First Public Meeting: September 15-16, 2014

These are the archived videos of the presentations, discussions, and public comment periods from the two-day public meeting of the committee on September 15-16, 2014.

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View Speaker Bios

Click the links below to view videos of the presentations and discussions.

Day 1

Welcome: Fred Gould, Committee Chair, University Distinguished Professor of Entomology and Codirector of the Genetic Engineering and Society Center, North Carolina State University

Study Process of the National Research Council: Kara Laney, Study Director, National Research Council

Committee Introductions

Session One:

Major Goodman, Member of the National Academy of Sciences and William Neal Reynolds and Distinguished University Professor of Crop Science, Statistics, Genetics, and Botany. bio

Major Goodman is the William Neal Reynolds and Distinguished University Professor of Crop Sciences, Statistics, Genetics, and Botany at North Carolina State University. His research focuses on the evolution of cultivated plants, especially maize, and plant breeding. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1986. Dr. Goodman began breeding maize when he took over the corn breeding program in the Crop Science Department at NCSU. Since then, he has developed more than 90 public lines mixing tropical and temperate parents. Because these lines have been used by others to develop commercial hybrids, the genetic stock he created has shown up in hybrids used in Asia, Central and South America and the United States. Dr. Goodman received a BS in Mathematics from Iowa State University, and Master’s and PhD degrees from North Carolina State University in Genetics.

R. James Cook, Member of the National Academy of Sciences and Professor Emeritus, Washington State University. bio

R. James Cook is Professor Emeritus at Washington State University. During his 40 years at WSU, he served from 1965 to 1998 with the USDA-Agricultural Research Service (ARS) conducting research on biological and ecological approaches to manage root diseases of Pacific Northwest wheat. From 1998 to 2003 he was the R. J. Cook Endowed Chair in Wheat Research at WSU, a position endowed with a $1.5 million gift to the WSU Foundation from the Washington Wheat Commission. From 2003 until his retirement in 2005, he served as Interim Dean of the College of Agricultural, Human and Natural Resource Sciences. He served as Chief Scientist for the USDA National Research Initiative Competitive Grants Program from October 1993 to April 1996. In addition to some 200 peer-reviewed journal papers and book chapters, he has co-authored two books on biological control of plant pathogens and one on wheat health management. Dr. Cook was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1993 and was selected co-winner of the 2011 Wolf Prize for Agriculture awarded in Israel. He currently serves as one of seven citizen trustees on the Board Authority of the State’s Life Sciences Discovery Fund and is a founding member and past president of the Washington State Academy of Sciences. He holds BSc (1958) and MSc. (1961) degrees from North Dakota State University and a PhD (1964) from the University of California, Berkeley.

Ian Baldwin, Member of the National Academy of Sciences and Professor, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology. bio

Ian T. Baldwin is Director of the Department of Molecular Biology and Professor at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology. In the Department, Dr. Baldwin is training the next generation of whole-organismic biologists (genome-enabled field biologists). In this research program, he and his students regularly use a nature preserve in the Great Basin Desert of the US to conduct experiments with genetically modified plants in the plant’s native environment to understand the genes that matter for survival under real world conditions. The research program has uncovered mechanisms by which plants resist and tolerate attack from herbivores and pathogens and optimize pollination services. Dr. Baldwin has published more than 370 peer-reviewed papers and one book on the
induced defenses of plants. He is distinguished by having integrated the advances in molecular biology into the study of ecological interactions to catalyze a change in how ecologists examine ecological interactions and falsify hypotheses and by having integrated the whole-organismic expertise of ecologists into the study of gene function. Dr. Baldwin received an AB from Dartmouth College in 1981, and PhD from Cornell University in 1989.

Committee Discussion with Presenters

Session Two:

Chuck Benbrook, Research Professor, Center for Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Resources, Washington State University. bio

Charles Benbrook is a Research Professor at the Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources, Washington State University. He is the program leader of “Measure to Manage: Farm and Food Diagnostics for Sustainability and Health.” He spent the first 18 years of his career working in Washington, D.C., first working for the Executive Office of the President (1979-1980), then as the Executive Director for a U.S. House of Representatives agricultural subcommittee (1981-1983). He was the Executive Director of the National Academy of Sciences Board on Agriculture from 1984-1990, and has run a small consulting firm since 1991. He moved to the west in 1997, and served as the Chief Scientist for The Organic Center from 2004 through June of 2012. He has participated as an expert witness in several lawsuits involving pesticides and agricultural biotechnology. He has written more than two-dozen peer reviewed articles in a wide range of technical journals and served on many committees and boards. Dr. Benbrook has a PhD in agricultural economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an undergraduate degree from Harvard University.

