the FDA (not the USDA) over the years that genetic modification can significantly alter levels of important nutrients. The agency has also admitted that when the wrong genes are forced into plants, the plant’s ability to make normal proteins can be impeded or stopped altogether, and that this can set off a chain reaction elsewhere in the plant that can be toxic to the person who eventually eats it. But despite these admissions, we are supposed to accept that there is no fundamental difference between GMOs and traditional food!
The FDA, of course, has done (and still does) no testing of its own. It relies on manufacturer’s data. This is built on the completely faulty premise that artificially corrupting the code by putting genes in backwards or putting in genes from animals is the essentially the same as natural plant breeding. Moreover, if you go back to the inception of GMO foods, there is evidence that many or most FDA scientists disagreed with this (or at least questioned it) and sought more testing. They were simply overruled by their bosses.
“Substantial equivalence” is the crucial legal basis for the FDA’s regulatory scheme. The agency asserts that GM plants do not need any special safety assessments if the GM plant is similar enough in its nutritional composition. Note that the bar for demonstrating substantial equivalence is quite low: there is only a cursory review of industry data. Once substantial equivalence of a GM crop is demonstrated, that crop becomes for all intents and purposes GRAS (“Generally Recognized as Safe”) and no further scrutiny or safety assessment is required.
If scientists can continue to produce data showing that GM plants are NOT substantially equivalent to conventional plants, then this crony capitalist regulatory scheme run by industry may be overturned.
Action Alert! Write to the FDA and tell them to use these findings to analyze more closely whether GE crops are truly “substantially equivalent” to conventional crops. Please send your message today.
Other articles in this week’s Pulse of Natural Health: