Political Ecology of GMOs

A Middlebury blog

Public Opinion of Genetically Modified Organisms

 Robin Weisselberg

 

Positionality Statement:

Robin Weisselberg is from a small, socially and politically liberal, environmentally minded town in the San Francisco Bay Area. Before coming to Middlebury, she was involved in the Yes on California Proposition 37 “Right to Know” campaign in favor of labeling genetically modified foods. She decided to take this class in order to challenge everything she thought she knew about GMOs. Although currently undeclared, she intends to pursue a degree in Environmental Studies with a concentration in Economics. Robin’s hobbies include environmental activism, being outdoors, hip-hop dance, theater, and tutoring math students.

 

Public Opinion of Genetically Modified Organisms

An Exploration of Extreme Rhetoric, Online Information, and Golden Rice

Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) exist in many spheres: physically in farmers’ fields and grocery stores, symbolically in pressing current issues, and rhetorically in online information centers and public debate, to name just a few. Forming an opinion of GMOs requires considering many controversial topics, such as corporate control, world hunger, human rights, moral boundaries, validity of scientific research, government and international regulations, and GMOs’ role in these issues. Public opinion, defined as “a representation of public consciousness or will,” (Savigny, 2002) is a collective generalization of individual perspectives. Given the complexity of the issue, it is interesting that public opinion of GMOs is generally considered polarized. People are usually characterized as completely pro- or anti-GMO and rarely as conditionally pro- or anti-GMO depending on the context. The stereotypical GMO proponent believes this technology is an invaluable tool in increasing food production for a growing world population and grounds his or her reasoning in current scientific studies. The stereotypical GMO opponent is concerned about corporate control of the food supply, believes that too many unknown consequences associated with widespread use of this technology have not been addressed by current research and grounds his or her reasoning in the precautionary principal, essentially a “look before you leap” philosophy.

These stereotypes are created by powerful interest groups that control the information available to the public. Both pro- and anti-GMO interest groups contend that “crop genetic modification should be judged and rejected as a whole rather than analyzed as the varied enterprise that it is,” (Stone, 2002, 618). In other words, if interested parties blur the lines between certain facets of the issue (like private versus public sector work or patented versus unpatented seed) they can make sweeping claims like GMOs are life savers or GMOs are evil. These claims are more powerful and attract more support for the party’s cause than middle-ground statements or critical evaluations of different GMOs, (Stone, 2002, 618). Biotech advocates, in an evocative narrative of hope, herald genetically modified, high-yield crop varieties as the solution to world hunger (Glover, 2010, 973-974; Schurman and Munroe, 2010, 161-162). Others argue that hunger is caused by systemic disproportionate access to resources, a problem that won’t be solved by increased food production (Zerbe, 2004, 598-599). GMO opponents, in a severe narrative of risk and rights, point to the uncertainty of long-term impacts on human health and the environment (Schurman and Munroe, 2010, 161-162). Biotech advocates assert that all scientific research of GMOs has found them safe for human consumption. Anti-GMO activists counter that not enough long-term research has been done to prove GMOs are safe and point to research that even shows they are not. This paper explores how varying sources of information inform public opinion and the central topics of discussion in the GMO debate. It looks beyond the polarizing rhetoric of pro- and anti-GMO advocates, instead demonstrating a wide spectrum of perspectives that better encompass the intricacies of GMOs and allow for more productive conversation.

In order to do this, I examined the comment sections below two news reports about Golden Rice as a window into public opinion of GMOs, noting the arguments made in the comments and the sources cited for support. Golden Rice is a variety of rice genetically modified to produce beta-carotene, the precursor of vitamin A. It is called “golden” rice because the modification also causes it to turn yellow. Golden Rice was developed as a humanitarian effort by non-profit groups as a way to combat vitamin A deficiency (VAD) in third-world countries where rice is staple crop. It would be free for farmers who make less than US$10,000 a year (“Frequently Asked Questions.” Golden Rice Project.). This makes it a very interesting case because most GMOs are developed by corporations and sold for a profit, one of the main critiques voiced by anti-GMO activists. In my analysis, I discovered that although public opinion of Golden Rice is tied up in perceptions of the private biotechnology industry, it is a case that forces people to consider and debate corporate control, patents, and farmer’s rights separate from the safety, environmental effects, and cultural implications of the technology itself. This allowed a spectrum of opinions to emerge from the comments.

