|Soybeans. CC photo by Scott Robinson on Flickr|
2013 may well go down as the year of the GM reality checks.
Reality Check No.1
GM crops increase the use of toxic chemicals in our food and in our environment.
In August, the US Department of Agriculture quietly approved the first next-generation GM crop, Bayer's soya which is resistant to 'Balance' herbicide containing 'isoxaflutole' (IFT).
IFT is classed as a “probable human carcinogen”, and is linked to liver and thyroid tumours and foetal toxicity. The herbicide is persistent in the environment, including ground-water sources of drinking water.
Right behind IFT in the GM/pesticide pipeline, a veritable “herbicide Armageddon” with matching GM crops is looming:
- Dow AgroSciences is awaiting approval of 2,4-D-resistant maize and soya. This herbicide has been linked to immune-system cancer and adverse reproductive impacts.
- BASF is preparing an imidazolinone-resistant soya. One form of this herbicide has been linked to bladder and colon cancer
- Syngenta has GM soya resistant HPPD inhibitors (related to IFT) which have been linked to toxic effects in the liver.
- Monsanto has its own GM soya and cotton resistant to Dicamba, a herbicide linked to cancer and developmental toxicity.