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Testimony on GMO Labeling

Testimony sent by Denise Snyder, Honolulu, for hearings on GMO labeling to be held at Honolulu Hale (City Hall) tomorrow, Wednesday, December 7, starting (best guess, there are a number of other items on the agenda) at 11 a.m.


Honolulu Councilmembers,

Thank you for your willingness to learn more about GMO’s.

Only two forms of genetically engineered plants are being commercially grown, those that enable plants to be sprayed with huge quantities of toxic poison or those that produce poison (the latter are regulated by the EPA as a pesticide). Biotech companies sell the seed and herbicide as a package deal, and US farmers use hundreds of millions of pounds more toxic herbicide because of these types of GE (genetically engineered) crops. These chemicals pollute our water, land, air and bodies.

FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) scientists recommended against the release of GE food into our food supply. Scientific consensus at the FDA was that GE foods were inherently dangerous and might create hard-to-detect allergies, poisons, new “super” diseases, and nutritional problems. They urged their superiors at the FDA to require rigorous long-term tests. However, politics trumped science and GE seeds were allowed, with no labeling.

There were no human trials before GE foods were released into the U.S. food system. After the public rejected the first GE tomato, Flavr Savr, all future GE food releases were done without any labeling or notice (beginning around 1996). Every effort was made to keep the U.S. public unaware that we had, without our knowledge, become participants in unsupervised and undocumented food testing trials.

The AAEM (American Academy of Environmental Medicine) position paper, reflects, based on established scientific criteria, ‘there is causation’ between GE foods and ‘adverse health effects.’

Animal studies that have been done reveal problems. GE food is linked to the increase in chronic health problems. Genes inserted into GE crops can transfer into the DNA of bacteria living inside our intestines and continue to function. Several years ago, GE tryptophan sickened hundreds and caused the deaths of dozens of people in the U.S. and our federal government covered up the fact that the tryptophan was genetically modified.

GE crops were widely introduced in 1996. Within nine years, the incidence of people in the US with three or more chronic diseases nearly doubled—from 7% to 13%. Visits to the emergency room due to allergies doubled from 1997 to 2002. And overall food related illnesses doubled from 1994 to 2001, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

Please read the attached documents that give additional health and scientific information, including scientific evidence from 114 research studies and other authoritative papers documenting some of the limitations and risks of GM crops.

We are only asking that you vote for GMO food labeling. We are not asking you to regulate the GE seed industry. Open-air field trials and other practices of industry have resulted in horrific contamination of our food supply BEFORE approval of their seed: flax seed in Canada, rice in California, and corn on the mainland to name just a few instances of their reckless disregard for the rights of others.

Please contact me if you would like additional information or have any questions.

Thank you,

Denise Snyder

(Contact information removed by Hawaii Political Info)