I'm pasting in below a comment I just submitted to another sanet post, because
it has bearing on your statements. Also, ranting is kind of strong language
to use when referring to objecting to man made toxins in one's food, the
presence of which is simply technologically unnecessary at this point.
They're there because they're more easily exploited economically by those that
manufacture, package and market them. Biologically based agricultural
technologies are not so easily packaged and sold - they just give better
results, without the disadvantages associated with agrochemicals, which
include a significant amount of unnecessary disease and death. (Did you read
Betty Graf's note about her brother? How about the suit against Monsanto in
relation to the information squelched in Miami)?
Lastly, regarding your comment "Humans are doing quite well. It is
wild nature we should be worried about." You have got to be kidding. (You
must like getting Sal agitated - but he's got plenty of real obstacles to
hurdle, in addition to tending his groves and getting his products to
market). I'm not even going to answer that.
Regarding your next the last paragraph, you can't recreate or substitute
evolution in the lab, no matter how much $ you throw at it (motivated by a
desire to produce more of it - but not necessarily a better life for
Were any studies included on nutritional content and / or animal
health? (Regarding the latter, obviously I'm referring to studies done on
groups raised exclusively on food cultivated one way or the other). Another
interesting area would be physical, mental and psychological performance of
individuals and groups fed products cultivated under different systems.
These are all relevant factors. Quantifying "Quality of Life" in concrete
is a real issue and unfortunately, those who aren't personally familiar with
effects of consuming a diet based on fresh picked, biologically cultivated
have little basis for comparison. For the figures to reflect real meaning,
comprehensive criteria must be applied. In short - the juries still out
the research is still far from complete. In fact, many significant variables
have yet to be plainly identified.
Wilson, Dale wrote:
> > Where is the residue testing USDA. Where is the chain of evidence.
> I've seen the labs where they test the safety of chemicals, and met
> people who do this. They appear to be good operations. Untold millions
> of rodents, and thousands of beagles, occasional monkeys are used in the
> testing. I have a passing familiarity with the kinds of (extremely
> conservative) models used for extrapolation to low doses. Believe me,
> enormous effort is brought to bear on this, millions upon millions of
> dollars for each chemical screened, and many years of testing.
> > Organic growers keep records for years where every thing they sell
> > goes so it is easy to trace back to the source yet not so with
> > chemical growers. And yet the USDA says organic food is not safer
> > than conventional foodstuff.
> Ultra-worst-case scenarios, and residue levels of pesticide use are
> modeled, and 1000 fold saftey factors built in. The companies
> internally screen thousands of promising new chemicals that get
> discarded for safety reasons, for every one sent on for EPA scrutiny.
> > Do you think organic food is safer than conventional food?
> No. I am convinced that the risks from the vast majority of pesticides
> are so small that they disappear in the background noise of naturally
> occuring risk from things like mycotoxins, plant metabolites, natural
> antigens, and pathogenic bacteria. In any case, the risks are too small
> to be measured.
> > Where are all those pesticides coming from and are they USDA approved?
> There aren't all that many that get through the intense scrutiny. But
> the big chemical companies have gigantic R & D efforts that design
> molecules, often based on naturally occuring toxins from plants,
> mushrooms, spiders, etc. They screen these robotically, in-vitro
> against a few pest, or pest-like species before toxicity testing the
> most promising against vertebrates. Then they make radio-labeled
> versions of the chemical, and follow all the metabolites through various
> vertebrate species. Then they synthesize and do toxicological studies
> on the metabolites. It is extremely difficult and demanding work.
> > and the band plays on.
> That is the feeling I get when you folks keep ranting about the supposed
> dangers of pesticides. IMO, this is a distraction from more important
> issues in responsible agriculture. Humans are doing quite well. It is
> wild nature we should be worried about.
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