“Follow the laws of nature and you’ll never go wrong” – Dr. Forrest C. Shaklee
Very wise words. It is becoming more apparent each and every day, everywhere I look. The more we tamper with Nature, the more we slide down a slippery slope. We as a society have been led to believe that we can make something that is from Nature better by manipulating it to fit our purpose, whatever it may happen to be.
Manipulation by genetic modification seems to be on my mind a lot lately. I heard a frightening statistic last week. I am going to share this stat with you not to rid myself of the horror of it rattling around in my brain but because I feel we all should be aware. Here goes: “70 to 75% of all “food” in our grocery stores are GMO (genetically modified organisms)”. I can no longer walk through a grocery store without being sceptical of almost everything sold there.
Let’s ponder this statement. Why is genetically altering a species or variety of plant a dangerous proposition, you ask? I will share my thoughts on this. I’m sure with time my understanding will broaden and my disgust deepen regarding the tampering with Mother Nature. For today I will focus on GMO “foods”. I hesitate to call them real food because in my mind once something is altered from its natural state as far as processing and laboratory experiments go it is no longer food. It becomes a food-like substance.
Genetically manipulating our food sources definitely comes at a price. These range from health effects, loss of natural species and an infinitely more expensive overall food cost. We are told by biotech companies that genetically altering plants is of great value to our future success. One of these companies actually claims on its website that human testing of GMOs is unnecessary because they are no different than conventional and natural crop varieties. Say what!? I beg to differ. I’m certain that once an individual delves a bit deeper than the surface of GMO’s that you would most definitely find there is a huge difference between natural crop varieties and those that have been manipulated. Do they think that we are all daft enough to believe this? Regulatory authorities have never taken the agri-giants to task on actually proving this baseless claim, which flies in the face of independent science.
Originally, genetic modification was developed to assist in increased crop production and crop protection against pests and diseases. This sounds like a great idea. We all want farmers to profit and don’t relish the thought of sharing our food with creepy crawlies. Sadly, it is having an opposite effect. Farmers are drowning in debt, our beautiful land is eroding at alarming rates, biodiversity is being affected, and those pests we shudder at the thought of really aren’t evil beings out to get us.
Sometimes there is no getting back what is lost. Species and plant varieties that become extinct, for example.
If you have the ability to get your hands on the documentaries Food Inc. and FoodMatters, I would highly recommend watching them. Both of the films will lead you to question the things we just accept or take for granted.
I just want to eat a big bowl of popcorn with butter and not have to worry whether my cells are being corrupted, or worse, destroyed.
If we really knew all of the effects these “foods” have on us and our environment, would we support their presence and consume them? I think not. We will probably never get a truthful, straight answer to this question from the companies and scientists that are producing these misfit sources of sustenance. Why would they tell us. They would go out of business in the blink of an eye. We need to educate ourselves.
This year I am on a mission. More so than ever before. I will only accept heritage(or heirloom if you prefer) seeds into my gardens. I have always been a pesticide-free gardener and bought heirloom plants when I could find them. From now on if they are not heirloom/heritage, they are not coming home with me. When I sit down to a meal that is lovingly prepared, I want to know that I am feeding my family and friends the best that Mother Nature has to offer.
“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” Mahatma Gandhi