These following doctors were not content with half-truths, propaganda, and lies. They did their own research. Continue reading
These following doctors were not content with half-truths, propaganda, and lies. They did their own research. Continue reading
The NM Tree and Garden Center located in Rio Rancho, New Mexico has discovered that Monsanto is buying heirloom seed companies. They are also buying the trademarks to a number of heirloom seeds. This means that you may think you are supporting an heirloom seed company but in reality the company is owned by Monsanto. The seeds themselves are still non-GMO and heirloom and they can be saved at the end of the harvest and resown next season, but you are still giving money to Monsanto. Continue reading
Recently I was reading an article on AltHealthWorks.com about a fake rice being produced in China. The rice is being made out of plastic believe it or not and no one is doing anything about it. Naturally, as a health advocate and researcher of food and how food is processed I thought to myself, this is going WAY too far. Continue reading
Braving a funding ban put in place by America’s top health agency, some U.S. research centers are moving ahead with attempts to grow human tissue inside pigs and sheep with the goal of creating hearts, livers, or other organs needed for transplants.
Based on interviews with three teams, two in California and one in Minnesota, MIT Technology Review estimates that about 20 pregnancies of pig-human or sheep-human chimeras have been established during the last 12 months in the U.S., though so far no scientific paper describing the work has been published, and none of the animals were brought to term. Continue reading
The meat in your pork chop or hamburger may have come from halfway across the world, and thanks to the repeal of a popular law by Congress last week, you’ll never know where. Continue reading
Mark H Durkan the Environment Minister announced on Monday that he is prohibiting the cultivation of genetically modified (GM) crops in Northern Ireland.
Sustainable Pulse Reports:
Hungary has taken a bold stand against biotech giant Monsanto and genetic modification by destroying 1000 acres of maize found to have been grown with genetically modified seeds, according to Hungary deputy state secretary of the Ministry of Rural Development Lajos Bognar.
Unlike many European Union countries, Hungary is a nation where genetically modified (GM) seeds are banned. In a similar stance against GM ingredients, Peru has also passed a 10 year ban on GM foods.
The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday passed legislation that would block states from requiring the labeling of genetically engineered foods, or GMOs—a move that consumer rights groups decried as corporate power defeating Americans’ right to know what’s in their food.
As the drought in California — home to much of the nation’s food production — worsens, desperation is rampant as politicians, policymakers and others scramble for ways to mitigate the worsening crisis.
One of the most recent ideas is also one of the most foolish because it is based on a series of misconceptions and outright falsehoods that have been perpetuated in large part by the mainstream media.
People have their pros and cons about vaccines, we all know this. It’s been one of the most heated discussions between parents in at least the last 10 years. Most people do their chosen amount of research, state their case, and never budge from that point. This can be a dilemma, no matter which side you are looking at it from. But what if we were to approach it from a different angle, one that most anti-vaxxers can relate with but pro-vaxxers can still agree to(hopefully)? Continue reading
There isn’t just one smoking gun anymore pointing at GMO toxicology. There is now an entire arsenal of scientific research proving that genetically modified organisms adversely affect the body. In yet another new study conducted by Egyptian researchers, rats given GM soy were found to have deadly amounts of toxicity in their kidneys, liver, testes, sperm, blood and even DNA. Continue reading
Monsanto and their biotech buddies would have you believe that they are super-heroes, set on saving hungry children from starvation wearing a dazzling fake-green cape. In fact, in a recent attack on activists, Monsanto’s CEO Hugh Grant said that because critics “can afford” organic food, we don’t care about the plight of those who can’t afford it. “There is this strange kind of reverse elitism: If I’m going to do this, then everything else shouldn’t exist,” said Grant. “There is space in the supermarket shelf for all of us.” Continue reading
(The Truth) - Are you a conspiracy theorist? If not, perhaps you should be. Yes, there have certainly been a lot of “conspiracy theories” over the years that have turned out not to be accurate. However, the truth is that a large number of very prominent conspiracy theories have turned out to actually be true. So the next time that you run into some “tin foil hat wearing lunatics”, you might want to actually listen to what they have to say. They may actually know some things that you do not. In fact, one recent study found that “conspiracy theorists” are actually more sane than the general population. So the next time you are tempted to dismiss someone as a “conspiracy theorist”, just remember that the one that is crazy might actually be you. The following are 16 popular conspiracy theories that turned out to be true…
By Jonathan Benson
Since the mid-to-late 1990s when genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) were first being thrust onto the market by governments working in lockstep with the biotechnology industry, the U.K. Parliament has effectively barred their use in all food items served to government officials at Parliament restaurants, according to new reports. This, despite the fact that prominent elected officials in the U.K. are right now pushing GMOs on a public that is largely opposed to them, effectively shining the spotlight on their own insane hypocrisy with regards to the GMO issue. Continue reading
I write a lot about the dangers of processed foods when it comes to wreaking havoc on our health, but even I was surprised to find that 80% of pre-packaged foods sold in the United States are actually banned in other nations. And for good reason. Continue reading
Despite new findings that prove a heightened crisis in US bee populations and a recent ban in Europe on similar chemical applications, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has decided to further endanger the population Monday by approving a “highly toxic” new pesticide.
The “EPA continues to put industry interests first to exacerbate an already dire pollinator crisis,” writes the group Beyond Pesticides.
The agency granted sulfoxaflor, a product of the Dow Chemical Company, “unconditional registration” for use on vegetables, fruits, barley, canola, ornamentals, soybeans and wheat among others, despite the EPA’s own classification of the insecticide as “highly toxic to honey bees.”
According to the Washington Examiner, the EPA’s studies on the chemical’s long-term effect on bees proved to be “inconclusive due to some issues with the study designs” and thus the EPA has proposed simply reducing the amount applied.
As part of their decision, the EPA approved new language for the sulfoxaflor labels which reads, “Do not apply this product at any time between 3 days prior to bloom and until after petal fall,” during heightened pollinator activity.
Further, they approved an additional ‘advisory pollinator statement’:
Notifying known beekeepers within 1 mile of the treatment area 48 hours before the product is applied will allow them to take additional steps to protect their bees. Also limiting application to times when managed bees and native pollinators are least active, e.g., before 7 am or after 7pm local time or when temperature is below 55oF at the site of application, will minimize risk to bees.
Though the EPA believes this advisory to be “robust” enough to protect pollinators, environmental advocacy groups such as Beyond Pesticides believe such statements “not only underscore the risks to bees” but prove to be unrealistic since systemic pesticides, including sulfoxaflor, “continue to exist in the plant (including pollen and nectar) for longer periods of time that well surpasses the recommended application intervals, and therefore expose bees to residues longer than suggested.”
And, in addition to harming bees, sulfoxaflor has been known to cause tumors and carcinomas in mice and rats and has been classified as “suggestive evidence of carcinogenic potential.”
Dismissing these concerns, the EPA alternately points to the “need for sulfoxaflor by industry and agriculture groups to control insects no longer being controlled by increasingly ineffective pesticide technologies,” proving the ongoing and harmful nature of unsustainable techniques such as pesticide sprays.
Following Europe’s announcement that they would suspend the use of bee-harming neonicotinoids in an effort to combat the rampant colony collapse crisis, many hoped the US would announce similar reforms.
However, following this week’s announcement, groups say it is clear the EPA will continue pursue an “irresponsible” and “counter-intuitive” agenda in regards to bee health and the environment.
It’s not a done deal, but Vermont took the first step toward legally requiring the labeling of foods that have been genetically modified.
Although the Vermont House moved the legislation one step toward becoming law last week, the GMO industry is fighting it tooth and nail, threatening lawsuits right and left. As a recent Truthout article noted,“Monsanto Threatens to Sue Vermont Over GMO Labeling Bill.”
