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All Tomatoes Are Not Equal

FOODS we now eat that were genetically modified for pesticide control are safe, concludes a National Academy of Sciences report.

But, in a break from past official studies, government researchers now say the risk from future gene-spliced food is high enough that the government should tighten and coordinate its control of this biotech industry.

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The report will help calm growing public concern about so-called GM foods by both reasserting the need for science-based information and recognizing that enough uncertainties exist that federal agencies should take nothing for granted in their oversight.

More humility and calmness on both sides of this debate would help transform a public dialogue, now driven by fear of the unknown, to one of certainty about what we need to know.

The new gene research means all tomatoes are not created equal in the eyes of nature. The industry must open its labs to more scrutiny by government scientists charged to prevent harm from biotech crops and food.

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society