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USDA Favors Monsanto over Organic Industry, Consumers

USDA Organic Sign

Major threats to organic food

Both GE crops pose major threats to organic foods. Alfalfa is the fourth major crop in the US after corn, soybeans, and cotton. It is a perennial crop that is pollinated by bees and other insects that travel great distances and grows wild near roads, ditches, and yards. Alfalfa is used extensively as feed for organic dairy cows and other livestock and used by organic farmers as a β€œgreen manure” to build healthy soils. With no restrictions, GE alfalfa could easily contaminate organic alfalfa threatening organic dairy production.

Speaking about the approval of GE alfalfa, Albert Straus, dairy farmer and president Straus Family Creamery, said: β€œThis is a ruling that seriously jeopardizes the integrity of the organic food chain, and could cause irreparable harm to organic farmers by ruining our ability to supply organic dairy foods to customers.”

Like alfalfa, sugar beets are a prolific pollinator and pollen from GE beets threatens organic Swiss chard and table beets. Seeds for GE beets are grown in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, a major seed growing area, in close proximity to seed production for chard and beets including organic varieties.

>>Next: How USDA ignored public outcry and what you can do to take action.

Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by 01-17-05_t-m-b

9 comments
  1. Tony

    You have been conned by the organic anti-GM people to believe the hype against GE crops. Those on teh market are safe and promote the use of much lower amounts of chemcial insecticides – somthing you fail to mention. The herbicide tolerance trait is against a herbicide is one of the safest on the market. Safer than table salt.

    1. Ken Roseboro

      GE crops haven’t reduced pesticide use, they have increased it. US farmers have applied 318 million more pounds of pesticides since GE crops were introduced.
      This will only get worse now that weeds resistant to Roundup herbicide, which is used with Roundup Ready GM crops, are increasing exponentially throughout the US.
      Farmers will have to spray more and more harmful herbicides.
      This shows the shortsighted problems with GM crops.

  2. Steve Savage

    Ken,
    The USDA based their decision on real science- not the sort of junk and “agenda” science you are citing. Millions of chickens, hogs, cows, turkeys etc have been eating GMO soy for more than a decade. They have seen no reproductive issues and there is absolutely no reason they should. Guess what, the sky is not falling!

    1. Ken Roseboro

      You speak as if you know for certain there have been no problems. There are several farmers here in Iowa whose hogs suffered false pregnancies from consuming Bt corn a few years ago. They switched to non-GM corn and the problem stopped.
      There is also a veterinarian in NE Iowa who has found intestinal damage in hogs fed RR corn and soy.

  3. Kenneth

    I may be simplistic or naive regarding part of this issue. I seem to recall a 3rd grade experiment that involves white carnations and blue dyed water. the carnation absorbs the water, changing color. How is it a plant, a tuber, that is watered with Roundup does not absorb this poison in the natural process of absorbing water as it grows? I understand the beets don’t die from the poison, but does that really indicate they have not absorbed it and subsequently created Roundup laced sugar?

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