Golden Rice is arguably a “pro-poor” technology being used to help people without profit or benefit to the developers, (“Frequently Asked Questions.” Golden Rice Project.). Because of this, however, corporations like Monsanto use it to advocate for all GMOs, even those that generate profit, (Stone, 2002, 616). Some have even dubbed it the “poster child” for industrial biotechnology, (Stone, 2002, 613):

Industry’s promotional use of Golden Rice is intended to obscure differences between the sectors of biotechnology as much as it is to draw attention to this one invention, reinforcing a monolithic and positive image of genetically modified crops (616).

Some anti-GMO activists are calling Golden Rice a “Trojan Horse,” that will allow the evil biotech industry entry to third-world countries, (Stone, 2002, 616). On the other hand, flat out rejection of all GMOs based on a dislike of private corporate practice is arguably inconsiderate of welfare in third-world countries where a publically funded technology could save millions from VAD, (Stone 2002; Charles 2013).

All of the aforementioned information and opinion about GMOs can be found on the Internet. But you have to be careful about which sources you trust – especially when researching Golden Rice. (Stone, 2002):

The most intense rhetorical battle lines of the genetic-modification wars have moved south to focus on food security in developing countries… [This] has exacerbated an already polarized issue, ushering in a Golden Age of misinformation, (611).

Interested parties can take certain pieces of information about GMOs out of context and frame them in a way that supports their position. Because Golden Rice provides a powerful narrative of poor people in third world countries either being taken advantage of or saved by GMOs, depending on who is telling the story, it is frequently mentioned in the GMO debate. Other important topics spun in the GMO debate include Monsanto (the largest multinational biotech corporation) because it “has become the symbol of everything people dislike about industrial agriculture: corporate control of the regulatory process; lack of transparency (for consumers) and lack of choice (for farmers); an intensifying rain of pesticides on ever-expanding monocultures; and the monopolization of seeds, which is to say, of the genetic resources on which all of humanity depends,” (Pollan, 2012). Indeed, the “inequitable distribution of political power… is at the root of public distrust of genetically engineered foods, (Nestle, 2004, 219). That’s why patents on seed varieties, identifying GMOs on food labels, and international trade agreements are frequently mentioned in the debate as well. In my research, I explored the types of sources people used to back up their perspective of GMOs and how trust in sources of online (mis)information varied across the spectrum.

I looked at the first fifty conversations (497 comments total) on two news reports about Golden Rice as a case study on public opinion of GMOs. The first, “After 30 years, is a GM food breakthrough finally here?,” was published by The Guardian online in February of 2013. The second, “In A Grain Of Golden Rice, A World Of Controversy Over GMO Foods,” was a National Public Radio story that aired in March of 2013. Below both stories, multiple users engaged in debate about Golden Rice, GMOs, and the biotech industry as a whole. Although political debate in online forums “very much resembles our old familiar world of everyday politics” (Tsaliki, 2002, 110), it cannot be equated to in-person debate because the “fragmentation of the self that takes place in cyberspace” (Tsaliki, 2002, 98) makes it impossible to equate a user to a human being. For these reasons, I chose to examine each comment independent of other comments made by the same user and rate it on a scale of zero through five. The numbers one through five represent the spectrum of perspectives of GMOs, one being strongly against all GMOs and five being strongly for all GMOs. The number zero denotes an unrelated comment or undeterminable perspective.

Description of Ratings

All of the facets of GMOs I mentioned earlier were discussed, often separately from one another, in this debate, allowing for a spectrum of perspectives to emerge. The middle of the spectrum offers perspectives in which people were for some facets of GMOs, like its potential to combat VAD, and against others, like patents that threaten farmers’ rights. Although these 100 conversations are not equitable to in-person debate, users in online forums are encouraged, by public scrutiny, to participate in rational debate by giving “valid reasons for the statements they make instead of resorting to arbitrary comments” and by citing outside sources, (Tsaliki, 2002, 99).

Perspectives with a rating of 1 cited the most sources at 42% followed by 2 at 27% while perspectives with a rating of 4 cited the least sources at 6% followed by 5 at 21%.

