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Genetically Modified Foods.


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#1 DSTM

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 11:53 AM

A Califorian Company has developed Genectically Modified Foods,which contain Human Genes.They plan to sell Drinks,Desserts,Yoghurts and Muesli Bars containing Human Genes,for starters.
To me this is scary stuff.Would you eat these foods?What are your thoughts on this?
I'd like to keep Religious ethics out of this Please.
Heres the Story.

http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/stor...5006007,00.html

//Mod edit: Let's discuss the topic at hand and reserve Religious comments - Please.

Edited by KoanYorel, 06 March 2007 - 01:35 PM.















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#2 ddeerrff

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 12:28 PM

Well, I think they need to be careful that any new food product is safe.

Beyond that, I don't really see a problem just because the plants produce some of the same chemicals a human produces. After all, they are just chemicals.

Humans take oxygen and produce CO2. Is there anything intrinsically wrong with using CO2 to carbonate beaverages?
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#3 buddy215

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 12:32 PM

Rice is a grass. Beans are legumes. Though the word "bean" is used in other descriptions such as cacao beans. The title of the story is misleading.
Genetically altering living things has and should be controversial. Corn was used to "manufacture" antibiotics with the assurance it was impossible for the plants to contaminate other corn fields. Wrong. The seeds that were missed in harvesting and the pollen from the altered plants "escaped".
The rice that will be grown though will not be producing a drug. A big difference. I saw this story in BBC news this morning for the first time. At first reading it sounds like a good thing to do. Then on reflection, considering the mistakes that have been made as in the antibiotic producing corn, it is right for people to question and demand accountability. Bring it out in the open and subject it to scrutiny by scientists who will not profit from the production of the altered rice.
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#4 MaraM

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 12:36 PM

Hmmm. To be honest, I have very mixed feelings on this topic.

While aware that grain, for instance, has been genetically altered for years (to prevent 'rust' etc), somehow it seems more innocent that what they are capable of doing now. And sadly, I don't have that much faith in many of the man-made things that we now ingest without giving it much thought.

Artificial sweeteners seem harmless - but there are always those few niggling sciece documentaries to remind us that with mice and bunnies, the brain of the young doesn't develop properly. Sugar has been around forever - pure, with no additives. And while I've never been able to prove this theory for myself, many farmers swear than 'margarine/oleo' is far worse than butter for the human body ... example, apparently even mice won't touch it.

And rather than bore everyone to tears with my wee theory that the less pretend foods we eat, the better, I'd have to say, "No" - given a choice between natural or geneticaly altered foods, I'll take natural every time.

Hmmm. To be honest, I have very mixed feelings on this topic.

While aware that grain, for instance, has been genetically altered for years (to prevent 'rust' etc), somehow it seems more innocent that what they are capable of doing now. And sadly, I don't have that much faith in many of the man-made things that we now ingest without giving it much thought.

Artificial sweeteners seem harmless - but there are always those few niggling sciece documentaries to remind us that with mice and bunnies, the brain of the young doesn't develop properly. Sugar has been around forever - pure, with no additives. And while I've never been able to prove this theory for myself, many farmers swear than 'margarine/oleo' is far worse than butter for the human body ... example, apparently even mice won't touch it.

And rather than bore everyone to tears with my wee theory that the less pretend foods we eat, the better, I'd have to say, "No" - given a choice between natural or geneticaly altered foods, I'll take natural every time.
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#5 DSTM

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 01:56 PM

Well, I think they need to be careful that any new food product is safe.

Beyond that, I don't really see a problem just because the plants produce some of the same chemicals a human produces. After all, they are just chemicals.

Humans take oxygen and produce CO2. Is there anything intrinsically wrong with using CO2 to carbonate beaverages?

I understand exactly where you are coming from,'ddeerrff'.What concerns me is like normal,we are not told the full story,and what their future plans are.When I read the story,so many Organisations are against this going ahead,I believe they know more than you or I do.

If the American Consumers Union and the Washingtonbased Centre for Food Safety also oppose Ventria's plans,then I believe we have reason to be concerned,Dont you agree?

If a very large Buyer threatens to botcott the whole State in Protest,then we need to know the whole truth.

As 'Buddy215'says,Let all the Scientists do a proper evaluation first.
Too often mistakes are made,and we the Public suffer in the end.

EDIT.If GM Food on it's own is proven to be a risk to both Humans and Animals,adding all these extra additives only makes this food more worrying to me,possibly after years on injestion.
Heres a link with information on the risks of GM Food,on it's own.

http://www.i-sis.org.uk/MRC-pr.php

Edited by DSTM, 06 March 2007 - 03:23 PM.















