Pseudo-Scientific Defense of GMO Safety is Smoke and Mirrors

By Jeffrey Smith, author and founder of the Institute for Responsible Technology at Huffington Post:

Three years after I wrote Genetic Roulette: The Documented Health Risks of Genetically Engineered Foods, pro-GM scientists have finally taken me up on my challenge to supply evidence that counters any of the 65 risks highlighted in the book. So, it will be a great pleasure for me to respond to the 65 arguments recently posted on a new attack-Jeffrey website. Their effort offers a priceless opportunity to not only revisit each health risk, but also to show more precisely where and how the biotech industry comes up short in its defense. Be sure to subscribe to my Huffington Post blog to catch the fun.

In my initial challenge to the GMO industry, I sought rigorous, independent scientific data that would enrich the global discussion and better characterize GMO risks. But the posts written by biotech apologists Bruce Chassy and David Tribe demonstrate without doubt how flimsy and unsupported the industry’s claim is that GMOs are safe. Their evidence is neither independent nor rigorous. Instead, Chassy and Tribe merely dust off the same old false assumptions and blatant fabrications that have long been exposed as hollow and even shameless. GMWatch describes it as “disinformation and ad hominem attack dressed up as ‘the open-minded search for truth.'”

Dr. Brian John offers this take on the new site:

The whole exercise is utterly grotesque—and is based on the hoary old line that they (Chassy and Tribe) represent “proper” science and that anybody who disagrees with them or who provides “inconvenient” evidence is by definition either a charlatan or a nutter. Their line is that proper peer-reviewed science always shows that GM products are entirely safe, and that on the other side there is nothing but “misinformation.” That of course is a grotesque distortion—there are scores of peer-reviewed papers that Chassy and Tribe have to explain away as aberrations or as based on fraudulent research. In a bizarre sort of way, one has to admire their strange obsession, and one cannot dispute the vast amount of effort that they have put in to their latest exercise in vilification. Poison pours off every page on the web site.

And this is from the review of the site by GMWatch…

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  • emperorreagan

    Regardless of the actual safety of GM products, I think one can make a pretty fair point that they were rushed to market. And that in application, they're not being used in the “put Vitamin XYZ in rice to erase malnutrition in the third world” sense that everyone promised at all.

  • rob

    Watch ‘food inc’ or ‘the world according to monsanto’ for the other side of the story about the multinational.

    Also, consider signing this petition: https://secure.avaaz.org/en/eu_health_and_biodiversity/ as GMO’s are soon to be allowed into the EU for the first time without any public debate or further studies.

  • rob

    Watch 'food inc' or 'the world according to monsanto' for the other side of the story about the multinational.

    Also, consider signing this petition: https://secure.avaaz.org/en/eu_health_and_biodi… as GMO's are soon to be allowed into the EU for the first time without any public debate or further studies.

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