The threat of legal action by multi-billion dollar corporations who are acquiring a monopoly on patented genetically modified food lets states like Vermont know that they will spend unlimited amounts of money on litigation, thus striking fear in state legislators who are worried about economically fragile budgets. As a May 13th Grist article quotes an NPR report:
No representatives on Thursday argued against the concept of more transparent food labeling. The most frequent point of opposition voiced on the floor concerned a likely lawsuit from the biotech or food industries that the Attorney General’s Office estimates could cost the state more than $5 million.
Grist comments on this argument in relation to a failed proposition in California:
A ballot initiative that would have required GMO labels in California was defeated last year after Monsanto and other corporations spent nearly $50 million on ads opposing it. A national GMO-labeling bill was introduced recently in Congress, but it has little to no chance of becoming law./Vermont House members caved a little in not requiring that milk or meat, for example, that come from animals who have been fed GMO’s be labeled as a concession to the behemoth genetically modified food industry. But it would require all food that contains GMO ingredients or is from a genetically engineered animal (salmon, for instance) be labeled as such.
So what would the Vermont bill accomplish?
Grist puts it succintly:
Most of the corn, soy, and sugar beets grown in the U.S. are genetically modified, and they’re widely used in processed foods. But shoppers who want to avoid them have no good way of doing so. Requiring food manufacturers to label genetically modified foods would allow people to say “no” to such products.
Transparency in knowing what we are eating: isn’t it a basic right to be given full information on what we put into our bodies? Monsanto and the other GMO giants are rightfully fearful that people will avoid genetically engineered food in large numbers and hurt their profits. But health and personal choice come before hiding the truth, stock prices, share holder dividends and executive compensation.
The lopsided (107-37) passage of the genetically modified foods labeling bill in the Vermont House joins other state victories on progressive issues that BuzzFlash at Truthout has recently highlighted. These include Minnesota becoming the 12th State to legalize same-sex marriage and the Vermont Senate voting to back abolishing any claim to legal corporate personhood.
What this means is that state-by-state activists are making headway on progressive issues becoming law, advancing crucial public policy as Washington remains grid locked. State elected holders are generally more responsive to local constituents because of the smaller size of their districts. Money still has a very large impact on state legislatures – to be sure – but less so on social issues than in the nation’s capital.
Is this cause for a moment of celebration? Yes, it proves that the logjam of backwards-looking policies can be broken.
Moreover, it’s a call to activists to dig in for a long slog. With hard disciplined efforts, victories can be won.
A leaked study examining genetically-modified corn reveals that the lab-made alternative to organic crops contains a startling level of toxic chemicals.
An anti-GMO website has posted the results of an education-based consulting company’s comparison of corn types, and the results reveal that genetically modified foods may be more hazardous than once thought.
The study, the 2012 Corn Comparison Report by Profit Pro, was published recently on the website for Moms Across America March to Label GMOs, a group that says they wish to “raise awareness and support Moms with solutions to eat GMO Free as we demand GMO labeling locally and nationally simultaneously.” They are plotting nationwide protests scheduled for later this year.
The report, writes the website’s Zen Honeycutt, was provided by a representative for De Dell Seed Company, an Ontario-based farm that’s touted as being Canadian only non-GMO corn seed company.
“The claims that ‘There is no difference between GMO corn and NON Gmo corn’ are false,” says Honeycutt, who adds she was “floored” after reading the study.
According to the analysis, GMO corn tested by Profit Pro contains a number of elements absent from traditional cord, including chlorides, formaldehyde and glyphosate. While those elements don’t appear naturally in corn, they were present in GMO samples to the tune of 60 ppm, 200pm and 13 ppm, respectively.
Honecutt says that the United States Environmental Protection Agency (FDA) mandates that the level of glyphosate in American drinking water not exceed 0.7 ppm and adds that organ damage in some animals has been linked to glyphosate exposure exceeding 0.1 ppm.
“Glyphosate is a strong organic phosphate chelator that immobilizes positively charged minerals such as manganese, cobalt, iron, zinc [and] copper,” Dr. Don Huber attested during a separate GMO study recently released, adding that those elements “are essential for normal physiological functions in soils, plants and animals.”
“Glyphosate draws out the vital nutrients of living things and GMO corn is covered with it,” adds Honeycutt, who notes that the nutritional benefits rampant in natural corn are almost entirely removed from lab-made seeds: in the samples used during the study, non-GMO corn is alleged to have 437-times the amount of calcium in genetically modified versions, and 56- and 7-times the level of magnesium and manganese, respectively.
These studies come on the heels of a recent decision on Capitol Hill to approve an annual agriculture appropriations bill, even though a provision within the act contained a rider that frees GMO corporations such as the multi-billion-dollar Monsanto Company from liability. The so-called “Monsanto Protection Act,” written by a lawmaker that has lobbied for the agra-giant, says biotech companies won’t need federal approval to test and plant GMO-crops, even if health risks are unknown.
“The provision would strip federal courts of the authority to halt the sale and planting of an illegal, potentially hazardous GE crop while the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) assesses those potential hazards,” reads a letter to the House of Representatives that was delivered to Congress last month with the signatures of dozens of food businesses and retailers, as well as interest groups and agencies representing family farmers. “Further, it would compel USDA to allow continued planting of that same crop upon request, even if in the course of its assessment the Department finds that it poses previously unrecognized risks.”
(secure.avaaz.org) It’s unbelievable, but Monsanto and Co. are at it again. These profit-hungry biotech companies have found a way to exclusively ‘own’ something that freely belongs to us all — our food! They’re trying to patent away our everyday vegetables and fruits like cucumber, broccoli and melons, forcing growers to pay them and risk being sued if they don’t.
But we can stop them from buying up Mother Earth. Companies like Monsanto have found loopholes in European law to get away with this, so we just need to close them shut before they set a dangerous global precedent. And to do that, we need key countries like Germany, France and the Netherlands — where opposition is already growing — to call for a vote to stop Monsanto’s plans. The Avaaz community has shifted governments before, and we can do it again.
Many farmers and politicians are already against this — we just need to bring in people power to pressure these countries to keep Monsanto’s hands off our food. Sign now and share with everyone to help build the biggest food defense call ever.
(Activist Post) Even though Monsanto’s biotech rider slipped through Congress in a matter of days and was signed into law by Obama as the Continuing Resolution spending bill - it didn’t take long for a vast majority to catch on and become outraged. Soon, it was a major part of the collective consciousness, making all kinds of rounds in the corporate-run media.
It is section 735 of HR933 that keeps courts from halting illegally or hazardous genetically modified crops in progress. Media clowns are often there to defuse serious ire in the public. But, they can also teach and out the absurdity in Congress and corporate ploys.
In a recent clip seen below, Jon Stewart focuses on how strange it is for the rider to be in a spending bill, the lameness of Congress claiming they did not know about the bill that they passed, and if only one Senator had stood up against the bill…oh wait, one did. See for yourself….
Not only did Senator Jon Tester stand up and out this rider on the Senate floor, but probably close to a million people called the Congressional and White House lines after having only a few days to find out about it.
Congress really had to be bought and sold to run over public outcry like this. And, of course, our president is cozy with biotech moguls - even placing them in leadership positions in the USDA and FDA. That outcry, my friends, is why Jon Stewart knows about it and had to poke fun on The Daily Show. Your activism brought this debacle into the public eye. Thank you.
