Recently there has been much concern over the labeling of genetically modified foods or organisms (GMOs). Just last year, in California, there was a proposition to require labeling of genetically modified foods. The goal and reasoning behind GMOs is to increase efficiency with production and provide a more uniform product.
There is a large fraction of the American public that thinks there are negative health effects caused by GMOs. Reality is, there is no evidence to suggest that there are negative health effects, though there is no evidence to suggest there are health benefits for GMOs compared with traditional foods or visa versa.
The lack of differences for either side presents a compelling argument for the need to label the supposed difference. But many will agree that the connotation of labeling GMOs is negative. Labeling these can be likened to labeling meat as having come from animals killed for their muscle. The thought may be gruesome, but it is the reality.
Labeling GMOs does not make the product any different; it just changes the thoughts associated with it. I challenge each and every one of you to evaluate the reasons behind labeling GMOs and then think about the unintended consequences behind adding negative connotation to a product that is no different than others to either side in the grocery store.
ZACHARY D. FRAZIER
Pennsylvania Beef Ambassador
The writer, a freshman at Purdue University, is the youth spokesman for Pennsylvania's beef industry.