Recently CBS news reported that on a Texas ranch that GMO grass suddenly started producing cyanide and killing cattle. It turned out that this was actually non-GMO forage that had been produced using traditional methods of plant breeding. This adds to the list of false claims made about biotech foods from finding toxic Bt proteins from biotech corn in pregnant women to Bt killing monarch butterflies, not to mention the misinformation spread not long ago about finely textured beef via the explicative term 'pink slime' that cost family cattle farmers billions and 1000's of 'green' jobs at beef products international.
Hopefully this will not have any additional negative impacts. But one thing this brings to light are numerous amounts of research related to the potential dangers associated with natural plant biochemical processes and traditional non GMO based plant breeding.
"Characterisation of GM crops is a legal requirement, however. As a
result GM crops are better characterised than ever before in the case of
conventionally bred crops, including knowledge on the site and nature
of the genetic modification....molecular biology techniques are producing less side-effects than classically used techniques""
"Conventional breeding techniques, accepted as safe by all, cause much more
genetic disruption than those introduced by genetic engineering, and the
resulting plants are not tested extensively for genetic change nor for safety
attributes using the rigorous standards applied to genetically engineered
And of course, under certain stress conditions, cyanide production is a perfectly natural plant process among many pasture plants.
See also: Research on Biotech Safety