Sign the Petition:
Search OCA:
Get Local!

Find Local News, Events & Green Businesses on OCA's State Pages:

OCA News Sections

Organic Consumers Association

30 Years of Genetically Engineered Plants - Consequences of Commercial Growing in the US

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA's Genetic Engineering page and our Millions Against Monsanto page.

Today in Berlin a new report was published presenting a critical assessment of the consequences of the commercial cultivation of genetically engineered plants in the US. The first genetically engineered plants were created 30 years ago in Europe and the US. Commercial growing in the USA began almost 20 years ago, but in the EU, acceptance of these crops is much lower. Nevertheless, companies are asking for further authorisations for cultivation, including in the EU. In the light of this development, past experience in the USA was assessed and recommendations made for the future handling of this technology in the EU. Some of the principal findings are:

>Consequences for farmers
Because the weeds have adapted to the cultivation of the genetically engineered plants, farmers are experiencing a substantial increase in both working hours and the amounts of herbicide they require. Cultivation of insecticide-producing plants have led to "an arms race in the field" against the pest insects, which have adapted quickly. Genetically engineered plants have been created to produce up to six different toxins. Costs for seeds have increased dramatically, without there being a substantial increase in yields or significant savings in the amounts of spray required.

>Impact on the seed market
The seed industry in the USA is largely dominated by agrochemical industries such as Monsanto, Dupont and Syngenta. In future, it has to be expected that developments in the USA will be strongly influenced by the interests of agro-chemical companies pushing for the cultivation of genetically engineered plants.

>Consequences for producers who avoid genetically engineered crops
Contamination with non-authorised genetically engineered plants has already caused billions of dollars worth of damage in the USA.

>Consequences for consumers
Consumers are exposed to a whole range of risks regarding unintended substances from plant metabolism, from residues from complementary herbicides and from the properties of additional proteins produced in the plants. As yet, there is no way of monitoring the actual effects that consumption of these products might have.


>>> Read the Full Article

For more information on this topic or related issues you can search the thousands of archived articles on the OCA website using keywords: