Thursday, January 15, 2009

Syngenta's New Baby

How can anyone possibly think that this is a good idea? Corn is wind pollinated, and those teeny grains of pollen can travel for miles.
There is more information on the Center For Food Safety Website.
Event 3272 corn:
Raises serious environmental and human health concerns. It contains an exotic enzyme derived from "thermophilic" (heat-loving) microorganisms living near deep sea hydrothermal vents. This enzyme might be capable of causing food allergies in people who inadvertently consume this corn. Humans have never been exposed to this form of alpha amylase before (no history of safe use).

While meant for fuel and not food, this corn will enter the food supply. USDA admits that if Event 3272 corn is intentionally or accidentally diverted into the food supply, it could negatively impact food quality. But instead of reviewing the foreseeable negative impacts of biological contamination to organic and conventional corn from this unprecedented new industrial crop, USDA has improperly relied on Syngenta, the creator of the GE corn, to protect non-industrial corn from contamination. If we learned anything from the StarLink episode, it is that voluntary, industry-led agreements to curtail contamination do not work in the real world.

Is not needed "to help the U.S. meet its goals for ethanol production" as USDA has erroneously suggested. Ethanol production from corn surpassed the 2012 target (7.5 billion gallons) in 2007 (8.2 billion gallons)! And with 10 billion gallons of ethanol produced in 2008, we're well on the way to achieving the mandate for 2022 without the introduction of Event 3272 corn.

Is engineered for fuel, not food. The dramatic worldwide surge in food prices last year--which has already pushed 100 million more of the world's poor into hunger and poverty--has caused a radical rethinking of how biofuels are produced, especially the use of corn for ethanol. Food experts from academia to the World Bank have decried the massive diversion of corn from food to fuel, blaming it for at least part of the steep price increases in food staples like corn, wheat and rice. Event 3272 corn will only exacerbate this situation.

1 comment:

Kathleen Stoltzfus said...

Sigh. I know this stuff is going on and I'm not sure there's much we can do to stop it. All these large corporations with their justifications for doing anything for a profit. Sad, sad, sad.