Are Genetically Modified grape vines ever going to be good for wine?

Let’s consider if Genetically Modified grape vines are ever going to be good for us… In order to do that, we have to look at studies that are being done independently, many of which are happening outside of the United States, as regards other crops.

It’s also important to note that a study handed off to a university through a grant program by a corporation might as well read, “give us what we want to see, regardless of anything the research group finds.” That’s what has long kept money flowing into any university system.

Meanwhile, other countries are not vested in GMO crops, and they want to know all they can from the current US experiment of an all-age generational study, to protect their own citizens.

I can’t make it more clear… I shudder to think that somewhere in time, someone with vested interests in companies, like Monsanto or Dow Chemical, will come along and want to genetically modify wine grape vines. Look who’s presenting your GMO Answers, below. they’re not scientists, they’re major pharmaceutical/chemical companies.


  • Non-GMO project ~ Genetically modified organism: “plants or animals that have been genetically engineered with DNA from bacteria, viruses or other plants and animals. These experimental combinations of genes from different species cannot occur in nature or in traditional crossbreeding.”
  • Science Daily ~  Cross breeding: Classical plant breeding uses deliberate interbreeding (crossing) of closely or distantly related individuals to produce new crop varieties or lines with desirable properties. Plants are crossbred to introduce traits/genes from one variety or line into a new genetic background.

Let me digress into some wondering, because it’s all in line with our most recent development with GMO foods and a government that is supposed to be protecting its citizens.:

Mother Nature has given everything to us that we need naturally. If we weren’t supposed to have wine grape vines, they wouldn’t exist. The same applies to medical marijuana. One has to ask oneself, “What was in those peace pipes ever so long ago?” And, why did marijuana become illegal shortly after Prohibition was repealed? Could it have been to continue to enslave men, since slavery had also become illegal, and prison populations began to decline after the Repeal… Just wondering here.

So, who’s writing what about GMO crops?

  • Collective evolution: 10 Scientific Studies Proving GMOs Can Be Harmful To Human Health = independent studies from around the globe.
  • GMO Answers: Founding Members GMO Answers is funded by the members of The Council for Biotechnology Information, which includes BASF, Bayer CropScience, Dow AgroSciences, DuPont, Monsanto Company and Syngenta. Our members are dedicated to the responsible development and application of plant biotechnology.

MIT, thankfully; but be assured, the GMO proponents will tell you that this MIT researcher has no credentials…

MIT Researcher’s New Warning: At Today’s Rate, Half of All U.S. Children Will Be Autistic (by 2025)

By Nick Meyer On June 11, 2014 ~ “Research scientist Stephanie Seneff of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), a widely published author on topics ranging from Azlheimer’s Disease to autism and cardiovascular disease, raised plenty of eyebrows recently with a bold proclamation on autism at a special panel in Massachusetts about genetically modified organisms and other topics.

“At today’s rate, by 2025, one in two children will be autistic,”  Seneff said last Thursday in Groton, MA at an event sponsored by the holistic-focused Groton Wellness organization.

Seneff presented slides showing a remarkably consistent correlation between the rising use of Roundup (with its active ingredient glyphosate) on crops and the rising rates of autism; while it doesn’t show a direct correlation it does give researchers plenty to think about, especially considering Seneff’s research into the side effects of autism that mimic glyphosate toxicity and deficiencies.

The rest of the world is more curious and less vested in genetically modified crops than Corporate US, it seems, than we are.

  • GROUNDBREAKING 2013 STUDY shows pigs were harmed by the consumption of feed containing genetically modified crops. A long-term toxicology study on pigs fed a combined genetically modified (GM) soy and GM corn maize diet, by Dr. Judy Carman, Howard Vlieger, Dr. Larry Ver Steeg, Veryln Sneller, Dr. Garth Robinson, Dr. Kate Clinch-Jones, Dr. Julie Haynes and Dr. John Edwards. Direct link to the study.

November 26, 2013 by True Activist, Geneticist David Suzuki Says Humans “Are Part Of A Massive Experiment, By Arjun Walia

  • DAVID SUZUKI: “It doesn’t seem to be much of a debate anymore, it’s clear that GMOs can indeed be harmful to human health. There is a reason why a majority of countries around the world have permanently banned GMOs, so what’s taking North America so long? One reason might be the fact that biotech corporations like Monsanto seem to be above the government and influence policy, but thankfully these things are changing. Big Island, Hawaii has recently banned all GMO products and bio-tech company products. Various bills calling for moratoria on GE food include Vermont, North Dakota, Boulder, Colorado, San Francisco and more.”

(24th August 2014): Ecologist ~ Cancer deaths double in Argentina’s GMO agribusiness areas

Cancer Deaths Double in Argentina’s GMO Agribusiness Areas: A report by the Ministry of Health in Córdoba, Argentina reveals that deaths from cancerous tumours are double the national average in areas where genetically engineered crops are grown and agro-chemicals are used.

This comprehensive report documented five years of information on cancer cases in the province.

Am I nuts? Those vested Monsanto would tell you, “Yes.”

Lorie from Massachusetts tells it differently, and she’s been observing my communications now for a few years: “Jo, I just [want] to say that while we don’t know each other terribly well you are one of my favorite Facebook friends because everything you post is either beautiful, informative, or thought-provoking. Thanks for never clogging up my wall with useless crap.”

