Genetically Modified Organisms

The Real Deal

What are Genetically Modified Organisms?

Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) are plants created with a special gene that is meant to increase the benefits of the product. Scientists and farmers team up to make organisms that end up harming farmers, consumers, and the environment.

How Are GMOs Hurting Farmers?

Big companies such as Monsanto are benefiting a lot from the production of GMOs. However, farmers that are being put under the control of these large companies are really suffering. Since GMOs require a large investment, farmers have to go under the wing of large companies that eventually put them in so much debt that the farmers can only do what the companies tell them to. Farmers who do not comply to the companies are left planting natural crops which aren't sold to manufacturers because they are "less attractive". Developing countries such as those in Africa do not have the money to invest in GMOs. This would force Africans to either fall under the rule of foreign companies, or would widen the gap between more developed people and less developed people. As GMO demands increase, farmers have to choose between a life of debt or a life of no money at all.
Food Inc: Chicken Farm part II

How Are GMOs Bad for Consumers?

Biotech companies such as Monsanto are profit-driven and only care about making up the amount of money they invest in GMOs. Most companies overpromote the benefits of GMOs to sell more products and make more money. Companies also mainly focus on high-volume crops instead of high nutrition crops for less developed places, as they advertise. The foods also pose many health risks such as allergens and bacterial resistance to antibiotics.

Companies are able to get away with feeding people whatever they want because of the poor oversight from government agencies. The FDA has stated that GMOs are the same as natural plants, and therefore do not check most of the new crops companies feed to people. Most farms set up for genetic modification just send all things to manufacturing companies, even livestock and crops that are sick or weak. GM foods are also not labeled so that the public can choose what products they want to eat. This also stops people from being able to trace back illnesses to GMOs.

How Are GMOs Harmful to the Environment?

The first argument people make against GMOs are that they are not natural. Humans select whatever organisms they want to mix and do so. Nature never mixed apples with oranges, and now people mix fish with vegetables. Scientists are playing with organisms like they are toys, giving people the option to change the color of certain plants. Scientists are going against nature by stopping natural selection.

These selections are also very harmful to the actual environment. Wildlife that eat GMOs suffer because they are not used to unnatural foods. GMOs also promote monoculture which leads to plants becoming vulnerable to diseases and pets. Many insects and pests also become resistant to the same antibiotics, which creates superorganisms that are unpreventable.