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Posts Tagged ‘genetically modified’

The fastest growing food segment is organic. More and more people are buying organic foods. That’s because they’re healthier than the GMO garbage the major food companies are selling you.

Costco has been crowned the new king of organic groceries. The company’s sales of organic foods increased by a whopping $1 billion in just 6 months. It’s mind boggling. If that’s not enough, Costco is committed to continue the expansion of their organic offerings. Costco has been quietly beefing up its offerings of organic foods for years.

GMO foods have been linked to a number of health issues, such as tumors and allergies. They’ve also been linked with autism, obesity and a variety of cancers. So more people are making the choice to eat healthy, and Costco is leading the way.

The US Food and Drug Administration first approved allowing GMO’s into the US food chain back in the mid 1990s even though they’d been tested a whopping three months for safe human consumption. That is how corrupt your government was back then, and it’s even more corrupt nowadays.

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On December 23, the government of Venezuela banned the planting of genetically modified crops, and pushed tougher regulations on patenting seeds.

“The present Law has as its objective to preserve, protect, and guarantee the production, propagation, conservation, and free circulation and use of seed, as well as the promotion, research, distribution, and commercialization of the same, based on a socialist agroecological vision, with the aim of consolidating our food security and sovereignty, prohibiting the release, the use, the propagation, and the entrance into the country and the national production of transgenic seeds as well as the patents and right of the breeder over the seed, in a manner that is sovereign, democratic, participatory, co-responsible and in solidarity, making special emphasis on the valorization of the Indigenous, afro-descendent, peasant and local seed, that benefits biodiversity and helps to preserve life on the planet in conformity with what is established in the Constitution of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.

Article 2 lays out the Seed Law’s six major goals:

1. Promote the transition from conventional systems of production based on monoculture and the use of agrochemicals with agro-industrial and/or corporate seed for conventional use, to an agroecological system and the preservation of the environment in the short, medium and long term, based on agro-biodiversity.

2. Promote the production of seeds that are necessary to guarantee national production, with the goal of avoiding importation and achieving national sovereignty.

3. Promote the transition to communal and eco-socialist agriculture, in order to protect agro-biodiversity by means of the production of local, peasant, Indigenous and Afro-descendant seed.

4. Revalorize and re-legitimize the local, traditional and ancestral knowledge wisdom, beliefs and practices of the peasant, Indigenous, Afro-descendant and other communities.

5. Prohibit the privatization of seed.

6. Orient the organization and planning of public policy in function of the different scales of production, distinguishing the policies intended for family agriculture or polyculture in small-scale production from the policies intended for big producers.

For more on the story, see Venezuela Bans GMO Poison–Ecowatch.com

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gmosalmonfight750

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) controversial approval of AquaBounty’s genetically modified (GMO) salmon has garnered further backlash from national grocery stores and restaurant chains.

Costco, the second largest retailer in the world with 487 stores and one of the largest retailers of salmon and seafood in the U.S., has made a firm commitment not to sell GMO salmon. Red Lobster has also declined to sell the GMO poison salmon.

Costco’s move to reject GMO salmon comes after vehement opposition from anti-GMO activists.

According to a statement from Friends of the Earth, Walmart and Publix are among the last remaining large retail grocers in the U.S. that have not yet rejected GMO salmon.

“The market is rejecting GMO salmon. Stores won’t sell it and people don’t want to eat it,” said Friends of the Earth Campaigner Dana Perls. “Now other retailers like Walmart and restaurants need to follow suit, and we need mandatory GMO labeling so that consumers know how to avoid GMO salmon.”

More than 60 grocery store chains representing more than 9,000 stores across the U.S. have made commitments to not sell GMO salmon, including Safeway, Kroger, Target, Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, Aldi and many others.

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europemap750

Brussels – In the latest blow to the European Commission’s laissez-faire approach to GM crops, 17 EU countries and four regions (in two other countries) banned the cultivation of GM poisons (known as crops) on their territories.

The 17 EU countries are Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland and Slovenia. The four regional administrations are Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in the UK, and Wallonia in Belgium. They notified the European Commission of their intention to ban GM crop cultivation under new EU rules [1].

This brings the total number of countries who have already declared their intention to put in place GM crop bans to 17 – plus four regions – representing over 65 per cent of the EU’s population and 65 per cent of its arable land.

The bans apply to the only GM crop currently approved for cultivation in Europe – Monsanto’s pesticide-producing GM maize, known as MON810 – but also to the seven GM crops awaiting approval by the Commission. These are all unhealthy GM maizes.

