Consumers should take animal feeding study findings as a warning, primatologist says
Jane Goodall is correct – animals fed GM foods do suffer adverse and potentially adverse effects:
Goodall says animals “suffer” from genetically modified foods
By Michaela Meaney
MarketWatch, 28 April 2015
Animals show adverse effects from genetically modified foods, and consumers should take that as a warning, primatologist Jane Goodall said Tuesday at a National Press Club news conference that called to urge stronger government safeguards for genetically modified organisms.
“Animals tell us something,” said Goodall. “If the animals have suffered this way, potentially for us, let’s listen to what they’re telling us. Let’s take heed.”
Goodall joined public interest attorney Steven Druker to talk about the Food and Drug Administration’s oversight of GMOs — organisms that have been engineered to develop new traits, commonly for the enhancement and growth of crops. Those crops often are fed to animals.
Goodall wrote the foreword for Druker’s 2015 book on FDA regulation of GMOs, which alleges a too-cozy relationship with Monsanto MON, -2.29% and other agribusiness companies. At Tuesday’s news conference, Druker noted that Michael R. Taylor, the FDA deputy commissioner for foods and veterinary medicine is a former Monsanto Co. vice president.
Although an FDA spokeswoman had no immediate comment, the agency’s website says, “Foods from genetically engineered plants must meet the same requirements, including safety requirements, as foods from traditionally bred plants.”
Druker discussed how he believes the FDA is not being truthful in its representation of GMO safety to the general public. The concern is that there has not been enough investigation into the effects of GMOs on feed animals, which eventually end up on American dinner tables.
Monsanto’s website says it produces eight commercially available GMO crops: corn, soybeans, cotton, alfalfa, sugar beets, canola, papaya, and squash. About 80% of packaged foods have at least one ingredient derived from a GMO, Druker said.
Goodall said that the industry studies she has seen report very little adverse effects on animals that eat the crops but independent studies demonstrate otherwise.
“But if the same tests, the same foods are examined by an independent scientist, then it turns out that in almost every case there are quite serious harms done to the rats, the mice or the other poor unfortunate animals, particularly internal organs like liver and kidneys and things of that sort,” Goodall said.
However a 2014 study conducted by researchers at University of California, Davis and published in the Journal of Animal Science concluded that from data of more than 100 billion animals, genetically engineered crops had no “unfavorable or perturbed trends in livestock health and productivity”.
“When the GMO foods are tested on rats or mice or rabbits or whatever it is, and the results are examined by somebody from the industry, it’s always, ‘Well, there are just one or two small things but they’re not significant,’” Goodall said. “I don’t think it’s proved at all that these are safe.”