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GMO Fact vs. Fiction

Many of SHAKA speaker Smith’s assertions ring false.

June 5, 2014
J. Eagle - Wailuku , Maui Weekly

We surely want to distinguish fact from fiction.

Organic food is easily available. Jeffery Smith, a SHAKA Movement zealot, does not mention where. However, he does make many assertions about GMOs which more than ring false.

Some who attend the performances of this SHAKA advocate may not have time to check out all of his pronouncements. For instance, Smith recently stated to applause on May 28, 2014, that Europe and China have banned GMOs. Perhaps he is just mistaken.

The overwhelming majority of the 28 European Community (EC) members have not banned GMOs. Germany and Austria are apparently among only six members that probably have largely banned growing GMOs. Two additional major European countries are not EC members. They also have not banned GMOs.

At Wikipedia, reference to European Union members notes that, as of 2010, the EU approved various types of genetically modified crops. Other sources suggest that members have a wide degree of latitude in what they do. No Wikipedia reader has edited this information to say otherwise since 2010.

One credible source on the Internet under "Ask Us Anything About GMOs" points out that "By mid-2011, 39 GM products were approved for food and feed use in the EU," with 72 approvals in processing. All got favorable opinions from the applicable scientific authority.

The source reports that, despite controversy, the EU in 2011 imported 72 percent of the protein-rich feed for its livestock from Brazil, Argentina and the U.S. The vast majority of that food is GMO. The subject of import is also accessible on the Internet.

China apparently planned in 2013 to produce its own genetically modified corn. Russia noted it would grow its own organic crops.

Maui Weekly gets thanks for its forethought in sagely covering this topic early.

When Jeff Smith speaks, other media can also help. Sorting out fact from fancy early can get misconceptions corrected before they bear rotten fruit.

When some, despite the vast weight of educated opinion, want to degrade others with unfounded innuendo, alarms sound. When those who are of a different opinion create confusion, alarms sound loudly. Smith says that he "generally believes in speaking the truth." One wonders whether truth he dislikes is a bother to speak.

If you heard Smith on May 28, you may have heard him also say that Walmart has banned modified foods. That is not true. Walmart has, in fact, started a line of organic foods.

These are but a few of the inconvenient truths that Smith disregarded.

Being amusing is one thing. Stating untruths is another.

Reminder: Two billion more people are going to exist by about 2040. You hear from some of those now that they are already starving. Two billion mouths are too many to ignore untruths.

Good on those who give us better options. The overwhelming weight of scientific opinion points out that genetic modification provides such an option.



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