The Free Range Gourmet Free range thoughts on the finest ingredients, cuisine, and fine dining in Hawaii.

Range Gourmet

  Local Hawaii ingredients used with an international flair


Wednesday, August 20, 2014


Another good reason to push for GMO labeling: Fake DNA Frankenfood will be next on our plates

What could possibly go wrong with vanilla flavoring brewed by DNA-manipulated yeast? Well, like genetic engineering, synbio falls into a regulatory void that often allows products to go from lab to grocery store with little or no oversight. Evolva's vanillin and resveratrol will likely sail through the Food and Drug Administration's approval process—and end up in your food without any special labeling—because they are versions of already-existing compounds and thus have "generally recognized as safe" status.

by Larry Geller

And what could possibly go wrong with creating glowing trees to replace streetlights?

Synthetic biologists also aim to conjure up self-growing buildings, streetlight-replacing glowing trees, and medicines tailored to your body's needs. No wonder the market for synbio is expected to reach $13.4 billion by 2019.

[Mother Jones, Now Your Food Has Fake DNA in It, 8/20/2014]

“Synbio” is supposed to sound better than “Frankenfood,” unless, of course, you know that’s what it means.

Check out the article. It appears that “synbio” vanilla is here, and could be appearing in food soon.

Next up: a better-tasting version of stevia, a natural, low-calorie sweetener that the soda industry hopes can replace synthetic chemicals in diet sodas.

As the article points out, the products targeted are currently grown the old-fashioned way by farmers, mostly in the global South. If factories in the North are churning out the stuff they used to grow, what will they do for a living?

Since consumers in this country haven’t yet won the war to have GMO foods labeled, there likely won’t be labeling required for Frankenfoods, either.

Unless we get our act together real soon.


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