Thanks Gwyneth, But We’ll Stick With Scientific Consensus On GMOs

Hollywood star and lifestyle guru Gwyneth Paltrow is set to appear alongside Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) Wednesday to discuss the need for GMO labeling.

We applaud Paltrow for her willingness to get involved in the political process, and think that all Americans should participate as much as they can in putting pressure on their local politicians to legislate change.

But while labels for genetically modified foods might seem sensible — or at the very least, harmless — the issue obscures some very important facts about the GMO debate.

The scientific community agrees: Genetically modified foods are not harmful to human health.

When it comes to scientific consensus on GMO foods, it’s not even close. In January, a Pew poll surveyed both the general public and scientists from the American Association for the Advancement of Science and found that 88 percent of scientists thought GMOs were “generally safe.” To put that in perspective, only 87 percent of scientists in the poll agreed that human activity is causing climate change.

Why do most scientists think this way? Because time and again, scientific research on the safety of genetically modified foods has proven them safe to eat. The American Medical Association states that there is “no scientific justification for special labeling of bioengineered foods” and that “voluntary labeling is without value unless it is accompanied by focused consumer education.” The aforementioned AAAS has also announced their support for GMO foods, warning that labels could “mislead and falsely alarm consumers.” Add to that list of supporters the World Health Organization and the U.S. National Academy of Sciences — all independent, non-corporate organizations.