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New Genfood Rules Delight Industry

After two years of review, the FDA has decided that there is no need for American companies to label genfoods, and that testing for allergic response and toxicity is unnecessary.

This means that genetically engineered food products are free to enter the American food chain without restraint or restriction. Stringent European rules are exactly the opposite, requiring both testing and labeling. As a result, consumers can tell which foods are genetically altered in Europe, and avoid them. As a result, genfoods are all but impossible to sell there.

Learning from this experience, the FDA has made it impossible for consumers to refuse to eat genfoods in the United States, and has made certain that the products will spread far and wide, remaining unlabelled and undetectable.

The experience of StarLink corn, believed to be a human allergen, after it was accidentally released was that it immediately appeared in all manner of corn products, and has even recently been detected in Japanese beer.

"It remains clear that the FDA doesn't have a taste for regulating genetically modified foods," said Rebecca Goldburg, a scientist with Environmental Defense, which favors a more rigorous approval process for new biotech products. "FDA is making the assumption that most genetically engineered foods will be safe and will not ask hard questions."

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