The Potential Benefits of GMOs

cowI almost felt defeated when I read a post in the blog, Science-Based Medicine, regarding the rise of pseudoscience in the medical field. (If you don’t read this blog, check it out. It is the most intelligent source of industry news and facts that you will find, except this blog. 🙂 )

The author, Clay Jones, laments about the state of pseudoscience in the context of 2016 predictions. He wrote,

“Quackery has become fully entrenched at this point and the outlook is bleak for those of us who strive to do something about it.”

Oh, my. It is equally sad when discussing other sciences, including the science of genetically-modified products or GMOs. Readers of this blog know that the evidence supporting the continued use and development is overwhelming, with the support of authoritative voices like the WHO, JAMA, AAAS, etc. It beats Dr. Oz or the Food Babe any day.

The matter deserves another review. Let’s look at the developments going on now that will make it harder to turn a blind eye to the benefits of GMOs.

Benefiting the Farmer

A study published in the journal, PLoS ONE, offers compelling evidence supporting GMOs. A meta-analysis of 147 original studies revealed that GM technology not only reduced pesticide use, but it also increased yields. These benefits translated to a 68 percent increase in farmer profits.

Now before you get your panties in a twist, let’s consider the facts. First, it isn’t all about corporations profiting. In fact, the opposite is true. According to the US Department of Agriculture,

“… family farms represent 97.6 percent of all U.S. farms and are responsible for 85 percent of U.S. farm production.

So, the ones benefiting from GM technology are the small family farmers who use it. It is also the farmers in developing countries. Excuse this soapbox moment, but isn’t this idea of denying authorization of GMOs a first-world self-indulgence, a luxury, if you will?

Many people bitch about how expensive it is to eat healthy. Here is a way to bring good healthy food to the masses and some of the elitist liberal crowd want to deny them of the simple pleasures of good health and a full belly? Please. Soapbox moment ended.

Healthy Food for the Masses

This is one argument of the opposition I cannot fathom. As a study from Ghent University points out, GM technology offers a tool to provide better nutrition to the people who need it. Again, liberals speak of food security and food waste.

Here is an opportunity to provide people who face the real possibility of nutritional deficiencies and their consequences hope for a better tomorrow. How can anyone deny them good nutrition based on a pseudoscience-backed belief?

What’s the Beef?

Another area of GM technology involves animal feed. Let’s begin with the context. Meat consumption is increasing. And the environmental costs of livestock production will continue to have a greater impact. GMOs offer a solution with animal feed.

The technology that increases yield plays into a more streamlined solution to reduce environmental costs of livestock production. The increased yields also offer a safeguard to protect crop production for human consumption.

GMOs are another tool we can use to ensure that no one goes hungry. It provides an efficient and cost-effective means to fulfill this goal, with the added benefit of reduced environmental costs. It’s time to kick the pseudoscience bogey man to the curb and embrace science and its benefits.

photo credit: Cow via photopin (license)