We Must Face the Harm Caused by Imported GM Soybeans to 1.3 Billion Chinese People

Posted on May 11 2014 - 11:50pm by Sustainable Pulse

“We Must Face the harm caused by imported GM soybeans to 1.3 billion Chinese people” by Mi Zhen-yu was published by the “Science & Technology Abstracts Newspaper” on April 25, 2014. This newspaper, under the leadership of the Ministry of Science & Technology of China, was established in 1992.

china gm soybeans

Author: Mi Zhen-yu, Former Vice President, Academy of Military Science, Doctoral tutor, Lieutenant General; National People’s Representative of the 8th National People’s Congress, Committee member of the 9th National People’s Political Consultancy Committee.
English translation by Chen I-wan
Re-posted from: blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_4bb17e9d0102edhg.html

The article emphasizes: In 2013, China imported 63.38 million tons of GM soybeans from USA and other countries. Most of China’s imported GM soybeans are used to extract soybean food oil (one of the main tradenames is “Golden Fish” ). GM soybean oil, widely used not because of its quality but rather due to its cheap price, has rapidly dominated China’s soybean food oil market, covering most of the restaurant industry and canteens in China. The glyphosate residue contained in GM soybean food oil (and GM soybean protein powder processed from GM soybean cake, a by-product of GM soybean food oil) eaten three meals a day, continuously penetrates the bodies of most Chinese, including children at kindergarden, primary school and middle school, university students and teachers, staff members and soldiers of the Chinese army, government staff members, and other consumers (with exception of special food supplied units). During the past 20 years, the health level of the Chinese people has rapidly deteriorated with various diseases rapidly increasing. The situation is shocking. China’s national health has deteriorated sharply in recent years. Although weather, water pollution and other factors also exist, the harm from GM soybeans can not be eliminated. Assuring absolute safety of the food supply is a firm policy of the state. On the massive issue of human health and life, we have no room for trial and error. Now is the time to dismantle the “information barrier” on GM food. Concerned departments should seriously carry out epidemiological investigations, face up to reality, control the risks, carry out the prevention priority principle, and adopt effective measures to ensure the bottom line of life and health safety of the people.

The significance of this paper is also related to the status of the author Mi Zhen-yu, Former Vice President, Academy of Military Science, Doctoral tutor, Lieutenant General; National People’s Representative of the 8th National People’s Congress, Committee member of the 9th National People’s Political Consultancy Committee.

The publication of this paper by Mr. Mi sends out a very strong message, it indicates that the serious harm caused by glyphosate, GM food and chemical extracted food oil is not only gaining wider recognition at grass-root levels in China, but also gaining strong recognition among professionals in many fields, including more and more senior military officers.

(Note: Chen I-wan, the translator, is Advisor to the Committee of Disaster History to China Disaster Prevention Association, and Advisor to the Committee of Natural Hazard Prediction to China Geophysics Society.)

“We Must Face the harm caused by imported GM soybeans to 1.3 billion Chinese people”

China is the homeland of soybeans. Before 1994, China was a net export nation of soybeans. Since 1995, China began to import soybeans. Thereafter, the import volume began to rapidly rise. In 2010, the import volume reached 50 million tons; in 2012, China imported 63.38 million tons, accounting for 80% of China’s soybean market.

The GM soybeans imported by China mainly are the glyphosate-tolerant Roundup Ready (RR) soybeans developed by the transnational company Monsanto. Roundup is a patented herbcide introduced by Monsanto in the 70s, which has special kinship with Agent Orange used by the American military during the Vietnam war. Roundup’s main active composition is glyphosate, mixed with toxic surfactants, like POEA.

In 1997, Monsanto isolated a glyphosate-tolerant gene from soil agrobacterium, and introduced it into soybeans and other crops. During the growing of crops, spraying glyphosate-based herbcides can effectively kill weeds and normal crops, but will not kill GM crops containing the glyphosate-tolerant enzyme, facilitating large scale growing of RR crops while saving labor cost.

But the result of spraying glyphosate not only causes a serious decrease of nutrition composition in RR soybeans due to lack of aromatic amino acids, but also causes glyphosate to penetrate and accumulate within the roots, stems and leaves of the crops, which can not be washed away. , The glyphosate residues are difficult to clear out of the human body after being ingested with the GM ingrediant foods.

In April 2013, TestBiotech, an independant German institution, collected RR soybean samples grown in Argentina to carry out measurement analyses of their glyphosate residue levels and found that the glyphosate residue level of 7 samples, within the 11 collected samples, exceeded 20 mg/kg, with the highest reaching 97.36 mg/kg. [2]

Glyphosate is a toxic chemical, large doses of glyphosate can cause death. There are suicide cases in both China and Japan caused by administering glyphosate. A Japanese study considers that 250 ml is the lethal dose for male adults, and low dosages and very low dosages of glyphosate cause cronic toxicity.