Percentage of Comments with Cited Sources by Rating

The anti-GMO side of the spectrum, ratings 1 and 2, cited mostly news publications, NGO websites, and unofficial websites. This shows that major anti-GMO interest groups are generally NGOs and other small self-organized groups as opposed to more official organizations.

Breakdown of Sources for Rating 1

Breakdown of Sources for Rating 2

The pro-GMO side of the spectrum, ratings 4 and 5, cited mostly official reports and official government and international organization websites. This is a reflection of the power pro-GMO interest groups have in the political sphere.

Breakdown for Sources for 4 Rating

 

Breakdown for Sources for 5 Rating

The middle ground cited mostly unofficial websites, official government and international organization websites, and academic publications. This shows that when a multitude of sources are explored and people are exposed to differing pieces of (mis)information, they will not necessarily adopt a strict pro- or anti-GMO stance. Rather, people have the ability to understand the complexity of the issue and form a middle ground opinion.

Breakdown of Sources for 3 Rating

Comments with undeterminable positions often contained little or no context for a cited source because it was in response to a previous comment. Although not associated with any perspective on the spectrum, these comments still contribute to an overall understanding of the types of sources people trust for accurate information.

Breakdown of Sources for 0 Rating

Interestingly, the anti-GMO side of the spectrum cited more scientific studies than the pro-GMO side, which usually considers itself to be “pro-science.” NGO websites were the most cited source of information across all comments followed by unofficial websites. This is probably because more comments on the anti-GMO side of the spectrum contained sources.

Breakdown of Sources for All Ratings

 

Number of Source Citings by Rating

At least one comment from each perspective included a source from an official government or international organization website which suggests that these are generally trusted sources of information. If public opinion were spread evenly across the spectrum, ratings 1-5 would each contain 20% of the comments. Out of the five perspectives, rating 3 counted for an astounding 15% of the comments.

Number of Comments by Rating

This suggests that although the “polarized and often manipulative positions” (Stone, 2002, 618) of interest groups fill the Internet with (mis)information, public opinion of GMOs is not as polarized as generally portrayed. There is a middle ground. Here are two examples of middle ground comments below The Guardian’s article:

  1. I am not against genetic modification, but I am strongly opposed to profiteering from food, control of food supply by a largely unregulated (except by non-profit organisations) foreign business, and the environmental issues created by massive agro-business and monoculture.
- Bonzaboy
  2. No to Monsanto, patents on lifeforms, plants that can’t sow viable seeds, and all the other technologies designed consciously to create dependence.
Yes to GM. Yes to solving world hunger.
Seems pretty clear-cut to me. They are separable. – JulianMorrison

Our current political sphere is overwrought with “polarized” issues whose progress is halted by uncompromising, almost warring, sides. The issue of Genetically Modified Organisms is complex, involving many actors, systems and moral questions, and requires that policy makers and developers think critically about how to use this technology in the future, if at all, so that public health, culture, and the environment are not damaged. Public opinion of GMOs plays a large role in policy creation, regulation and development of new technologies. Recognizing a spectrum of perspectives on GMOs frees decision makers from the pressure to choose a side of the debate or adhere to the desires of powerful interest groups. It allows critical thinking and productive conversation to exist in the public and political spheres.

Annotated Bibliography:

Charles, Dan. “In A Grain Of Golden Rice, A World Of Controversy Over GMO Foods.” The Salt. 7 Mar. 2013. Www.npr.org. National Public Radio, 7 Mar. 2013. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2013/03/07/173611461/in-a-grain-of-golden-rice-a-world-of-controversy-over-gmo-foods>.

This NPR story describes Golden Rice from its birth in 1984 to the present day. It presents a few perspectives on the issue but leaves you with a number of unanswered questions at the end. I focused my research for this project on the first fifty conversations (192 comments) chronologically in the comment section below the story. I found the comments to be spread very evenly across the spectrum of perspectives. The most common perspective was rating 3, the middle ground opinion. A single user, Laura Harrison, cited 8 sources for the anti-GMO perspective, rating 1. This heavily influenced my research results.

“Golden Rice Project.” Golden Rice Project. Golden Rice Humanitarian Board, n.d. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.goldenrice.org/index.php>.

