Your rephrased question is still scary to contemplate. The limits of human
knowledge about indicators of impacts on human health, the uncertainties of
measurements and their intrepretations in complex systems, and the long term
implications of genetic alterations prevent findings and conclusions that,
without question, genetic alterations of crops do not effect human health
Furthermore, the arrogance implied in the assumption that such a conclusion
is definitive is no different than the level of arrogance required to
generate ecological risk from recombinant DNA technology.
I couldn't disagree with Benbrook more about the value of GE. The great
surge of technological fixes that began after WWII has generated the muriad
of ecological crises that exist today. Good management and stewardship do
not require magic bullets to develop an agricylture that is sustainable.
Releasing a plethora of transgenetic products to build a biological based
agriculture is akin to building countless nuclear weapons to produce a
lasting peace on earth.
The fact is that very few charastics of living matter are produced by the
expression of a single gene. Likewise, few, if any, genetic manipulations
result in the translocation of a single gene. There are no free lunches.
This technology will be so abused by the multinational corporations for
monetary gain that any benefits will be negligable. The Plant Variety
Protection Act that allows the patenting of GE material should be
overturned. In agriculture, the end result of this technology will be that
the major agribusiness players will produce entire systems that farmers must
purchase in order to farm "conventionally."
>If a systematic, comprehensive, well-planned and well-executed effort by
>a broad team of highly qualified and indisputably unbiased investigators, who
>are given time and money in amounts commensurate with the task, finds no
>evidence of any adverse human health effects from recently available
>genetically engineered crops, would this be good or bad news?
Steve Bonney, President
Indiana Sustainable Agriculture Association
100 Georgton Ct.
W. Lafayette IN 47906
(317) 463-9366, fax (317) 497-0164