The genetic engineering of food crops is an ecological hazard and health crisis that affects us all. Its consequences are global and potentially irrevocable. Yet the decision to use genetically modified organisms is currently being made for you by the government and major multinational corporations. To combat this practice, more than 600 scientists from 72 countries have called for a moratorium on the environmental release of GMOs. GMO Free is the most comprehensive resource available on the science behind this worldwide debate.
GMO Free takes a good look at the evidence scientists have compiled, and makes a powerful case for a worldwide ban on GMO crops, to make way for a shift to sustainable agriculture and organic farming. It’s time to take the future of your food supply and environment into your own informed hands. GMO Free will give you the information you need to do so.
Lim Li Ching works as a researcher for both the biosafety program at the Third World Network and the Institute of Science in Society. She is also the deputy editor of the magazine Science in Society.
Mae-Wan Ho, PhD, is director of the Institute of Science in Society, and Science Advisor to the Third World Network. Her career spans more than thirty years of research and teaching in biochemistry, molecular genetics, and biophysics.
Members of the Independent Science Panel (ISP) on GM have had the opportunity to review extensive scientific and other evidence on genetic engineering over the past decades. Many are among the more than 600 scientists from 72 countries who have signed an “Open Letter from World Scientists to All Governments” , initiated in 1999, which called for a moratorium on the environmental release of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), a ban on patents on living processes, organisms, seeds, cell lines and genes, and a comprehensive public enquiry into the future of agriculture and food security.
Scientific and other developments since 1999 have confirmed our concerns over the safety of genetic engineering, genetically modified (GM) crops and food security. At the same time, the successes and benefits of the different forms of sustainable agriculture are undeniable. The evidence, now assembled, makes a strong case for a worldwide ban on all environmental release of GM crops to make way for a comprehensive shift to agroecology, sustainable agriculture and organic farming.
The evidence on why GM crops are not a viable option for a sustainable future is presented in Parts 1 and 2, while Part 3 presents evidence on the successes and benefits of sustainable agricultural practices.
Note: This report is a summary of a vast amount of literature. We have included as much of the primary sources as possible, but many of the papers cited in the list of references are themselves extensive reviews of scientific and other literature, submitted to various national and international bodies that have called for evidence.
Part 1: No Future for GM Crops
1. Why Not GM Crops?
2. Escalating Problems on the Farm
Part 2: GM Crops Are Not Safe
3. Science and Precaution
4. Safety Tests on GM Foods
5. Transgene Hazards
6. Terminator Crops Spread Male Sterility
7. Herbicide Hazards
8. Horizontal Gene Transfer
9. The CaMV 35S Promoter
10. Transgenic DNA More Likely to Spread
11. Horizontal Transfer of Transgenic DNA
12. Hazards of Horizontal Gene Transfer
13. Conclusion to Parts 1 and 2
Part 3: The Manifold Benefits of Sustainable Agriculture
14. Why Sustainable Agriculture?
15. Higher or Comparable Productivity and Yields
16. Better Soils
17. Cleaner Environment
18. Reduced Pesticides and No Increase in Pests
19. Supporting Biodiversity and Using Diversity
20. Environmental and Economic Sustainability
21. Ameliorating Climate Change
22. Efficient and Profitable Production
23. Improved Food Security and Benefits to Local Communities
24. Organics for Health
25. Conclusion to Part 3
Statement of the Independent Science Panel