#6 ddeerrff

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 04:01 PM

If the American Consumers Union and the Washingtonbased Centre for Food Safety also oppose Ventria's plans,then I believe we have reason to be concerned,Dont you agree?


Don't know enough about these organizations to agree or disagree. Are these really scientific organizations or are they pseudo-scientific/political groups such as 'Union of Concerned Scientists'. If the latter, then they have no credibilty for me.
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#7 blueandgold04

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 04:25 PM

the older i get, the more skeptical i become of such 'progress'. :thumbsup:

natural processes (to create food) have been proven healthy simply by the fact that humans have survived for this long without GM food. we continually attempt to find ways to trump nature, and often our follies aren't revealed until much further down the road.

think of the aluminum age. i think it is safe to say that for the past 25 years or so, we have incorporated much more aluminum into our food containers. everything was hunky-dorey until an inordinate sample of the population began showing signs of Alzheimer's. now research is surfacing that presents incrreased levels of aluminum in some of those afflicted. granted, such is simply speculation at this point, but as finite creatures our perception of multi-generational effects is hindered.

i digress...

i agree with you DSTM, i often feel as if all research findings are not publicized because they would shine unfavorable light on the product they are meant to reinforce. more longitudinal studies must be conducted to ascertain true-life consequences.
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#8 nn23

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 12:51 AM

Firstly, my innitial response to the idea of eating food that has been genetically modified with human genes is one of disaproval on very simplistic grounds until i ventured in to the other issues. I am a vegetarian that eats vegan. This simply means that i wont make a fuss when visiting friends, but at home i buy organic and local produce when i can. I did not originally become vegetarian because of animal beliefs it was just a life choice i made to suit my needs. So there is not an issue of animal rights feuling what i am saying here, i just think that putting human genes into a vegetable surely stops it from being vegetarian? this thought was my primary point of disagreement when i first read the article.

I then pulled myself back and thought "ok hang on a minute...it says that they want to use it to help starving children in the third world" so i ticked that as a "for" argument, although recovery 1 to 2 days quicker did seem to be a rather small thing to be blowing trumpets about.

These quotes in the article took me on a train of investigation:

...He said any concerns about safety and contamination were "based on perception, not reality" given all the precautions the company was taking....

...Now the USDA, saying the rice poses "virtually no risk". has given preliminary approval for it to be grown in Kansas, which has no commercial rice farms....


:inlove: The first quote i found quite ammusing... concerns "based on perception, not reality"??? this is a silly statement for it assumes that perception is not reality or that reality is more real than perception...its just utter nonsence!! Reality IS what we percieve he he :)...silly.

VIRTUALLY no risk...interesting. :P

"Me thinks this might be a smoke screen" :flowers:

Alarm bells started to ring and so i immediatly decided that i wanted to read more about the USDA and how they substantiate their findings. I went to their site and spent a good hour doing searches and reading small parts here and there looking for any research or reading about their work with human genes and this rice. I must admit, i am not very experienced at finding precise info on web-sites so i may have missed something, but i was not able to find ANY documentation whatsoever about this rice. So i took my research down a new line and decided to find out a little about their policy and motivation behind their actions and funding.

This is their statement:

USDA supports the safe and appropriate use of science and technology, including biotechnology, to help meet agricultural challenges and consumer needs of the 21st century. USDA plays a key role in assuring that products produced using biotechnology are safe to be grown and used in the United States. Once these products enter commerce, USDA supports bringing these and other products to the worldwide marketplace. For the USDA Agricultural Biotechnology website click here for information on:

This WHOLE statement bothers me, I highlighted the human needs...oops sorry "consumer needs" because this word encompasses the topic of business and market and profit, NOT safety. They say they play a key role in assuring but not a key role in "making sure"....SCAREY! :)

This is their website: http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/!ut/p/_...&navtype=RT

Troubled by this i then came back to the discussion to check out the second link DSTM had posted and below i have pasted a quote.

..."Theoretically, the most effective studies are likely to be those where the GM food selected forms a major and consistent part of the diet. Randomisation of infants, whose whole or predominant source of nutrition happens to be infant formula, to formulas based on GM versus non-GM soya should be a good example. Another would be the random assignment of individuals or families to a free supply (to promote compliance) of a key staple food (that exists in GM or non-GM form) e.g. potatoes, bread or rice."...


...The most immediate group of people who would qualify for such trials are the starving, who could be asked to volunteer as guinea pigs in order to obtain food. In effect, this may already be happening, as GM foods are being dumped as ‘food aid’ on the Third World and Latin American countries...


These two statements RIP APART THE THIRD WORLD ARGUMENT that "they want to help starving children in third world countries" (sarcastic floaty angelic voice) he he...That idea REALLY is a smoke screen!!!