This is the second time that a rider was slipped into an unrelated bill; this time going all the way. Supposedly it’s only good for six months, but the six-month expiration date is for government spending. So will this rider that’s been heavily pushed by Monsanto for over a year suddenly evaporate in September? My magic 8-Ball says, “Outlook not so good…”
Food critic Jesse Hirsch wrote up a great Monsanto Protection Act timeline to follow the rider on its suspicious ride.
Again, let’s go back to what we did before - stop giving Monsanto our dollars and vote with our forks.
(Natural Society) -In the typical slippery nature of Monsanto’s legislation-based actions, the biotech giant is now virtually guaranteed the ability to recklessly plant experimental GM crops without having to worry about the United States government and its subsequent courts. The Monsanto Protection Act buried deep within the budget resolution has passed the Senate, and now nothing short of a presidential veto will put an end to the ruling.
In case you’re not familiar, the Monsanto Protection Act is the name given to what’s known as a legislative rider that was inserted into the Senate Continuing Resolution spending bill. Using the deceptive title of Farmer Assurance Provision, Sec. 735 of this bill actually grants Monsanto the immunity from federal courts pending the review of any GM crop that is thought to be dangerous. Under the section, courts would be helpless to stop Monsanto from continuing to plant GM crops that are thought even by the US government to be a danger to health or the environment.
It is a lobbyist-created recurring nuisance that has been squashed in previous legislation thanks to outcry from not only grassroots but major organizations. Last time we saw The Center for Food Safety, the National Family Farm Coalition, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Sierra Club, and the Union of Concerned Scientists all come out against the Monsanto Protection Act from the 2012 Farm Bill.
This time, there was a swift resistance I thought might be enough, however sadly the Senate acted so quickly on this and almost entirely ignored the issue that it has now passed despite thousands of fans signing the old petition I linked to in my previous articles on the subject. The old petition by Food Democracy Now detailed the effects of the bill:
“If approved, the Monsanto Protection Act would force the USDA to allow continued planting of any GMO crop under court review, essentially giving backdoor approval for any new genetically engineered crops that could be potentially harmful to human health or the environment.”
That said, now a new petition exists telling Obama to veto the bill. The reality is that the bill is actually seen as a positive one by most politicians, which is where Monsanto lobbyists were so deceptive and slippery as to throw in their rider (the actual Monsanto Protection Act into the bill). This makes it very unappealing to veto the bill, but also we must remember that Obama actually promised to immediately label GMOs back in 2007 when running for President.
The simple fact is that this bill will likely not be vetoed by Obama, and instead Monsanto will get what they wanted. That said, this ushers in an entirely new era of activism. Monsanto has decided to push the envelope in a way that is unprecedented, fighting the US federal courts. I expected to see almost immediate legal action taken that will certainly hit the headlines, leading to even more people to become aware of what’s really going on with this company and therefore their dinner.
Sometimes in order to truly have an intellectual revolution on a subject, the people need to see exactly what they are facing. With the truly blatant and downright arrogant Monsanto Protection Act, it’s now clearer than ever.
His claim follows a Health Protection Agency investigation into an outbreak of salad-linked Cryptosporidium infections that affected around 300 people in England and Scotland in May.
In the analysis of the exposure to different salad vegetables a significant statistical association was found between infection and the consumption of pre-cut spinach.
When specific retailers were included in the analysis, the strongest association with infection was found to be with consumption of ready to eat pre-cut mixed salad leaves from a major supermarket chain.
“Together these findings suggest that one or more types of salad vegetables could have been contaminated,” said the HPA.
Professor Pennington said the case also followed on from several in the USA where they are “very worried” about “washed and ready-to-eat” bagged salad.
Last year produce giant Dole issued a recall on its American Blend bagged salad in 10 states in those two regions, after the Tennessee Department of Health found listeria bacteria in one sample.
Demand for salad has boomed because of healthily eating campaigns. But salad is considered one of the products most likely to cause food-related illness – largely because greens are grown directly in the soil, and some pathogens can only be killed by heat or strong detergents, not just water.
Professor Pennington said: “It is generally safer to eat a burger than the salad that goes with it.
“Despite the recent horsemeat and other scandals, the meat can be traced and through a rigorous process that checks for its quality etc.
“That does not exist to the same rigour for salad. You can only make vegetables safe by cooking and you can`t obviously do that with salad.
“You could irradiate it – but that would be a `no, no` with the public. You just can`t be absolutely sure that the bagged salad you are buying – which has been put through a chemical wash to kill the bugs, is actually free of them.
“These bugs are very good at clinging on to salad and the risk from cryptosporidium, salmonella and listeria is very real.
“I would advise people to thoroughly wash salad even when it says it has been washed and is ready to eat.”
Bagged salad on sale in supermarkets is often sourced from the same suppliers for most leaf types, often with common production lines packing product for several retailers at the same time.
Professor Pennington also pointed out that a bean sprout farm in northern Germany was identified as the most likely source of many of the infections in the E. coli outbreak that left 22 people dead in 2011.
The farm, located in Uelzen, south of Hamburg, was the epicentre of the outbreak that has also made more than 2,000 people ill.
Professor Pennington, emeritus professor of bacteriology at the University of Aberdeen, said the biggest E.coli outbreak happened in Japan in 1996 and involved radish sprouts.
“My understanding is that this farm in Germany was an organic one and there are more risks with organic food. For example organic chicken has more bugs than non-organic because they spend longer in the field and have wild bird droppings on them etc.
“Vegetables are fine and safe if they are cooked in the traditional British way of boiling them to death. The only danger comes when you eat them raw.
“Sometimes the spouts are contaminated to start with and they can get contaminated when spouting in the steaming process.
“At the end of the day the responsibility falls on the people who produce food. But much of our vegetables are now grown in countries who do not necessarily have the same hygiene standards.
“At the end of the day there has to be trust who is in supplying you with your food. The consumer has no way of knowing how the food has been produced. The consumer is not in a position to know all that has gone on.”
Professor Pennington headed the investigation into the E.coli outbreak in Wishaw which claimed the lives of 20 elderly people in 1996.
(Natural Society) -While we may be under the impression that our democratic system of government is here to protect us, corporations—and the politicians getting paychecks from them—do a fair job of making that difficult. This manner of “legislative capture” is manifesting itself in a host of appalling ways far beyond those listed here. Here are 8 ways corporations are poisoning our food supply, humans, and mother earth.
Sugary drinks, especially soda, run rampant in the U.S., with corporations shelling out millions to advertise to both children and adults. Kids are taking in 7 trillion calories of sugar each year from soda alone, with sodas making up 15-25% of the daily recommended caloric intake for kids aged 2 to 19. Sugar-sweetened sodas can contain upwards of 200 calories per can, but even artificially sweetened drinks should not be considered safe. Several studies show that artificial sweeteners—like cancer-linked aspartame—can contribute to tooth decay, obesity, kidney damage, and depression.
BPA is a hormone disrupting chemical used in canned goods and plastic bottles. The chemical, which is labeled as “toxic” in other nations, had a chance to be banned of March 2012. In a move that angered activists within the US and even internationally, the FDA ruled against the ban. This ubiquitous chemical has been linked to:
You may not know this, but many organic companies are actually owned and operated by major corporations like Coca-Cola or Kellogg. Companies like Honest Tea and Odwalla may appeal to health conscious shoppers, but they are actually owned by Coca-Cola. Another popular ‘health’ brand is Kashi, owned by the Kellogg corporation. Some products from these companies may be ’100% organic’, but do you really trust their labeling practices? Or perhaps more important, do you really want to give support to the corporate producer?
Further, these large corporations are buying out some of the companies many natural-health advocates have grown to love. One example is when New Chapter, a vitamin and supplement company offering worthy products since 1892, was bought out by mega-corporation Proctor & Gamble.
