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GMO Grass Story Toxic Of a Different Kind

June 25, 2012

The story has gone viral. People are panicking about GMO grasses exuding cyanide which is poisoning meat which is going to kill us. See! We knew GMO was evil! Except that within the story the authors know as well as others that it’s NOT GMO grass!

Now some say that doesn’t matter – it’s a hybrid and therefore is modified. But wait! When farmers pointed to natural crossbreeding we were told that was different. We’ve said over and over here that food choices make farm choices. Bermuda grass is a common forage for not only cattle and horses but other grass based animals.

The big danger here is if dismissed as GMO and it’s not those using hybrid varieties (including organic) may falsely not pay attention. This is a natural occurrence. Some plants when wilted produce toxic results.

Bermuda grass is a normally drought tolerant livestock forage and lawn grass that is popular throughout the southern United States. Tipton 85 is but one variety of the grass that is planted over millions of acres.

Several years ago Kentucky horses had issues with cherry trees. Several types of trees pose danger to horses. Aflatoxin in corn and other plants can cause death as well.

Many criticize farmers for using GMO seed, although in many cases it’s unwarranted. In others, farmers use what is the most productive and what people will pay for. If there was an order for 350 million tons of organic corn, farmers would rise to the occasion and work to fill it. When there is call for organic hay, farmers will fill it. Many don’t find the income from organic enough of an offset to change…and like any business farming needs to stay afloat.

Kidney beans, lima beans, potato and onion can be toxic in large enough doses or improperly handled. These are all edible, can be organic, can be heirloom but can still be toxic in the wrong situation. Some were used by Native Americans medicinally, but can also be deadly, and I don’t think GMO was an issue in the 1700-1800s.

The fact is many plants can be safe or toxic. The rush to blame GMO, Monsanto etc for something that is *not* GMO seems a case of crying wolf. It’s not only not true but is an outright fraudulent statement.

Food choices and food safety are something everyone has a concern about. The fact is many who object to GMO use, and demand labeling, aren’t willing to take the effort to choose and buy those products right now that are not GMO produced. If they did then the food industry could say “see people are willing to pay for non GMO options.” People say that, but don’t act on it, and yes it is possible. There is available online, and easily found, an application and printable list of brands that do not include GMO ingredients.

For those who care about the GMO issue, by all means you are free to buy non GMO from us or grow it yourself or buy from many other places. However, labeling something unfortunate as GMO related is reckless and inaccurate. It means if or when there is a threat people disregard it because, well this was wrong.

Empower your own food choices. Make the effort for non-GMO purchases if you feel strongly enough about it to send messages. Action creates choices. Food choices mean farm choices, and many are waiting for those choices.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. rushoffthefarm permalink
    June 25, 2012 6:03 PM

    Thank you for your honest commentary! It was the perfect storm of many issues that caused the toxicity and death. Very unfortunate. Unfortunate too is the false conclusions people have come to.

    • June 25, 2012 8:26 PM

      Thanks for visiting! There is much out of our control, but some that is. tragic to lose any animal let alone several, but the spin and misinformation on this is incredible.

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