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03/24/14

Food for thought: Do consumers have right to know about GMOs?

A major debate about what you actually are eating is brewing.
No, this discussion isn't centered on the extremely popular topic of health and fitness, struggles with being overweight or the obesity crisis but rather the existence of Genetically Modified Organisms (or GMOs) in your foods, and whether you as the consumer have a right to know that they're in there.
For the record, GMOs are exactly what the name suggests: organisms found in food that have been genetically altered through engineering techniques. Some have suggested that GMOs aren't safe and that ingesting foods with these characteristics could lead to disease, toxicity within your body or a bevy of undisclosed nutritional shortcomings and issues in the future.
Truthfully, you're probably eating foods right now that contain GMOs. They can be found in cereals, canned soup or even baby formula. More recently, GMOs made headlines when debates raged as to whether GMOs should be disclosed in the form of labels on the food we're eating.
The general public, for all intent and purposes, has voiced opinions that favor labeling GMOs in food, but you have to wonder where this concern was previously and whether or not this uprising isn't just the flavor of the month when it comes to food.

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Society is incredibly fickle when it comes to food. This month, coffee is good for you. Next month, caffeine is bad. It's hard to say where GMOs fall in the food spectrum until more research and subsequent results are reported factually.
Until then, the GMO debate is more he said, she said between those who defend them as being totally safe versus the sector that says they potentially could be harmful. There's always the possibility that GMOs aren't necessarily a good thing, and we are all just finding out now, thus the reasoning for why legislature that would force GMOs to be clearly marked on food is for the most part being shot down or scoffed at from state to state.
It also would explain why heavy hitter General Mills announced that they'll be making Cheerios, the iconic breakfast cereal, without GMOs and will be aptly labeled as "GMO free" once the change occurs.
Then again, maybe ignoring the GMO discussion is just their way of saying this isn't really much of a problem at all.
Whatever the case may be, the fever pitch permeating through the banter back and forth between GMOs is justified for the purposes of inspired discussion, but no true determination can be made, at least not at this very moment.

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