A new study provides yet another reason to avoid animal products, such as meat, dairy, and eggs produced with GM feed, and to take action to make supermarkets respect their customers' wishes. The new study by scientists at Leipzig University was published earlier this month. As you can see from the Abstract below, the study shows that Monsanto's Roundup weedkiller harms beneficial gut bacteria while leaving highly pathogenic bacteria unaffected. This has clear relevance to animals fed on Roundup Ready grains genetically engineered to tolerate Roundup exposure. The GM industry has got around the problem of consumer rejection of labelled GM foods by hiding them in animal feed.
Meat, eggs, and dairy products from animals raised on the millions of tons of GM feed imported into Europe do not have to be labelled, although some European supermarkets and food brands insist that their suppliers of certain lines of products (e.g. from poultry) only use non-GM feed. In order to justify not telling consumers when animal products have been produced with GM feed, it has been claimed by industry that the animals raised on GM feed are no different from those raised on non-GM feed. But, in addition to this latest study, there are plenty of other studies that show that GM crops do have an impact on the animals they are fed to, and that GM material can even appear in the resulting animal products. So eating these "stealth GMOs" may affect not only the health of animals but that of consumers too. http://bit.ly/RWh2OV
On top of that, GM soy production for animal feed has caused many millions of hectares of deforestation in Latin America, and has triggered violent land grabs, displaced indigenous peoples, dramatically increased the use of Roundup, causing major health problems for local communities, and created vast unsustainable GM monocultures.
This means there are strong ethical, environmental, and social justice reasons, as well as health and welfare ones, for opposing the use of GM animal feed. Supermarkets need to understand that consumers do not want meat, dairy products and eggs produced from GM feed. They need to keep GM feed out of their production lines and to clearly label their products as GM-free so consumers can have confidence in what they are buying. Take action now to stop stealth GMOs. Here is where UK consumers can avoid GM fed meat and dairy - please circulate widely: http://www.gmfreeze.org/why-freeze/unwanted/where-buy-non-gm-fed/
And here is where you can write to UK supermarkets to encourage them to maintain their non GM fed lines (they are coming under increasing industry pressure to move to GM feed in all their meat and dairy):
Roundup harms beneficial gut bacteria - study
GMWatch, 15 December 2012
NOTE: Below is the abstract of a new study by scientists at Leipzig University which found that Roundup herbicide, based on the chemical glyphosate, negatively impacted the gastrointestinal bacteria of poultry in vitro. The researchers found that highly pathogenic bacteria resisted Roundup, whereas beneficial bacteria were moderately to highly susceptible to it. The study provides a scientific basis to farmer reports of increased gastrointestinal disease in animals fed GM Roundup Ready soy, which is tolerant to Roundup. Here is an interesting video presentation by a Danish egg producer Claus Storgaard who found drastic improvements in the health and egg production of his hens after changing from GM to non-GM soy feed ("Changeover to non-GMO diet in egg production"): http://sustainablepulse.com/2012/12/15/monsanto-feels-pain-europe-roundup-herbicide-dangers/
The effect of glyphosate on potential pathogens and beneficial members of poultry microbiota in vitro. Shehata, A. A., W. Schrodl, et al. (2012). Curr Microbiol. Publ online 9 December. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23224412
Abstract: The use of glyphosate modifies the environment which stresses the living microorganisms. The aim of the present study was to determine the real impact of glyphosate on potential pathogens and beneficial members of poultry microbiota in vitro. The presented results evidence that the highly pathogenic bacteria as Salmonella Entritidis, Salmonella Gallinarum, Salmonella Typhimurium, Clostridium perfringens and Clostridium botulinum are highly resistant to glyphosate. However, most of beneficial bacteria as Enterococcus faecalis, Enterococcus faecium, Bacillus badius, Bifidobacterium adolescentis and Lactobacillus spp. were found to be moderate to highly susceptible. Also Campylobacter spp. were found to be susceptible to glyphosate. A reduction of beneficial bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract microbiota by ingestion of glyphosate could disturb the normal gut bacterial community. Also, the toxicity of glyphosate to the most prevalent Enterococcus spp. could be a significant predisposing factor that is associated with the increase in C. botulinum-mediated diseases by suppressing the antagonistic effect of these bacteria on clostridia.