GMO RR seed and Glyphosate - The Combine Forum
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post #1 of 33 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 01:15 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation GMO RR seed and Glyphosate

Was at an interesting conference the last 2 days with a couple of speakers that talked in regards to the the RR genetically engineered seed and glyphosate. Two of the speakers were Dr. Arden Anderson and COL. (retired) Dr. Don Huber. Their talks were not only compelling but very concerning. The amount of peer reviewed papers showing the very detrimental affects of not only just glyphosate but the genetically engineered/modified seed genes on their own as well. This seems to be an issue that will be on the horizon for all farmers in the near future (2-5 years).

As a farmer that uses these products it was somewhat depressing not just that it could seriously impact our bottom line and how we do things. But the very real possibilty that a lot of the recent food issues we see now; allergies, celiac, irritable bowl syndrome, crohn's, etc could very well be a result of the food we grow/chemicals we use.

If this does prove to be conclusive, how would this affect you and your operation?

I know that I surely don't want to gamble my children and future grand childrens lives by continuing to produce these kinds of products. And now with the industry wide (well north american anyway) acceptance of moving into GM alfalfa and wheat is quite concerning without really knowing what the health ramifications are, along with now seeing the federal government reducing the funding to plant breeders that can provide us conventional varieties. From what I heard (haven't confirmed it yet) Andre Comeau has been told by government that he is losing his funding and to dispose of his germplasm from his/our breeding program. If we lose this, yikes, especially if we have to go back to conventional breeding if GM seed doesn't work or is stopped. Where does breeding start again if all work up till now on varieties is lost.

I really feel that we as farmers need to start asking more questions of these seed companies that continually bend us over...where is the science to prove the health of these plants and grain for animals and humans. I will leave you with one last thing I was shown, in Germany I believe it was, they tested people in the city for levels of gyphosate in their urine. The results were positive for glyphosate, so for a product that "supposedly" breaks down quickly from what we've been told by health officials and these companies, seems to be inaccurate.

Sorry this got so long, could be a lot longer, head is swimming right now. But thought it's important to at a minimum throw it out there to discuss. Dr. Huber is a very humble but passionate man with over 55 years of experience in this field. It was an excellent but depressing presentation. If we don't pay attention to him, who has nothing to gain out of this (not like the government or the seed/chemical companies), and the science he is showing us along with his peers. Who do we believe/trust?

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post #2 of 33 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 01:34 PM
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One thing for certain, you will get a lot of passionate replies to this thread.

I wish I knew for sure, or surely not, but some of this stuff is scary, if true.

I have some landlords that banned glyph. use last year. I have a hay customer that won't buy RR alfalfa (and is extremely well read and researches the GMO and Glpyh problems you heard about). She claims the RR gene can now be found in bacteria in the human gut. I dunno, I don't want to blindly keep doing a horrible thing either, and it's awfully easy to dismiss these people as tree hugging nut jobs, but I just don't know.

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post #3 of 33 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 01:45 PM
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I believe there was a team of scientists from different schools in the US that got together and tested all of Dr Huber's claims and found them all to be without cause. I will have to look up the article and post a link when I get a chance. It would be scary if its true!
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post #4 of 33 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 04:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Valley Farmer View Post
I believe there was a team of scientists from different schools in the US that got together and tested all of Dr Huber's claims and found them all to be without cause. I will have to look up the article and post a link when I get a chance. It would be scary if its true!
wasnt this the guy that got shut down about 3 years ago when the huge lawsuit was started on the RR ready sugar beet seed?? I cant remember??
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post #5 of 33 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 05:05 PM Thread Starter
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He has been shut down and disregarded by many scientists but if you look at who they get their funding from and the products they are working on to try and get commercialized it is far from coincidental that its these scientists.

Another tidbit, did you realize that gyphosate has a patent as an antimicrobial agent, patent 7771736. This means it kills biology and its not selective like an antibiotic you give to your cattle, etc. This patent was issued August 10, 2010. That means Monsanto knows what its doing but I surely as a farmer have not been informed of this fact, all I'm saying is shouldn't we be told?