Studies by many scientific institutions in America, France, Canada, Eygpt, Brazil, Argentine, India, Thailand and China indicate, very low levels of glyphosate causes mutation toxicity, tumor causing toxicity, reproductive toxicity, developmental toxicity, neural toxicity, genetic toxicity and immune toxicity.

In their paper “Glyphosate’s Suppression of Cytochrome P450 Enzymes and Amino Acid Biosynthesis by the Gut Microbiome: Pathways to Modern Diseases,” Anthony Samsel and Stephanie Seneff systematically collected and compiled 286 scientific references worldwide. Using statistical analysis as well biological mechanism, they explained in detail the causal relationship between glyphosate contamination and diabetes, infertility, cancer, abnormal embryonic development, autism, ADHD, fatty liver disease, cardiovascular disease, depression, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, cerebral thrombosis and cerebral hemorrhage. [3]

During recent years, EPA applied restrictions on the MRL of glyphosate allowed in drinking water, i.e. glyphosate residue should not exceed 0.7 mg/L, and specified that glyphosate could cause damage to kidney, liver and reproductive problems. [4]

China’s National State Standard G52763-2005, “MRL of pesticides in food” established by the Ministry of Health in 2005, specifies the glyphosate residue level in fruits should not exceed 0.1 mg/kg and corn should not exceed 1 mg/kg. It is unknown why the above standard does not specify the glyphosate MRL for soybeans.

“GMO Food Health Management Measures” established by the Ministry of Health in 2002 had clearly specified that “the nutrition value and food safety of GMO food should not be lower than the corresponding traditional food.” However, when this regulation was revised on July 1, 2007, again for unknown reasons, this clause on food nutrition value and food safety was specifically deleted.

As China’s National Standards does not apply restrictions on glyphosate residue of soybeans, to date we have not seen official measurement reports on the glyphosate residue level of imported GM soybeans.

In 2013, China imported 63.38 million tons of GM soybeans from USA and other countries. China’s population is 1.3 billion, thus this means that on average we are importing about 50 kg of GM soybeans per capita. Using the glyphosate residue value of 20 mg/kg measured on the GM samples from Argentina, the total amount of glyphosate residue averaged by the Chinese population amounts to 1000 mg per capita in 2013. Calculated on daily basis, the amount of glyphosate residue from such imported GM soybeans averages to 2.74 mg/per capita/day.

The U.S. government applies an agricultural subsidy policy on the production of GM soybeans. Based on subsidizing 59.1 USD per ton of soybeans in 2004, the total amount of subsidies for the 63.38 million tons of GM soybeans imported by China amounts to a massive 3.8 billion USD.

(Translator’s note: This paragraph contains a mistake, i.e. the total amount of 63.38 million GM soybeans imported by China are not all imported from USA. However, the international trading price of GM soybeans is directly affected by the massive agricultural subsidy in the USA.)

Most of China’s imported GM soybeans are used to extract soybean food oil (the main tradename is “Golden Fish”). GM soybean oil, used not because of its quality, but rather due to its cheap price, has rapidly dominated China’s soybean food oil market, covering most of the restaurant industry and canteens in China.

The glyphosate residue contained in GM soybean food oil (and GM soybean protein powder processed from GM soybean cake, a by-product of GM soybean food oil — note of translator) eaten three meals a day, continuously penetrates the bodies of most Chinese, including children at kindergarden, primary school and middle school, university students and teachers, staff members and soldiers of the Chinese army, government staff members, and other consumers (with exception of special food supplied units).

During the past 20 years, the health level of the Chinese people has rapidly deteriated with varius diseases rapidly increasing. The situation is shocking.

In 1996, the rate of newborn defects in China was 0.87%; in 2000, it increased to 1.09%; and in 2010, it increased to 1.53%. [5]

According to an American survey reported by Reference News on June 2, 2013, the rate of severe depression inpeople over 60 years old in China is as high as 40%; [6]

The Xinmin Evening News reported on Nov. 22, 2011, the rate of precocious puberty in Chinese girls has increased 10-foldin the past 10 years; The first “The Public health white paper” issued by the Beijing Municipal Government in 2010 revealed: Type II diabetes has increased 11.7 times;

The Zhengzhou Daily News reported on April 2, 2013: The number of children confirmed with autism has increased 100 times during the past 20 years; The Chengdu Daily reported on Feb. 20, 2013: During recent years, the prevalence of childhood cancer is increasing, on average there is one cancer patient for each 10,000 children. Among juvenile cancer patients, leukemia, brain tumor, malignant lymphoma and neuroblastoma are the top 4 types.

