Our Take

Label the GM soy

Label the GM soy
This has taken some time coming but the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has finally recommended that all packaged and branded food in India must clearly indicate genetically modified (GM) ingredients used in them on their labels. While declaration of essential nutritional information like calories, trans fats, quantum of salt and sugar has been made mandatory, consumers are still clueless about genetically engineered ingredients figuring in their packet of snacks. An awareness level is required to help consumers make an informed choice, given the fact that India does import a lot of food products. And while we may not grow GM crops, they could come in traces in other packaged foodstuff.     
Worldwide genetically engineered food while yielding short-term productivity has had long-term negative impact. Such crops have actually increased our dependence on pesticides as they become more resistant to traditional preventives, leaving more chemical residue on plant life as experiments with Monsanto have shown and depleting soil nutrient balance. Various studies have linked the ill-effects of GM foods to hormonal imbalances in adults and autism, gluten intolerance and birth defects in children. Consider this, more than 85 per cent of the corn and soy grown in the US come from rejigged seeds and they figure in everything that a young population binges on, soda, chips, sandwiches and so on.  


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