Nine EU countries (Austria, Bulgaria, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Luxembourg and Poland) had previously banned cultivation of MON810 under so-called safeguard clauses.

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Over 60 countries around the world have mandatory GMO labeling laws, if not outright GMO crop cultivation bans. But here in the USA, many of our elected Representatives are working for Monsanto instead of the People that elected them into office. CALL YOUR REP NOW AND TELL THEM NOT TO SUPPORT HR1599 – the mother of all Monsanto protection acts: 202.225.3121

Agrichemical corporations and Big Food don’t want us to know if our food has been genetically engineered because no one would want to buy the GMO food-like products once they’re educated about what GMOs are. Who would want to eat unnatural, lab-created, insecticide-producing crops that are, themselves, EPA-registered pesticides that are then coated with more insecticides before being planted, and then doused again and again with toxic herbicides as they are growing? The EPA, for example, has labeled corn as a pesticide. That’s because the corn plant is loaded with pesticides and herbicides when they’re seeds.

When bugs bite into the GMO corn or the corn plant with the Bt toxin, it ingests the insecticide, which then expands its abdomen until the unfortunate bug blows up. When you eat GMO corn, you’re eating the Bt toxin. Those same corn stalks are filled with herbicides, which kill rival plants for up to three feet from the stalk. When you eat GMO corn, you’re eating herbicides.

Numerous scientific studies link GMOs with health issues in rats, cows, hamsters, amphibians, and humans. See 10-scientific-studies-that-prove-gmos-are-toxic. Those studies are just a few of the studies showing the harmful impacts of GMOs.

Monsanto and its congressional representatives, such as Representative Mike Pompeo, are backing a bill, HR 1599, which was written by the Grocery Manufacturers Association (made up of members like Monsanto, Kellogg’s and Nestle), will keep Americans in the dark about the GMOs in our food. More properly known as the DARK Act (Deny Americans the Right-to-Know), the official name of HR 1599 is intentionally misleading and is deceptively called “The Safe & Accurate Food Labeling Act.”

This DARK Act would outlaw States’ Rights to enact mandatory GMO labeling and prohibit mandatory GMO labeling at the federal level. It would overturn GMO crop cultivation bans passed at the county level such as those in Jackson County, Oregon, and in many counties in Northern California. It would allow GMOs to be labeled “natural” and allow some GMOs to be labeled as Non-GMO. And to further deceive the American People, it would do away with the independent nonprofit Non-GMO Project Verified label in favor of a corrupted USDA non-GMO label.

HB1599 is anything but safe or accurate.

Tell Congress to Stop Doing Big Food and Monsanto’s Dirtywork: Americans Need to Know if It’s GMO. Sign the petition: http://tinyurl.com/StopTheDARKAct

Then contact your Reps directly and tell them to vote NO on HR1599 and YES on DeFazio’s HR913 bill that would require mandatory labeling of GMOs. WE NEED TO KNOW IF IT’S GMO. Find your Reps here: https://salsa4.salsalabs.com/o/51225/getLocal.jsp

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Why do Nike executives want the US congress to pass the Trans Pacific Partnership?

The answer is simple, they want to offshore more jobs, which the corporation will be able to do once the TPP becomes law. But first let me explain a few things.

The folks at Nike declared that the notorious jobs exporter would create 10,000 new manufacturing jobs in the US if the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) is passed by congress. President Obama repeated this lie when he gave a speech at Nike headquarters on May 8. I should point out that 10,000 jobs represents less than 1 percent of Nike’s total manufacturing labor force. So it’s a drop in the bucket.

So how is it that the president is willing to share information from his top secret trade negotiations with Nike executives, but not with the rest of us?

This willingness to create jobs in the United States defies both logic and Nike’s history.

Nike is one of the top jobs exporters in all of US history, if not number one of all time. And the defining issue for Nike in the TPP, that we know of via leaked documents, is the desire of Nike executives to reduce or eliminate the tariff on Nike products the company exports to the United States from Vietnam, which swells the US trade deficit, and ask anybody, the latter is a bad thing.

If the TPP becomes law, we can count on tens of thousands of Nike jobs to be relocated from China to Vietnam because the wages in Vietnam are much lower than in China. This will increase Nike’s profits and stock price. Take a look at the history of Nike’s stock price below.

