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5 reasons to support the GMO labeling act

5 reasons to support the GMO labeling act

By Mike Barnett

Watching the anti-GMO forces rally against the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act, recently passed by the House Agriculture Committee, reminds me of a dog chasing its tail.

They whirl with unexplainable passion in pursuit of an elusive goal. The end, pardon the pun, is always in sight. But it is never achieved.

It’s disconcerting to me. The anti-GMO forces have worked through many states to get mandatory labeling of GMO products. They’ve been successful in Vermont.

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Farmers and ranchers support voluntary labeling of GMO products

Farmers and ranchers support voluntary labeling of GMO products

By Gene Hall

I support a GMO product labeling law. Shocked? Well, it’s not THAT one. It’s this one—the Pompeo Bill.

Under its provisions, food sellers may voluntarily label food as GMO-free and gain any market advantage that exists. It also creates a meaningful standard, a certification for those products, under the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) supervision.

If this sounds like an approach that might work, it already has. Organic certification and labeling under USDA has functioned this way for years. In fact, since organic production itself specifies no GMOs, this is a multilayered labeling system that will make it quite easy to avoid a product that is perfectly safe to start with—if you want to.

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Hey, EPA: Don’t mess with my barbecue!

Hey, EPA: Don’t mess with my barbecue!

By Mike Barnett

Backyard barbecues. EPA. Mix the two and what do you get? A pollution study with the potential to kill hot dog and hamburger cookouts. At least that’s how I read it.

Sometimes those not involved in agriculture have a hard time understanding all the fuss Texas farmers and ranchers raise about the environmental agency. For example, a rule now being finalized by EPA could bring regulation of water down to bar ditches and fields—potentially affecting every management practice used by the farmer or rancher. It’s a hard concept to grasp unless it affects you.

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5 beefy reasons lean meat should be in your diet

5 beefy reasons lean meat should be in your diet

By Mike Barnett

So we need to eat less red meat. That’s what the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee says.

That’s a group of “experts” who get together every five years and make recommendations on what Americans should and should not eat. Although there will be a public comment period with an opportunity to change, their conclusions are confusing. And a bit misleading.

The good news is you can drink more coffee, eat more eggs and don’t have to worry much about dietary cholesterol. The bad news is, while they said lean meat can be part of a healthy diet, they recommend eating less of it.

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Biotech is here to stay, in medicine and food

Biotech is here to stay, in medicine and food

By Gene Hall

When we go to the doctor, we tend to listen, aware of the training, knowledge and expertise behind those letters.

“M.D.” We say, “Make me well.”

It would never occur to us to say, “Make me well the way doctors did three generations ago.” Medicine’s come a long way since then.

Biotech research in cows has yielded positive results in changing the properties of milk for human consumption.
It may be possible to cure deadly diseases as a result of similar bovine genome research.

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Food fear could lead to out-of-control labeling

Food fear could lead to out-of-control labeling

By Mike Barnett

Over 80 percent of Americans support “mandatory labels on food containing DNA.”

So says a recent survey conducted by the Oklahoma State University Department of Agriculture Economics, as reported by The Washington Post. And it’s the same numbers that support labeling of GMO foods.

According to Oklahoma State Economist Jayson Lusk, a government-imposed label on foods containing DNA might look something like this:

WARNING: This product contains deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). The Surgeon General has determined that DNA is linked to a variety of diseases in both humans and animals. In some configurations, it is a risk factor for cancer and heart disease. Pregnant women are at very high risk of passing on DNA to their children.

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