Who knew? GMO Pesticide used on conventional produce

The other week I watched a health documentary series and one of the interviews was with Jeffrey Smith, Executive Director of the Institute for Responsible Technology. He was asked about the dangers of genetically modified foods and glyphosate in particular.


I only half listened as he explained there are two main types of GMO crops – one kind that is weed resistant so that you can douse everything with pesticide and the weeds will die while the crop remains standing. The second type produces its own pesticide and kills the bugs that eat it. Okay, fine.


Then he talked about several different ways that glyphosate can disrupt the body’s systems, including the digestive system, endocrine system, etc. I wasn’t terribly interested.


We’re big fans of the precautionary principle – i.e. when something is new, exercise caution until there is sufficient evidence to make a decision. I knew we were buying GMO-free stuff and were careful, so that wasn’t really applicable to our family.


It was then he blew my socks off. Asked whether glyphosate was used on non-GMO crops, he answered – drum roll please – that glyphosate is used on roughly 160 different conventional crops – not as a pesticide – but as a ripening agent! It apparently helps mature the produce faster.


My jaw hit the floor.


So glyphosate could be used on every item we eat?


We don’t even eat 160 different crops – our repertoire isn’t nearly so varied. He added that not every farmer uses it, but there’s no way of telling which ones do and which ones don’t.


The result?


Paradigm shift. Suddenly the foods I’ve been eating and giving to my kids each day didn’t look so innocent. I became suspicious. Were my breakfast oats sprayed with glyphosate? What about the fruit we were eating?


I found myself inadvertently tightening the family belt and buying more organic produce. Starting with the dirty dozen, and eventually expanding outward. The past two weeks have seen a revolution in our household. We are not 100% organic, but there has been a vast shift and a major change of buying habits – including a weekly organic produce delivery.


Maybe something to think about for your family as well?


And remember, just because the label says “organic” doesn’t mean it’s healthy. If it comes in a packet, look twice. Processed junk is still junk – even if it’s organic.


Are there certain items that you buy organic? If so, which ones?


I’d love to know.

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