May 17, 2016
The American Soybean Association (ASA) welcomes a report issued today by the National Academy of Sciences Board on Agriculture and Natural Sciences that points to the safety and benefits of continued use of genetically modified crops for soybean producers, with specific regard to economic and environmental impact. The NAS report, Genetically Engineered Crops: Experiences and Prospects, reviewed a broad range of studies and reaffirmed that there are no adverse health impacts associated with the use of GMOs for either humans or animals. ASA President Richard Wilkins, a farmer from Greenwood, Del., issued the following statement in response to the NAS report:
“Today, the National Academy of Sciences reaffirmed what health and safety officials have confirmed for two decades: GMOs are safe. The scientists at the Academy also confirmed what we as farmers also have known for 20 years – that GMOs provide significant benefits for producers. They help us manage pests, weeds and reduce on-farm inputs, and they do it with absolutely zero risk to people or animals. This is an exceptionally in-depth report, and we hope that it will move the dialogue on GMOs to the next chapter.
“The other side of the GMO debate continues to attempt to engage our industry on the safety of and science behind genetic engineering. Yet, as we’ve seen today, NAS and the world’s most respected health and scientific organizations have unequivocally settled that question.
“The report also points to the significant advances we are seeing in the science of plant breeding techniques. Farmers can only benefit from these technologies if we continue to have access to them. The NAS report is a very positive step, and we hope that those in charge of approving these new breeding techniques and getting them in the hands of farmers as soon as possible will take note.”