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Face Down Food Fears!

03/11/2014 @ 11:00pm

“OMG. GMO.”

The journalist in me appreciated this clever headline. The agriculturist in me, however, saw a red flag and decided to read the opening paragraph of this blog by Kristi Cooper, Family Life Specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach:

Oh My Goodness! I am amazed at the flurry of GMO conversation in social and news media. If you are blissfully unaware of what I am talking about, GMO stands for Genetically Modified Organisms. GMO, my definition, is the code word for everything that is bad in the food chain right now.

“GMO, my definition, is the code word for everything that is bad in the food chain right now.” Fortunately, I didn’t take offense at this statement and chose instead to read further into the article where Cooper writes:

I don’t want to be afraid of my food. I don’t want to be afraid of my social media ‘friends’. I don’t want to be afraid of asking questions about GMO for fear someone will ‘peg’ me in one ‘camp’ or the other. Food is critical to our survival so anything that seems threatens the safety, quality or supply triggers strong emotion in people.

GMOs certainly trigger emotions from people on both sides of the issue, but it’s unfortunate that fear is one of the emotions often experienced. Food should not be feared. Fear causes people to make decisions and act in ways that defy common sense and common decency

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