These days, physicians are a little stab-happy with their antibiotics, often to just please the patient with a medical solution (a placebo effect, if you will). But it could be setting us up for lifelong obesity – at least that’s what some research has to say. In addition to killing “bad” bacteria, antibiotics kill “good” bacteria in the gut, thereby disrupting digestion even in the long run. There’s also mounting evidence that antibiotics may be promoting diabetes and metabolic syndrome—but not killing the cold and flu viruses that parents think they are (antibiotics cannot kill viruses, only bacteria).
Last year, The Guardian wrote about 150 scientists and 50 farmers—including a former FDA commissioner—demanding that Congress regulate antibiotic use in livestock. The European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) has even blamed overuse of antibiotics for the global resistance to antibiotics, which could make antibiotics futile against disease-causing bacteria. And this is not even considering the other ill effects antibiotics have on the animals we eat.
If you are into organic foods and have been following GM news, you know that the latest and greatest chance for GM labeling was with California’s proposition 37. Needless to say, the bill was not passed, but Prop 37 did teach us a lot about the interest of various companies and mega corporations. It was no surprise to see biotech giant Monsanto dish out over $4 million to fight the bill, but some people were surprised to see Naked Juice, Kashi, Cascadian Farm Organic, Honest Tea, and some others on the side of anti-GM labeling. As mentioned above, many of these companies are owned by corporations like Coca-Cola or General Mills.
They all support GM food, are anti-GM labeling, and subsequently support the use of herbicides and pesticides. Pesticides that are being used in greater amounts each day thanks to mutated insects that become resistant to Monsanto’s Roundup-ready GM crops.
According to numerous pieces of research, GM foods like Monsanto’s corn have been implicated of contributing to weight gain, organ disruption, tumor development and infertility in rats. Roundup—a glyphosate-based herbicide— is to thank for contributing to water pollution, resistant rootworms and superweeds, and environmental devastation.
Although technological products like cell phone towers and cell phones are hurting the bee population, herbicides, insecticides and pesticides brought to us by Bayer, Monsanto, and Dow AgroSciences appear to be the main culprits. It has been shown time and time again that these chemicals are ravaging these tiny insects that are essential for agriculture purposes and pollinating food crops.
“…a document was leaked revealing that a bee-killing pesticide put in use by the EPA may be to blame [for the bee decline]. Adding to the controversy, more records have emerged showing that the USDA was fully aware of the pesticide’s threat to not only bees, but humans…Neonicotinoids, the particular type of pesticides used, are absorbed systemically into plants, including the pollen and nectar. Once the bees begin to pollinate, they also absorb the insecticide, and die.”
Neonicotinoids have been banned in France and Germany, but not the United States.
If you purchase your meat from a grocery store instead of a farmer’s market or co-op, it was probably raised in a factory farm. Not only are these farms known for extreme animal cruelty (which many undercover videos have gruesomely pointed out), but they are also responsible for polluting groundwater, drinking water, and contributing to massive deforestation. Actually, they produce 100 times more waste than the entire U.S. population.
Run-off from these establishments as well as non-organic crops are contributing to blooms and dead zones in coastal waters. Earlier this year, a scientific paper argued against the case of factory farms feeding the world, but with the USDA and FDA deep in industrial farming’s pockets, it will take considerable time and effort before we see any changes.
(Natural Society) -Yet another disturbing reason has emerged as to why you should be avoiding health-devastating genetically modified organisms, and it may be one of the most concerning yet. We know that GMO consumption has been linked to a host of serious conditions, but one thing we are not so sure about is the recent discovery of a hidden viral gene deep within genetically modified crops.
For years, GMOs have been consumed knowingly and unknowingly around the globe, with Monsanto and the United States government claiming that the altered franken crops are perfectly safe despite very limited (or virtually none in some cases) initial testing and scientists speaking out against the dangers. One such danger that has actually not been spoken about has been revealed in a recent report by a safety watchdog group known as the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).
In the EFSA report, which can be read online, you can find (within the scientific wording) that researchers discovered a previously unknown viral gene that is known as ‘Gene VI’. What’s concerning is that not only is the rogue gene found in the most prominent GMO crops and about 63% of GMO traits approved for use (54 out of 86 to be precise), but it can actually disrupt the very biological functions within living organisms. Popular GMO crops such as Roundup-Ready soybeans, NK603, and MON810 corn were found to contain the gene that induces physical mutations. NK603 maize, of course, was also recently linked to the development of mass tumors in rats.
According to Independent Science News, Gene VI also inhibits RNA silencing. As you may know, RNA silencing has been pinpointed as vital for the proper functioning of gene expression when it comes to RNA. Perhaps more topically, it is a defense mechanism against viruses in plants and animals alike. On the contrary, many viruses have developed genes that disable this protective process. Independent Science News reports that the Gene VI is one such gene.
Overall, there is a degree of knowledge on Gene VI. What we do know going by information within the report is that the gene:
All of which are very significant effects that should be studied in depth by an independent team of scientists after GMO products are taken off the market pending further research on the entire array of associated diseases. And that does not even include the effects we are unaware of.
This is yet another incident in which Monsanto and other biotech companies are getting away with an offense against the citizens of the world with (most likely) no action taken by the United States government. What we have seen, however, is nations like Russia, Poland, Hungary, and Peru taking a stand against Monsanto in direct opposition to their disregard for public safety. Russia, in fact, banned Monsanto’s GMO corn variety after it was linked to mass tumors in rats.
As more and more dirty secrets come out from the GMO industry at large, it gives further reason and more support to remove GMOs as a whole from the food supply.
(Activist Post)A lot of events are converging to create a tipping point to finally allow the labeling of genetically modified (GM) foods.
The FDA is likely to approve GM salmon and apples against the people’s will. Many big food companies have received massive social media backlash from consumers, particularly parent companies to organic ones that heavily funded campaigns against GMO labeling.
For instance, Ben & Jerry’s ice cream got shrapnel from some of these “Traitor’s Boycotts” because its parent company Unilever funded to prevent labeling. Ben & Jerry’s will remove its GM ingredients by the end of 2013.
The funded and questionable failure of California’s Proposition 37 has stoked the flames since last September.
Consumers have even themselves begun labeling grocery products with a passionate drive to bring awareness to others. Wal-mart got flak last summer for selling unlabeled and possibly dangerous GM sweet corn.
Most recently, Washington state introduced a labeling initiative for the 2013 ballot.
Their concern is not only about “right to know” but surrounds fears that unlabeled genetic salmon and apples could seriously damage the economy by getting their exports blocked - especially from countries that require labeled GM food. It is estimated that at least 20 other states are considering labeling initiatives.
This amalgam is perhaps why there is talk of Wal-mart, PepsiCo, ConAgra and at least 20 major food companies possibly switching sides and lobbying for national labeling.
It’s probably the very least all those companies could do after spending more than $45 million to keep food unlabeled. Gary Hirshberg of Just-Label-It and chairman of Stonyfield Organic called it a poor return on their investment, referring to their actions provoking demand instead of squashing it. Too late – money talks both ways, but now they are starting to get it.
Organic Consumers Association (OCA) reported earlier that those companies, the FDA and some advocacy groups met in January behind closed doors at the Meridian Institute, a major discussion hub.
Ronnie Cummins of OCA warned to keep watch:
We should be wary of any compromise deal at the federal level, one that would preempt the passage of meaningful state GMO labeling laws that have real teeth.
How many of you saw a red flag for a case of Problem-Reaction-Solution or Controlled Opposition? Are they discussing a watered-down solution – a strategic attack? At the very least, they know that they have a problem.
