10 Reasons Monsanto Should Not Develop GMO Wheat

These points are taken from a press release from WORC.  If you have not looked into the technology behind the GMO “movement” let me recommend a quick view of, “The Future of Food“.  When someone tells you that we need GMO seeds for some lame excuse like “our wheat production is down”, you can refer them to this list, or if they are inclined to read the actual report, it can be found here, and more articles are found here.  For now, in my best David letterman voice, the Top ten reasons Monsanto should never develop GMO Wheat:

  1. Crop acreage is declining because of changing U.S. agricultural policy and increased production of crops suitable for ethanol and biodiesel production (corn and soybeans), not because of poor wheat production.
  2. Consumer attitudes in the European Union and Japan are not ready for GM wheat,” according to Dr. Blue’s report. “In addition, Asian countries such as South Korea and Taiwan are leery about importing GM wheat. Major customers of U.S. wheat, particularly the EU and Japan, have labeling and traceability requirements that make it difficult to sell GM wheat.
  3. 58% of Europeans are opposed to genetically modified organisms, while 21% support their use.
  4. The wheat export shares for the former Soviet Union (Russia and Ukraine) have gone up from 10% in 2001 to almost 30% in 2008. If the United States approves GM wheat, the EU would buy more wheat from the former Soviet Union.
  5. In 2007/09, 55% of U.S. hard red spring wheat was exported, mostly to countries that label GM food and where consumers can refuse to buy food containing GM ingredients.  Only 28% of U.S. exports go to countries that do not label GM products.
  6. In 2007/08, U.S. durum wheat exports to Japan, Taiwan, the EU, and North Africa were 75% of total U.S. durum exports.  The high export shares of hard red spring and durum wheat to countries likely to reject or curtail import of GM wheat place these exports at risk.
  7. No GM wheat is near commercial release. Monsanto shelved plans to GM wheat in 2004, and Syngenta recently announced the company was not pursuing GM wheat because of consumer resistance.
  8. Introduction of genetically modified wheat in the United States is a risky proposition
  9. The introduction of GM wheat would not reverse the declining market share of U.S wheat exports, nor would it reverse the downward trend of wheat acres planted.
  10. Wheat buyers in Europe, Japan, and other Asian countries are likely to switch to GM-free wheat from other countries if GM wheat is introduced in this country. As a result, the price of U.S. hard red spring wheat would fall 40%, and the price of durum wheat would drop 57%.

Can you think of any others? 🙂

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