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The recent decision by the FDA will only ignite a debate for years to come

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently made a tentative conclusion that meat and milk from some cloned animals is safe for human consumption.  The decision has paved the way for the United States to become the first nation that allows products from cloned animals to be sold in grocery stores. 

After years of numerous delays, the FDA report found that there is not much of a difference in composition of food from cloned animals compared to normal animals.  Even if the FDA's assessment is officially approved in 2007, consumers may not be able to products from cloned animals since the technology remains too costly to be widely used.

The decision on Thursday immediately drew comments from critics from across the nation.  Opponents to cloned food are aiming to throw Congressional pressure to delay the policy before it is finalized.

Consumer groups are gravely concerned over potential health issues that may arise in some of the cloned animals.  Some cloned animals may have weakened immune systems and will need more drugs to stay healthy, according to activists and critics.

Don't be surprised if you begin seeing some sort of "clone-free" labels on meat and dairy products from cloned animals.  Ben & Jerry's ice cream, for example, already mentions that its farmers do not use any sort of bovine growth hormone on its cows.  Many opponents are not necessarily against cloned food, but want to make sure consumers know exactly what they are purchasing.  The FDA found, however, that there is "no science-based reason" for having to label cloned foods.


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RE: wrong development
By number999 on 1/2/2007 1:54:39 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The farmer in the suit in question was found to be intentionally and willfully using patented seeds...he claimed they were "just a few the wind blew" onto his property
From Canada
http://www.percyschmeiser.com/
He was fighting Monsanto and others are doing so as well. This isn't a closed system. Those genes are in the wild and if they get transfered to weed species -> trouble.

quote:
Bioengineering isn't necessarily about growing more food.... and with less environmental side effects
The point to Monsanto and it's Roundup plants are plants that are resistant to Roundup herbicide, so you can use more of it on the crops. Less side effects??? Not really. For Monsanto, it's about selling more. Also, the modification for RR Soybeans effects the nitrogen takeup in the beans, slightly retarding the growth so even more chemicals must be used.


RE: wrong development
By masher2 (blog) on 1/2/2007 2:08:08 PM , Rating: 3
> "From Canada.."

Err, that's the man's own personal web site...you really put that forth as a nonbiased source? The facts are clear. A federal judge heard evidence that 98%+ of Schmeiser's crop was Monsanto product...far more than just "a few seeds" getting accidently blown in. That judge found in favor of Monsanto, and justice was done.

> "For Monsanto, it's about selling more..."

For the famers, its about selling more also. That's why they buy these products. No one puts a gun to their head. Why are you so dead-set against freedom and capitalism?



RE: wrong development
By number999 on 1/3/2007 1:44:10 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
A federal judge heard evidence that 98%+ of Schmeiser's crop was Monsanto product...far more than


http://www.greenpeace.org/raw/content/usa/press/re...
greenpeace article has links to cbc news story and other pertinent links
http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/genetics_modific...
Counterpoint about the 98% claim
http://www.biotech-info.net/cropchoice_guest.html
timeline website
http://www.biotech-info.net/percy_schmeiser.html
his wiki entry
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Percy_Schmeiser

The above sites, you may consider partly partisan. The news ones maybe not. Fact is, the lawsuit by Monsanto was not won by them for all their money and influence while the farmer kept his integrity. The ruling also protected the rights of Monsanto in that it protected their intellectual property rights and kept Canada a place where biotech investments are uphold. It basically let Monsanto keep face while saying they had no case and let it be known that Canada was safe for biotech.

quote:
famers, its about selling more also...
Your original talk was about using less chemicals and such. With a product such as this, it isn't the case and was never meant to be so. This report sort of exposes some of the problems involved. I do have excerpts from other sources but they are buried in a pile of other papers.
http://www.btinternet.com/~nlpwessex/Documents/Ben...

quote:
Why are you so dead-set against freedom and capitalism?
Did I mention anything against freedom or capitalism? How about Monsanto sneeking around and trying to get farmer's money by heavy handed tactics and lawsuits with a product that naturally migrates? How about the farmer not being able to sell that product at a higher price in Europe because of GM migration/contamination? I oppose your viewpoints, so I'm against freedom & capitalism? That is nonsensical.

I have no problems with any sort of biotechnology. I do have a problem with hype and not presenting a balanced case or existing known or possible problems. This doesn't make me anything but thoughtful and open and not blinded by the possibilities of technology to the negatives, which do exist.


RE: wrong development
By masher2 (blog) on 1/3/2007 5:21:46 PM , Rating: 2
> " Fact is, the lawsuit by Monsanto was not won by them for all their money and influence.."

Err, they did win the suit. They didn't receive punitive damages...but actual damages were awarded. As for the integrity of Schmeiser and the ability to trust what he says, let me quote from your own link:
quote:
On July 2, 2006 it was exposed that Percy Schmeiser had been falsely presented to the Irish public as a “former member of the Canadian Parliament”...

On November 16, 2006 it was exposed that Percy Schmeiser falsely presented himself as previously being "a Canadian Member of Parliament at one time" while speaking in Berkeley...


