Industry responds to recent GMO study

A two-year study into lab rats found GMO corn and Monsanto's Roundup Ready herbicide caused tumors and organ failure. Despite skepticism, will the study affect Prop 37?

A controversial two-year study into lab rats in France published this week found those consuming levels of Monsanto's GMO corn and Roundup herbicide that correlate to the amount average Americans eat suffered from organ damage and cancer.

After initial release of the research, leaders within the food industry responded—some with skepticism. In a post on her blog Food Politics, professor Marion Nestle called the study "weirdly complicated", and wrote "There are enough questions about this study to suggest the need for repeating it, or something like it, under carefully controlled conditions."

Major news outlets also covered the new research. "David Spiegelhalter, a professor at the University of Cambridge specializing in the public perception of risk, said the numbers of animals in each group was too low to draw firm conclusions," according to an article in the New York Times.

Implications for Prop 37

Will the study be the biotech industry's "47%" moment in the politics of the day and help sway the debate in California to label GMO foods?

"The results of this study are worrying," said Gary Ruskin, who manages a campaign to pass the food-labeling initiative in California. "They underscore the importance of giving California families the right to know whether our food is genetically engineered, and to decide for ourselves whether we want to gamble with our health by eating GMO foods that have not been adequately studied and have not been proven safe."

The lead researcher, Gilles-Eric Seralini, said, "It's bizarre and dramatic for us that the US government has not requested to make serious tests before releasing these products into the environment because these GMOs are pesticide sponges, and we know that pesticides can be harmful to humans."

Seralini also pointed out that his team started to see tumors after four months, while the industry studies on rats were limited to a three-month period.

To read the full story, click here.

Do you think the GMO study is faulty? Or do you think it's ample evidence that GMOs are unsafe to eat? Share in the comments below.

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