By Chef Centehua:
GMOs, or Genetically Engineered Organisms, are experimental gene combinations within plants whose DNA has been genetically altered with bacteria of other plants and animals. This kind of cross breeding cannot occur naturally. In 1982, the FDA approved GMOs for pharmaceutical use, and crops were also widely introduced to consumers.
During the 1990s, the FDA, without any type of rigorous testing, approved GMOs as safe. (The same biotech companies that created them did studies that deemed GMOs safe for human consumption.) Most developed countries do not consider GMOs to be safe. Many have banned the use of GMOs, and some countries demand that GMO foods are at least labeled as such. However, in 2000, the FDA ruled that GMO food labeling was not mandatory.
It is safe to say that today 80% of commercial food in the U.S. is genetically engineered. Since the introduction of GMOs, there has been a rise in allergies, hormone imbalances and a multitude of degenerative diseases. It is extremely frustrating to begin understanding what our government is doing to our food production, and how these medical problems are related to our food supply. The public deserves objective information about what is being done to our food.
Because politics and food are intimately intertwined, the mass media have ignored independent studies and food activists. However, we are in the information age, and one way to reach the masses is through movies. There have been quite a few documentaries and books on the subject. The world of film is having a huge impact on the public. Many of these films are free for viewing online.
Learning from documentary films is great, so I recommend hosting movie nights at home. I have done that, making it fun by serving organic popcorn and kale chips, and afterward discussing the film. We encouraged one another to take back power and support organic farmers. Nothing is more revolutionary than where we choose to spend our dollars. We vote everyday with our money. .
Here’s a list of some insightful documentaries on the subject:
The World According to Monsanto is a 2008 film directed by Marie-Monique Robyn. This movie is based on a three-year investigation of Monsanto’s corporate practices around the world. The film exposes this corporation’s pressure tactics, manipulation and suppression of scientific data, and collusion with governments. In my opinion, the most shocking and eye opening part of this amazing film is how GMOs have affected farmers across Mexico, India, Argentina and Paraguay. The suicide rates of many farmers is alarming and devastating to what were once healthy agricultural communities.
GMO OMG is another wonderful film created by Jeremy Seifert. Jeremy is a concerned father in search of answers. The film explores how exactly GMOs affect our planet, our children and, of course, our freedom of choice. The growing question of many citizens is “What’s on my plate?”
Genetic Roulette: The Gamble of Our Lives is a film by Jeffrey M. Smith, author of the bestselling book on GMOs, Seeds of Deception. In his film, he also explores Monsanto’s fraudulent practices and directs the consumer about ways to protect the family and how to accelerate the tipping point against GMOs.
One Cow, One Man, One Planet is about how bio-dynamics makes organic farming work. This award winning film explores the damaging effects of modern agriculture, the importance of topsoil, desertification, water, GMOs, soil erosion and how,by using a biodynamic system, to effectively feed the entire world. This movie is so inspiring! I highly recommend it.
- King Corn
- Food Matters
- Food, Inc.
- Fork Over Knives
- Fast Food Nation
- The Future of Food
- Hungry for Change
- Queen of the Sun
- Vanishing of the Bees
The more information we have, the more choices we have, and the more empowered we’ll be to take our health back and take pro-active steps toward the many environmental issues we are facing today. We are our environment, and ultimately we are at the service of nature. Without a healthy planet, clean water and food, we are lost. Gratefully there is hope … always. Our responsibility as caring citizens of the earth is to educate one another and do our part to stay healthy and walk gently on our beautiful home, Earth.