While so many consumers are adamantly opposed to GMOs existing anywhere close to planet Earth, some law makers like Senator Jamilah Nasheed of St. Louis simply feel:
I don’t want to hinder any producer of genetically modified goods — However, I strongly feel that people have the right to know what they are putting into their bodies.
Fighting the presence of GMOs and trying to raise awareness has been an uphill and often unseen battle for over 20 years.
Not only have the FDA and USDA failed to help, but they have systematically ushered them in with no safety testing and have covered up studies proving hazards.
At least with consumer awareness reaching critical mass (we vote with our forks and dollars), big companies like Wal-Mart and food giants finally voicing labeling desires is a step in a good direction if they stop selling us out for profits.
Let’s continue giving them an uphill battle to win back our patronage – if ever. They don’t want to keep shelling out millions to further provoke us if they have to keep doing it repeatedly to their own demise. If they want people’s money, they had better listen.
The definitive movie on genetically modified foods - watch Genetic Roulette: The Gamble of Our Lives for free, limited time only.
(dailymail.co.uk) A virus gene that could be poisonous to humans has been missed when GM food crops have been assessed for safety.
GM crops such as corn and soya, which are being grown around the world for both human and farm animal consumption, include the gene.
A new study by the EU’s official food watchdog, the European Food Safety Authority(EFSA), has revealed that the international approval process for GM crops failed to identify the gene.
As a result, watchdogs have not investigated its impact on human health and the plants themselves when assessing whether they were safe.
The findings are particularly powerful because the work was carried out by independent experts, rather than GM critics.
It was led by Nancy Podevin, who was employed by EFSA, and Patrick du Jardin, of the Plant Biology Unit at the University of Liege in Belgium.
They discovered that 54 of the 86 GM plants approved for commercial growing and food in the US, including corn and soya, contain the viral gene, which is known as ‘Gene VI’.
In this country, these crops are typically fed to farm animals producing meat, milk and eggs.
Significantly, the EFSA researchers concluded that the presence of segments of Gene VI ‘might result in unintended phenotypic changes’.
Such changes include the creation of proteins that are toxic to humans. They could also trigger changes in the plants themselves, making them more vulnerable to pests.
Critics say the revelations make clear that the GM approvals process, which has been in place for 20 years, is fatally flawed.
They argue the only correct response is to recall all of the crops and food products involved. Director of the campaigning group, GM Freeze, Pete Riley, said the discovery of the gene, ‘totally undermines claims that GM technology is safe, precise and predictable’.
He said: ‘This is a clear warning the GM is not sufficiently understood to be considered safe.’Authorisation for these crops must be suspended immediately, and they should be withdrawn from sale, until a full and extended review of their safety has been carried out.’
Typically, GM crops are modified in the laboratory to give them resistance to being sprayed with powerful weed killers such as Monsanto’s Round-up.
This means that, in theory, fields can be doused with the chemical, so wiping out the weeds and allowing the food plants to thrive.
The modification process involves inserting genes into the plants using a technique that allows them to piggyback on viruses that are commonly found in the soil and plants.
It has been assumed that virus genes are not present in the plant once it is grown in the field and reaches consumers, however it is now clear that this is not the case.
A review of the EFSA research in Independent Science News said the presence of the viral gene appears to have been missed by biotech companies, universities and government regulators.
‘This situation represents a complete and catastrophic system failure,’ it said. ‘There are clear indications that this viral gene might not be safe for human consumption. It also may disturb the normal functioning of crops, including their natural pest resistance.
‘A reasonable concern is that the protein produced by Gene VI might be a human toxin. This is a question that can only be answered by future experiments.’
Biotech supporters argue that there is no evidence from countries such as the USA that eating GM food causes any harm.
However, the reality is that no health monitoring has taken place to establish this. The findings will embarrass the government and the food and farming Secretary, Owen Patterson, who has embarked on a pro-GM propaganda exercise designed to win over sceptical consumers.
Mr Patterson recently rejected public concerns as ‘humbug’ and ‘complete nonsense’. Policy director at the Soil Association, Peter Melchett said: ‘For years, GM companies have made a deliberate and chilling effort to stop independent scientists from looking at their products.
‘This is what happens when there is a complete absence of independent scrutiny of their GM crops.’Biotech firms are represented by the Agricultural Biotechnology Council(ABC).
Its chairman, Dr Julian Little, said the EFSA study was one small part of a strict and complex scrutiny process.
He said: ‘Over the past 25 years, the European Commission has funded more than 130 research projects involving 500 independent research groups which have found no higher risks to the environment or food chain from GM crops than from conventional plants and organisms.
‘Furthermore, nearly three trillion meals containing GM ingredients have been eaten without a single substantiated case of ill-health. The combination of these two facts can give consumers a huge amount of confidence in the safety of GM crops.’
GM critics and EFSA are at odds over the implications of the research paper, which was written by the deputy chairman of the organisation’s advisory panel on the issue and a former senior member of staff.
EFSA insists that the research highlighting the presence of Gene VI does not represent a new discovery of a viral gene and does not indicate a safety concern about GM crops already approved.
It said the viral gene ‘cannot infect animals or humans and therefore presents no threat to human or animal health’. This is challenged by GM critics who say there is no research evidence to justify this statement.
(CAV News) - The American multinational agricultural biotechnology giant, Monsanto, has agreed to pay the residents of West Virgina for a total of $93 million, according to the Associated Press.
Here’s how the settlement will break down: First, Monsanto will be forced to pay the legal fee’s in the case that began in the 1980’s, when plant workers in Nitro filed a class action lawsuit. Second, Monsanto will pay $9 million to clean up 4,500 homes. Third, Monsanto will pay up to $84 million for medical monitoring.
Judge. Derek Swope approved of the settlement earlier today.
Legals troubles is nothing new to Monsanto.
The United States Department of Justice forced a fine $1.5 million fine for breaking the Foreign Corrupt Practice Act after admitting a senior official of Monsanto bribed an Indonesian official.
In 2003, Monsanto and the residents of Alabama reached a $300 million settlement, who were affected by the toxic dumping of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB’s).
Of course, last year the company spent huge bucks(roughly $8.1m) to defeat the Prop.37 inititative, which if it had passed, would have forced companies like Monsanto to disclose genetically modified crops that are used in California food products.
(Independent) -Goldman Sachs made more than a quarter of a billion pounds last year by speculating on food staples, reigniting the controversy over banks profiting from the global food crisis.
Less than a week after the Bank of England Governor, Sir Mervyn King, slapped Goldman Sachs on the wrist for attempting to save its UK employees millions of pounds in tax by delaying bonus payments, the investment bank faces fresh accusations that it is contributing to rising food prices.
Goldman made about $400m (£251m) in 2012 from investing its clients’ money in a range of “soft commodities”, from wheat and maize to coffee and sugar, according to an analysis for The Independent by the World Development Movement (WDM).
This contributed to the 68 per cent jump in profits for 2012 Goldman announced last week, allowing it to push up the average pay and bonus package of its bankers to £250,000.
The extent of Goldman’s food speculation can be revealed after the UN warned that the world could face a major hunger crisis in 2013, after failed harvests in the US and Ukraine. Food prices surged last summer, with cereal prices hitting a record high in September.
Christine Haigh of the WDM said: “While nearly a billion people go hungry, Goldman Sachs bankers are feeding their own bonuses by betting on the price of food. Financial speculation is fuelling food price spikes and Goldman Sachs is the No 1 culprit.”
Goldman makes its “food speculation” revenues by setting up and managing commodity funds that invest money from pension funds, insurance companies and wealthy individuals in return for fees and commissions. The firm invented these kinds of funds and continues to dominate the market, together with Barclays and Morgan Stanley. Swiss trading giant Glencore hit the headlines in August when its head of agriculture proclaimed that the US drought will be “good for Glencore”.
