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Note from Chef James: I do not necessarily agree with all of the views expressed below, but I do believe we need to use a much more cautious approach to genetically altered organisms, especially with cross species modifications.
While looking at my groceries I lugged into the house, I started the arduous duty of unloading 8 bags of groceries. When finally, I came to the bag that held my fresh fruit purchases, I spotted the familiar sticker on the apples. This time what caught my attention were little numbers on those stickers. I was curious about them. I had a little time to spare that day and to seek out and possibly satisfy my curiosity. Once seated at my trusty computer, I knew I was on a mission to find out the secrets behind those hard to remove little pieces of sticky paper on my fruit. What I found eventually amazed me. Those special numbers are telling you if your fruit was grown by chemical fertilizers, organically grown, or GENETICALLY MODIFIED!
I gasped at the thought of eating ANYTHING genetically modified. Had I had my head in the sand? Here’s what I learned:
The PLU code has four numbers.
So here is what that fifth number means for you and me:
• Organically grown fruit has the number “9” prefaced to the four digits. For example, if the PLU number is 4130 for a standard grown apple, (all accepted fertilizers and fungicides used conventionally) If it was organically grown, it would read 94130.
• If the fruit is genetically altered (or GE or GMO) it will have an “8” prefaced to the four digit code. As in 84130.
These genetically altered foods are already in the marketplace main stream and have been for a number of years. Scientists are using newly found technology to transfer genes from one species to another. Many scientists are concerned about the effects, not only on us as humans, but the environment as well.
Twenty years ago the first GM pet was introduced. The Glo fish. Scientists had given a gold fish a gene from coral. The little fish glowed under ultraviolet light.
Are these altered animals and foods safe? We do not know yet.
Here’s some info on what happening to our wheat supply that the corporation Monsanto is pursuing. In promoting its GMO wheat product, Monsanto is desperately trying to win over a bid to introduce, Round-Up Readies, into California and ultimately to the world. It is meeting with very hard opposition, as farmers are directly opposed to this. And well they should be. Digging further, I found nine countries that have stated adamantly, along with the European market, they will have none of the GMO wheat we offer.
THEY ARE: • Britain • Ireland • Norway • Japan • Algeria • Italy • Indonesia • Malaysia • France
And the list is growing longer with threats to buy from Canada or where available if pushed to that point.
Interesting - even the livestock do not want it. Here are just a few documented observations from Kansas to Wisconsin:
* Hogs would not eat their rations, when GMO crops were included in the feed. * Cattle that broke through an old fence, and had to walk PAST the GMO hybrids, to get to and feed on, the natural wheat on the other side. * Of deer mowing down a crop of soy beans, while across the way, not one deer touched the GMO variety “Round-Up Readies”. * Raccoons feasted by the dozen on the organic corn, while down the road the GMO field of corn stood untouched. * Mice will not touch it either, if given a choice.
Okay, maybe that would have some merit for the farmer, so he doesn’t lose his crops to wildlife. But what about the price our families will pay in the interest of creating a supercrop resistant to herbacides and pesticides?
The question we have to ask ourselves, What do the animals know instinctively…….. that we don’t know and have yet to find out?
What can anyone do about it?
One thing personally I can do is: 1. Vote with money in the choice of foods that are bought. 2. Ask the grocer to supply his shelves and produce bins with an abundant choice of organic foods. 3. Voice an opinion against stocking of altered foods when known.(Kraft is one company that has started to use altered foods or Genetically Altered food in its products.) 4. Start an awareness group in your area and/or let your neighbors know about this. 5. Post flyers on a bulletin board at your local grocers, or farmers market with the owner's permission of course, informing others who come in, of what those little stickers really are telling us about the fruits and vegetables we buy. I know I am... I hope you will too.
Knowledge is power!
Karen Arnold studies nutrition and helps families become more informed through toxic-awareness issues. A wonderful profitable at-home-business opportunity is available. Please visit her website to learn more. Mentorship – guaranteed; Leadership – guaranteed