A nipa hut quitely sits amidst fields of organic rice standing witnessing hardwork and persistence of the farmers in Sitio Canaan, Barangay Crossing, Magallon, Negros Occidental. © Greenpeace/Gigie Cruz-Sy

Only a couple of decades ago, genetically modified organisms (GMO) would have been something out of science fiction. In the not so distant past, we never imagined we would find on our dinner tables strawberries with fish genes, corn with bacterial genes, and soybeans with built-in herbicides. Little did we know that such scenes would turn into reality in a dizzyingly short period of time. But this is now part of today's reality.

In the natural world, organisms develop specific desirable traits through evolution. This is usually a very slow process and driven by natural laws---not by human beings. Typically, an organism develops a color that will camouflage it from potential predators through hundreds or thousands of years of selection and adaptation. And, in the natural world, species never breed with unrelated species.

Greenpeace activists dressed to symbolize the "bul-ul", a traditional Ifugao rice guardian, carried out a protest at the Department of Agriculture in Quezon City. © Greenpeace / Joseph Agcaoili

With the advent of genetic engineering, the natural barriers between species have been broken down. Today, different species can be genetically manipulated to give rise to totally new organisms, presumably with a human-desired trait. Today, through human intervention, a fish can contain genes from a plant, and a plant can be 'shot' with genes from a bacterium. The possibilities for novel organisms are endless with this technology. They are also unpredictable and frightening.

Greenpeace is in the forefront of the campaign to oppose the release of GMOs into the environment. Greenpeace insists that because the technology is very new and imprecise, the potential ill effects on public health and on the environment are still widely unknown. The truth is no one knows for sure how these new man-made creations will affect life on planet Earth. Therefore, because there is still no scientific consensus as to long-term impact, and in accordance with the precautionary principle, it is best that no releases of GMOs into the environment be allowed.

This technology must be approached with great caution and more study! Releasing GMOs into the environment could have lasting effects that we cannot yet even imagine.

The latest updates

 

24 children used as guinea pigs in genetically engineered "Golden Rice" trial

Blog entry by Monica Tan, Greenpeace East Asia | August 31, 2012

The above picture taken from our 2004 'Rice is Life' tour where we captured images from traditional, chemical-free paddy fields. How would you feel if I told you that a group of scientists had come to the United States, and fed ...

Greenpeace calls for GMO-free food on World Environment Day

Press release | June 5, 2012 at 13:36

Quezon City — Greenpeace today marked World Environment Day with a call for the government to stop the onslaught of genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) into the country.

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Stop GE field trials in the Philippines!

Put GMO regulators under the microscope: Greenpeace

Press release | May 18, 2012 at 12:28

Quezon City — Greenpeace today called for a rigorous public scrutiny of GMO regulators as it stepped up the demand for accountability and transparency of the country’s GMO (genetically-modified organisms) regulatory process.

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Stop GE field trials in the Philippines!

Some scientists are either lying, or they did not do their research (Part II)

Blog entry by Danny Ocampo | May 15, 2012

In the first part of this blog , we’ve pointed out that GMO proponents are trying to paint critics of genetically modified crops as being unscientific, when it is in fact GMO pushers who are trying to sweep scientific facts under the...

Greenpeace wins landmark GE eggplant court case

Blog entry by Ditdit Pelegrina | May 14, 2012

In a  landmark decision  the Philippine Supreme Court has ruled in favour of Greenpeace Philippines and other petitioners who  launched a court case  against on-going field trials of genetically engineered (GE) Bt eggplant.  ...

Writ of Kalikasan granted against Bt Talong field trials

Press release | May 12, 2012 at 11:40

Quezon City -- Greenpeace today called for greater scrutiny of the country’s GMO approval system as it welcomed the Supreme Court decision to grant a Writ of Kalikasan in favor of the petition to stop field trials of the genetically-modified...

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Stop GE field trials in the Philippines!

Some scientists are either lying, or they did not do their research

Blog entry by Daniel Ocampo | May 10, 2012

Genetic manipulation of food crops poses threats to human health, the environment, and the livelihood of farmers. This is what true and unbiased science warns us about. Yet, sadly, some respected names have been turning a blind eye...

India and the Philippines at forefront of campaign to protect eggplant diversity

Blog entry by Didit Pelegrina | May 8, 2012

Recently, Greenpeace in the Philippines  dressed up  as genetically engineered (GE) monster crops and  filed a case before the Supreme Court  asking to stop the on-going field trials of the GE insect resistant  Bt  eggplant, on...

Legal remedy vs. GMO invasion sought

Press release | April 26, 2012 at 12:18

Manila - Greenpeace and fellow petitioners today sought legal remedy to the flawed regulatory system that has allowed the unhampered proliferation of dangerous genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in the country by filing at the Supreme Court a...

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Stop GE field trials in the Philippines!

PNoy failing on the environmental front : Greenpeace

Press release | April 22, 2012 at 23:25

As the world observes this year’s annual Earth Day celebration, Greenpeace lamented the failing performance of the Aquino administration on the environmental front, citing the last two years under President Aquino’s leadership as a period ...

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