Food produced with genetically modified organisms (GMO) warrants considerable debate. Several consumer watchdog groups, like Greenpeace International, advocate banning GMO foods. Others, however, maintain that GMO foods are safe for human consumption and can help feed the world while reducing the use of pesticides. Nonetheless, although public opinion is divided over the acceptance and safety of genetically modified foods, one thing is certain: Consumers should be made explicitly aware of GM foods; these foods must be labeled. People have a right to know what they are ingesting and how it is produced. In fact, 94% of Americans favor labeling genetically modified foods (Hesson). Even though the FDA does not currently require labeling
…show more content…
Although both agencies maintain that GMO food is safe, no long term studies on the human consumption of GMO foods have been complete. This leaves many to speculate and wonder about potential health concerns in the future. Additionally, with an increasing rate of food containing genetically modified organisms, health risks could arise from increased or excessive consumption. Until multiple conclusive studies are completed which conclusively establish the safety of long term consumption of biotech foods, labels are necessary.
Allowing corporations to withhold information from the consumer by refusing to label GMO products on the grounds that the consumer is “scientifically uninformed” is disgusting. Furthermore, because labels are not required for GMO foods it is the American populace who remains uninformed on what they are ingesting; “only 19% of Americans had thought they had eaten a GM product” (Hesson). This is unacceptable; more people need to be aware that they are consuming food products with unknown and potentially harmful long term effects. In the end, what a consumer chooses to purchase is their decision; they deserve to know crucial facts about the products they eat. If a consumer wishes to avoid all GMO foods, even if this decision is not scientifically based, they should be able to do so. Not labeling GMO foods deprives the consumer of their ability to make their own choices; it manipulates people into purchasing and consuming