Glenn Stone, Professor of Anthropology and Environmental Studies, Washington University in St. Louis. bio

Glenn Stone is Professor of Anthropology and Environmental Studies at Washington University in St. Louis. Dr. Stone is an ecological anthropologist who studies the ecological, political, and cultural aspects of agriculture. His major research projects have focused on population, conflict, and the organization of production in Nigeria, and on agricultural biotechnology in India. His writing has also explored global biotechnology debates, ethics in agriculture, indigenous knowledge and agricultural
deskilling, prehistoric and modern settlement patterns, internet technology and agriculture, intellectual property, genetically modified foods, new forms of internet-based scholarship, and science studies. His current field research projects are a Templeton-funded study of indigenous knowledge, management skill, and technological change (including genetically modified seed) in India and the Philippines, and a study of sustainable small farms in several sites in North America. Dr. Stone received his BA from Northwestern University, and MA and PhD from the University of Arizona.

Hope Shand, Independent Consultant and Senior Advisor, Erosion, Technology and Concentration (ETC) Group. bio

Hope Shand is an Independent Consultant and Senior Advisor to ETC Group, an international civil society organization based in Canada. Working with both the ETC Group and Rural Advancement Foundation International (RAFI) over the past 30 years, Hope has conducted extensive research and writing on the topics of agricultural biodiversity and intellectual property, as well as the social and economic impacts of new technologies on farming communities and marginalized peoples. She has also served as a consultant to the FAO. Ms. Shand currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Seed Savers Exchange (Decorah, Iowa), a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and conserving food crop diversity.

Committee Discussion with Presenters

Public Comment

Day 2

Welcome: Fred Gould, Committee Chair, University Distinguished Professor of Entomology and Codirector of the Genetic Engineering and Society Center, North Carolina State University

Study Process of the National Research Council: Kara Laney, Study Director, National Research Council

Committee Introductions

Session Three:

Dietram Scheufele, Co-chair, National Research Council Roundtable on Public Interfaces of the Life Sciences and John E. Ross Professor in Science Communication, University of Wisconsin, Madison. bio

Dietram A. Scheufele is the John E. Ross Professor in Science Communication at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and Honorary Professor of Communication at the Dresden University of Technology (Germany). He serves as Co-PI of the Center for Nanotechnology in Society at Arizona State University, and currently also co-chairs the National Academies’ Roundtable on Public Interfaces of the Life Sciences. Dr. Scheufele is an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters. He has been a tenured faculty member at Cornell University, a Shorenstein fellow at Harvard University, and a DAAD Visiting Professor at the Technische Universität Dresden. His consulting experience includes work for PBS, the World Health Organization, the World Bank, and other corporate and public sector clients in the U.S., Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. Dr. Scheufele received his PhD in mass communications from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Jennifer Kuzma, Goodnight-Glaxo Wellcome Distinguished Professor and Codirector of the Genetic Engineering and Society Center, North Carolina State University. bio

Jennifer Kuzma joined North Carolina State University in August 2013 as the Chancellor’s Faculty Excellence Program senior hire in the interdisciplinary Genetic Engineering and Society cluster. She is the Goodnight-NCGSK Foundation Distinguished Professor in the School of Public and International Affairs and co-director of the Genetic Engineering and Society center at NCSU. Before this appointment, Kuzma was a professor in the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota for 10 years in the Science, Technology and Environmental Policy program. Her research focuses on studying governance systems for emerging technologies and understanding the dynamics of these systems. She explores the values, organizations, and outcomes associated with existing oversight systems in order to inform future policy-making. She has published over 90 academic articles, book chapters and policy reports in areas associated with emerging technologies and governance. She has held and currently holds several board, leadership, and advisory positions, including Chair of the Gordon Conference on Science and Technology Policy, Chair of the Society for Risk Analysis section on Risk Policy and Law, the European Commission Expert Group for 2011 Science in Society Work Programme, the Expert Group for the EU’s ‘SYNTH-ETHICS’ project, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Blood Products Advisory Committee, and the UN WHO-FAO Joint Expert Group for the Applications of Nanotechnologies to the Food and Agriculture Sectors. Prior to entering academe, she served as program and study director for several U.S. National Academy of Sciences reports related to biotechnology and bioterrorism policy and as an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Risk Policy Fellow at the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Carmen Bain, Associate Professor of Sociology, Iowa State University. bio

Carmen Bain is Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology at Iowa State University. Her research interests include the political economy of food and agriculture; the socio-political dimensions of biotechnology as it relates to food and agriculture; and gender, social change and development. Dr. Bain is co-PI on an interdisciplinary AFRI-NFI grant “Transgenic approaches in managing sudden death syndrome in soybean” (2012-2017), where her research focuses on understanding and analyzing societal acceptance and governance issues related to genetically engineered foods, especially as it relates to labeling. She received BA and MA degrees from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, and a PhD from Michigan State University.

