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GMO’s Can Feed The World

Pope BenedictWe hear so much about the need to feed the hungry around the world. But how is that being done? Can it be done?

One of the things that will help is increasing the productivity of people who can produce food. That would be farmers. Biotechnology is helping them accomplish this. But like just about everything today it seems, there are people who want to protest it. I think most of them just don’t like big companies. They just use this as an excuse to promote their own personal agenda. Genetically modified crops are very safe and the amount of research that goes into the creation of what is essentially just speeding up a natural process is extensive. There’s never been a negative problem with a GMO.

So, why the Pope’s picture? It’s really because of the action of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and a letter from a Minnesota farmer. Thanks to Terry Wanzek who grows corn, soybeans, and wheat on his family farm in North Dakota and serves as a North Dakota Senator and board member of Truth About Trade & Technology, for bringing this to my attention.

He wrote a letter in which he mentions that the Pontifical Academy of Sciences has given it’s blessing to genetically modified crops as one solution to world hunger. Here’s the first two statutes of the Academy:

The Pontifical Academy of Sciences, founded by Pius XI of hallowed memory, is placed under the exalted and direct protection of the reigning Supreme Pontiff.

The aim of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences is to promote the progress of the mathematical, physical and natural sciences and the study of epistemological problems related thereto.

Here are a couple of excerpts from Terry’s letter:

There are some people around the world who think religion and science shouldn’t get along. For some reason, they believe the men of the cloth should disagree with the men of the lab coat, now and forever.

They’ll be disappointed to learn that the Pontifical Academy of Sciences–an arm of the Vatican–has given its blessing to genetically modified crops. At a conference last month in Rome, it praised GM food for holding “a great potential to improve the lives of the poor.”

This is a welcome marriage of religion and science–two powerful forces joining for the good of all.

Farming is my profession. But it’s more than a job–it’s a vocation. The Catholic Church teaches us to show benevolence toward the poor, and to feed them when they are hungry. One of the best ways I can realize this goal is to grow as much food as possible and to make it available at the most reasonable prices. I believe it is important that all farmers, especially the resource-poor smallholders, have the right to choose the best technology available, including biotechnology when appropriate, to improve their hope of producing more food for themselves.

Are GM foods dangerous, as so many Europeans have been told? “No substantiated environmental or health risks have been noted,” says the academy. “Opposition to biotechnology in agriculture is usually ideological.”

Isn’t it great when science and religion can agree and even in the face of extreme emotionalism with a political agenda.

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