Your favorite oranges might soon contain pig genes
Well, as revolting and as insane as it may sound, you might have to get used to the idea that your favorite orange juice may contain genetically modified DNA of pig genes.
Since 2005, Florida orange farms have been hit by Asian jumping lice and a bacterium known as Liberibacter asiaticus. The wide-spread disease called ‘citrus greening’ that has left thousands of oranges in Florida farms sour and discolored has encouraged the biotech scientists to use genetic manipulation to combat this disease.
The biotech industry who has been playing God for more than a decade now believes that GMO oranges tainted with pig genes can solve the problem. However, the critics believe that the bitterness of citric fruits could be even worse once the DNA of the oranges have been genetically manipulated inside the laboratory of biotech companies.
In fact, spraying tons of pesticides and chemicals on the oranges to keep Liberibacter asiaticus bacterium (which is assumed to be the main reason behind citrus greening ) under control has made the disease even worse and many studies have shown that excessive use of pesticides can backfire by making the problem even worse.
Follow the money:
However, Ricke Kress (the president of Southern Gardens Citrus who is the main person behind the two and a half million orange trees and a factory that squeezes juice for both Tropicana and Florida’s Best) is open to any idea. In fact, he is willing to do whatever it takes to preserve his position at fruit and juice companies like Welch’s and Seneca Foods since he has invested his entire life in this business.
Just few weeks before Florida Oranges were hit by citrus greening, on his way to move to the new job, Mr. Kress biggest headache was probably competing with flavored waters or pursuading his wife to tolerate Florida’s humidity. However, right now, Mr. Kress has a bigger challenge ahead of him and he is willing to do whatever it takes to find an immediate solution to citrus greening problem and maintaining his orange crops. Even if it meant ignoring peer-reviewed scientific articles that are asking farmers and giant Agribusinesses to think carefully about the long-term impact of genetically modified foods before harvesting them.
According to NY Times, “Ricke Kress of Southern Gardens has high hopes for his secret plot of test trees, some of which are genetically modified. In five years or so, with regulatory approval, some modified trees could be the first to produce juice for sale”.
If the regulatory agencies approve GM oranges, in less than two years the consumers could end up drinking pig-gene orange juice:
With United States anti-GMO labeling policies and political corruption of giant biotech and chemical companies, pig-genes could very well end up in your favorite orange juice, without your knowledge or even right to know.
More and more scientific studies show that genetically modified foods are nutritionally deficient and are related to infertility, cancer, autism and inflammatory bowel disease. According to naturalsociety , the Liberibacter asiaticus bacterium has already cost Florida orange growers more than $4.5 billion but they are also one of the largest mono-cropping areas in the country that use million pounds of pesticides to grow oranges. In fact, most orange juice that you drink from a container has high levels of pesticides and fungicides like carbendazim, and others in them.
But selling toxic chemicals and pesticides (that should be banned by the world health organization) is not enough for the giant biotech and chemical companies. They have taken things even further by having patents on different crops and genetically manipulating DNA of our foods that can significantly increase the risk of new diseases and pathogens.
The monopoly of biotech and chemical companies can only make everything worse, not any better. No wonder why the oranges no longer oranges. They don’t even taste, feel or smell like real oranges and who can blame them? Millions of orange trees are sprayed with tons of pesticides on a regular basis and the soil itself is so overly harvested that barley has any nutrients left.
May be, banning toxic chemicals and pesticides and bioremediation of the soil (that has been accumulating toxic chemicals like glyphosate) is a solution for change. But for sure, the definition of insanity is our current path which is giving monopolies to biotech and chemical companies and putting them in charge of our food supply.