Session Four:

Gilles-Éric Séralini, Professor of Molecular Biology, University of Caen, France, and Director of the Network on Risks, Quality, and Sustainable Environment. bio

Gilles-Éric Sérálini has been a Professor of molecular biology at the Université de Caen Basse Normandie since 1991. He is also the Chairman of the Scientific Council CRIIGEN. Dr. Seralini has researched effects of environment on health, particularly in the area of agricultural genetically-modified crops and the accompanying pesticides. He has also studied effects on sexual steroids, reproduction, tumors and cancer, and gene expression. Dr. Sérálini was a member of two French government commissions on GMO evaluation from 1998-2007, Commission du Genie Biomoleculaire (CGB) and the Comité de Biovigilance. He has also served as an expert for the European Union on environmental ethics, chemical and biotechnological risks, and for the conflict on GMO moratorium between the U.S. and EU at the WTO level.

*Due to technical difficulties, Dr. Séralini was unable to give his full presentation. For a copy of the full presentation, please email the Public Access Records Office.

Jeffrey Smith, Founding Executive Director, Institute for Responsible Technology. bio

Jeffrey M. Smith is the Founding Executive Director at the Institute for Responsible Technology. He has been involved with genetically modified (GM) foods for nearly a decade. He worked for non-profit and political groups on the issue and in 1998, ran for U.S. Congress to raise public awareness of the health and environmental impacts. To protect children-who are most at risk from the potential health effects of GM foods-Smith proposed legislation to remove the foods from school meals. He also proposed legislation to help protect farmers from cross-pollination by GM crops. Later, he was vice president of marketing for a GMO detection laboratory. Prior to working in this field, he was a writer, educator, and public speaker for non-profit groups, advancing the causes of health, environment, and personal development. Mr. Smith received a Master’s degree in business administration.

*Presentation experienced technical difficulties

Janet Cotter, Senior Scientist, Greenpeace International. bio

Janet Cotter is a Senior Scientist at the Greenpeace International Science Unit, based at the University of Exeter, UK, where she has served as an expert on agriculture (including GMOs) and forests campaigns for over 12 years. The Greenpeace Science Unit supplies scientific support and leadership to Greenpeace’s offices worldwide. Prior to joining Greenpeace, she was a Lecturer in Plant and Soil Science at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland. This appointment followed the award of a postdoctoral research fellowship, held at Manchester University. Dr. Cotter received a PhD from Imperial College, University of London.

Committee Discussion with Presenters

Session Five:

Greg Jaffe, Director of the Project on Biotechnology, Center for Science in the Public Interest. bio

Gregory Jaffe is the Director of the Project on Biotechnology for CSPI. Mr. Jaffe came to CSPI after serving as a Trial Attorney for the U.S. Department of Justice’s Environmental and Natural Resources Division and as Senior Counsel with the U.S. EPA, Air Enforcement Division. He has expertise on agricultural biotechnology and biosafety, and has published numerous articles and reports on those topics. Mr. Jaffe has worked on biosafety regulatory issues in the U.S. and throughout the world, including the African countries of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Mali, Ghana, Malawi, South Africa, Burkina Faso, and Nigeria. He was a member of the Secretary of Agriculture’s Advisory Committee on Agricultural Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture from 2003-2008 and was reappointed to a new term in 2011. He was also a member of FDA’s Veterinary Medicine Advisory Committee from 2004-2008. In addition, he has provided his biosafety expertise for projects involving the International Food Policy Research Institute, the World Bank, and the UNEP-GEF Biosafety Project. Jaffe earned his BA with High Honors from Wesleyan University in Biology and Government and then received a law degree from Harvard Law School.

