Thursday, February 21, 2013

Expert discusses GMOs role in sustainable agriculture - Arizona Range News: News

Expert discusses GMOs role in sustainable agriculture - Arizona Range News: News

Sustainable agricultural systems are needed now more than ever, as food growers worldwide struggle to meet the needs of an ever-increasing global population.

That according to Dr. Jeffrey C. Silvertooth, associate dean of Education for Economic Development and Extension in the University of Arizona’s College of Ag and Life Science.

Because many people are concerned about GMOs (genetically modified organisms – crop seeds, in this case), Ag Day Chairman Claire Owen invited Silvertooth to discuss how our food is being modified.

Giving examples of questions people are asking, Owen said, “When you are modifying food, what will it do to us? What will it do to the animals you feed it to? Are there ramifications to eating modified beef?”

“On the other hand, yield is increased and it solves other problems,” Owen told the Range News.
“We have to feed the whole (increasing) population of the word.”

Sonya Gasho, with the Cochise-Graham Cattlegrowers Association, asked Silvertooth how best to get the truth out about the use of GMOs.

“You can tell people the scientific evidence all day long,” but in the end, their opinion “is an emotional one,” she said.

Silvertooth agreed, saying that fundamentally “what we need to do is to increase the education in the general public.”

He reminded the audience that as citizens of one of the world’s most affluent nations, those  concerned about GMO foods “have the luxury of not eating it.”

“We can afford to do what we want,” said Silvertooth, adding, “Folks in other parts of the world are starving.”

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