Genetically Modified CORN: A New “Image” to the Filipino Staple Food


Philippines- Local groups in Central Visayas were alarmed that the white corn, a basic bite for Filipinos is now cross-bred with the common corn harvest thereby producing Bt Corn. This was due to the fact that the Philippine government would have wanted to address the complication related to starvation through the use of GMOs. Unfortunately, this food phenomenon was already approved by the Department of Agriculture in the Philippines.

Moreover, an agriculture and food assembly hosted in Cebu City by the Bureau of Plant and Industry and GMO advocates focused on the benefits of genetically modified products. Furthermore, the symposium was graced by attendees from Negros Island Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development Foundation, the Institute for Strategic Research and Development Studies of the Visayas State University, Bohol Initiators for Sustainable Agriculture and Development, Inc., the Muslim Mindanao Halal Certification Board, Inc., Greenpeace Southeast Asia, the Social Action Center, the Diocese of Marbel, South Cotabato and Pagtambayoyong Foundation.

Apparently, Bohol croppers voiced out their apprehensions about soil spoliation caused by the Bt corn, because it contains a biocide as a component. On contrary, this type of product has been banned in other political territories due to its adverse effects.

A well-documented study demonstrated that the detrimental impacts of the Bt corn GMO on the environment include evolution of advanced weeds tolerant to weedkillers and pests that could withstand its toxoids. Additionally, once a GMO crop is planted in an open field, its capability to hybridize with other natural growing crops cannot be restrained even by men or machines.  As of the moment, there is no available monitoring device to keep a register of cross-contamination in planted crops.

On one hand, the Greenpeace, a non-governmental global organization which works for the care of endangered flora and fauna, cited a document by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization; revealed that there is 5.4% increase in the number of starving Filipinos compared to the last 10 years.  In comparison to Thailand, wherein they utilized strict agrarian reforms, the total number of its famished citizens nose-dived to 79.8%