RE: wrong development
By number999 on 1/26/2007 8:49:49 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
but actual damages were awarded...

http://www.mindfully.org/GE/2004/Goliath-v-Schmeis...
...that plants are not patentable in Canada, but said that genes are. Schmeiser, though he had infringed, was not held responsible for monetary damages. He did not have to pay one cent to Monsanto, not in damages and as far as I know, not even the per acre fee that Monsanto charges. If you can actually show anything different then reference it. This is from the Supreme Court ruling and not the lower court ruling.

quote:
integrity of Schmeiser and the ability to trust what he says, let me quote from your own link
Oh yes. From Shane Morris, a single blogger who did both quotes. Did you actually download the audio clip? Schmesier was actually a member of parliament as he says. The provincial parliment , which is stated in the Wiki and is the used synonymously as the provincial legislature. If others assume "parliament" is the federal parliament, then their ignorance is their own fault, they don't have the cultural references to understand the speaker and should check up instead of jumping down someone else's throat.

The man does have an axe to grind because he does live in Canada and should have known better but he obviously wanted to take down Schmeiser more than maintain some integrity. I will complain to the Wiki editorial staff about that entry for sure.

As for Shane Morris'integrity. The man is a long standing supporter of GMO's and has himself a controversy when during a study of puplic acceptance of GMO food, labelled one bin as wormy corn and the other as regular sweet corn and then published a report on how accepted GM corn was and how unbiased the labeling was between the 2 bins. A reporter for the Toronto Star uncovered the falsity and his bias.
http://www.gmfreeireland.org/potato/media.php
http://www.gmwatch.org/archive2.asp?arcid=6381
http://photos1.blogger.com/photoInclude/blogger/13...

I perfer my sources not to get funding from those that they comment on. It has a tendency to bias their opinions. He has/had close contacts with the Food Safety Network whose major funding is from big agribusiness.
http://www.foodsafetynetwork.ca/en/page.php?a=7&s=...

Although he presents himself as non-partisan, his past affiliations and work shows otherwise.


RE: wrong development
By Hoser McMoose on 1/2/2007 5:23:01 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The point to Monsanto and it's Roundup plants are plants that are resistant to Roundup herbicide, so you can use more of it on the crops.


The idea behind Roundup Ready crops is to use LESS herbicide, not more. With traditional crops farmers tend to spray all kinds of different herbicides in a variety of concentrations to attack all the different types of weeds they might encounter. With RR crops they spray ONLY Roundup which kills all the plants EXCEPT Roundup Ready ones.

As a bit of a side note: organic farming requires even more herbicide spraying. Because organic herbicides tend to be much less effective than their inorganic counterparts, organic farmers usually need to spray a lot more herbicide.

Of course, to be fair, quantity is only one part of the story here. Most people would rather a crop sprayed with a comparatively large quantity of acetic acid (ie high-concentration vinegar, an organic herbicide) vs. a smaller quantity of paraquat (a common herbicide known to be very toxic in medium to high concentrations, though considered safe for spraying).


RE: wrong development
By number999 on 1/3/2007 1:51:53 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Roundup Ready crops is to use LESS herbicide
If that was the point, you wouldn't have to genetically engineer the crop to be resistant to the herbicide. You are using quantites that would normally kill it and killing everything else. Logically to me that seems to be using more, not less.

This site maybe a little left but...
http://www.btinternet.com/~nlpwessex/Documents/Ben...


RE: wrong development
By masher2 (blog) on 1/3/2007 5:24:36 PM , Rating: 3
> "If that was the point, you wouldn't have to genetically engineer the crop to be resistant to the herbicide"

Err, you don't understand at all. Round-Up kills everything...its never used on normal crops. If you're not using RR-engineered seed, you spray some other herbicide. Several of them in fact, in large quantities. With RR-crops, you replace all that spraying with one, much smaller dose, that kills all vegetation, save those specifically engineered to resist it.


RE: wrong development
By number999 on 1/26/2007 7:43:23 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Round-Up kills everything

Roundup was created in the 70's way before genetically modified resistant crops came up (RR soy 95/96) and was used on crops in lower concentrations. My initial response is to the increase of Roundup/Glyphosate.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roundup

quote:
With RR-crops, you replace all that spraying with one, much smaller dose..
You wish. That would be ideal and it's what Monsanto tries to sell but it isn't the case. Herbicide use has actually increased especially with the evolution of herbicide resistant weeds, like pigweed, maretail and ryegrass . While spraying, people have been selecting weeds and helping nature breed roundup resistant weeds leading to ever increasing amounts of herbicide use and/or reversion to more complicated herbicide regimes....weeds survived a dosage of glyphosate almost 10 times the recommended rate (6lb per acre as opposed to 0.75lb).


http://www.non-gm-farmers.com/news_details.asp?ID=...
Roundup Ready soya growers in Argentina were using more than twice as much herbicide as conventional soya farmers, largely because of unexpected problems with tolerant weeds..Because so much herbicide is being used, soil bacteria are declining and the soil is becoming inert,

As for genetic engineering being a panacea...
http://www.newfarm.org/features/0904/soybeans/inde...
which attributes some of the decline of production (2003) to the overuse of roundup ready genetically engineered soy and talks about some of it's inherit weaknesses.

http://www.biotech-info.net/troubledtimesfinal-1.p...
Gives USDA compiled figures for periods before,at, and after the introduction of Roundup resistant soy.


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