Anti-GMO proponents will often claim that GMOs haven’t been tested for safety. This is false. The reply is that they haven’t been sufficiently tested and/or that whatever testing has been done is from industry and therefore not credible.
If you hold one of these views or if you are discussing GMO safety testing here are a few things to consider.
Establish standards of evidence before looking at the evidence: What would count as sufficient testing to assure safety? I.e., How many studies, what kind of studies, and what quality of studies would count? Very often people opposed to GMOs don’t have good answers for these questions.
Regardless of your position here, decide on an answer. Once you’ve done that, look at the links below and decide whether the standard of evidence has been met.
- USDA list of applications. All evidence available to the public and open for public comment. Here
- List of 400 studies on GMOs
- Over 150 studies on GMO safety with independent funding
- Review of 6000 studies and 20 years of data on GMO safety
- Independent Meta-Analysis of 150 studies
At this point many anti-GMO proponents will respond by moving the goal posts to other arguments. Nevertheless, if the concern is safety, it’s hard to argue that the burden of evidence hasn’t been met. Furthermore, the evidence in the other direction is virtually non-existent and only exists in a few notorious studies with poor design and conflicts of interest. The most well-known one is the now-retracted Séralini study. For information on why this is a poorly designed study with conflicts of interest click on the links below.