Science vs. Perception: Why Are So Many Opposed to GMOs?

“It’s an atrocity to block the humanitarian gesture of improved nutrition,” says Kevin Folta, scientist and associate professor at the University of Florida, referring to opposition towards Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs).

We saw incredible public interest in food in 2013, with polarizing discussions often centred around biotechnology. Many, including Folta, argue the current debates are largely science versus perception, which was exactly what Folta talked about at the Southwest Agricultural Conference this week in Ontario.

More from Kevin Folta: Lights, Plants and an Orchestra of Flavours 

So, why can’t science beat perception? In the following interview with Bernard Tobin, Folta explains that much of the opposition to biotechnology is based on fear, which is far easier to market than the sterile perception of “science.” But, biotech proponents have hope.

“When a consumer starts to see the real benefits, they’ll change their perceptions,” explains Folta, who suggests providing examples from the “GMO 2.0” generation, like those with better nutrition, quality or shelf-life.

Watch the entire interview here:


Folta encourages anyone interested in finding out more about Genetically Modified Organisms, to look up gmoanswers.com.

2 thoughts on “Science vs. Perception: Why Are So Many Opposed to GMOs?

  1. It’s not just perception. Industry has been guilty in the past of developing something, claiming that it’s safe only to be proven wrong years later. The companies who promote GMO’s have a great deal to gain from ensuring that they do not lose these massive profit centres. It would be great if honest research could be done to better understand the risks. It is difficult not to be a cynic when you read reports and find many of the glowing reports are done by folks who are connected those selling GMOs.

  2. There is lots of independent research that has been done for the last 20 years, contrary to what the anti GMO groups would have you believe. Do you think that all scientists are untrustworthy or dishonest? If there were any substance to the bogus “studies” finding tumors in rats, and others, all scientists would be all over it. The ones that are protesting have either direct interests in anti GMO organizations or something else to gain, as in the case of Dr Oz and others. Who want to promote their supplements etc.

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