Thursday, January 31, 2013

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs)

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs)

The Weekly has also been a national leader in its reporting on the need for the labeling of all products containing GMOs. The paper’s articles regularly gain national attention and are frequently republished by other magazines, newspapers and websites. 

One of the Weekly’s most recent articles on GMOs was an exposé titled “Monsanto’s point of no return” by Editor Joel Dyer. In this piece, Dyer explored how consolidation within the seed industry has led to not only most U.S. crops being genetically modified, but how even when farmers want to plant non- GMOs, there is often no traditional seed available in the marketplace. 

Dyer found that most of the traditional non-GE seed companies in the world have been purchased by the four largest GMO seed companies, which are quickly phasing out the traditional seeds from the market, in essence forcing farmers to plant the companies’ patented, genetically modified seeds that must be repurchased each year. With a dwindling number of varieties of corn, soy, sugar beets and other major food crops now being grown, scientists are warning that our food supply could be in peril if our crops, with DNA that is now dangerously homogenous, were hit by the right disease or pest infestation.

“Most people are mainly concerned about the health and environmental threats associated with GMOs, and rightly so,” says Dyer. “But what I found while researching my Monsanto piece was that Monsanto’s business model may, in fact, be the single biggest threat to the global food supply.

“And sadly,” Dyer continues, “thanks to the political power that Monsanto and its seed monopoly friends have acquired by buying politicians via campaign donations and hiring Washington insiders when they leave office or the White House administration, it may already be too late to stop Monsanto. Even if voters demand labeling on GMO products, it doesn’t make any difference if there isn’t any non-GE seed left in the world to replant. That’s the point of no return, and we’re getting there fast, if we haven’t already passed it.”

Needless to say, after more than a decade of GMO coverage, Boulder Weekly will continue to inform our readers with long-form explanatory and investigative journalism on the important issue of GMOs.

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