Welcome comment from the Wall Street Journal on the USDA

Last week U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the USDA would seek the input of environmental activists and organic farmers in making federal regulations on the planting of genetically-modified (GM) alfalfa plants. This apparent change in government policy came even though an environmental impact study, demanded by the activist anti-biotech Center for Food Safety, validated the safety of GM alfalfa.

Welcome criticism of Secretary Vilsack’s decision appeared in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, and ACSH commends the Journal for its editorial.

Says ACSH's Dr. Gilbert Ross: “GM crops have been used safely in the U.S. for 16 years, and there’s no evidence these have ever harmed any person, animal or the environment. The USDA’s decision puts it in the position of kowtowing and seeking direction on science questions from non-scientists. Ironically, many of the people it’s now turning to for guidance are folks who have sued the government in the past. This is much like what is common behavior for the EPA, now under Lisa Jackson, but dating back at least to the Browner period. We hope that the USDA remains more discerning when it comes to distinguishing between politics and science.”