On the one hand, its a matter of needs must but on the other hand i think this is ABSOLUTELY DISGRACEFUL that people who are poor are to be treated like guinea pigs by profit motivated organisations who are dishonest about their intentions because they know what they are doing is/will be viewed as wrong and therefore impede their rate of profit...DISGRACEFUL!!! they dont care at ALL about the third world countries not only that they probably recieve credit where it is not due!!! :trumpet: :cool: :) !

Ok so now i'm wound up, i want to find more stuff to support my points or to argue with them, i like to have a well rounded view. After picking that article of its points (the second link that DSTM posted) i decided to follow a suggested link at the beginning relating to a report about GM research into the risks of GM food and its reliability.

heres the link again if you didnt go to it in the article:
http://www.i-sis.org.uk/precautionary-pr.php

Although, i've just this minute try to access this link and its out of action at the mo, sight mainetenance or somit, who knows, might just be me with this prob...anyways here are the points that stuck out to me, they were towards the bottom of the page in bullitins.

GM constructs containing antibiotic resistance genes have spread to bacteria in the soil and in the gut of bees. These bacteria constitute a reservoir of antibiotic resistance genes, which may be passed on to pathogenic bacteria, making infections very difficult to treat.

The gut of livestock and human beings contain bacteria that can take up foreign DNA containing antibiotic resistance genes, making infections untreatable.

The cauliflower mosaic virus 35S promoter (CaMV 35S promoter) widely used to make GM genes over-express continuously, is active in practically all living species, plants, bacteria, algae, fungi, amphibian and human beings. Hence, any gene linked to it will be active in all species to which the GM construct is transferred. The CaMV 35S promoter can also make other host genes over-express. Over-expressing of certain cellular genes is associated with cancer in animals and human beings.

The CaMV 35S promoter is known to substitute in part or in whole for promoters of other viruses to give infectious viruses. That means it has the potential to wake up dormant viruses that have now been found in all genomes, plants and animals included.


SO, these companies who are helping to "feed the starving children of third world countries" (sarcastic floaty angelic voice) despite helping their recovery along a little bit they are actually subjecting these kids to the likely hood of secondary infection through lack of immunity, cancerous growths, and activation of viruses a plenty because of lack of vaccination facilities i reckon that people probably carry many more dormant viruses than in other places.

Now just as i am typing, in this particular statement i am realising that maybe i am carried away, i mean surely it would take many years for a chance of somit like this to happen? but i also suspect that it is possible that they will carry on "helping" the starving children for many years with the motives of finding out just how long it is before these problems come into fruition, so these things are likely to happen anyway. The point is they DO NOT care about these starving children at all other than as a tool of research for their profit making schemes!

Ok, made up me mind completely now, thought i might do one last search simply because i've been drawn in and am interested, so i found this...

http://www.ucsusa.org/food_and_environment...-oversight.html

Its about the research the USDA did into the whole "human gene rice project" called “UCS Uncovers Lax USDA Oversight of Pharma Crops” and it highlights how lax their oversight in the project was. Read it its quite interesting when you bring yourself back to the statements:

...He said any concerns about safety and contamination were "based on perception, not reality" given all the precautions the company was taking....

...Now the USDA, saying the rice poses "virtually no risk". has given preliminary approval for it to be grown in Kansas, which has no commercial rice farms....


HA! whatever...the article gives us a good idea of the reality of the research.

I think its absolutely awful that a corporation with blood thirsty motivations like the USDA can have such an influence on the developments of different countries. Their website was a sham filled with "health" oriintated articles to influence us into thinking they have our best interests at heart. It worries me that there are probably many well minded people that visit that site thinking that they are being green and healthy when they are being lied to!

So, my overall view...ITS WRONG!!!! and CAPITALISM SUCKS!!!! Thankyou so much for bringing my attention to this DSTM MUCHLY APPRECIATED!!!! :thumbsup: . And i am sorry for being such a moyd and hope i havent drained the subject too much, all the stuff i looked at really affected me, i hate the way we are lied to!

Ahhhh, i'm done! :)

Edited by nn23, 07 March 2007 - 09:46 AM.


#9 Orange Blossom

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 02:44 AM

First, I want to clarify some definitions. One means of genetic modification is the manipulating the DNA of an organism by splicing out some of its code and splicing in code from a completely different organism that by nature would never interact. Another means is to change the location of sections of the DNA so that inactive genes become active, and active ones become dominant. This is different than creating hybrids or selecting seeds to plant from certain plants or specific animals to breed because of particular traits you find favorable. Albeit, this has had a negative effect on the flavor and hardiness of a number of domestic plants and animals, but in all these cases it is possible through the generations to reverse what was done as long as the genetic diversity of the plants and animals is maintained. This is not the case with genetic modification: this cannot be reversed.

