Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory - Page 2
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  1. #21
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Bt are "specific" in that they don't kill all insects, but they're still pretty broad-spectrum. Its not like one type of Bt kills only cabbage worms; the cabbage worm "specific" Bt also kills the larval stage of most types of beetles. I don't know how much biology you know, but Bt specificity is at the "family" taxonomic rank; e.g. a particular Bt will be lethal to all species/genera within a family, and often has reduced toxicity to similar families. This is one reason why an ant-specific Bt has not been released; such a Bt kills ants, but would also harm a number of pollinator species including bees and wasps (all of whom belong to close families to ants).

    In GMO plants the toxin doesn't go away because it is continually produced by the cells - as far as the plant is concerned, its just another gene under a promoter (the thing that turns genes on and off) that is 'on' in cuticle tissues. You could think of it as equivalent to a gene that gives your skin colour - its always 'on' in your skin, and 'off' everywhere else. But in this case, instead of colour, its making an insect toxin in the plants "skin".

    In terms of resistance, you have how resistance forms backwards. Transient exposures, such as those you get with spraying, are what cause resistance to evolve. The reason being that a portion of the insects are exposed to a non-lethal dose (e.g. due to being in a more poorly sprayed area, or because they move into the field a few days after spraying); this lets any insects with a small amount of resistance a chance to out-compete those without any resistance. The next time you spray you re-select for insects with some resistance, with more resistant insects out-competing less resistant ones. Repeat enough times and completely resistant species can emerge. GMO is always there, at toxic levels, making it much harder for resistance to evolve. Resistance can still evolve with GMO, which is why the more modern Bt strains express 2 or 3 different Bt toxins. This approach seems to be sufficient to prevent the evolution of resistance (its also why similar tri- or quadravalent-component treatments are used to treat things like HIV).

    As to why non-GMO seeds are still propagated, there are a number of reasons:
    1. Most food crops are not GMO'd (only ~10 crops have GMO variants available) so there is a need to produce those seeds for producers.
    2. Crop breeding is still a major industry, and those strains represent their feed stock
    3. GMO is never done alone; it is always combined with conventional breeding approaches (which are pretty unnatural, btw) to produce plants with the desired characters. Think of it this way - with GMO you can add or remove a single select trait with high specificity. What you cannot do (yet, at least) is insert general desired characteristics.
    4. Those seeds represent a lot of genetic diversity which can be used in the future for breeding or GMO
    5. Some people just like old varieties.



    B

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  3. #22

    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Im not convinced, but no matter because Im against natural and GMO toxins.

    http://earthopensource.org/gmomythsa...nimals-people/

  4. #23
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    I'm not going to breakdown all the falsehoods in that article, but lets just say that they are very selectively feeding you information that supports their political agenda, rather than giving an as unbiased view as possible. There are literally tens of thousands of academic researchers out there whose job is to investigate safety/etc of GMO's; they are independent of industry and of special interest groups. And their work consistently shows that GMOs are as safe as any other crop, and generally are better for the environment across a broad range of categories.

    Just as one example of how misleading your article is, take the line "The Bt toxin expressed by GM Bt plants is different from natural Bt, both in terms of its structure and its mode of action". That is true...for one single line of now withdrawn Bt corn. All other approved Bt plants express the full, native Bt protein. So while the fact in their claim is true, the remainder of what they state - and their implication that it is true for all Bt strains - is not.

    Its a common bait-and-switch approach used by the anti-GMO lobby (and most other anti-science groups, from creationists, to anti-vaxers, to flat-earthers) to make their case, but to be blunt about it, its simply lying while using a few bona-fide facts to give their claims the veneer of authenticity. I would suggest you look to sources not from lobby groups (either for- or against-GMOs) and look instead to the independent researchers whose only interest is to accurately understand the impact of GMO's.

  5. #24

    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    There are no independent researchers in my eyes. On both sides perhaps.
    It should be that the people can decide what to choose with declaration of products, no matter if they are educated or not. Democracy freedom. But the declarations lack. Why? Lobby input?

