Ethical and Moral Implications of GMO


Wow, where did May go? It zipped by with all the preparation and then teaching of the nutrition class at Shasta Bible College. We had so much fun even though it was so time intensive. I love teaching college students. They so quickly grasp the importance of eating correctly for lifelong health and for producing healthy children.


Dr. Titrud taught the first week of this course. The students had already changed their eating habits by the time that I arrived to teach the second week of the course. Isn’t that just amazing and incredible? I am so proud of them.


After each teaching session I asked them to answer 3 questions in writing because I wanted them to think about and interpret what they were hearing. With their permission I will share their essays with you because they had such great insights.


We watched portions of the videos King Corn, Food, Inc, Unnatural Selection, and Hidden Dangers in Kids’ Meals. The latter 2 come in a set called GMO Trilogy which you can order from Amazon. Find Food, Inc. and King Corn on Amazon

You may want to watch these DVDs yourselves. You can also review the prior articles on Genetically Modified Organisms at:


Here’s the first question asked of the class:

Q. What are the major issues, problems, ethical and moral factors facing us individually and as a society in regard to genetic modification of our food? Did you know the truth or were you deceived?

And the answer by Lisa Bowes:

A.        The genetic modification of food has created some key social, ethical, and moral dilemmas in our society and in the global food market. Since labeling is not mandatory in the United States it would be fair to state that like me, most citizens are unaware of the harmful side effects of genetically modified foods. Corporations that genetically modify food include the giant agricultural company, Monsanto. Monsanto only informs the public of the possible benefits of their biotechnological advances. It is important to look at both the positive benefits and negative side-effects of genetically modified foods before making an informed decision as a consumer.

The social effects of genetically modified food include the unknown health impact on humans. Potential concerns include unknown allergens and the increased use of antibiotics to treat animals fed genetically engineered food. There are also studies linking genetically modified food to the increasing infertility rates in humans. The environmental impact is now surfacing in the unintended transfer of transgenes (genetically engineered genes) through cross-pollination. Organic farmers are struggling to keep the genetically modified crops from cross-pollinating with their crops. The unknown effects on soil microbes are still being studied.

The ethical issues at hand include the manipulation of the natural organisms’ function and value. Companies are even going as far as mixing genes among species. Humans are unknowingly consuming animal genes in plants and plant genes in animals. Gene mixing is causing stress for the animals. Genetically altered corn fed to livestock is destroying them and causing the need for antibiotic treatment on a continuous basis. Seventy percent of all antibiotics produced are being used to treat livestock. The increased fat content in the meat and antibiotics used to treat acidosis from corn feed are passed along to humans who consume the meat of these animals.

The moral issues include the domination of world food production by a few companies. Genetically altered seeds are sterile and only produce one crop. Farmers are then subject to the controlling factors mandated by the large companies. The farmers must comply or go out of business. Developing countries are becoming increasing dependent on industrialized nations for their supply. Thus there is foreign exploitation of natural resources.

Monsanto has been very successful at marketing their biotechnology plan for the welfare of society. Monsanto’s current website states that the world will go hungry due to population overgrowth if we don’t turn to biotechnology. Biotechnology has yielded faster and larger crops. However, is faster and larger better? Do the companies controlling biotechnology really care about what is in the best interest of humanity or is it what is in their best interest? Until consumers are educated on the issues facing the whole of society concerning genetically modified food, large corporations will continue to dictate the future of agriculture based on profit.

A comprehensive analysis by Lisa Bowes. Thanks Lisa!

In the next post we will look at another student’s answer to the same question.


Dr. Jo

About Dr. Jo

Dr. JoDr. Jo delights in sharing the message of health. She believes disease is optional if you know how to take care of yourself. And she’s a great coach to help you reverse or prevent disease.

So she writes this blog to keep you up to date with information that may undermine your health if you are not aware of it. She also provides tips on healthy living, how to reverse degenerative diseases, delicious recipes, and ways to enjoyably change your habits to healthy ones.

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