What types of studies have been done on the safety of GMOs and where can we see them?

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Q: My neighbor said that there are no studies that show the safety of GMOs, that doesn’t seem true.  What types of studies have been done on the safety of GMOs and where can we see them?

A: This is simply not true.  Here at Monsanto Hawaii, we care deeply about our friends, neighbors, keiki and fellow residents, and are committed to protecting their health and safety. Despite what you may have heard, genetically modified organisms, often referred to as GMOs, have been in the food stream for decades.  Over that time, there have been thousands of studies done and very strict regulatory reviews and approvals secured for these products. Our safety studies are reviewed by a number of sources, most are peer reviewed, and they collectively have concluded that genetically modified crops pose no more health risk than their conventionally grown counterparts.

Each GMO crop undergoes many years of research, field trials and internal reviews before we submit it to regulatory agencies for assessment and approval. We conduct tests to make sure the crop contains the same components and nutrients as conventional varieties, including levels of protein, carbohydrate, fat, amino acids, fiber and vitamins. We thoroughly test any gene that is added to the GMO crop, make environmental and ecological assessments, and confirm there are no health concerns from the gene or the protein produced by the gene. We test to verify that any such proteins do not introduce a new food allergen.

For each GMO crop grown today, roughly 20 to 40 different and independent health and environmental agencies have scrutinized the product’s safety studies and assessments.

We encourage our community and neighbors to learn more about the facts about GMOs by reading some of the reports and studies from the world’s leading researchers and food experts. There are hundreds of credible and independent studies that demonstrate that foods grown from GMO crops are safe to eat. To check out these independent studies go to BioFortified (www.biofortified.org/genera/studies-for-genera/independent-funding/) or the World Health Organization (www.who.int).

We are committed to being good neighbors and have pledged to act with respect and integrity. As such, we take it very seriously when a question is raised about our products and our dedication to health and safety. Foods developed through biotechnology are the most well tested and highly regulated foods in history. Every biotech crop we sell has been through rigorous testing and been reviewed by the multiple regulatory agencies worldwide that are responsible for ensuring the safety of our food.

When it comes to issues as important as the safety of our food, results must be based on quality research that adheres to internationally recognized standards. As always, Monsanto Hawaii remains committed to adhering to these rigorous scientific guidelines as the safety of our products remains our highest priority.