Simplot’s Potatoes Aren’t the Problem: Big Organic is the Problem

Smith on the Dr. Oz Show. (groan)

Aasif Mandvi tackled Simplot’s GM potato on last night’s episode of The Daily Show.

Aasif interviewed Jeffrey Smith, Founder of the Institute for Responsible Technology, and Walter DeJong, Associate Professor of the Cornell School of Integrative Science.

Smith claims that the potatoes, and GM food in general, are dangerous. Smith exhibits his lack of understanding of RNA interference by claiming that it “might regulate our own gene expression, causing serious problems, possibly death” (there’s no research supporting this claim). He also makes the claim that proteins from Bt crops eat holes in human cells (there’s no research supporting this claim). DeJong counters this by asking via what mechanism this occurs.

The process itself is dangerous… The technology itself is generically unsafe. -Jeffrey Smith

Smith goes on to say that he’s not a scientist himself (yet he is still disseminating pseudoscientific, unsubstantiated claims).

Sometimes I purposefully play dumb. -Jeffrey Smith

(Are you sure it’s just sometimes?)

DeJong highlights the fact that traditional potatoes, when cooked, release a neurotoxin, and that Simplot’s GM potato produces less of this neurotoxin.

​They’re creating their own Lex Luthor for themselves.

DeJong points to the fact that the anti-GMO lobby has created a monopoly for the large biotech companies because of the fees and regulations associated with the development of new GM foods, making it more difficult for smaller companies to do their own development. This makes the playing field uneven, and makes it extremely difficult for small companies to enter the arena and contribute themselves.

Aasif dumps a bucket of GM potatoes on DeJong, proving that GM potatoes are indeed dangerous.

One can only hope shows like The Daily Show continue to be the voice of logic and reason.

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