Another view from someone who comments every time I write about genetically modified crops: “Judging from your last comment, you don’t appear to me to be very educated, or perhaps you are willfully blind, but whatever your problem is, cancer rates are declining as per the CDC. And if it were’t for smoking, obesity, sunbathing, lack of exercise and poor diets, cancer rates would be declining more rapidly. GMOs have no effect on cancer rates, except fear of GMO vegetables could result in fewer vegetables eaten and as a result your fearful lifestyle increases your cancer risk. Darwin might predict you are going to go extinct because you are [your] thinking is illogical.”

It’s interesting to note that this person privately told me he’d not be back to my website ever again, and the popular definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results, as if he could “cure” me because – using his words, “don’t appear to me to be very educated.” (Thanks, buddy, my 3.894 GPA didn’t make it to 4.0, because I have philosophical differences with people like you, and I won’t bend just to be in a favorable light.)

9 Responses to “Are Genetically Modified grape vines ever going to be good for wine?”

  1. Tom says:

    What a great F.U.D. piece!

    The collective-evolution piece has been thoroughly debunked… http://www.geneticliteracyproject.org/2014/08/05/10-studies-proving-gmos-are-harmful-not-if-science-matters/

    And that MIT researcher (Seneff) publishes her works in “pay-to-play” journals that don’t have a high impact factor (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impact_factor). So that means she payed to have her article published in a scientific journal… it wasn’t published because of it’s scientific merits – I’m guessing they weren’t peer-reviewed either.

    That aside. I’m confident that genetic engineering can bring many benefits to the wine industry – especially grape growing – and I really wish more people appreciated the science behind these things instead of just believing misleading pictures on the internet of a syringes injecting a piece of corn with a blue liquid and calling that a GMO.

    Check out this guys blog about potential uses of genetic engineering with viticulture. Really cool stuff that could really benefit the industry. I predict we’ll be seeing the first engineered grapes on the market within the next ten years.


  2. If you seriously believe half of American children will be autistic because of glyphosate, you need your head read. Can’t help but suspect it may already hafe affected you.

  3. Jo Diaz says:

    Thanks, Gordon,

    You may be right. It may “hafe” affected me.

  4. Jo Diaz says:

    Tom, if you were writing a research piece, would you actually be using Wikipedia as a credible source, since anyone can write for Wiki? Com’mon.

    For every piece that is debunked on one side, there are just as many on the other side… Not funded by the government or lobbyists for the companies involved, these are the ones that I trust.

    Here’s my side of the issue. I bet you love trusting this guy with your health and your life. John Robbins… Your trusted source: http://www.shiftfrequency.com/john-robbins-monsantos-lies-and-the-gmo-labeling-battle/

  5. Thanks Jo, for keeping us up to speed on GMO’s. I too hope the wine industry never imbibes. As for your naysayers: the cancer mortality rate is declining, but the incidence of cancer is on the rise. And while the birthrate of autistic children may not grow to 2-1, the increase is alarming, not to mention other mental health issues such as ADD. It’s imperative that we seriously consider the fallout from these chemicals we allow American corporations to spew out at our expense. Keep writing. It’s important.

  6. Jo Diaz says:

    Thanks, Paula. I, too, acknowledge that autism may not be as bad as predicted… However, my sister who is an RN – Registered Dietician – chef graduate from New York Restaurant School – and is now medically registered to help autistic children and their inflamed guts, has kept me abreast of health issues I didn’t also come across myself. With instances of autism occurring at an alarming rate (and it IS), we have a different picture than those who love the GMO process. Honestly, if I had a vested interest in chemical companies, I’d fight for them, too. There’s a bottom line to protect, no matter how sick it will become. Pharmaceuticals won’t solve everything… including cancer that they may even experience as an end product.

  7. Tom says:


    You’re right, I wouldn’t use Wikipedia for a research piece. Fortunately, this is just a comment on a wine blog. Regardless, the definition of “impact factor” doesn’t really change with other sources. Is there a more credible definition of impact factor that I don’t know?

    I was reading through some of your bio and learned that you also teach with the UCD extension on various wine subject. Do you think that any other professors in the Department of V&E would agree with your sources / conclusions? Particularly Prof. Andy Walker? He knows a lot about genetic engineering with regards to wine. I’d invite you to contact/consult him since you’re more connected than I am to UCD. Here’s his email: awalker@ucdavis.edu

  8. Jo Diaz says:


    We all know that within any university system, grants from corporations decided what the study will be, with expectations for a certain outcome. I teach independently, not bound by corporations. I have Andy Walker’s email, for the obvious reasons. And many more through the Plant Management Services department, including emeritus professors. There are things I agree with at UCD, and there are things I don’t agree with. There’s no perfection in life, Tom; and no absolutes. Otherwise, we wouldn’t all be enrolled in Earth School.

    I suggest that You spend $10,000 on your own children in one year (out of pocket) like I did, and have the medical community find “absolutely nothing wrong with them,” in and out of emergency rooms; then pull things from their diet and watch them heal. I have my own very personal expensive experiment I’ve been through. We now eat organically and non-GMO deliberately. My children’s children are now also affected. (Read up on ciliac disorder and why it’s believed to have exploded over the years.) When you live it, you know it, that’s all I can say. Why do you think I’m such an advocate? Because I enjoy going against the grain? No, because I have firsthand experiential learnings… Otherwise, I’d have no passion for it and better things to write about.

  9. Tom says:

    Well then would it be alright with you if I emailed him and expressed my concerns with your blog posts about this subject? UCD is an institution that stands for science, not quackery, and since I haven’t spent a day in your shoes, I can only consider your experiences as anecdotal evidence.

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