Let’s Define GMO (genetically modified organism) and GM (Genetically Modified
By now you most likely have heard the terms GMO and GM. They are used interchangeably in marketing and information. In fact, the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) doesn’t define GM in their terminology. But they do define GMO and genetic modification. Below is the USDA definitions of both.
You’ll notice in the genetic modification definition the USDA uses the term genetic engineering and “other more traditional methods”. But what does “other more traditional methods” mean? Below you’ll also see what the USDA refers to as traditional breeding and agricultural biotechnology.
Are you confused yet? When terms such as genetically modified, genetically engineered, etc. think humans. Because humans are altering your food sources – not nature evolving it over time.
The production of heritable improvements in plants or animals for specific uses, via either genetic engineering or other more traditional methods. Some countries other than the United States use this term to refer specifically to genetic engineering.”
“Genetically modified organism (GMO):
An organism produced through genetic modification.”
Modification of plants and animals through selective breeding. Practices used in traditional plant breeding may include aspects of biotechnology such as tissue culture and mutational breeding.”
The information above provided by the USDA at:
https://www.usda.gov/topics/biotechnology/biotechnology-glossary last visited 4/5/2018