GMO, Monsanto, biotechnology, Roundup Ready, Bt, glyphosate.
OK, most of the Internet search keywords/buzzwords are there for those who seem to spend far too much time on the Web searching for agricultural biotech “news.”
Now that I hopefully have your attention, my last blog on GMO pickles causing genital baldness was a joke ... a mockery ... a spoof ... a lampoon. It was maybe a lame attempt at ridiculing the hullabaloo surrounding what the whackos call genetically modified food. Everything we eat is genetically modified for goodness sake!
(See genital baldness blog GMO pickle claim leaves you scratching your head)
I figured sentences and headlines like, “If it is on the Internet, it must be true” and “Shroud of Turin Authenticated by Antiques Roadshow, Atheist Suicide Bomber Kills 18 Agnostics, Good Looking Woman Reportedly Not Body Searched At Airport Security” would be dead giveaways that it was a joke.
Apparently not. Carly Scaduto, vegetable communications manager for Monsanto, emailed: “Harry, I read your blog post about the GMO pickle and took it as a joke, but it turns out a lot of our customers are reading this as fact ... and they are seriously concerned about this.”
Yep, she says.
OK, eating Monsanto-created GMO pickles will not cause baldness on your top, middle or bottom.
In 50 years of doing this, I cannot recall another issue that has taken on such a bizarre existence. Part of it must be the Internet and the open door for anyone to post whatever they want, regardless of its validity. It is a facts-be-damned debate.
With each one of my GMO rants, I receive a variety of responses. Many hope me and my family go blind or are permanently disabled from eating dastardly GMO cookies. Others send obscure so-called scientific studies. I try to respect those and ask for more information, like “are there replicated field studies to validate what has been found in the lab?” All I typically get back are rants and Monsanto-bashing. So don’t send me anymore “scientific studies” from failed scientists who discovered that a rat lost his left ear after eating three kernels of Bt corn.
One of the ironies of the biotechnology debate is a plant breeding tool that has emerged that greatly benefits conventional plant breeding. It is called genetic marker technology.
It can take 20 years or longer to develop new crop varieties using old technology. Genetic marker-assisted technology can shorten that time to only seven to 10 years.
This marker technology allows plant breeders to more quickly identify and transfer a desirable gene between similar plant species like wheat, rice and cotton in what the anti-GMO crowd calls “conventional breeding.” I dare say that all those new wonderful organic breads, rice cakes and granola are made possible by this genetic market technology that emerged from biotechnology. Fear not, though, you will not be rendered hairless by marker assisted technology.
Instead of searching online for the irrationality of the anti-GMO movement and other “news,” pour a glass of California wine and go to www.thelapine.ca. Laugh a little rather than worrying about nothing.
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