Behind the Business / Culture

Where Are Our Seeds?

Gone are the days when we used to eat grapes or tangerines and spit out the seeds. A seedless fruit option has become the norm and does not leave much shelf space for fruits with seeds. Nevertheless, who cares about seeds anyway – they are annoying and are tossed in the trash along with the skin. Let’s think about that for a second. Would you eat a banana, an orange or an apple if it was sold in the grocery store without the skin? Right, so why are we eating fruits without seeds?

gmo-monsanto-chemical-history

via GMOiNSiDE

Ever since Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) entered the food industry, we have seen a big change in the way our food is sold. Our fruits are modified to look bigger, have a high pigment on the skin and more importantly have a longer shelf life. With that being said, the fruit sold in most grocery stores have been modified, factor in the missing seeds and now you’re eating something simulating fruit.

Why remove seeds? That question is still unclear. However, what we do know is the seeds farmers grow are not their own and are not allowed to grow their own seeds. They are required to purchase seeds from Monsanto. Who is Monsanto? According to Wikipedia “Monsanto Company is a publicly traded American multinational agrochemical and agricultural biotechnology corporation headquartered in Creve Coeur, Greater St. Louis, Missouri. It is a leading producer of genetically engineered seed and Roundup, a glyphosate-based herbicide.” Monsanto is arguably the single most powerful company in the agricultural industry because it controls many agricultural changes and biotechnology products.

Diagram showing Monsanto produce vs Organic produce. Retrieved April 1,2016 from sourcewatch.org

Diagram showing Monsanto produce vs Organic produce. Retrieved April 1,2016 from sourcewatch.org

Monsanto currently hold many seed patents including the Soya bean patent. This means you cannot grow your own Soy – it’s illegal. Since when does growing your own seeds become illegal? “The Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association, et al., v. Monsanto Company, et al. Supreme Court Case No. 13-303 case where, The US Supreme Court upheld biotech giant Monsanto’s claims on genetically-engineered seed patents and the company’s ability to sue farmers whose fields are inadvertently contaminated with Monsanto materials,” reported by RT.com.  In summary the case ruling allows Monsanto to sue farmers/individual growers who use their own seeds or contaminate Monsanto’s GMO seeds. Thus forcing the consumer to eat food produce grown by farmers who must purchase seeds from Monsanto. Since Monsanto successfully lobbied government agencies, and was able to fully control seed distribution with their seed patents.

While there is little choice left for the consumer, you have to become a more informed buyer. Read your labels, and consider buying organic or visit your local farmers market. See diagram below that shows the PLU number of GMO fruit vs organic.

PLU Codes. Retrieved April 1, 2016 from vintagerecipeblog.com

PLU Codes. Retrieved April 1, 2016 from vintagerecipeblog.com

Organic fruits, can be slightly more expensive than GMO fruit, however when looking at the costs of detrimental long term health effects by consuming GMO fruit and food the decision to spend a little more on organic is clear.

Reblogged from EGL and edited by author.

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