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Many of the mainstream agricultural scientists, especially at the agricultural schools, but at all of our major universities, are tied into all sorts of contractual relationships and consulting relationships with the life science companies.
Many of the genetically modified foods will be safe, I'm sure. Will most of them be safe? Nobody knows.
It may be that everything the life science companies are telling us will turn out to be right, and there's no problem here whatsoever. That defies logic.
In this country, the health concerns and the environmental concerns are as deep as in Europe. All the surveys show that. But here, we didn't have the cultural dimension. This is a fast-food culture.
If your corn has a herbicide-tolerant gene, it means you can spray your herbicides and kill the weeds; you won't kill your corn because it's producing a gene that makes it tolerant of the herbicide.
I wanted to make sure that this be the first scientific and technology revolution in history in which the public thoroughly discussed all the potential benefits and all the potential harms, in advance of the technology coming online and running its course.
I know quite a few farmers all over the United States who have tried this and have said the opposite, that they have to use more herbicides, not less. The same holds true with BT.
Here we are 17 years later. Those agencies never did come through.
Europe will not accept genetically modified foods. It doesn't make any difference in the final analysis what Brussels does, what Washington does, or what the World Trade Organization does.
Back in the mid-1980s, congressional hearings were held after we brought this litigation, and held up the first experiment. At that time, I went in front of Congress, along with the major agencies involved with this.
Back in 1983, the United States government approved the release of the first genetically modified organism. In this case, it was a bacteria that prevents frost on food crops.
A refuge is supposed to prevent what? The genes from flowing out of sight? This refuge idea won't stop insects from moving across boundaries. That's absurd.
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