More than 2,000 Torontonians took the street this weekend to protest against Monsanto and GMO (Genetically Modified) food. It was part of a nearly global event where it’s estimated that 2,000,000 people took to the streets to voice their concerns against GMO’s (source). The event was organized by the folks at March Against Monsanto.
Here’s our highlights from the Toronto march and what it felt like to walk amongst the peaceful crowd:
If you’re not familiar with the reasons why people are angry about GMO’s, consider (source):
- 61 countries in the world require labelling of GMO food.
- The United States and Canada are the only two industrialized nations which do not require them.
We are eating GMO food, due to lack of labelling, cannot make a choice not to. Consider the percentages of the following crops that are Genetically Modified (source)
- 93 percent of all soy
- 86 percent of corn
- 93 percent of canola seeds
Many countries have partial or outright bans on GMOs (source):
- Monsanto’s GMO corn is banned in France
- GMOs are banned in Austria, Hungary, Greece, Bulgaria and Luxemburg.
There is significant concern about the environmental impact of the use (and types) of chemicals being used with GMO crops (source).
Like any global issue, GMOs have opponents and proponents. There are arguments supporting both sides; my primary frustration is that I cannot choose to be GMO free if I want. We don’t have to agree on the impacts of GMOs – but surely everyone must be willing to support the right to choose? Monsanto and companies using it’s seeds spent millions of dollars campaigning Californians to prevent mandatory labeling (source).
Change will happen when the public asks for it. Will you join us (and the people in almost 300 cities around the world) asking for labeling of GMOs?