Goldman has always shrouded the breakdown of its profits in secrecy, but a WDM commodities derivatives expert has calculated the revenues it believes the bank makes from food speculation through an analysis of its recent results and market information.
The bank declined to comment on WDM’s estimate or the impact of speculation on food prices. But Goldman Sachs is known to be advising clients that corn is one of its top trading tips for 2013, after the worst drought in US history whittled stockpiles down to their lowest level since 1974.
Although global food prices averaged seven per cent below 2011’s record, prices in 2012 were 16 per cent higher than in 2010 and 2.3 times as expensive as a decade earlier, even after adjusting for inflation, according to the United Nations.
British consumers have not been spared the impact of rising food costs – prices have, on average, risen by nearly 40 per cent in the past seven years.
Rob Nash, Oxfam’s private sector adviser, said: “Oxfam is very concerned about food speculation, especially in the light of increasingly extreme weather conditions which can reduce supply suddenly and severely deplete stocks. The last thing we need is for that volatility to be exacerbated by speculation and exploited for short-term profit.”
Banks and hedge funds typically argue that speculation makes little or no difference to food prices and point out that no definitive link has been proved. But there is a growing consensus that the influx of cash into food has increased demand so much that it has inevitably pushed up the prices.
Since deregulation allowed the creation of the commodity funds that allowed many speculators to invest in agriculture for the first time, institutions such as Goldman have channelled more than $200bn of cash into the area. This investment has coincided with a significant and sustained rise in global food prices.
(Natural Society) -Over 140 nations have come together under a new treaty to curb deadly mercury pollution over serious risks to worldwide health, but meanwhile the FDA is still allowing the mass majority of US citizens to chomp down on mercury-containing processed foods. Specifically, mercury has actually been found in the highly popular genetically modified junk ingredient high-fructose corn syrup — an ingredient present in over 90% of processed foods.
I’ve been very vocal about this issue since it was originally reported by the Washington Times in 2009 despite little syndication by the mainstream media. The report could not mention brand names for legal reasons (although I wish they would), however it was found that half of all high-fructose corn syrup samples tested contained mercury. It was also found in about a third of 55 popular brand-name food and beverage products in which high-fructose corn syrup is listed as one of the top two ingredients.
You can easily imagine that this includes major soda brands, candy manufacturers, and much more.
But what does the FDA say about this? Or how about the corporations responsible for churning out mercury-ridden products for children and pregnant women to consume? Well, after the report surfaced in 2009, action groups began calling on the FDA for action. The Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy was one such organization, with member and co-author of the two studies that identified mercury in HFCS stating on record in the report:
“Mercury is toxic in all its forms. Given how much high-fructose corn syrup is consumed by children, it could be a significant additional source of mercury never before considered. We are calling for immediate changes by industry and the [U.S. Food and Drug Administration] to help stop this avoidable mercury contamination of the food supply.”
Needless to say, the FDA did not warn the US public about the mercury content in these foods. Instead, it continues to protect billion dollar corporations who continue to literally poison the nation with foods that are unfit for consumption.
As reported with the original article surrounding the new treaty, mercury is a highly dangerous substance — especially for developing and unborn children. Brain development can be majorly impaired, and pregnant mothers consuming mercury can alter the very growth of their babies. As the article states:
“Mercury is a serious health threat, especially for unborn children, and exposure to it can not only have neurological effects but also an impact on the digestive and immune systems.”
Next time you go shopping, be sure to avoid any items containing high-fructose corn syrup and processed foods at large. I recommend always purchasing high quality organic foods to avoid not only high-fructose corn syrup, but a wide variety of toxic ingredients that come along with ‘traditional’ (pesticide-laced, GMO-containing junk) options. We simply cannot count on the FDA or any other ‘watchdog’ US government agency to warn consumers when it comes to what we are putting into our mouths.
It is beyond ironic and more geared towards disturbing that 140 nations have signed off on this treaty to curb mercury emissions when many US citizens (a first world nation) are actually putting it directly into their mouths.
(N aturalSociety) -Paving the way for other nations to introduce similar legislation and inform consumers what they’re really putting into their mouths, the labeling of products containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) within the nation of India is now mandated by law. The country’s Ministry of Consumer Affairsmakes declared in a June 5, 2012 notice that all GMO-containing packaged foods must be labeled by January 1, 2013 or face legal repercussions.
Each package containing GM ingredients will clearly be labeled directly on the prime real estate of the package as ‘GM’. A warning that many heads of organizations and even bodies within the Indian government are praising for its ability to inform individuals as to what they are really feeding their family.
“The labelling will basically help inform the consumer about the presence of GM content in packaged food products,” said B.N.Dixit, Director, Legal Metrology, Department of Consumer Affairs.
In the wake of crippled labeling attempts inside the United States thanks to Monsanto-backed corporate deception, such as phony campaign materials designed to deceive California’s Prop 37 GMO labeling campaign, this is an extremely bold message by India. A message that will likely be picked up by neighboring countries where citizens have been demanding GMO labeling — or even an outright ban. The move also comes after other countries like Poland already took moves to ban Monsanto’s genetically modified maize.
While the labeling declaration is certainly a victory, some Indian experts are saying that it would be much more of a victory for somewhere like the US, where around 90% of food products are pre-packaged or processed. The opposite is true in India, where much of the food available in local markets is whole food items and raw materials. In other words, the Indian citizens still prepare meals by hand in many cases. This means that they are using non-packaged food items like produce that may not be labeled.
(NaturalSociety) -It’s ‘McRib season’, and thousands across the nation are scrambling to use online websites like the ‘McRib locator‘ to stuff the McDonald’s McRib sandwich down their throats. A sandwich that is not only full of genetically modified ingredients, a medley of toxic fillers and preservatives, but also some ingredients that are actually banned in other nations around the world. But honestly, are you surprised?
The McRib is the result of intensive marketing by McDonald’s. Utilizing the basics of supply and demand through creating scarcity over the McRib by only unleashing the culinary abomination for a fraction of the year that is only known once it is released, McDonald’s fans have been known to ‘hoard’ McRib sandwiches and eat them in extreme excess. It’s even a topic of the popular documentary Super Size Me, where filmmaker Morgan Spurlock (who gorges himself with McDonald’s for 30 days only to find serious health consequences) encounters ‘McRib hunters’ who actually travel the country eating McRib sandwiches.
Related: 3 Fast Food Secret Ingredients
McDonald’s even made McRib fans sign a petition to ‘save the McRib’ online, bringing out a conglomerate of fans to bring back their favorite franken sandwich.
But what’s really inside the McRib specifically that makes it such a food abomination? Containing over 70 ingredients, the McRib is full of surprises — including ‘restructured meat’ technology that includes traditionally-discarded animal parts brought together to create a rib-like substance. Here’s some of the disturbing substances found within the McDonald’s McRib sandwich:
Out of the 70 ingredients that make up the ‘pork’ sandwich, a little-known flour-bleaching agent known as azodicarbonamide lies among them. At first glance, this strange ingredient sounds concerning enough to look into. After a little research, you will find that even mainstream media outlets have generated content revealing how azodicarbonamide is actually used in the production of foamed plastics. Foamed plastics like yoga mats and more.
What’s more? In Australia and Europe, the use of azodicarbonamide as a food additive is banned. In Singapore specifically, use of this substance in food can result in a $450,000 fine and 15 years in jail. Thank you McDonald’s for supplying the nation with such healthful ingredients.