  6. #25
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Well that is hugely insulting to myself and all the other scientists tolling out there to make your life better. The most valuable thing I have - profession-wise - is my independence. It's the whole underlying basis of academic freedom, and the foundation upon which science has progressed for the past 500 or so years. But I guess no one can convince a conspiracy-mongerer.

  7. #26

    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    No its not insulting. Its your personal feeling because you are convinced of your knowledge.

    The problem is the arrogance of believing that you are the Redeemer of mankind because you are convinced of your knowledge.
    But there are people who are suspicious of it.
    These too have a voice and a right to their opinion.

  8. #27
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    It is insulting, whether you intended it that way or not. You presume to know what motivates I (and my fellow scientists), and because the facts we reveal don't align with your personal beliefs, you assume that they are a product of bias. You should try stepping into a lab one day, I think you'll be shocked at the Herculean steps we go through to remove our conscious and unconscious biases from our analyses. Right now you are ascribing motivations based purely on your ignorance of how science works, and the best defence you can come up with for that is insinuation and insults.

    And yes, I am convinced of my knowledge; the nice thing about science is we can assign mathematical certainty to our conclusions and even quantify the likelihood that we are wrong. That doesn't make me the redeemer of mankind - and for that matter at no place did I ever express the opinion that GMO was the only way to go - but it does mean that I can be certain the information I share is as accurate as possible.

    And while I agree that people have a right to their opinions, they do not have a right to their own facts. Facts stand independent of us and our opinions. But if you have to ignore facts to keep your opinions, than you opinions are - in a word - wrong. And similarity, while you have a right to your opinions, you do not have the right to not have those opinions challenged, nor to have them treated as equal to informed opinions.

  9. #28

    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    No problem. Im not feeling insulted. Sorry that you feel insulted.

  10. #29
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Last edited by rwurster; 02-20-2018 at 10:21 PM.
    Zone 5 @ 4700 ft. High Desert

  11. #30
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Siwolke - There is a reason why he may be insulted and you are not. You questioned his integrity, he just questioned your facts.

  12. #31
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Anti GMO is like a religion. It is based on faith not facts.

  13. #32

    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    I do not question anyone's integrity.
    And there are many branches of research that I support, for example in the medical field, and in both directions.

    There are facts on both sides these days, and I think it must be possible to discuss them in a civilized way without anyone feeling offended.

    25-30 years of genetic engineering research are much too short to judge the long-term consequences. That's a fact too.
    It has not been proven that there are no sequelae, e.g. in the human genome, if you take the modified food for many years.
    It is not even possible to say something about it yet.

    Only when this technique is used for many years on all foods (there are still only certain plants, if you observe the cultivation in the whole world) will you see what happens, to what extent dependencies arise (income dependencies, chemistry dependencies) and to what extent humans are used.
    Laboratory tests results are not what happens on the fields and the field research is not what will happen in different locations. Just like with beekeeping.

    But I think all people should be allowed to determine these changes, the farmers and scientists and the consumers.
    Anti GMO is like a religion. It is based on faith not facts.
    Just like GMO is.
    To be skeptical and to listen to and even provoke the arguments of both sides is important for learning processes.

  14. #33
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    I do not question anyone's integrity.
    Except that you did; your own words: There are no independent researchers in my eyes.

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    25-30 years of genetic engineering research are much too short to judge the long-term consequences. That's a fact too.
    No, it is not a fact. There are very well developed toxological, etc, frameworks which can accurately determine long-term health risks (similar for environmental) over periods of one-to-two decades. I *literally* teach this stuff for a living. You're repeating propaganda from anti-science groups; there is no basis in reality for your claim.

    If you actually care about the reality of how we quantify long-terms risks I'd suggest the following books:
    Toxicological Risk Assessment of Chemicals: A Practical Guide
    Fundamentals of Toxicology: Essential Concepts and Applications
    Probabilistic Approach for Deriving Acceptable Human Intake Limits and Human Health Risks from Toxicological Studies: General Framework.

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    It has not been proven that there are no sequelae, e.g. in the human genome, if you take the modified food for many years.
    Actually, it has, at multiple levels.

