SUMMARY: "Backers of Oregon's measure to require labeling of genetically modified foods have lost a court fight they hoped would help them garner enough votes to pass the measure in an ongoing recount of ballots."
Backers of Oregon's measure to require labeling of genetically modified foods have lost a court fight they hoped would help them garner enough votes to pass the measure in an ongoing recount of ballots.
SUMMARY: "The European Union is taking a big step toward giving EU member states the power to ban the cultivation of genetically modified crops even if they have been approved by the food safety authority of the 28-nation bloc."
The European Union is taking a big step toward giving EU member states the power to ban the cultivation of genetically modified crops even if they have been approved by the food safety authority of the 28-nation bloc.
VIENNA, Austria — Say this for Austen Heinz: His vision for the future will either thrill you or leave you fearing for the future of humanity. There’s not really any room in the middle.
In a pair of interviews, on and off the stage at the Pioneers Festival in Vienna today, the CEO of San Francisco-based Cambrian Genomics explained the mission of his company, which is often benignly described as “laser-printing DNA.”
So what does that mean?
“We want to make everything that is alive on the planet,” he explained. “Everything that is alive is not optimal. It can be made better.”
* In the first of a series on the precautionary principle, Andy Stirling argues it offers crucial time to think through options
Precaution is arguably one of the most misunderstood and misrepresented issues in the global politics of science and technology. Misunderstood, because precaution is so often wrongly asserted to be unscientific or anti-technology. Misrepresented, because a large part of the resulting stigma can be a systematic – even deliberate – effect of power.
No article questioning the safety of genetically modified (GM) foods is complete without a rebuttal consisting of reassuring comments to the effect that every credible scientific and government organisation has said that GM foods are safe.
Take for example a recent article in the UK’s Guardian newspaper announcing the launch of a large long-term animal feeding study with a GM maize that’s been in the food supply for years. Among the many comments was this typical example:
“Has any GMO crop, in widespread use, been shown to be dangerous? I guess not because:
* By studying the immune systems of plants, they've developed a technique that eliminates the need for chemicals
“In the Second World War,” Samuel Zook began, “my ancestors were conscientious objectors because we don’t believe in combat.” The Amish farmer paused a moment to inspect a mottled leaf on one of his tomato plants before continuing. “If you really stop and think about it, though, when we go out spraying our crops with pesticides, that’s really what we’re doing. It’s chemical warfare, bottom line.”
* Thousands of rats will be fed Monsanto maize diets in a $23m, three-year "Factor GMO" study into long-term health effects of GM food and associated pesticides
A Russian group working with scientists is set to launch what they call the world’s largest and most comprehensive long-term health study on a GM food.
The $25m three-year experiment will involve scientists testing thousands of rats which will be fed differing diets of a Monsanto GM maize and the world’s most widely-used herbicide which it it is engineered to be grown with.