McDonald’s McRib is famous in some circles for utilizing what’s known as ‘restructured meat’ technology. Since McDonald’s knows you’d never eat a pig heart, tongue, or stomach on your plate, they decided instead to grind up these ingredients and put them into the form of a typical rib. That way, consumers won’t know what they’re putting into their mouths. As the Chicago Mag reported, the innovator of this technology back in 1995 said it best:
“Most people would be extremely unhappy if they were served heart or tongue on a plate… but flaked into a restructured product it loses its identity.Such products as tripe, heart, and scalded stomachs…”
So in other words, it’s not actually a rib. Instead, it’s a combination of unwanted animal scraps processed down in major facilities and ‘restructured’ into the form of a rib. Then, 70 additives, chemicals, fillers, and GMO ingredients later, you have a ‘meat’ product that tastes like ribs.
(WakingTimes) - The North-Eastern European country, Poland, has become the latest EU nation to ban the production of genetically modified (GM) crops, although, the European Food Safety Authority has approved GM crops as being safe for cultivation. Poland’s Ministry of Agriculture has opted to take advantage of a special ‘safeguard clause’ which allowed them to reject these GM crops, allowing Poland to protect their agricultural base from contamination.
Recently, the European Union approved two GM crops for Europe, Monsanto’s MON810 Maize, and BASF’s Amflora Potato, however, Poland’s ban will take effect on January 28th.
“To justify the enactment of these regulations, the Ministry of Agriculture pointed out to the impossibility of the coexistence of GM crops and the natural varieties, without the risk of contamination of the latter. The Ministry also draws attention to the threat of contamination of honey by pollen of maize MON 810 and the lack of research supporting the safety of GM crops on the environment and human health. From now on, a farmer who illegally sows MON 810 maize or Amflora potato may be levied with severe financial penalties and even with the destruction of his crop.” (GMWatch)
This is good news for opponents of genetically modified foods as their consumption has been linked to cancers and other health problems in labratory animals and in humans. Last year, Russia temporarily banned the production of several GM crops, but in the last week “Russia’s Federal Service for Supervision of Consumer Rights Protection and Human Welfare conducted its own safety assessment of NK603 and concluded that there were no adverse effects on humans.” (AGProfessional)
This is a small and perhaps temporary victory in the fight against franken-foods, but activists must remain steadfast and dedicated to stop the tidal wave of genetically modified crops, which rely much more heavily on boutique pesticides and herbicides than traditionally cultivated crops. And organizations working toward this goal, like GreenPeace, are quick to point out that we must remain vigilant so that the EU is not able to overturn this ban, and also that proper oversight is implemented to ensure that GM crops will be controlled effectively and that the ban is actually observed by local farmers.
(ActivistPost) - Dozens of family farmers, Plaintiffs in the landmark lawsuit Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association et al v. Monsanto, will travel from across America to Washington, D.C. next week to take on Monsanto and demand the right to farm. They will attend the January 10th Oral Argument in the Appeal of Dismissal to be aired before the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. A Citizen’s Assembly in support of family farmers at 10am in Lafayette Square will coincide with the beginning of the Oral Argument inside the court room.
“Our farmers want nothing to do with Monsanto,” declared Maine certified organic seed farmer, Jim Gerritsen, President of lead Plaintiff Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association. “We are not customers of Monsanto. We don’t want their seed. We don’t want their gene-spliced technology. We don’t want their trespass onto our farms. We don’t want their contamination of our crops. We don’t want to have to defend ourselves from aggressive assertions of patent infringement because Monsanto refuses to keep their pollution on their side of the fence. We want justice.”
Many farmers have been forced to stop growing certain crops to avoid genetic contamination and potential lawsuits from Monsanto. This case challenges the validity of Monsanto’s genetically engineered seed patents and seeks Court protection for family farmers who, through no fault of their own, may have become contaminated by Monsanto’s patented seed and find themselves accused of patent infringement.
Monsanto filed 144 lawsuits against America’s family farmers and settled another 700 out of court between 1997 and 2010. These aggressive lawsuits have created an atmosphere of fear in rural America and driven dozens of farmers into bankruptcy.
“The District Court erred when it denied the organic seed plaintiffs the right to seek protection from Monsanto’s patents,” said attorney Dan Ravicher of the not-for-profit Public Patent Foundation ”At the oral argument on January 10, we will explain to the Court of Appeals the District Court’s errors and why the case should be reinstated.”
A Citizen’s Assembly In Support of Family Farmers is scheduled for 10am in Lafayette Square on Thursday, January 10. Family farmers, their lawyers, and supporters will join after the hearing to explain why they traveled thousands of miles to protect their farms and communities.
“Farmers have planted and saved seeds for more than 10,000 years without interruption until Monsanto’s genetically engineered seeds entered the market in 1996. Almost immediately Monsanto began a campaign of harassment against America’s farmers, trespassing on their land and launching frivolous patent infringement lawsuits,” said Dave Murphy, founder and executive director of Food Democracy Now!. “It’s time to end Monsanto’s campaign of fear against America’s farmers and stand up for farmers’ right to grow our food without legal threats and intimidation.”
The lawsuit was originally filed in March 2011 by a large group of 83 Plaintiffs, which included individual family farmers, independent seed companies and farm organizations, whose memberships total over 300,000 individuals. The case was dismissed in February 2012 by Federal Judge Naomi Buchwald who ruled that the farmers lacked standing.
Lawyers from the Public Patent Foundation representing the farmers have identified numerous reversible legal and factual errors committed by the judge, which they assert caused her to mistakenly dismiss the case and have filed a powerful appeal brief with the court. Amici briefs in support of the Plaintiffs have been filed by a group of eleven prominent law professors and by a group of fourteen non-profit agricultural and consumer organizations.
If you aren’t concerned about GMOs, or think that foods aren’t labeled due to a lack of support over the issue, think again. In addition to being linked to weight gain and disrupting vital organs like the liver, GMO foods have actually been shown to cause massive tumors in rats, in addition to causing early death. Even more concerning is the fact that nearly 80% of the US food supply contains GMO ingredients. Ingredients that are likely created by biotech giant Monsanto, who is responsible for upwards of 90 plus percent of the world’s GM seed supply.
Perhaps this is why grassroots movements are popping up all around the country, and other nations have already taken a stand against GMOs. Despite the largest GMO labeling campaign Prop 37 taking a dive (due to false advertising and quite possibly questionable vote counting), still over 90 percent of citizens in the United States are heavy supporters of GMO labeling legislation.
Will the interest of Washington citizens win this campaign? One county in Washington, San Juan, has already succeeded in banning GMOs – at least to a degree. The residents helped pass Initiative Measure No. 2012-4 late last year that makes it illegal to ”propagate, cultivate, raise or grow plants, animals and other organisms which have been genetically modified.” Despite not effecting GMO products in stores, it’s still a step in the right direction for Washington citizens. It should also be noted that citizens of Washington have also helped pass one of the first amendments allowing for the recreational use of marijuana – another move that shouts ‘we demand individual rights’ by the people.
In the end, every act toward the labeling of GMOs brings us one step closer to winning the fight for these rights (and an overall ban on the disease-linked creations). California’s Prop 37 may not have passed, but the bill, along with the Washington bill and every other GMO labeling bill, are necessary stepping stones for both labeling of GMOs and the essential ‘right to know’.
(Natural Society) -Is this the next Prop 37, complete with a forthcoming wave of successful activism and education from concerned consumers? Unfortunately we know that Prop 37 failed due to not only irrefutable deception and lies from the Monsanto-funded ‘No on 37′ campaign, but also seriously questionable vote counting. What did succeed, however, is mounting awareness over the dangers of GMOs and the subsequent need for labeling.
