We write a lot about food and our search to find good food. We’re not obsessed with organics, but we want fresh food, minimally processed at the very least. There has been a lot written lately about GMO’s, genetically modified organisms. A genetically engineered organism is an organism that has been manipulated by humans in a way that could not occur in nature.
Which brings us to Farmer Assurance Provision, now known as the Monsanto Protection Act. Monsanto has cried foul over the nickname, but they wrote most of the provision, so it seems fair to us. If a GMO crop was found to pose a health threat to humans or animals, the provision would allow companies like Monsanto to continue to grow those crops until it was resolved in the courts. That process could take years. The “Assurance” isn’t really for the farmers, it’s for Monsanto.
Monsanto is a formidable adversary. If there is cross contamination of their GMO crops to an organic farm or any farm, instead of cleaning it up, they sue for patent violations. They have sued over 800 small farms. Fighting those lawsuits has put some of those farmers out of business. Once their crops have been cross contaminated, they cannot sell their produce as organic. There are currently class action suits by wheat farmers in Oregon and elsewhere because a field of unapproved GMO wheat has been found and may have contaminated their wheat fields. Exports to Japan and Europe have been suspended, putting those farmers at terrible financial risk.
We urge you to sign the petition that can be found on fooddemocracy.org . We urge you to call your representatives and insist that they remove this rider from the farm bill now working its way through Congress.
A bill to require labeling of products containing GMO’s was recently defeated in Congress. There are valid scientific studies linking GMO’s to childhood allergies and learning disabilities such as ADHD. We don’t want to eat meat or poultry raised on genetically modified feed. We don’t want to eat genetically engineered fruits, vegetables or grains and we certainly don’t want to feed them to our children. Since most of the corn, soybeans and sugar beets grown worldwide are now genetically modified, doing so becomes a challenge. Please contact your state representatives, asking them to pass legislation that requires that foods containing GMO’s be labeled as such. Connecticut recently passed such a law. If enough states pass labeling requirements, a federal law is possible. Whether GMO’s are harmless or harmful is irrelevant to our right to know it’s in a product and to decide for ourselves if we want to consume it. Monsanto’s stance that labeling will confuse and frighten the public, is ludicrous.
The power lies with us. Monsanto has given up investing resources in Europe and Japan because people have risen up in such numbers against GMO’s that they know there will be no market there. We can do the same here. We would also like for you to consider boycotting the products listed below. Monsanto may not be moved by words or reason, but money is a language they understand well.