As a born and raised farm girl, GMO’s and grass fed beef were things that weren’t really talked about just a few years ago. Growing up, I would ride in the combine with my grandpa, while he was harvesting his GMO soybeans or corn. As a kid, I would be going for a bike ride while our neighbors and my dad sprayed pesticides or insecticides on their mid-summer crops. My parents didn’t buy anything organic. My dad would bring me whole wheat kernels to eat while he was hauling wheat to the elevator. And I feel like I turned out okay! 🙂
Now, my husband sells his cows and steers to “finisher” feed lots, where they are fed corn and other grain to be “finished” off for a better quality, and tasting meat. Most of your better steaks and burgers are not grass fed at all. It’s honestly bad marketing. And guess what, grass fed doesn’t mean it’s healthier. It will maybe save you a few calories and it has a “cows tail” more omega 3’s fatty acids, but you can get those from fish too.
I guess what I am trying to say that when you buy “organic”, “non-GMO”, or “grass fed”, you are really only paying for a “designer” tag. Just like buying a purse or shoes! And of course, I am going to use a fashion example! 😉 The same sandals that you buy at Target or Micheal Kors, will get the job done and be a great shoe, but you are only paying for the name of one.
It is crazy to no end, that when most people are asked, “what is a GMO?” They have NO clue what it actually means OR what foods are actually genetically modified. First GMO means “genetically modified organism”. If it weren’t for GMO’s there would be no crops to harvest because most bugs, weeds, and other pests, would have taken over the field. They help even in drought conditions, so the seed can survive. GMO’s even help the soil and they are a great option for ever changing soil conditions and crop diversities. For example, GMO’s increase crop yield therefore less ground is needed to produce more crop.
GMO’s are also the reason why we don’t eat bananas with seeds or why ruby red grape fruits are truly ruby red! This picture from the Genetic Literacy Project is truly amazing and mind blowing! How would food look like without GMO’s?!
In fact, what most people don’t know is that we have been eating GMO’s for nearly 20 years!
And this is truly the beginning! GMO’s can be used for great things, like creating allergy free nuts! My own mom is allergic to several foods, and hasn’t been able to eat dairy products, fish, or nuts most of her adult life. How amazing would it be to have an allergy free peanut butter spread!?
A sweet potato is a natural example of most liking the very first GMO, where bacteria got into the plant organism of a potato plant and puffed up the root to make it edible and sweet! That is right, sweet potatoes were NOT naturally grown at first!
But what foods are actually GMO today?!
In this GREAT blog post from Prairie Californian, she give a great breakdown on GMO’s and goes on to explain, that most foods that have been genetically modified are actually found in oils and syrups, and not in the product sections, like you would think! Yes, some are in corn and papaya, but for fresh produce, that is about where it ends!
I believe that people NEED to be EDUCATED before they can truly say WHY they buy something, because most people aren’t. If you don’t have the luxury of growing up on a farm or marrying a farmer, you have to stay educated on farming and WHERE you food actually comes from. And with that, I am thankful to have a choice of what foods we can buy. Some countries do not have our technologies and are being plagued with droughts or malnutrition, that GMO’s could help with!
And as farmers, we NEED GMO’s in order to farm and do our job! GMO technologies have done a lot for the agricultural world and it’s about time that people get educated… GMO’s are NOT bad, horrible things. They are a great use of technology and literally carry the future of our farming industry in their hands. So when you eat a banana without seeds or a grapefruit that is ruby red, remember to thank a farmer and the agricultural technology that brought it to you!
Are ALL choices, but we need to be aware of not only false advertising, because let’s face it, EVERYTHING has a label these days. When we buy something we need to know WHY we are buying it and WHERE it comes from. I am not saying that grass fed or organic is bad, it’s a choice, but we need to be educated on where our food is coming from, and not just assume that just because something has a label, means it’s “healthier” or better.