    Firstly, there is no known physical, chemical or biological process by which genomic changes can be induced by GMOd foods. In fact, for that to occur a lot of established biology (e.g. how digestion & nutrient absorption works) would have to be completely wrong.

    Secondly, it is physically impossible for GMO'd genes/proteins to have a different biological effect when consumed that a non-GMO'd variant; the GMOd portions of an organisms are still DNAs and the encoded protein (not counting knockout GMOs, which lack genes rather than having new ones), and our bodies process them the same as any other consumed DNA or protein. The average food item you eat has between 20,000 and 60,000 genes/proteins. GMOs have - at most - and extra 10 (most have 1). Unless you think GMO DNA is magical, it cannot have any effect different from that of the already foreign (to you) DNA and genes in your food.

    Lots of info here: http://www.nap.edu/catalog/23395/gen...-and-prospects

    Again, you are merely parroting propaganda from anti-GMO groups that has no basis in reality.

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    Only when this technique is used for many years on all foods (there are still only certain plants, if you observe the cultivation in the whole world) will you see what happens, to what extent dependencies arise (income dependencies, chemistry dependencies) and to what extent humans are used.
    Again, no. The entire fundamental underlying principal of science (and the statistics we rely on) is to make accurate inferences about what occurs in the large scale through observations/experiments on samples/subgroups.

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    Laboratory tests results are not what happens on the fields and the field research is not what will happen in different locations.
    Good thing that GMO's go through multi-site field trial before approval, then! Glad you agree (even if you don't realise it) that the framework used to approve GMOs and assess their safety is robust, and takes into account environment-specific events.

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    But I think all people should be allowed to determine these changes, the farmers and scientists and the consumers.
    You do understand that farmers around the world are clamouring for GMO's - right? Its why they've been so successful. No one forces farmers to buy them; farmers buy them because they provide value to the farmer. And by-and-large, consumers don't seem to care.

    If we're going to label foods for reasons of risk, it makes far more sense to label foods grown using compost or manure as fertiliser; unlike GMO's, there is an actual, proven risk. Organic produce (and conventional produce fertilised with manure or compost) is about 20x more likely to carry pathogenic bacteria than crops grown conventionally. In contrast, analysis of over a trillion (yes, trillion, with a 't') consumed GMO meals finds no measurable risk.

    But yeah, lets label the GMOs

  15. #34
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    SuiG.....
    But yeah, lets label the GMOs
    Why not label them? It doesn't matter why somebody decides for themselves not to or to eat it. You mention testing of trillions. Well pork is tested by trillions and when you go buy it it is labeled pork. I eat it but yet know many who for religious reasons that don't eat it. I don't want them to take pork off the shelf but don't mind that it is labeled pork and don't care if somebody doesn't eat it. I think it is not too much to ask to know what you are eating and for the person eating it getting to make the decision for what ever reason on wether to eat it or not.
    Cheers
    gww

    Ps so it is ok to force products to label sodium content and added ingrediants but to hide gmo?
    zone 5b

  16. #35
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Thats right I believe we should label the food, those mit de cow poop and those mitout de cow poop,
    Johno

  17. #36
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Quote Originally Posted by gww View Post
    Why not label them? It doesn't matter why somebody decides for themselves not to or to eat it. You mention testing of trillions. Well pork is tested by trillions and when you go buy it it is labeled pork.
    And GMO'd corn is labelled 'corn'...

    ...and GMO'd soy labelled 'soy'.

    What you are proposing is that foods be identified down to the breed/strain. So to take your pork example, instead of saying 'pork', you are proposing the packaging would have to say "Cheshire pork", or "Landrace pork". Producers/packagers have the option to do that already - "angus beef" being a common one that makes me laugh every time I see it.

    Aside from being ridiculous (and how would you label hamburger that may contain meat from a dozen breeds of cow, or a cereal that may be made of ten or twelve different strains of wheat), it provides no benefit to the consumer, and provides significant cost to the producer. After all, they now need to create separate transportation, storage and processing lines to keep the strain/breeds identifiable.

    Quote Originally Posted by gww View Post
    I think it is not too much to ask to know what you are eating and for the person eating it getting to make the decision for what ever reason on wether to eat it or not.
    And that information is not missing. If there is corn in it, its labelled as such.

