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Old 07-05-2012, 03:24 PM   #41
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No, The Fly was one of the best sci-fi movies of its time (1958).

I'm frightened about genetic manipulation of food crops by means of insertion of foreign genes (like from insects and bacteria, or even from other plant species). I don't accept that all the possible consequences or worst case scenarios are yet understood. I'm disturbed that GMO crops can escape from farms into the general environment. Monoculture bothers me too. We are becoming ever more dependent on technology that could suddenly fail (due to economics, nature, climate, war, unanticipated side effects) and leave humanity in a crisis.

The following shows a few more problems with Canola production:

Wikipedia:
Quote:
Genetic modification issues:

A genetically engineered rapeseed that is tolerant to herbicide was first introduced to Canada in 1995. Today 80% of the acres sown are genetically modified canola. A 2010 study conducted in North Dakota found herbicide resistant transgenes in 80% of wild natural rapeseed plants. The escape of the genetically modified plants has raised concerns that the build-up of herbicide resistance in feral canola and related weeds could make it more difficult to manage these plants using herbicides.

Legal issues

Genetically modified canola has become a point of controversy and contentious legal battles. In one high-profile case (Monsanto Canada Inc. v. Schmeiser) the Monsanto Company sued Percy Schmeiser for patent infringement after his field was contaminated with Monsanto's patented Roundup Ready glyphosate-tolerant canola. The Supreme Court ruled that Percy was in violation of Monsanto's patent because he knowingly collected Monsanto's variety growing on his land for replanting, but he was not required to pay Monsanto damages since he did not benefit financially from its presence. On March 19, 2008, Schmeiser and Monsanto Canada Inc. came to an out-of-court settlement whereby Monsanto would pay for the clean-up costs of the contamination, which came to a total of $660 Canadian.
But it doesn't say if Canola has insect or bacteria genes inserted, or what process they used.
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Old 07-05-2012, 03:27 PM   #42
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Did they modify Canola's genome by selective breeding or did they use artificial means like inserting genes from other species?

Mankind has been genetically modifying plant and animal species for millennia, by means of selective breeding. There's nothing wrong with that. However when they start inserting foreign genes (like from insects or bacteria) that's when I start freaking out.

If the latter then I'm going to put Canola on my "do not use" list.
I don't call selective breeding GM. It was selectively bred to become canola. It was genetically modified to be herbicide resistant.

There is an ugly story about Monsanto suing farmers for using their patented, Roundup resistant canola without permission. The farmers had not bought Monsanto seeds. They had had their own crops contaminated with the Monsanto product.
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Old 07-05-2012, 03:30 PM   #43
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It's easy to find any number of articles describing why Canola oil is evil. Here's a typical one:

GMOs and why you should never use Canola oil. Vanessa Runs

There's just one problem. Anybody can say anything they want on the Internet. For example the article above seems to be pure opinion.

The subject has been so obfuscated by opinion that I can't find an authoritative source for anything substantial.
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Old 07-05-2012, 03:40 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Who Cooks View Post
It's easy to find any number of articles describing why Canola oil is evil. Here's a typical one:

GMOs and why you should never use Canola oil. Vanessa Runs

There's just one problem. Anybody can say anything they want on the Internet. For example the article above seems to be pure opinion.

The subject has been so obfuscated by opinion that I can't find an authoritative source for anything substantial.
I'm pretty sure it had to be a question of inserting the gene. I don't think you get a patent on cross breeding, but I don't know that for sure.
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Old 07-05-2012, 03:54 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Who Cooks View Post
...
Genetic modification issues:

A genetically engineered rapeseed that is tolerant to herbicide was first introduced to Canada in 1995. Today 80% of the acres sown are genetically modified canola. A 2010 study conducted in North Dakota found herbicide resistant transgenes in 80% of wild natural rapeseed plants. The escape of the genetically modified plants has raised concerns that the build-up of herbicide resistance in feral canola and related weeds could make it more difficult to manage these plants using herbicides...
Notice how the article switches from 'genetically modified rapeseed' in the first sentence to 'genetically modified canola' and later 'feral canola'? That's a sly way of getting the term GM in close proximity to the word canola to tarnish its image.

Also, the term 'has raised concerns' is a non-specific that suggests a problem without ever stating there is one or a realistic expectation that one could develop. I have no idea if "herbicide resistant transgenes..." has anything to do with making wild rapeseed plants herbicide resistant, but the article suggests it does and leaves the rest to your imagination.

I recommend the following article as interesting reading on the subject: Canola Baloney by Robert Wolke (Professor Emeritus of Chemistry at U. Pitt. published in the Washington Post.
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Old 07-05-2012, 04:42 PM   #46
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I'm pretty sure it had to be a question of inserting the gene. I don't think you get a patent on cross breeding, but I don't know that for sure.
I'm inclined to agree with you. (I know very little about this subject.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
Notice how the article switches from 'genetically modified rapeseed' in the first sentence to 'genetically modified canola' and later 'feral canola'? That's a sly way of getting the term GM in close proximity to the word canola to tarnish its image.

Also, the term 'has raised concerns' is a non-specific that suggests a problem without ever stating there is one or a realistic expectation that one could develop. I have no idea if "herbicide resistant transgenes..."
Well "transgenes" pretty much says the genes got transferred from a different "organism" whether or not the other organism is another plant, or insect, bacteria... whatever.

I recall some months ago I had decided to quit using Canola but I can't recall now what my basis was. It did have something to do with my feeling that it is somehow unhealthful, unnatural...

I'm not trying to convince anybody else to quit but I think for the time being I'm going to stick to using other oils.
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Old 07-05-2012, 04:45 PM   #47
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Here's a link to that article.

Yahoo! Groups
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Old 07-05-2012, 04:57 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
Here's a link to that article.

Yahoo! Groups
Well that's just addressing the erucic acid issue, and I think everybody can agree that is present in only miniscule amounts in the GMO canola oil.

It's the GMO-ness that bothers me.
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Old 07-05-2012, 05:11 PM   #49
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Well that's just addressing the erucic acid issue, and I think everybody can agree that is present in only miniscule amounts in the GMO canola oil.

It's the GMO-ness that bothers me.
HE clearly is debunking the claims of canola's harmfulness via the use of 'first hand accounts' and such. I find this quote telling:

"...In searching the Internet for information on canola, I found
tons of pro-canola material from the Canola Council of Canada's
prolific public relations machine, plus at least half a ton of
undocumented anti-canola allegations. But significantly, I found
no research studies indicating that today's low-erucic-acid
canola oil, as distinguished from ordinary rapeseed oil, is
harmful to humans."
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Old 07-05-2012, 05:53 PM   #50
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Well remember what I said earlier in this topic:
Quote:
The subject has been so obfuscated by opinion that I can't find an authoritative source for anything substantial.
And also:
Quote:
Well that's just addressing the erucic acid issue, and I think everybody can agree that is present in only miniscule amounts in the GMO canola oil.
I'm particularly NOT concerned about erucic acid. What bothers me is that apparently it is GMO, and I'm concerned about what that may do to the environment, and what introducing GMO crops may mean for the future. I'm also concerned that the genetic modifications may have unintended effects besides the intended effect of reducing erucic acid content.

What about the herbicide resistance genes? What are the consequences of eating the product of that? The other oils we use have been in use for hundreds or thousands of years or more. We know the consequences of eating them. We don't know the long term consequences of eating GMO rapeseed oil.

I think that more than anything else we just don't know what the effects will be, either to our health or to our environment.
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