WHAT ARE GMOs AND HOW DO THEY AFFECT YOUR FOOD?

When it comes to finding foods that are natural and real these days, the choices are getting more limited by the month. Corporations and industrial farm outfits are looking to squeeze out as much possible profit from their products, no matter what the cost to our health. The GMO issue is one of the most controversial when it comes to industrial food. Where do residents of towns like Newtown, Monroe, Southbury, and others in upper Fairfield County shop to avoid these types of foods? Frequenting smaller, local establishments, like Butcher’s Best, is a good place to start.

GMO's

Technically speaking GMO stands for genetically modified organism. These are living organisms that have been modified artificially in a laboratory using genetic engineering. There are several reasons that food growers modify plants. One is to make them more durable so they withstand disease better and will not be as sensitive to harsh pesticides. This leads to higher yielding crops. The downside of this is that crops are now subject to even more harsh chemical pesticides. Other reasons for growing food this way revolve around the goal of enhancing flavor, color and nutritional value. But at what cost do these modifications come?

The safety of GMOs is debated strongly. Food production insiders point to studies that support the safety, while other studies link GMO foods with harmful effects to the liver, kidneys, and heart as well as other organs. One of the most disturbing recent controversies surrounding the issue involves the modification of corn, and other plants, to resist being sprayed by the weed killer Roundup (a Monsanto company). Since the plants can survive this chemical the entire crop can be sprayed to kill weeds. Before the modification growers would need to target the weeds specifically. An Agency of The World Health Organization has classified the main chemical in Roundup to be a carcinogen: a substance capable of causing cancer in living tissue.

Unfortunately foods using GMOs are everywhere. The Grocery Manufacturers Association says that 70% of conventional processed foods contain GMOs. Furthermore grocery store meat comes from animals that are fed GMO’s – one more reason to be cautious about grocery store steaks, pork chops and chicken. The author of a recent paper by the American Academy of Environmental Medicine recommends that their patients avoid all GM foods. The apparent harmful, negligent risk associated with growing food this way has led to the ban of GMOs in twenty six leading industrialized nations including China, France, Germany, Russia, and Australia, among many others. And the number continues to increase.

So where do you get foods that aren’t sprayed with cancer causing chemicals, and that haven’t been tampered with in a laboratory? Butcher’s Best. We’re the anti grocery store. The foods we carry are natural and real. Our meats, dairy and produce come from small farms, many of which are local. At the end of the day we hope that the foods we provide our customers will not only taste delicious, but will also lead to healthier lives.