In a Los Angeles Times interview, UCLA molecular biologist Robert B. Goldberg questioned the thought processes that lead activists to oppose genetically improved foods. “If we want to be able to grow the best plants that are optimized for human health and for human nutrition,” he says, “we have to use the absolute best technology, which includes genetic manipulation, something mankind has been doing through selection and cross-breeding for 10,000 years. The opponents of genetically modified (GM) foods don’t make the scientific connection. The exact same technology that we’re using for plants we’re using for medicine. When someone takes a drug that keeps him alive, that drug–tPA, insulin, growth hormone–was probably created with the same exact gene-splicing technology. People will never argue that we shouldn’t make gene-spliced drugs. Yet, genetic engineering of plants could potentially save millions of lives, in parts of the world that depend on the latest technology in order to be able to live on a daily basis.”

On the emotion-driven subject of food safety, Goldberg reminds Los Angeles Times readers that “There’s not one case, not one example, not one shred of credible scientific evidence indicating that anything that we’ve done in the manipulation of plant material or the making of crops has been harmful to humans… They’ve been tested and retested. I don’t think any plants on Earth have been under more scrutiny than these plants. There’s absolutely no question about it–as opposed to any of the supplements that you can buy at a natural-foods store, which have never been tested, are completely unregulated and you have no idea what active ingredients they contain.”