Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are created when DNA from one species is injected into another species to create plant or animal combinations that don’t occur naturally or by means of traditional cross-breeding methods. Most genetically engineered crops have been designed not for improved taste, increased yield, or added nutrients, but to withstand higher applications of herbicides.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved numerous genetically engineered crops, but many health-conscious shoppers are concerned about the lack of independent scientific study on the safety of those crops. A 2008 poll by CBS and the New York Times found that 87 percent of consumers want GMO products to be labeled. Fifty-three percent indicated they won’t buy genetically engineered goods.
According to the FDA, in the U.S., 93 percent of soy, 78 percent of cotton, and 63 percent of corn has been genetically engineered. The Non-GMO Project cites estimates that GMOs are now present “in more than 80 percent of packaged products in the average U.S. or Canadian grocery store.”