It’s safe to eat meat from livestock raised on biotech crops, according to a new report. The Ames, Iowa-based Council for Agricultural Science and Technology compiled the report. It’s a nonprofit consortium that’s supposed to be independent in its findings.
CAST’s report looked at regulatory assessments on genetically modified crops, results of feeding studies and information about what happens when animals consume various proteins and DNA, according to the Associated Press story. It can be found here, http://www.iht.com/articles/2006/07/26/business/gmo.php, or here, http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ap/fn/4072657.html, or here, http://www.mlive.com/newsflash/business/index.ssf?/base/business-66/115390135995490.xml&storylist=mibusiness.
Key quote: “Meat, milk and eggs produced by farm animals fed biotechnology-derived crops are as wholesome, safe and nutritious as similar products produced by animals fed conventional crops,” said John M. Bonner, CAST’s executive vice president.
Not so fast, says Doug Gurian-Sherman of The Center for Food Safety, which recommends against eating genetically modified foods. He points out that CAST receives support from the biotech industry and questions aspects of the information used for the report.
Meanwhile, one of the arguments in favor of genetically modified crops may have a hole in it, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports, http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/news/stories.nsf/metroeast/story/5F4EECA9A12FE7A1862571B70018B028?OpenDocument. Here’s the London-based Independent’s story as well, http://news.independent.co.uk/environment/article1199339.ece.
Advocates, including Montsanto, which makes modified seeds, have claimed that biotech crops are more resistant to pests, thus requiring fewer pesticides. That’s better for the environment and cheaper for the farmers.
But Cornell University scientists studying cotton crops in China found that farmers had to use as much pesticide after seven years as farmers with conventional crops. And because modified seeds are so much more expensive on average, that means it’s more expensive for farmers to grow such crops.