Meet the genetically engineered (GE) potato: it's virtually indistinguishable from normal potatoes, except that it bruises less easily... and that its long-term health effects are completely unknown.
The GE potato was created by biotech company J.R. Simplot, who intends to use it in a variety of fried foods like french fries, and may even market the crop as a "healthier alternative". But the real story is that this crop has yet to be thoroughly tested for human health risks. Plus, altering enzymes in crops like the potato can unintentionally affect other characteristics of the crop, meaning it could have negative side effects that we haven't discovered yet.With these GE potatoes being sold unlabeled in supermarkets and restaurants, consumers won't even be able to decide for themselves whether to puchase them.
Sign the petition below to tell the USDA to stop the approval of the GE potato.
Stop the Approval of GE Potatoes
J.R. Simplot's proposed genetically engineered (GE) potatoes are under-tested and potentially unsafe for human consumption. I urge you to stop the approval of this new GE crop.
The genes altered in J.R. Simplot's potato are designed to suppress the normal functions of some of the potato's enzymes, including the enzyme that causes black-spot bruising. But we don't know if that's all they do -- a modification in just one enzyme can unintentionally affect a plant's other characteristics as well. For example, the same enzyme that affects bruising also plays a role in protecting the potato plant from pests and pathogens. Engineering like this could have unintended, as-yet-unknown harmful effects on human health, yet the new crop has been grossly under-tested for safety. These health concerns are compounded by the fact that J.R. Simplot's potatoes will likely be unlabeled on supermarket shelves and in processed foods. This means consumers will not know whether they are purchasing a genetically altered potato, and will have no way to avoid these GE foods if they prefer not to eat them.
I urge the USDA to stop the approval of this GE potato (Docket No. APHIS-2012-0067), due to its potential risks to human health.
Sincerely,[Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State ZIP]
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