Monday, November 17, 2014

McDonald’s rejects Simplot’s GMO spuds

Simplot’s new genetically-modified potato variety may be dead on arrival because McDonald’s Restaurants says it won’t buy french fries made from GMO spuds.

Never mind that this variety has less acrylamide which might cause cancer.

But, then again, the Enviropig, genetically engineered to reduce phosphorous pollution in waterways, has never made it through the stringent government approval processes.

Yet GMO critics will claim they are acting as guardians of human health and the environment.

Marketplace rejection also prompted Monsanto to scrap its genetically-modified New Leaf potato varieties developed more than a decade ago to resist Colorado potato beetles.

That means much more toxic pesticides are used to control that pest.

"McDonald's USA does not source GMO potatoes, nor do we have current plans to change our sourcing practices," the company said in a statement to the Idaho Statesman newspaper.

The United States Department of Agriculture recently granted J.R. Simplot Co. permission to begin commercial planting of its new spud, called the "Innate" potato.

Simplot, based in Boise, Idaho, altered the potato's DNA so it produces less acrylamide, which is suspected to be a human carcinogen.

Potatoes naturally produce the chemical when they're cooked at high temperatures.

The potato is also engineered to resist bruising.