The “2012 Chinese male sperm quality survey white paper” announced by the China Population Association in 2012 indicates: The total amount of infertility patients in China already exceed 50 million, accounting for 15.6% of the child-bearing age population. This number 10 years ago in 2002 was 8%, and 20 years ago in 1972 was 3%, 40 years ago during the 70s infertility patients were not more than 1%.

According to a report by the Xinhua website, the prevalance of Parkinson’s patients in China has increased over 20 times during the last 20 years; [7]

At present, the prevalance ofcardiovascular disease has exceeded 13% [8]; and the percentage of people with chronic kindney disease has reached 10%. [9]

As the toxicity of low-dosage and micro-dosage glyphosate shows the characteristic of being progressivein the long-term, the harm of GM soybean food oil can not, like other toxic substances, be immedietly ascertained. China’s national health has deteriorated sharply in recent years. Although weather, water pollution and other factors also exist, the harm of GM soybeans can not be eliminated.

Assuring absolute safety of the food supply is a firm policy of the state. On the massive issue of human health and life, we have no room for trial and error.

Yangcheng Evening News reported on March 3, the American Academy of Environmental Medicine officially announced: Genetically modified food causes serious harm to human health. Back in May 2009, the American Academy of Environmental Medicine, USA issued a report stating: Multiple animal studies show significant immune dysregulation, including upregulation of cytokines associated with asthma, allergy, and inflammation. [10]

Xinhua website reported on March 15, 2014: The French ministry of agriculture announced on March 15, they decided to ban cultivation, use and sales of Monsanto GM maize MON810.

Now is the time to dismantle the “information barrier” on GM food. Concerned departments should seriously carry out epidemiological investigations, face up to reality, control the risks, carry out the prevention priority principle, and adopt effective measures to ensure the bottom line of life and health safety of the people.

Introduction to the author

Mi Zhen-yu, Vice President of the Academy of Military Science of China, Doctoral Tutor, , Lieutenant General; National People’s Representative of the 8th National People’s Congress, Committee member of the 9th National People’s Political Consultancy Committee; Military discipline appraisal group convener for the 2nd, 3rd and 4th State Council Academic Degrees Committee; The army postdoctoral discipline appraisal group convener; The 5th National Human Resources Ministry postdoctoral professional committee member.

References:
[1] T. Bøhn et al., Compositional differences in soybeans on the market: glyphosate accumulates in Roundup Ready GM soybeans, Food Chemistry, online 18 December 2013
www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308814613019201
Chinese translation: blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_4bb17e9d0102ebkd.html
[2] TestBiotech, High levels of residues from spraying with glyphosate found in soybeans in Argentina, 2013-10-22 www.testbiotech.de/en/node/926
Chinese translation: blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_4bb17e9d0102edgj.html
[3] Anthony Samsel and Stephanie Seneff, Glyphosate’s Suppression of Cytochrome P450 Enzymes and Amino Acid Biosynthesis by the Gut Microbiome: Pathways to Modern Diseases, Entropy 2013, 15(4), 1416-1463
www.mdpi.com/1099-4300/15/4/1416/pdf
Chinese translation: blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_6e9914110101ec4d.html
[4] EPA, Technical Factsheet on: GLYPHOSATE
www.epa.gov/safewater/pdfs/factsheets/soc/tech/glyphosa.pdf
[5] Information Times, Within 100 newborns is 5.6 with defects, 2013-03-07
news.ifeng.com/gundong/detail_2013_03/07/22826084_0.shtml
[6] Reference Information, Overseas Media, Chinese old age seriously suffering from suppression, 2013-06-02
china.cankaoxiaoxi.com/2013/0602/218581.shtml
[7] Xinhua website, The prevalence of Parkinson’s disease has increased over 20 times during the recent 20 years in China, 2007-04-12 news.xinhuanet.com/health/2007-04/12/content_5965118.htm
[8] Health Newspaper, “China cardiovascular disease report 2012″ announces that ever 10 seconds a person dies from cardiovascular disease in China, 2013-08-12
www.bj.xinhuanet.com/hbpd/health/yw/2013-08/12/c_116900727.htm
[9] Guangzhou Daily, The prevalence of chronic kidney disease in Guangdong province is higher than average in China, 2013-11-04
news.southcn.com/d/2013-11/04/content_83567059.htm
[10] American Academy of Environmental Medicine, Genetically Modified Food, May 8, 2009
aaemonline.org/gmopost.html
Chinese translation: blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_502041670102em9z.html

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