Genetic Modification v.s Hybrid
-----------
Genetic modification is rather like a Frankenstein's monster. A great deal of it is done simply in the interests of agri-business profits. One of the modifications that has been done is to put a 'terminator gene' into many of the staple grain crops such as wheat and corn. The seed from these crops will be sterile, hence the name 'terminator gene', forcing the buyers to buy yet more seed. Worse, these genes have escaped into the wild. If this continues and if the, what I call contaminated plants both wild and domestic, are not destroyed we could end up with no food supply at all.

Some time ago, I read an article about a scientist who clearly demonstrated in a very good study that genetically modified potatoes caused serious health issues in laboratory mice. He was relieved of his position, and his research was never published.

Here are some other genetic modifications that have been at least proposed if not actually done: modifying produce genes so that the produce won't rot, splicing genes from cruciferous plants into orange trees to make the trees grow faster so that they can see the results of hybridization faster, splicing cold-water fish genes into corn so it can grow in extremely cold climates. I know that there are others, but these are the ones I'm aware of.

Here is some additional reading:

Problems with genetic modifications

Concerns about genetic modifications

We need to work with nature so that she helps us. Fighting nature creates imbalance which causes sickness and ill-health.

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#10 DSTM

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 03:24 AM

Firstly,I'd like to say I believe the last line of Orange Blossom's Post is so true.I think this is a serious issue,because it will affect our Children if something goes wrong.I have an open mind,but have concerns from what I have read so far.The link below gives the Positives and the Negatives into this Subject.Also if you Google (GM FOODS MICE TESTS) there are many results of tests done.Our Water supplies are already full of Chlorine and Flouride here,which are deadly Poisons in the right Quantities.We can bury our heads in the sand or research and be aware of whats going on around us.This Website talks about so many subjects which affect our daily lives. :thumbsup:

http://www.newscientist.com/channel/life/g...dified-dna.html















#11 Darthy

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Posted 07 March 2007 - 02:18 PM

I'm totally astonished with this topic!!! :flowers:
I didn't know that a Califorian Company had developed Genectically Modified Foods with Human Genes. :trumpet:
I'm also completely astonished with the reasoning of nn23.
I agree with everything she said. :thumbsup:
Thanks DSTM for opening my eyes with your post.
Very well said nn.
Regards,
Darthy

Edited by Darthy, 07 March 2007 - 02:19 PM.

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Thanks John

#12 MaraM

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Posted 08 March 2007 - 01:46 AM

Yes, it's astounding what 'poor countries' are submitted to by 'well wishers' - sigh.

But although things like cattle raised on anti-biotics and other 'drugs' aren't 'genetically modified' per se, why on earth do we 'stand for it', I wonder?

And although it's not been proven (at least I don't think so), many wonder about peanut allergies and so, so many children having them now - versus even a few short years ago - and if it has to do with the 'pretend' food we feed our children.
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#13 MaraM

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Posted 08 March 2007 - 02:08 AM

Oh piffle to myself - forgot to add this and now can't get my previous post to 'edit'.

Dr. John B. Fagan is a molecular biologist who has conducted research using recombinant DNA techniques and his article states, "Scientists have altered foods by inserting into them genes from bacteria and viruses. Many more such products containing foreign DNA from insects, fish and even humans are in the R&D pipeline and soon will be headed for our dinner plates"

Coming Soon... Genetically modified foods that have been approved, are awaiting approval or are under development in the USA:

Apples Rice
Barley Soybeans
Beans Squash
Chestnuts Stawberries
Corn Sugar cane
Cucumbers Sunflower
Lettuce
Tomatoes
Melons
Tobacco
Peppers Walnuts
Papayas Watermelons
Potatoes Wheat

Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture (unquote)

Full article and source: http://www.netlink.de/gen/Zeitung/970327.htm
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#14 Darthy

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Posted 08 March 2007 - 10:30 AM

Thanks for your link Mara.
It's incredible. I don't know what to say about this. :thumbsup:

We need to work with nature so that she helps us. Fighting nature creates imbalance which causes sickness and ill-health.

I agree with you.

Edited by Darthy, 08 March 2007 - 10:34 AM.

Εν οίδα οτι ουδέν οίδα - Socrates
Thanks John

#15 blueandgold04

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Posted 08 March 2007 - 11:26 AM

wow MaraM, i had no idea how far swept this issue has become. our knee-jerk reaction style to solving world problems proves to be a continual engine for creating more problems. imagine if we were patient enough to conduct research over the lifespan of a test group, perhaps we would approach things differently.
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