Interview with Dr. Peter
Goldsbrough, Professor of Botany and Plant Pathology at
Your Body and GMOs
GMOs are relatively new and, like anything new, there are conflicting
viewpoints about many issues surrounding the use of these plants. One area
that draws a lot of attention is whether these GMO plants and the foods that
contain them are safe to eat. There is no data to indicate that consumption
of GMOs is bad for human health.
How do we know? GMOs have undergone more detailed evaluation than any
other group of plants that we consume. In almost all cases, GMOs differ from
a conventional plant by the addition of just one or two genes that produce
one or two new proteins. The origin and function of these proteins are well
understood. For example, the proteins are studied to make sure they do not
have any characteristics that are likely to cause allergic reactions. The
National Academy for Science, the United States’ number one source for
independent, objective advice to the nation on matters of science and
technology, concluded that GMOs are safe for human health. The same
conclusion has been reached by a large number of prestigious health and
science organizations from around the world. In addition, over the two
decades that GMOs have been on the market, there have been no occurrences of
health issues due to genetically modified organisms.
As GMOs stand today, there are no health benefits to eating them over
non-GMO foods. However, this may change in the future as technology develops
and becomes more sophisticated.