Jon Entine, Executive Director, Genetic Literacy Project, and Senior Fellow, World Food Center Institute for Food and Agricultural Literacy, University of California-Davis. bio

Jon Entine is the Executive Director of the Genetic Literacy Project, and is a Senior Fellow at the World Food Center Institute for Food and Agricultural Literacy at the University of California-Davis. Mr. Entine has been a Senior Fellow at the Center for Health and Risk Communication at George Mason University and, since 2003, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, focusing on science and public policy. He has written or edited seven books, is a columnist at Ethical Corporation magazine, and is the founder of the sustainability consultancy, ESG MediaMetrics. Before launching his writing and consulting career, he was an Emmy-award winning producer and executive for 20 years at NBC News and ABC News, winning two Emmys and 17 other major awards. Mr. Entine received his BA in philosophy from Trinity College (CT) and studied at the University of Michigan under a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship.

Doug Gurian-Sherman, Director of Sustainable Agriculture and Senior Scientist, Center for Food Safety. bio

Doug Gurian-Sherman is the Director of Sustainable Agriculture and Senior Scientist at the Center for Food Safety. He previously served as Senior Scientist at the Center for Food Safety from 2004-2006. Dr. Gurian-Sherman works to expand scientific programs and assess research in important areas of sustainable and industrial agricultural including: Animal factories (Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations), soil, agroecology, public breeding, equitable food systems, and genetic engineering. In previous positions, Dr. Gurian-Sherman has been known for his work examining the impacts of genetic engineering, CAFOs, and agroecology. He is the author of the Union of Concerned Scientists report Failure to Yield: Evaluating the Performance of Genetically Engineered Crops. Dr. Gurian-Sherman was the founding co-director and science director for the biotechnology project at the Center for Science and the Public Interest. He has served as senior scientist in the Food & Environment Program at the Union of Concerned Scientists. Previously, Dr. Gurian-Sherman worked at the EPA where he examined the human health impacts and environmental risk of genetically engineered plants. He also worked in the Biotechnology Group at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and he served on the Food and Drug Administration’s inaugural advisory food biotechnology subcommittee. Dr. Gurian-Sherman earned his PhD in plant pathology from the University of California-Berkeley. He conducted post-doctoral research on rice and wheat molecular biology at the U.S. Department of Agriculture laboratory in Albany, California.

Bill Freese, Science Policy Analyst, Center for Food Safety
Tamar Haspel, Journalist, The Washington Post. bio

Tamar Haspel is a journalist with The Washington Post, and currently writes for the food and science sections. She has been writing about food, health, and science for the best part of two decades for a host of magazines and newspapers. Her monthly column, Unearthed, deals with food supply issues; biotech, pesticides, food additives, antibiotics, honeybees, and organics. When she’s not writing about those issues, Ms. Haspel helps her husband on their oyster farm, Barnstable Oyster.

Session Six:

Tim Schwab, Senior Researcher, Food & Water Watch. bio

Tim Schwab is a Senior Researcher at Food & Water Watch, a non-profit advocacy group based in Washington D.C. With a background in journalism, Mr. Schwab’s research and writing continues the watchdog role he learned and practiced as a reporter. In recent years, his work has focused on GMOs and investigating conflicts of interest in agricultural research, including a widely cited report from 2012, Public Research, Private Gain. Mr. Schwab’s research and writing has been published or profiled in the Boston Globe, Le Monde, Food and Drug Law Journal, and Mother Jones. He has a Master’s degree in journalism from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.

Michael Hansen, Senior Staff Scientist, Consumers Union. bio

Michael K. Hansen is a Senior Staff Scientist with Consumers Union, publisher of Consumer Reports. He currently works primarily on food safety issues, and has been largely responsible for developing CU positions on safety, testing and labeling of genetically engineered food, and “mad cow” disease. Since 2003, he has worked on a multi-state effort to ban the use of food crops to produce pharmaceutical drugs and industrial chemicals. Dr. Hansen served on the USDA Advisory Committee on Agricultural Biotechnology from 1998-2002, and on the California Department of Food and Agriculture Food Biotechnology Advisory Committee, from 2001-2002. He was appointed to a FAO/WHO Joint Consultation on Genetically Engineered Animals in 2003. In June 2005, he joined the Board of ETC Group, previously known as RAFI. Dr. Hansen has written reports on alternatives to agricultural pesticides in developing countries, and the pesticide and agriculture policies of the World Bank and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization. Dr. Hansen received his undergraduate degree with Highest Distinction from Northwestern University and his PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Michigan.

Lisa Griffith, Outreach Director, National Family Farm Coalition

Committee Discussion with Presenters

Public Comment

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