This is the Golden Rice Project’s website. It contains the entire history of the Golden Rice Project, information on the people and organizations involved, and how the technology will be used in third-world countries. As far as official organization websites go, this one is very transparent. In my research, I found that a number of people cited various pages on this website to advocate for their perspective of GMOs.

McKie, Robin. “After 30 Years, Is a GM Food Breakthrough Finally Here?” The Guardian. N.p., 2 Feb. 2013. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2013/feb/02/genetic-modification-breakthrough-golden-rice>.

This Guardian article tells of the current state of Golden Rice. It gives a few perspectives on the issue but focuses on how Golden Rice will save millions of children in third-world countries from vitamin A deficiency. I focused my research for this project on the first fifty conversations (305 comments) chronologically in the comment section below the article. I found the comments to be polarized on the spectrum of perspectives. However, many more sources were cited here than below the NPR story. A single user, RobertWager1, posted the same two official reports 10 times collectively for the pro-GMO perspectives, ratings 4 and 5. This heavily influenced my research results.

Stone, Glenn Davis. “Both Sides Now: Fallacies in the Genetic- Modification Wars, Implications for Developing Countries, and Anthropological Perspectives.” Current Anthropology 43.4 (2002): 611-30. Print.

In this article, Stone goes into great detail about the creation and implications of extreme rhetoric in the GMO debate. He uses Golden Rice and “Terminator” seeds as two examples of both pro- and anti-GMO interest groups prescribing meaning onto a technology to advance their argument. I cite Stone’s article widely as it pertains to the polarization of public opinion of GMOs, contextualizing Golden Rice within the GMO debate, and the effects of public opinion on the biotech industry.

Tsaliki, Liza. “Online Forums and the Engagement of Public Space: Research Findings from a European Project.” The Public 9 (2002): 95-112. Http://kczx.shupl.edu.cn. 2002. Web. 5 May 2013. <http://kczx.shupl.edu.cn/download/6d0a828d-f7a7-47b9-b5c7-239c841b11b2.pdf>.

Tsaliki’s study looks at discussion in online political forums and its contribution to public deliberation and opinion. I used her research to better design and interpret the data in my own research. Tsaliki discusses the validity and limitations of using online conversation as a window into public opinion. She also points to the citing of outside sources as proof that users are engaging in rational and valid debate. This gives me confidence that the research I conducted focused on rational debate.

Full list of the Political Ecology of GMOs annotated sources from all papers

Full Bibliography:

Adams, Mike. “The GMO Debate Is Over; GM Crops Must Be Immediately Outlawed; Monsanto Halted from Threatening Humanity.” NaturalNews. N.p., 21 Sept. 2012. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.naturalnews.com/037262_GMO_Monsanto_debate.html>.

All That Glitters Is Not Gold: The False Hope of “Golden Rice” Rep. Greenpeace, May 2005. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.greenpeace.org/international/Global/international/planet-2/report/2005/5/all-that-glitters-is-not-gold.pdf>.

Charles, Dan. “In A Grain Of Golden Rice, A World Of Controversy Over GMO Foods.” The Salt. 7 Mar. 2013. Www.npr.org. National Public Radio, 7 Mar. 2013. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2013/03/07/173611461/in-a-grain-of-golden-rice-a-world-of-controversy-over-gmo-foods>.

Dyer, Gwynne. “Genetic Engineering: Golden Rice.” Jamaica Gleaner. N.p., 6 Apr. 2013. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20130406/cleisure/cleisure2.html>.

“Frequently Asked Questions.” Golden Rice Project. Golden Rice Humanitarian Board, n.d. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://goldenrice.org/Content3-Why/why3_FAQ.php>.

Glover, Dominic. “Exploring the Resilience of Bt Cotton’s ‘Pro-Poor Success Story’.” Development and Change (2010): 955-81. Print.

GMWatch. “Golden Rice: A Dangerous Experiment.” BanGMfood.org. N.p., May 2009. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.bangmfood.org/feed-the-world/17-feeding-the-world/37-golden-rice-a-dangerous-experiment>.

“Golden Rice Project.” Golden Rice Project. Golden Rice Humanitarian Board, n.d. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.goldenrice.org/index.php>.

