Need Safeguards for Gene-Tinkered Foods

Don Christie dc_ags at ac.nsac.ns.ca
Fri Jun 25 06:27:16 EST 1993


In article <C95F74.IoF at dartvax.dartmouth.edu>, James.F.X.Wellehan at dartmouth.edu (Jim Wellehan) writes:
>In article <C8zq2I.6M8 at cunews.carleton.ca>
>wcsbeau at superior.carleton.ca (OPIRG) writes:
>
>>   All of the transgenic crops have bacterial
>> antibiotic resistence and 81% of the tests are for herbicide tolerance
>> (promoting use of polluting chemicals)
>
>Pulling a valid point out of this compost pile, I'd have to agree that
>it's a shame so much research is aimed toward providing Monsanto et al.
>with a reason for making more poisons.  They do fund it, but that
>doesn't mean it should be done.

At least some of the reason for antibiotic resistance comes from the
methodology employed to introduce the desired genes into the host
species. 

As far as the statement `81% of the tests are for herbicide tolerance'
goes, I'd like to know the source of this statistic... it sounds
like fertilizer to me... 

Biotechnologists have been able to address winter hardiness, resistance 
to dry or flooding conditions, resistance and/or tolerance to certain 
fungal pathogens, insects and viral infections, tolerance of saline 
conditions.... and these are just a few that *I* have heard about...
I'm sure there is much more that I haven't.... yet the poster who wrote
the original article is asking you to believe that all this only
accounts for 19% of the focus of the discipline.
 
`(promoting use of polluting chemicals)' ?? From what I've been able
to gather, anything that doesn't *slam* agrichemical use is by default
`promoting' them as far as some people are concerned. I think it's
important for people to realize that *major* research efforts are
directed towards developing *alternatives* to pesticides. The reason
we don't hear more about this effort is that it doesn't have the
same emotional appeal in the media.

//Don
>Jim



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