More than 500 netizens taste GM rice experts: It is easy to mislead the public

According to China Voices, “News Horizons” reported that the day before yesterday, about 80 netizens in Beijing gathered together and ate 3 kilograms of rice. Eating a piece of rice was an ordinary thing that caused controversy. Because they are eating GM rice.

In addition to the 80 Beijing users, on the same day, nearly 500 netizens participated in the "GM rice tasting meeting" in 23 cities including Xi'an and Hangzhou. The sponsors stated that they applied for 30 kg of insect-resistant genetically modified rice to Huazhong Agricultural University and sent it to Beijing for distribution.

The sponsor stated that this was a popular science activity. However, the GM rice tasting meeting was also questioned by “violation of relevant regulations”. So, what is the taste of genetically modified rice? Why do you want to organize "taste" activities? Is this move reasonable and compliant?

The event was initiated by a scientific and popular science website initiative. According to statistics, there are 23 cities including Beijing, Xi’an, and Hangzhou. About 500 netizens participated in the tasting session.

According to Wu Xingchuan, the site's webmaster, this is a popular science event, even a show, but it has no experimental or scientific experimentation.

Wu Xingchuan: People who oppose genetic modification often say that if you say that genetically modified organisms are safe, then you eat them. We will eat it for them now. But this is definitely not the meaning of the experiment. That is to say, "You see we have nothing to eat after." There is no such way to design experiments. We mean that the netizens who come to participate in tasting are determining that the food is safe. When we come to eat, it is actually a kind of popular science activity. It can even be said to be a show. We are letting other doubtful netizens to dispel doubts.

According to Wu Xingchuan, attending a tasting party is like finding places where AA dinners can be arranged. Participants need to pay for the meals. For example, this event in Beijing costs 200 yuan per person.

And such tasting of genetically modified foods is not the first time. From the pictures of various local events, it can be seen that some places have already opened to the seventh. Only this time is the larger scale of participation in the city and the number of people.

Fang also participated in the tasting session in Beijing. He said that in the past he had also eaten the genetically modified corn provided by other teams in similar activities. They tasted genetically modified foods, but not all of the foods in the campaign were genetically modified.

Fang Zhou: Of course, it is not mainly genetically modified, because there are too few GM varieties that can be eaten. The genetically modified foods on the market in China are soybean oil, rapeseed oil, corn and papaya. You can taste genetically modified rice. The amount is very small, 100 come to only three kilograms of rice. So I also saw people say that what would be good for you to eat such a bit of rice, and it was not a poison. What's the use for eating once, and eating every day? We want to eat every day and eat it. But now, GM rice has not been grown commercially.

The rice bag used in this campaign read "Development of Genetically Modified Rice, Transgenic Rice Team of Huazhong Agricultural University". Professor Yan Jianbing, a Huazhong Agricultural University professor who is responsible for liaising with the sources of rice, said that there are only a few of them.

Yan Jianbing: This rice is provided by the GM rice team of Huazhong Agricultural University. I am not doing rice research myself. I have been involved in science work so I contacted them. Because it is still not allowed to commercialize planting, this is an intermediate product of scientific research. The entire amount is very small. In previous years, my understanding was that our college would give us one kilogram for each teacher to taste for everyone. But this year is gone. I mean, this amount is very small. Therefore, it can only taste, not enough to make you full.

However, such activities of the GM Food Tasting Party have also been questioned. Some doubters have suggested that China's "Regulations on the Administration of Agricultural Genetically Modified Organisms" stipulates that "Units and individuals engaged in the production and processing of agricultural genetically modified organisms shall be approved by the agricultural administrative department". Such tasting will not meet the requirements for the production and processing of genetically modified crops. Batch requirements.

In this regard, Professor Yan Jianbing of Huazhong Agricultural University stated that the rice consumed this time came from the Bt63 transgenic insect-resistant rice. It has obtained a safety certificate, but has not yet obtained a variety certificate. This means that it cannot enter the promotion stage and cannot be sold as a commodity in the market. , and he believes that tasting is an internal, small-scale popular science behavior, and has nothing to do with commercial production and processing.

Yan Jianbing: What I eat is Bt63 which has obtained the safety certificate. The meaning of the safety certificate means that all the procedures it needs to be tested are already finished and gone. This thing is OK. However, the Ministry of Agriculture has another regulation on variety certification, that is, it is sold as a company or commercialized and it needs to go through a variety approval process. This has nothing to do with GM and non-GM. The GM rice is now worse than this, there is no certificate of variety approval, this seed can not be commercialized.

Zheng Fengtian, professor of the School of Agriculture and Rural Development at Renmin University of China, believes that although there are no laws and regulations specifically prohibiting GM food tasting, he does not support it and feels that it is not a true science popularization.

Zheng Fengtian: The state has strict requirements on the cultivation of genetically modified plants. But your genetically modified experiment, test field things out for ordinary consumers to eat, this is no corresponding provisions. I still think that this behavior is not suitable. Our country's research on transgenes is strongly supported by the country. However, it is extremely cautious about edible agricultural products, especially rice and Chinese rations. So from this point of view, you can have scientific research results for genetically modified rice, but the country is not allowed to grow commercialized now, and you should not put pressure on this kind of activity. This approach is easy to mislead the public.

In addition, there are those who oppose genetic modification believe that such tasting or the existence of violations of scientific ethics, participants may not necessarily fully understand the food they eat. At the same time, there are also concerns that genetically modified raw rice cannot ensure that genetic drift will not occur in circulation.

For these, Wu Xingchuan, the initiator of the event, said that during the event, participants will be introduced to what kind of food they are eating, etc., and he thinks that worrying about the drift of rice genes in the entire activity process is not valid.

Wu Xingchuan: Rice is not rice. Some people worry that the rice will be turned into seeds as the rice leaks out. However, rice is shelled, not rice or rice, and these rice can no longer be seeded and planted.

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