What Mr. Stuart Hayashi failed to point out in his editorial (See “Shoots from the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii – Feb. 24, 2004”) is that the consumers who died from taking the genetically-modified tryptophan, did not even receive the dignity of knowing that their supplement had been genetically-modified. So would he continue to deny consumers the basic right to know what is in their food, and how it was produced?
If biotech food is such a panacea for all that ails us, why do the GMO creators continue to refuse any attempt to label their products? Giant ag corporations even shun country-of-origin legislation, so that they can weasel out of responsibility in case any public health disaster occurs.
No wonder millions of Americans (and other enlightened people) are overwhelmingly turning to natural and organic foods. Farmers’ markets are a booming industry. Their producers have a great incentive to take care of the land, instead of turning it into a chemical dump. That is because they stand face-to-face with consumers. And they stay closer to the communities and families that occupy them.
I think that GMO foods should compete with other varieties, on an honest and comparable basis. But their “manufacturers” should not get a pass when their products endanger human and environmental health — they must be held accountable.
And if this corporate responsibility really took place, it would work wonders for their public relations and image. But if they really want to get ahead, follow consumers’ lead and go organic.
”’Brent J. Bielema is a resident of Fulton, Illinois, and can be reached via email at:”’ mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
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