“Grains of Delusion: Golden Rice Seen from the Ground.” Grain.org. Biothai (Thailand), CEDAC (Cambodia), DRCSC (India), GRAIN, MASIPAG (Philippines), PAN-Indonesia and UBINIG (Bangladesh), 25 Feb. 2001. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.grain.org/article/entries/10-grains-of-delusion-golden-rice-seen-from-the-ground>.

The Greenman. “GMOs: How The Greens Went Anti-Science.” Web log post. Blogspot. N.p., 27 Oct. 2012. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://thesnufkin.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/gmos-how-greens-went-anti-science.html>.

Hindo, Brian. “Monsanto: Winning the Ground War.” Bloomsburg Businessweek. N.p., 5 Dec. 2007. Web. 21 Apr. 2013. <http://www.businessweek.com/stories/2007-12-05/monsanto-winning-the-ground-war>.

Lomborg, Bjørn. “The Deadly Opposition to Genetically Modified Food.” Slate Magazine. N.p., 17 Feb. 2013. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/project_syndicate0/2013/02/gm_food_golden_rice_will_save_millions_of_people_from_vitamin_a_deficiency.single.html>.

Mcafee, Kathleen. “Beyond Techno-science: Transgenic Maize in the Fight over Mexico’s Future.” Science Direct 39.1 (2008): 148-60. Print.

McKie, Robin. “After 30 Years, Is a GM Food Breakthrough Finally Here?” The Guardian. N.p., 2 Feb. 2013. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2013/feb/02/genetic-modification-breakthrough-golden-rice>.

“Micronutrient Deficiencies.” WHO. World Health Organization, n.d. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.who.int/nutrition/topics/vad/en/index.html>.

Nash, J. Madeleine, and Zurich. “This Rice Could Save a Million Kids a Year Read More: Http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,997586,00.html#ixzz2SVlpqTe4.” Time.com. Time Magazine, 31 July 2000. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,997586-1,00.html>.

Nash, J. Madeleine. “Grains of Hope.” Time 12 Feb. 2001: n. pag. Time.com. Time Magazine, 12 Feb. 2001. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,98034,00.html>.

Nestle, Marion. “The Politics of Government Oversight.” Safe Food: Bacteria, Biotechnology, and Bioterrorism. Berkeley, CA: University of California, 2004. 194-219. Print.

Nestle, Marion. “Risks and Benefits: Who Decides?” Safe Food: Bacteria, Biotechnology, and Bioterrorism. Berkeley, CA: University of California, 2004. 167-93. Print.

Nowak, Peter. “Golden Rice May Be a Golden Opportunity.” Online Article. Www.cbc.ca. CBC News, 15 Oct. 2010. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/story/2010/10/15/golden-rice-food-technology.html>.

Parfitt, Claire, and Bill Dunn. “Golden Rice Is No Silver Bullet: Hunger Needs a Political solution.” The Conversation. CSIRO, Melbourne, Monash, RMIT, UTS, UWA, Canberra, CDU, Deakin, Flinders, Griffith, JCU, La Trobe, Massey, Murdoch, Newcastle. QUT, Swinburne, UniSA, USC, USQ, UTAS, UWS and VU, 20 Feb. 2013. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://theconversation.com/golden-rice-is-no-silver-bullet-hunger-needs-a-political-solution-12067>.

Patel, Raj, Eric Holt-Gimenez, and Annie Shattuck. “Ending Africa’s Hunger.” The Nation. N.p., 21 Sept. 2009. Web. 14 Apr. 2013. <http://www.thenation.com/article/ending-africas-hunger>.

Pollan, Michael. “The Great Yellow Hype.” The New York Times. The New York Times, 04 Mar. 2001. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.nytimes.com/2001/03/04/magazine/the-way-we-live-now-3-04-01-the-great-yellow-hype.html?src=pm>.

Pollen, Michael. “Vote for the Dinner Party.” The New York Times Magazine. The New York Times, 10 Oct. 2012. Web. 28 Apr. 2013. <http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/14/magazine/why-californias-proposition-37-should-matter-to-anyone-who-cares-about-food.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0>.

Potrykus, Ingo, and Greenpeace. “Potrykus Responds to Greenpeace Criticism of ‘Golden Rice'” Agbioworld.org. AgBioWorld, n.d. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.agbioworld.org/biotech-info/topics/goldenrice/criticism.html>.

