After more than 15 years of the world gambling with genetically modified crops the verdict is in and it’s pretty damning.
There is now strong empirical evidence from a variety of authoritative places that GM crops increase pesticide resistance which ends up driving up pesticide use. They also
GM companies have used a variety of tactics to persuade farmers to take up GM, from attractive promises of more yield and less cost, to much harsher strategies such as making conventional seeds unavailable, vertically integrating seed and chemical companies locking farmers into using products from the same system, aggressive litigation of any perceived harm to the company, creating monopolies then driving prices to record highs leading to crippling financial debt that many Indian farmers can only escape through suicide.
There are also health safety concerns for human eating and there is strong evidence that pesticide use has doubled and in some cases has gone up 13 times to the original. Only a few traits have been developed to favour consumers or farmers, all the other developments favour GM companies at the expense of everyone else.
In many areas growing conventional crops has become impossible because of large scale cross-contamination which brings with it uncertainty, impossibility to isolate non-GM crops and also in many cases harsh litigation from GM companies who easily bankrupt farmers even when the claim is absolutely solid against the GM companies. Injustice occurs and choice is taken away. Not fair, not democratic, not ecologically sound.
The conventional instrumental rationality of technoscience coupled with ethics-free capitalism is clearly failing both the people and the environment. Again. Most who studied this issue through the last 15 years, such as myself, or those who have been at the front line of GM developments knew what was going to happen, yet developments went ahead. Clear failure of the underlying logic that drives both science and capitalism in this case.
Global Citizens’ Report on the State of GMOs: