Re: Health Risks

Brian D Williams (
Tue, 24 Aug 1999 13:58:17 -0700 (PDT)

>> A few years ago Dennis Miller made a good bit out of one of the
>> first controversies (strawberries as I recall) showing a picture
>>of the field and a man dressed head to toe in a protection suit.
>>"Maybe I'd have a little more trust if they didn't dress like
>>they worked for waste management!"

>I don't recall it, but it sounds like a cheap shot. I would
>bet they dressed that way to keep from tracking foreign pollen
>into the crop. Or it might have been very early on in the trials
>when they were still unsure of the safety. You might recall
>the early debates about genetic engineering (mid-'70s).
>Many people thought it was very dangerous and should be stopped.
>They came up with some sensible systems for classifying the
>levels of danger (P1-P4 containment) and now you have high
>school kids doing gene transfer experiements.

If I recall correctly they were spraying a modified bacteria onto the plants to prevent frost damage. The bacteria involved was known to cause possible respiratory infection if inhaled in sufficient quantities, hence the precaution. Cheap maybe, funny definitely.

I guess we agree to disagree on this one.

My bet is that if agribusiness had to label products with (contains genetically engineered materials) those products would fail in the marketplace......

good posts as always Robert....


Member, Extropy Institute, Life Extension Foundation,
National Rifle Association,, 1.800.672.3888 Ameritech Data Center Chicago, IL, Local 134 I.B.E.W