Check out the study by Seralini et al., 2011. They tested over a couple year period the feeding of NK603 Roundup-tolerant genetically modified corn, cultivated with or without Roundup, and Roundup alone, at levels permitted in drinking water and GM crops in the United States on rats.
Environmental Sciences Europe | Full text | Genetically modified crops safety assessments: present limits and possible improvements

A year or two ago Monsanto's subsidiary company were trying to get GMO eggplant approved in India, it was at first denied so it was taken eventually to the supreme court. The Court said they needed an independent study to be done because they were not educated in this area to make a decision. Dr. Gallagher from New Zealand was used and it was one of the first times that the GMO companies science had to be handed over and the independent analysis concluded that GMO eggplant posed a significant health risk to humans and needs to be further evaluated in the United States.
India: Signs of food toxicity in GE eggplant- AgroNews

More and more science seems to be showing up. Hard to keep refuting and ignoring.
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post #6 of 33 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 05:33 PM
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The study was actually just a review of other studies and a recommendation that longer study times were needed. It also assumes that herbicide tolerant plants 'contain' pesticides, rather than are tolerant of them.

The patent is for a specific protozoa genus. The one that malaria is in. At no time in the application does it say it is non selective, and it also needs (or is) a catalyst to work. The way that it works (shikimate pathway) is the way that glyphosate is known to work on weeds as well. By compromising it, plants are killed by soil microbes that formerly were kept at bay by this defense mechanism. That effect in plants is well documented and sure hasn't been covered up by Monsanto. It is the only reason glyphosate is as effective as it is. In a sterile soil environment, much higher rates are required for control because soil pathogens are not there to kill the plant.

This obviously makes it look like I am in favor of GM organisms. I can't say if I am or not. I do not see them as necessary (other than the recently approved Golden Rice). RR has become a crutch. Even if there were no potential consumer health risks, the faster we can figure out how to farm without them the better. Might take a little more work, we might have to grow different crops, but it will be possible if there is a will to do it. But Crop insurance on both sides of the border sure are not encouraging sustainability at a minimum.

But that all should be said and explored for all pesticides, not just glyphosate or GM crops.

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post #7 of 33 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 06:01 PM Thread Starter
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Andy, would you give Monsanto the benefit of the doubt? Would they actually include anything more than what they need to get stuff approved? All I would ask is for the government to request Monsanto to hand over their research to them or an independent to validify their claims. Like was done in India and showed recklessness. The independent analysis of Monsanto's scientific work was stated to not meet protocols for a feeding study and did not meet international standards. I wonder why????? Because the eggplant was shown to be healthy...
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post #8 of 33 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 06:57 PM
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I really did not want to chime in here cause I am simply not schooled enough in these matters but I thought I would share a few on farm observations of glyphosate

1. It won't kill even the smallest tree saplings, even at a extremely high dose

2. No Roundup GMO plant is immune from the effects of glyphosate, give Roundup canola a dose even a little higher than recommend and it could bite the dust.

3. Why not question all herbicides, glyphosate by its very nature is non selective, Wild oat or broadleaf are not, what do they do to other living things?
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post #9 of 33 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 07:34 PM
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Go to YouTube and search "gmo roulette". There is an 85 minute documentary that very interesting. Sounds long but once you start watching you will finish. If even half of it is true its a very scary and sad ordeal. Who stands to lose if rr crops dissapear. Certainly we do, but not as much as Monsanto.

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post #10 of 33 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 08:04 PM
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I have also heard a read a lot about RR disasters, I've heard of both of the gentlemen that you mentioned. I think these people tend to get blown off because of some of the outlandish claims they make. Not to say that everything they say is incorrect or that I'm a RR fan but some of the things they claim are down right nutjob. That being said I think that people also need to realize that with the increase in gyph use we as farmers are using a lot less of other compounds. Is this a net positive, or net negative? I have no idea, but the other herbicides we used before RR I'm sure were not benign to health issues either. I don't know what the answer is.

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