"Coffeehouse Forum Slams GMOs

Apr 30th 2007

Genetically-modified organisms pose a great environmental and health threat today, but no one seems to know much about them. To raise awareness on this pressing issue, CFA devoted the second forum of its 2007 Coffeehouse Environmental Series to the topic “GMOs: Risk or Richness?”. CFA’s resource speaker at the forum last March 29th was Sr. Ma. Aida Velasquez, OSB, (inset photo) Coordinator of the Lingkod Tao-Kalikasan, who is a tireless advocate against GMOs.

Present at the forum were pastoral and community workers, government employees, students, educators and CFA employees. During the three-hour forum, Sr. Aida Velasquez presented the basic truths about genetically-modified organisms, including the fact that the Philippine government has allowed entry of GMOs into the country despite international outcry about its reported ill effects.

GMO proponents argue that genetically-modified organisms are products of scientifically advanced genetic engineering, allegedly designed to boost agriculture by making crops resistant to pests, with traits that will make them more viable in the market. However, GMOs are actually counterfeits of natural organic farm products, Sr Aida stressed. The combination of genes from unrelated plants and animals is an unnatural process that interferes with the basic structure of created things. They can lead to poisoning of ground water, infection of other crops and diseases among humans.

The CFA Coffeehouse Forum concluded its discussions on GMOs by encouraging the audience to learn about them and consequently become vigilant consumers. More materials on GMOs are available at minimal cost at Lingkod Tao-Kalikasan, telephone numbers 562-0031 and 564-6538.

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