Read up on GMO and frankenfood

Genetic modification of plants is inherently different than plant hybridization, a time-honoured practice.

Jim Drummond’s recent letter (‘Frankenfood better than chemicals’ The NEWS, Nov. 25) makes a number of assertions that require clarification.

Genetic modification of plants (leaving out for the purpose of this discussion the genetic modification of animals, fish, etc.) is inherently different than plant hybridization, a time-honoured practice that most agriculturalists will support.

He is correct in stating that “starvation still occurs in parts of the world,” but does not address the real cause of this tragedy. The real cause of starvation is not food scarcity, but government and corporate policy.

His assertions regarding the possible connections between long-term ingestion of ‘safe’ amounts of herbicides and pesticides in our food, and our society’s growing list of chronic disease are logical, and in my opinion, unassailable.

He also states: “Given a choice between frankenfoods and chemicals, I would choose the frankenfoods.” I wish him good luck on his grocery-buying trips to find your preferred choice of a “frankenfood.”

I think if Drummond delved into this very large and complicated subject a little deeper, he would learn that the two agricultural practices of growing genetically modified crops and using large amounts of chemicals, are inextricably linked.

To address all the other aspects of the global corporate drive to push agendas that promote growing large mono-cultures of genetically manipulated crops, would require much more space than is available here.

To that end, I would recommend that anyone interested in understanding the complexities of the so-called “Green Revolution,” and educating themselves before heading out to purchase their food, begin with some well chosen reading material. Seeds of Destruction by Engdahl is one of the best.

Janet Thony, president, Coombs Farmers’ InstituteQualicum Beach

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