Posted by Dave on January 10, 2013
Today we're only yards from the White House and it's a big day for America's farmers. In fact, it's a big day for farmers and eaters everywhere and we realize that people from all over the world are watching. Yesterday more than 30 family farmers, who traveled from across the U.S. and Canada, arrived in Washington DC to stand in federal court to ask for an end to the genetic contamination of their crops by GMO pollen and to protect them from Monsanto’s abusive patent infringement lawsuits.
For the past 16 years, Monsanto’s seed police have run roughshod over America’s farmers, suing more than 144 family farmers for patent infringement and settling out of court with another 700 farmers for undisclosed sums. At the same time, every year Monsanto sneaks onto the fields of more than 500 farmers and steals their plants to see if they contain the biotech giant’s patented genes. This is an outrage, but currently U.S. law allows this and as a result, Monsanto has created an atmosphere of fear in rural America and driven dozens of farmers into bankruptcy.
Last night we had dinner with these brave farmers and we asked them what they wanted.
They said they wanted justice, not only for them, but also for you and for future generations and the planet.
Many of you have asked us what you can do to help these farmers and now we need your help!
Today, after our court hearing we will be gathering less than a hundred yards from the White House to send a message that America’s farmers and our food supply need protection and we need your help right now!
We know people don't like to make phone calls, but now it's more important than ever to pick up that phone and make a call. The future of our food supply depends on it!
Right now 13 new genetically engineered crops are awaiting approval at the USDA, including GMO crops that are resistant to more toxic pesticides, such as 2,4-D (half the chemical component of Agent Orange) and dicamba, along with a non-browning GMO apple.
At the same time, the FDA recently cleared a final hurdle for the approval of AqauBounty’s GMO salmon when the agency ruled that the fast growing genetically engineered fish does not pose a threat to the environment. Already bureaucrats at the FDA have ruled that GMO salmon is safe for human consumption, despite no independent scientific research and only tiny sample sizes from the corporation that stand to benefit from its approval.
Despite the biotech industry’s assurances that GMOs are safe, new science is emerging that calls into question what they really know about the safety of their own genetically engineered products and also what they reveal to regulatory agencies when they apply for approval.
Already the first generation of biotech crops has failed in farmer’s fields and failed badly, creating more than 21 million acres of superweeds and a new breed of superbugs resistant to their genetically engineered toxins. What’s next?
Leaked documents reveal that even government scientists are dubious about the FDA’s own assessment. In fact, the FDA’s own assessment of AquaBounty’s studies to determine whether GMO salmon are safe for human consumption states that the studies contain “technical flaws” and provide “insufficient data”.
While a scientist at the U.S. Department of Interior’s Fish & Wildlife Service goes so far as to say: “Maybe [the FDA] should watch Jurassic Park”!
For the past 20 years, the biotech industry has gotten away with rigging science and our regulatory system, while systematically abusing America’s family farmers, the very people who work so hard to feed us.
This time, they’ve had enough and they want you to lend your voice to stand with America’s family farmers. More than anything, the farmers said they wanted a return to fairness in our laws governing our food supply and integrity in our regulatory system, which giant corporations like Monsanto have been allowed to corrupt.
Thanks for participating in food democracy,
Dave, Lisa and the Food Democracy Now! team