GMOs, glyphosate contamination of food products widespread in Mexico
Study finds GMOs extensively in industrial produced tortillas while none were found in tortillas made by hand from native corn
In 2001, researchers led by University of California scientist Ignacio Chapela found genetically modified organisms in Mexican native corn varieties. The findings ignited a firestorm of attacks on Chapela with GMO proponents attacking his science and his findings.
Sixteen years later, another team of researchers confirmed how far and deep GMOs are in Mexico’s food products. In August of 2017, the research team comprised of members from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) and the Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (UAM) published a study showing the presence of GMOs and the herbicide glyphosate in processed foods and tortillas made from industrial corn throughout Mexico.
At a press conference, the team stated: “The data are worrying, since maize is our basic food and we have lost our food sovereignty. Consumption of glyphosate-containing genetically modified corn can have serious health consequences.” They continued: “Of 367 samples analyzed, 82% (301) contained at least one transgene. Of the tortillas analyzed, 90.4% contained transgene sequences.”
Furthermore, “Glyphosate was detected in nearly one-third of the food samples that tested positive for the presence of the glyphosate-tolerance transgene.”
The researchers found that GMO contamination is widespread in processed foods, especially cereals, flour, and packaged corn-based snack foods and tortillas, the corn flatbread that is the basis of the Mexican diet. In particular, GMOs are particularly present in the industrial, machine-made tortillas that are distributed and marketed in small stores or tortillerías throughout the country.
Significantly, samples of tortillas produced by hand from native Mexican corn showed almost no GMO contamination.
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