Potrykus, Ingo. “”Golden Rice”, a GMO-product for Public Good, and the Consequences of GE-regulation.” Link.springer.com. Springer Link, 14 Aug. 2012. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13562-012-0130-5/fulltext.html>.

Qiu, Jane. “China Sacks Officials over Golden Rice Controversy.” Nature (2012): n. pag. Nature.com. Nature Publishing Group, 10 Dec. 2012. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.nature.com/news/china-sacks-officials-over-golden-rice-controversy-1.11998>.

“Renewed Golden Rice Hype Is Propaganda for Genetic Engineering Industry.” Greenpeace. Greenpeace International, 21 Mar. 2005. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/press/releases/renewed-golden-rice-hype-is-pr/>.

Reuters. “China-US Project Allegedly Tested Genetically Modified ‘golden Rice’ on Kids.” Online Article. Nbcnews.com. NBC News, 11 Sept. 2012. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://worldnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/09/11/13796926-china-us-project-allegedly-tested-genetically-modified-golden-rice-on-kids>.

Savigny, H. (2002), Public Opinion, Political Communication and the Internet. Politics, 22: 1–8. doi: 10.1111/1467-9256.00152

Schurman, Rachel, and William A. Munroe. “Biotech Battles and Agricultural Development in Africa.” Fighting for the Future of Food: Activists versus Agribusiness in the Struggle over Biotechnology. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota, 2010. 147-78. Print.

Shiva, Vandana. “THE “GOLDEN RICE” HOAX -When Public Relations Replaces Science.” THE “GOLDEN RICE” HOAX -When Public Relations Replaces Science. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://online.sfsu.edu/rone/GEessays/goldenricehoax.html>.

Stone, Glenn Davis. “Both Sides Now: Fallacies in the Genetic- Modification Wars, Implications for Developing Countries, and Anthropological Perspectives.” Current Anthropology 43.4 (2002): 611-30. Print.

“Syngenta: Incompetent Science Covered by Public Relations Smokescreen.” Greenpeace. Greenpeace International, 31 Mar. 2005. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/press/releases/syngenta-incompetent-science/>.

Tan, Monica. “The Genetically Engineered “Golden” Rice Lacks Lustre.” Web log post. Www.greenpeace.org. Greenpeace International, 5 Sept. 2005. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.greenpeace.org/eastasia/news/blog/the-genetically-engineered-golden-rice-lacks-/blog/41984/>.

Then, Christoph. “Golden Lies – the Seed Industry`s Questionable Golden Rice Project.” Foodwatch. Foodwatch: Testbiotech, 19 Jan. 2012. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.foodwatch.org/en/what-we-do/topics/genetic-engineering/?sword_list[0]=golden>.

Then, Christoph. Golden Lies: The Seed Industry’s Questionable Golden Rice Project. Rep. FoodWatch: Testbiotech, Feb. 2012. Web. 7 Apr. 2013. <http://www.foodwatch.org/uploads/media/golden_lies_golden_rice_project_2012_01.pdf>.

Tsaliki, Liza. “Online Forums and the Engagement of Public Space: Research Findings from a European Project.” The Public 9 (2002): 95-112. Http://kczx.shupl.edu.cn. 2002. Web. 5 May 2013. <http://kczx.shupl.edu.cn/download/6d0a828d-f7a7-47b9-b5c7-239c841b11b2.pdf>.

“UN World Food Day – Asians Call for Ban on GE Rice.” Greenpeace. Greenpeace International, 14 Oct. 2005. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/press/releases/worldfoodday1410/>.

Ward, Stephen J.A. “Digital Media Ethics.” Center for Journalism Ethics. University of Wisconsin-Madison, n.d. Web. 05 May 2013. <http://ethics.journalism.wisc.edu/resources/digital-media-ethics/>.

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Xinhua. “China Continues to Probe Alleged GM Rice Testing.” Global Times. N.p., 6 Sept. 2012. Web. 07 Apr. 2013. <http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/731557.shtml>.

Zerbe, Noah. “Feeding the Famine? American Food Aid and the GMO Debate in Southern Africa.” Science Direct (2004): 593-608. Print.

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