Animal Pharm: Food For Thought

2007 ,    »  -   9 Comments
Ratings: 8.09/10 from 34 users.

Mother Nature can no longer claim total dominion over the future of evolution. Some of the planet's most commonly consumed animals are undergoing extensive genetic manipulation in laboratory settings across the globe. Scientists can create new breeds of cows, chickens and fish that grow faster, leaner and more muscular than ever before. Even fruits and vegetables - the foods we most associate with being wholesome and all-natural - are not what they appear to be. Is this cause for celebration or alarm? The documentary Animal Pharm: Food for Thought explores this and other practical and ethical questions related to the genetic engineering of our food supply.

Biologist Olivia Judson is a vocal proponent of the practice. Throughout the film, she presents her case for continued exploration of this controversial field of science. She argues that our foods have been altered for thousands of years, and cites a series of examples including the changing color of carrots, the creation of the pink grapefruit and the taming of the once poisonous potato.

On the opposite end of the spectrum is journalist and organic food enthusiast Giles Coren. Nature provides all the food the human population needs, he argues. Genetic manipulation of our food is akin to playing with fire. We may have it in our power to control this aspect of the natural world, but what are the moral, ethical and long-term health-related ramifications of doing so?

The dialogue shared by these two studious figures is fascinating, multi-faceted and enlightening. Both points of view are impassioned and, on their own individual merits, persuasive. Along the way, they tour various operations where the boldest examples of genetic research are taking place. We witness chickens that are bred without feathers, rabbits that glow in the dark, championship racehorses that are produced from genetically altered sperm, and experiments with rice that could eradicate the scourge of vitamin A deficiency around the world. We come to recognize how these practices can prove problematic, or ultimately serve as an engine for positive change.

Whether you're enthused or repulsed by this weird science, Animal Pharm: Food for Thought provides a valuable and informed overview of its subject.

Directed by: Jeremy Turner

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9 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Chuck Rogers

    They cannot make me believe that there aren't piggy back genes or DNA initials that can carry a switch which could create toxins, because they don't test for them, and aren't required to test for them. All plants have minute quantities of toxins, naturally, and some of this genetic material could possibly have the switch which makes the toxin be produced in large quantities. I'm not saying it will happen in all species, or specimens, but it can, and I think it probably will at some point in this science. There are other issues, such as our immune systems not recognizing these foods, and attacking them as foreign matter, causing inflammation. I can't prove this, but it hasn't been proven that they don't.

  2. james

    This is soooo wrong, You people will be judge buy GOD!!! Are food does not tast good any more. high prices for sh*t food. you people will make problems in time. God help us.

  3. james

    One more thing you people think you can do better the GOD!!!!!

  4. Matthew Burke

    Hey thats pretty kewl

  5. Aliyah

    Mr. Rogers,

    My understanding of those last two sentences are called allergies. I have many of them and it would be interesting to see why I have a long list of them. Especially, food. In combination I am a Celiac, and I have an excessively long list of food allergies. Don't get me started on the medical allergies. I have those too.

  6. Kay

    I feel very sorry for the animals that's have been subjected to this type of abuse. I don't care what they say, this type of madness is what's wrong with the world. I especially feel sorry for these scientists who are obviously brainwashed into thinking that this sh*t is normal.

  7. Kay

    and you know what I wish that they would eat all of these fake foods that they love for one year. Strictly. I want to see what they look like afterwards. SMH.

  8. Cindy

    Let's just stop spending all the money on genetic research of this sort and start eating plant based protein which the entire world can benefit the environment, sheesh, get over your obsession with eating dead animals

  9. Carole

    It's a crime that living, feeling, intelligent beings are forced to endure this type of abuse in the interest of "science." It's well-known that most broiler chickens today have been genetically manipulated to be huge and that their slender legs cannot sustain that immense weight. This creates immense suffering for these gentle beings. it is immoral and unethical to deliberately create pain and suffering in others. The callousness, selfishness and ego-centrism of scientists that see nothing wrong with this insanity is truly astonishing. I- for one- will always speak for those who have no voice- the animals.

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