0.9% GM, Still Organic

We’re not really anti-GM here at TreeHugger; we realise that the science could equally provide solutions or problems. Genetic mutations occur naturally every day, and the vast majority of them are less capable of survival than existing strains, so die out. They’re not likely to spread far, except with human help - evolution is by far a more reliable designer than any team of humans could ever be (no offence to our geneticist readers).

However, we do believe that you should be aware of exactly what goes into your food, which is why it’s somewhat of a shock to find out that European agriculture ministers have decided that foods containing 0.9% GM ingredients can still be labelled "GM-free".

It’s caused outcry among those who support organic farming, provoking fears of genetic contamination. However, the decision was made because more sensitive tests to prove organic methods were deemed to be too costly. Testing for a 0.9% content can be done rather more easily, and allows a small boundary for accidental contamination. Agriculture commissioner Mariann Fischer Boel said, "It can be very tempting to say 'zero tolerance', but that wouldn't work in real life. To avoid accidental contamination, it would be so expensive to produce organic products that it would damage the market completely; it would simply kill the sector."

Whether you are OK with eating GM crops or not is a personal choice. I don’t have a problem with it, but some do, and they should be aware of what products contain GM ingredients. Vegetarians choose to not eat meat, not to eat food with less than 0.9% meat, and this is no different. Yes, the tests may be expensive, but they are necessary. :: The Guardian

See also :: Extreme makeover- Genetically Modified Apples :: Venezuela Bans Genetically Engineered Crops

Tags: GMO

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