Nike’s stock price was barely over $4 a share in November 1994, just before the implementation of NAFTA in December 1994. It more than doubled between 1994 and 2000, because the company was able to export more jobs. Then China was given most favored nation status. The price of Nike stock has jumped more than a thousand percent since then because the company was able to export even more jobs. If you owned 1000 shares of Nike in 1994, your stock was worth $4000. Now it would be worth $100,000, and that doesn’t even count the yearly dividend payment.

Nike’s stock growth was a result of exporting jobs. When a job is exported from the US, the difference between the old higher US wage and the new lower Vietnam wage increases profits, which drives stock prices and dividends higher, but leaves everybody else in poverty.

So it’s more than likely that Nike will not shift production to the United States with or without the Trans Pacific Partnership. This suggests that people should rightly be suspicious of the dubious claim by Nike executives that they will create 10,000 US manufacturing jobs in the US if only the TPP passes through congress. Nike could do it right now. And the lowering of US tariffs on imports from Vietnam via the TPP gives Nike absolutely no incentive to create production jobs in the US. Rather, it gives Nike incentives to export the few production jobs in the US and the hundreds of thousands in China to Vietnam.

On the other hand, these executives want the TPP in the worst sort of way, which suggests they have had the privilege of seeing the text of the TPP, a right which is being denied to the rest of us.

So what is the president and his chief Wall Street henchman in the senate (Ron Wyden) hiding?

We know from leaked documents that the TPP will:

* TPP will give incentives for US corporations to export millions of US jobs. The Federal Reserve estimates that 28 million US jobs were exported between 1990 and 2010. Wyden wants to increase this number. Jobs are the biggest US export product. Wyden likes this.

* TPP will increase US income and wealth inequality. The 1 percent have already taken 95 percent of all income growth in the United States since 2009. Currently, the 1 percent are stealing 36+ percent of all income produced in the USA, compared to only 8 percent in 1980. International trade scams and other federal legislation have brought inequality about. For example, when the above jobs were exported, the difference between the old higher US wages and the new lower wages will go straight into the pockets of the 1 percent via higher corporate profits, rising dividends and surging share prices. Wyden is a principle architect of this inequality.

* Those lost jobs will no longer be paying the taxes for our infrastructure, K-12 education, higher education (tuition and fees will go up), social safety nets, schools, fire, police, public transportation, social security taxes, but those lost jobs will push the stock markets higher.

* TPP will effectively eliminate your voting rights on local and state issues since it will unconstitutionally grant investors of the 0.01 percent special privileges to challenge labeling and health and safety local laws and regulations of the 99 percent, which most people call voter suppression, but in this case it should be called voter elimination.

* TPP will eliminate millions of jobs in Latin America, which will drive millions of more people illegally into the United States and depress wages here. See How the Trans Pacific Partnership Will Destroy American Jobs and Exports

* TPP will jack up pharmaceutical prices by extending the patents of the pharmaceutical corporations. Hmm, that doesn’t sound like free trade. It sounds like they’re rigging the game against the 99 percent.

These things we know only from leaked documents, and they’re only a tiny bit of what’s been negotiated. It doesn’t seem like the stuff we don’t know about in the TPP is going to be very good for the majority of citizens, otherwise, the president would let us know what is in the TPP, which is precisely what the president doesn’t want us to know. If the TPP is so good for the majority of American citizens, as the president claims, then why don’t the rich folks want us to know what’s in it?

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News From the Organic Consumers Association:

On Monday (April 27), a federal judge in Vermont struck a major blow to the junk food and gene giant industries by signaling that Vermont has a constitutional right to require labels on foods produced with genetic engineering.

The judge’s 84-page ruling scuttled Monsanto’s plan to stall Vermont’s GMO labeling law, and instead paved the way for Vermont to finalize its rules for the country’s first statewide bill to require mandatory labeling of GMOs, effective July 1, 2016.

That’s great news for consumers in Vermont. It also bodes well for consumers in other states, including Maine, Rhode Island and Massachusetts, which are in the process of moving GMO labeling bills through their legislatures.

On April 30, 2015, hundreds of people turned out for a public hearing in Augusta, Maine, on two bills: LD 783, a Right to Food Bill; and LD 991, a bill that would speed up enactment of Maine’s existing GMO labeling law by removing the stipulation that four additional and contiguous states must also pass GMO labeling laws before Maine’s law can take effect.

One of the arguments against LD 991 being bandied about in the halls of the Maine State House? “We can’t pass LD 991 because it might be unconstitutional.” Thanks to the timely ruling in Vermont, that debate should be over.

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