In case you’re wondering, YES
Your suspicion that the bucket of “cleaning fluid” used to sanitize the elementary music class recorders smelled a little funny was spot on. After one very shocking junior high truth or dare session with a group of boys from several elementary schools (and other girls), it became crystal clear why a few of them rarely asked to be excused to the restroom. [cringe]
Most of us can look back and laugh about those kinds of things – especially if we played the triangle and not the recorder! However, there’s a giant company that’s doing the equivalent of peeing in the bucket, only it’s our food supply and the “pee” is poison. Yesterday Kristen of Food Renegade posted a quote from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, which found that based on the seeds they’ve tested about half of America’s heirloom corn varieties are now contaminated with GMO strains. I’m not laughing, you?
Fortunately, if you want avoid GMO’s but can’t give up your chips, here are some options:
According to the Institute For Responsible Technology, blue corn does not cross-pollinate with GMO varieties. You can buy the seeds to make your own cornmeal and corn chips or just buy some at the store.
UPDATE: The Institute has updated their info and now states that “Blue corn cross-pollinates with current GM corn varieties.”
There are a couple of things to keep in mind, though:
- Conventional corn is a heavily sprayed crop. Even if GMO’s are not a concern organic is still the way to go for this one. (See this post for times it’s not a huge deal to skip the organic label)
- Blue corn chips prepared with non-organic canola are likely to be GMO. Even if the canola is organic it may be contaminated. Safflower or sunflower are okay. Coconut oil is even better.
Here’s what blogger Elizabeth Yarnell has to say:
At the Seeds of Doubt conference recently, Jeffery Smith, executive director of the Institute for Responsible Technology and GMO expert, assured us that even though almost 90% of the corn grown and eaten in this country is GMO corn, popcorn comes from a different seed and has not been genetically modified.
So, while you should assume that your Doritos brand corn chips and those sweet corn cobs on sale at the grocery store are Genetically Modified even though they are not labeled as such, you’ll never have to worry about your popcorn being GMO. Makes you feel a little bit better about ordering that large tub at the movie theater!
Is this good news or WHAT!?!? I confess I’ll still be sneaking popcorn into the movie theater with real butter and salt, but it’s still great news. I double checked with the Institute For Responsible Technology website and was able to confirm that popcorn does not cross-pollinate with GMO varieties of yellow and white corn, leaving it’s status as one of the healthiest snacks you can eat intact.
Want one more reason to celebrate? Then check back this Friday, because I’m sharing a popcorn ball recipe you former Rice Krispy treat junkies do not want to miss!