Last week Vermont leapt energetically into the GMO labeling race, launching legislation that would require labels for food products containing genetically modified ingredients. Representative Kate Webb (D) introduced the VT Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act on February 1 of 2012, and Monsanto’s response was swift and predictably litigious. Despite overwhelming voter support for the bill, VT caved to corporate threats last year. Will democracy finally triumph over corporate bullying, this time around?
Big Food’s defeat of Prop 37 cost them dearly, and only energized the labeling movement across the nation. Now they’re meeting to talk about GMO labeling at the federal level — but is it just an attempt to preemptively weaken future labeling laws?
Environmental activist Mark Lynas recently embraced biotechnology, as the agricultural savior of humanity. His public conversion has drawn heavy attention in mainstream media, prompting gleeful cackles from biotech profiteers. As with any science-based debate, critical thinking and skeptical inquiry offers the best path forward: are there good reasons to follow the pilgrimage of the devout, renounce organics for GMOs, and spread Monsanto’s gospel? (Spoiler alert: nope.)
Last week GMO labeling advocates submitted more than enough signatures to propel I-522 into the legislative limelight. This initiative would require labeling for foods containing genetically modified ingredients. Under WA law, the measure can now be enacted, revised, or sent to voters in November 2013. Good work, WA!
The USDA recently announced a $500,000 grant to develop GMO pigs, even as the demand for non-GMO food skyrockets and the demand for meat decreases. USDA priorities clearly reflect the whim of their corporate biotech and meat industry bosses, rather than the pesky citizens they’re meant to serve.
Energized by Prop 37’s near-victory last month, labeling advocates in 30 states are ramping up legislative efforts to require fair labeling of GMO foods. Washington state looks poised to step up as the next big battleground: if advocates for initiative I-522 obtain enough signatures by the end of December, WA voters could see a ballot measure requiring GMO labeling as soon as November 2013. They need your help — read on, for what you can do to support Washington’s GMO labeling efforts!
For the first time in US history, California voters this November will have the opportunity to vote for mandatory labeling of foods containing GMOs. Democracy Now hosted a Prop 37 debate this week, and interviewed food writer Michael Pollan on the health, environmental, and social issues surrounding GMO labeling and biotechnology-driven agriculture. As election day nears, industry’s slick and deceptive campaign against the labeling initiative continually saturates the CA airwaves. Democracy Now’s coverage offers a grass-roots education and rebuttal opportunity: read, watch, consider, and share!
Researcher and organic agriculture scientist Charles Benbrook released a study last month showing escalating herbicide use on GMO crops, in direct opposition to industry assertions otherwise.
Last week the Supreme Court agreed to hear arguments on whether Monsanto has patent rights on second-generation self-replicating seeds, accepting an appeal from one of the many farmers sued by the biotech behemoth. The case is one of seven scheduled to be heard next year, with arguments set to begin in January or February 2013 and a ruling expected by June. After two decades of riding roughshod over US farmers, will Monsanto’s dominion over farmers’ rights finally be reined in?
Democracy relies on an informed citizenry. With the battle for GMO labeling ongoing in California and across the US, there’s never been a greater need for public awareness of the issues surrounding biotechnology, agriculture, and our food supply. For one week only — September 15th through the 22nd — you can watch the new documentary Genetic Roulette online for free! So take this opportunity to aggravate the biotechnology megacoporations pinning their hopes on an uninformed and apathetic public: watch, learn, reflect, and share!
New evidence highlights a potentially serious problem for US food shoppers and corn farmers. First documented about a year ago, a new study last month showed worsening rootworm resistance to Monsanto’s Bt corn. Based on a growing body of research, the EPA acknowledges that “There is mounting evidence raising concerns that insect resistance is developing in parts of the corn belt.”
Last month EDB reported on a new grass-roots organization seeking GMO labeling through direct consumer action. Faced with Monsanto’s corruption of democracy Connecticut and Vermont earlier this year, GMO Free USA formed to take the labeling issue directly to food manufacturers. The group announced its first action campaign yesterday: boycott-bazookas fire initial rounds this week at the Kellogg Company, demanding fair labeling of their products containing GMO ingredients.
Bill Moyers interviews physicist, ecologist, and social justice advocate Vandana Shiva on a recent episode of Moyers & Company. The half-hour talk delves into the intrinsic problems with GMO agriculture in terms of world hunger, compromised democracy and environmental degradation.