    Quote Originally Posted by gww View Post
    Ps so it is ok to force products to label sodium content and added ingrediants but to hide gmo?
    That would be a false equivalency on your part; GMO isn't an ingredient added to food, its a breeding method.

    We don't label breeding methods on food, and requiring only one be labelled makes no sense. After all, mutagenic breeding (most plant crops), line breeding (most animal breeds), forced/interspecies hybridisation (most vegetables), and induced polyploidy (all cereals), all create far larger and uncontrolled changes to the genomes than does GMO. All produce much less predictable outcomes than GMO. And all are completely unnatural and do not (in many cases, cannot) occur in nature.

    So if we're labelling breeding methods, why only GMOs, and not the ones which incur far larger changes to the organisms biology and which are equally - if not more so - "unnatural"?

  18. #37
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    SuiG....
    Good enough answer for me at my knowlage level. I am not invested hard enough in the subject to care enough to learn more to decide if I totaly agree or not and so find no fault with your answer at my current knowlage level. I also will not work to learn more (unless on accident) on purpose cause there are enough things now that I am doing and don't know that I won't get to before I die.
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  19. #38

    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Thanks for the detailed information, SG.
    I need some time to study now.

    I am generally in favor of labeling foods, but as permitted proportions are genetically engineered there, I do not see much purpose in them either.

    But since I find it basically fair to be able to choose, at the moment I buy organic food from labels that control themselves.
    So I will continue to watch the discussion and see how it develops.

    Eduardo started this thread.
    I assume that it is important to him that in the Portuguese orchards the bees are not poisoned directly by spraying, so the argument that the defense is built into the plant is certainly an advantage.

    Are there any studies on the extent to which the guttation water of the plants or the resins they are segregating and which the bees may use has an impact on bee health?
    Last edited by 1102009; 02-24-2018 at 06:53 AM.

  20. #39
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    Perhaps he was paid for this and is tired.

    Here a speaking of what happened to a farmer who believed genetic modified corn was good for his cattle and who lost his existence, his milk cows dying on him and the manure contaminating all his farmland.
    He is one of the reasons the genetic science companies left europe`s experimental field research because his experience showed the reality.
    He even went to prison a time for his actions.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ehJe-4hjR2c
    You tell Mr McCormack to get that reaper off your land! It will never catch on.

  21. #40
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    Default Re: Time to call out the anti-GMO conspiracy theory

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    I am generally in favor of labeling foods, but as permitted proportions are genetically engineered there, I do not see much purpose in them either.
    As someone who (well, my wife, to be accurate) produces/sells food at the small scale, I'm generally opposed to labelling laws. They are very expensive to implement, especially at the level of the small producer.

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    But since I find it basically fair to be able to choose, at the moment I buy organic food from labels that control themselves.
    And it is a voluntary labelling, which is what I prefer as the costs are incurred by choice, and farmers/producers will do so if is to their advantage. We looked at getting organic certification for the dairy goat operation we are in the process of building, but decided against it. The cost of certification, plus the additional cost of buying certified & traceable feed, far outweighs the additional price we could charge for cheese. It also illustrates just how arbitrary the organic label is - because our goats will be eating predominantly wild fodder, with only 10-20% of their winter diet coming from feed, its almost impossible to get certification (we need to get soil testing done throughout our property, whereas someone growing fodder needs only have each separate field tested)...even though they are eating a far more "natural" diet (bush, trees, sedges, etc) than any goat eating a 100% organic feed diet

    Quote Originally Posted by SiWolKe View Post
    Are there any studies on the extent to which the guttation water of the plants or the resins they are segregating and which the bees may use has an impact on bee health?
    Lots, as measuring the release of Bt into the environment is a mandatory part of the certification process for all Bt crops. The best type of study to look for are meta-analyses, which pool the data from multiple studies and analyze it in-bulk. These (along with the individual studies they assess) show now harm to bees & other pollinators: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18183296

    You can even feed bees a pure diet of Bt-pollen without incurring a measurable detoxification response: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28688300

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