May 26--Demonstrators gathered near Main Beach on Saturday to protest genetically engineered crops, as they have done for the last few years.
About 80 people marched in value="LU/us.ca.lagach" idsrc="xmltag.org">Laguna Beach without incident, police said; similar events were held in several cities during the March Against Monsanto worldwide campaign.
Proponents of genetically engineered food such as corn and soybeans hail what they consider their longer shelf life, higher vitamin content and resistance to diseases.
Opponents say these types of foods "can lead to serious health conditions such as the development of cancer tumors, infertility and birth defects," according to the March Against Monsanto website.
Charla Lord, spokeswoman for value="NYSE:MON" idsrc="xmltag.org">Monsanto, a value="LU/us.mo.stluis" idsrc="xmltag.org">St. Louis-based agricultural biotechnology company, referred to a report issued last week by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine that said there is "no substantiated evidence of a difference in risks to human health between currently commercialized genetically engineered crops and conventionally bred crops."
"Many of us at value="NYSE:MON" idsrc="xmltag.org">Monsanto are parents who have spent a lot of time thinking about and studying [GMOs, or genetically modified organisms], and we feel confident feeding them to our kids," Lord said in an email.
GMOS are living organisms whose genetic material has been manipulated through genetic engineering.
Opponents of genetically engineered crops favor buying organic produce and having products that contain GMOs clearly labeled as such.
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