This awareness has triggered New Mexico lawmakers to introduce legislation that actually calls for the mandatory labeling of GMOs within the state. In essence, it’s the next Prop 37 — and it’s influence is very much the same. It’s also a second chance for health activists worldwide to start the proverbial fire that will ignite similar legislation around the nation and eventually the world.
The New Mexico bill, which was introduced by State Senator Peter Wirth (D-Santa Fe), goes into debate this year and will likely be hit (in a similar manner to Prop 37) with a ton of corporate-backed roadblocks. Nevertheless, it’s statistically what the consumers want. Over 90 percent of United States citizens have repeatedly voiced their support of GMO labeling legislation. And that’s using very conservative figures; many show 96% or higher.
Now I don’t agree with everything Senator Wirth does, but this bill is definitely a step in the right direction. And as he puts it, it’s blatantly simple. It’s really not challenging to add an additional notification to consumers that products contain genetically altered ingredients — ingredients that have been linked to everything from infertility to tumors. In fact, it’s beyond absurd that these indicators do not exist. Of course Monsanto and other mega corps profiting on this fact simply do not want you to know what you’re eating.
In a statement reported by RT, Wirth explains:
“The premise of this amendment is simple – New Mexicans deserve the right to know what’s in the food they are eating and feeding to their families.”
The issue is that a precedent was set with the multi-million dollar squelching of Prop 37, an achievement that Monsanto and fellow goons put as one of their greatest. With Prop 37 being crushed by deception, it makes approving this legislation harder. Because in the eyes of some legislators (besides those paid off by corporations who profit from GMOs) it has already been tried.
Major organizations are already giving their support for the bill, however, and many more will likely soon come out and sound the alarm. Food & Water Watch is one of these organizations, with the New Mexico offices coming out and cheering the success of the bill and the necessity of GMO labeling. The organization’s New Mexico Organizer Eleanor Bravo said:
“Giving foods with GE ingredients a label will only improve and expand independent health and scientific knowledge about genetic engineering…”
The time is now to begin spreading the word about this initiative and lighting the fire. It’s almost a certainty that Monsanto & Co. will pump millions into defeating this legislation if it gets too big, but we can have the edge by getting into the game before they disseminate their deceitful propaganda to voters. Ultimately Monsanto will fail, and it will be a grassroots campaign that is responsible for throwing the last stone.
(Natural Society)- With the aid of innovative and highly sensitive testing, Spanish-Moroccan scientists determined that there could be up to 20 painkillers, antibiotics, and growth hormones in a single glass of milk. The researchers say that the traces are so small that consumers need not worry about adverse effects, so we’ll just have to take their word for it, it seems.
The scientists analyzed 20 samples of milk—cow’s, goat’s, and human—bought in Spain and Morocco, and found a chemical cocktail of ingredients added to the animal’s diet prior to milking or contamination through feed or on the farm. Some of the contaminants found in trace amounts include triclosan (an anti-fungal), 17-beta-estradiol (a sex hormone), and florfenicol (an antibiotic).
It’s worth noting that the image provided by the University of Jaen lists the anti-inflammatory drug diclofenac twice in error. Their findings were published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.
University of Jaen’s Dr. Evaristo Ballesteros marveled over their technique, which could be used to assess the food safety of other products. “We believe the new methodology will help to provide a more effective way of determining the presence of these kinds of contaminants in milk or other products.”
“Food quality control laboratories could use this new tool to detect these drugs before they enter the food chain. This would raise consumers’ awareness and give them the knowledge that food is…harmless, pure, genuine, beneficial to health, and free of toxic residues.”
While all types of milk tested contained chemicals cow’s milk was most contaminated. This is not surprising, seeing as cows are routinely given antibiotics, growth hormones, and fed questionable GMO feed. Unfortunately, you will probably be picking up some of these chemicals each time you purchase milk from big-time and conventional supermarkets.
If you do drink milk, there is always a better option than traveling to your nearest grocery store. Organic milk is superior to conventional milk, as the cows won’t typically be on an antibiotic, growth hormone, and GMO corn feed diet; they will likely be grass-fed and graze freely. But there is an even better milk than organic.
Raw milk, like organic, should not come from antibiotic-fed, hormone-injected cows. In addition, raw milk is not pasteurized, a process that destroys beneficial bacteria, transforms proteins, and ruins many of the other vitamins and nutrients found in the milk. It’s always smart to go one step further when buying raw milk to ensure safety, finding out a little bit about the farm and farmer the milk come.
Toxic residue in food is hardly limited to milk. The Daily Mail writes about earlier studies that have found fish with altered brain chemistry and sexuality thanks to caffeine, antibiotics, and hormones from contraceptive pills and HRT that survived treatment from sewage plants.
While some scientists say these trace amounts aren’t enough to affect people, many of them are stored in our bodies for great lengths of time, which can become problematic with frequent consumption. To this end, it’s important to limit our exposure to environmental toxins and poisons found in conventionally grown and prepared food and water. You can also take steps to detox your body naturally.
While you were likely resting or enjoying time with friends and family over the Christmas break, the United States Food and Drug Administration was hard at work ramming through genetically modified salmon towards the final acceptance process. Despite the frankenfish actually being blocked by Congress last year over serious health and environmental concerns, the FDA is making a massive push to release the genetically modified salmon into the world as the FDA-backed biotech giant and creator of the fish AquaAdvantage screams for profits.
These fish of course threaten the very genetic integrity of the food chain when considering the fact that they will ultimately be unleashed into waters with other salmon and likely even the ocean at large. The AquaAdvantage genetically modified salmon have been engineered through genetic manipulation to grow double the size and weight of the average salmon. Hitting 24 inches instead of 13 and weighing in at 6.6 pounds instead of 2.8, the GM fish contains both a gene from another salmon known as the Pacific Chinook as well as an eel-like fish.
This unnatural genetic infusion allows the fish to generate a growth hormone 24/7, making it a massively mutated ball of growth hormones and disease.
In the event that awareness is not spread and Congress allows the FDA to approve AquaAdvantage’ GM salmon, it will become the first approved GM animal for growth and human consumption.
Modified salmon will mate with regular breeds, creating hybrid mutations that may likely never be tracked. Hybrid families that may continue to repopulate for generations, all containing modified genes. After being consumed by predators like sharks or others, the sharks are then affected by the genetically modified fish through the development of various health conditions conditions. In mice trials alone it was found that eating GMOs triggered mass tumors and early death in the animals — and that’s just crops. Genetically modified crops are concerning enough, but are much less complex than animals.
The fact of the matter is that no one truly knows the long term effects of GM crops, let alone GM animals. But hey, why not test it out on the public? After all, who cares? It’s not like the FDA will do anything to Monsanto despite the numerous studies linking GMOs to disease. Instead, they just say it’s pseudo science and that only FDA-backed ‘science’ is worth anything. Forget the fact that the only lifelong rat study done on GMOs found it led to tumor development.
So what can we do?
There are a number of methods here, but first and foremost the word needs to be spread far and wide that genetically modified salmon is being pushed through by the FDA. People despise GM products on average, with 90 plus percent in favor of at least labeling. In addition, there is a petition going around to send to politicians to ask them to stop this approval as they did in 2011.
Ultimately, it comes down to opposition. If enough people know this is coming and are very upset about it, they will have trouble ramming it through. That’s why they announce these things over Christmas weekend. They don’t want anyone to even hear about it — they want to make it harder to popularize since hardly anyone saw it.
We can beat this as we did back in 2011, and the FDA knows it. Their dirty tactics are not effective in the technological age in which the transfer of information is more powerful than ever. Share this news and spread the word. Block genetically modified salmon from getting put on your dinner table without any labels.