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Why Did Tom Vilsack Ignore This Warning?

Submitted by Food Democracy Now on May 13, 2011 - 9:29am

Watch: Dr. Huber warns Secretary Vilsack of a major new threat to agriculture.

Halt the planting of Monsanto's Roundup Ready alfalfa & sugar beets!

Tell President Obama to instruct the USDA to immediately ban Monsanto's GMO alfalfa and sugar beets from being planted until independent peer reviewed safety testing can be conducted.

Tell President Obama & Secretary Vilsack to halt the planting of Monsanto's GMO alfalfa and sugar beets.

We are deeply concerned, and know that many of you are, too. Last week we released a video interview with Dr. Don Huber, a senior plant pathologist who wrote to Secretary Vilsack on January 17th of his grave concerns about the discovery of a new organism and a potential link between the number one selling agricultural product, the weed killer Roundup and an alarming rise in crop diseases and infertility problems in animal livestock consuming Monsanto’s genetically engineered Roundup Ready corn and soybeans.

Already more than 25,000 people have signed the letter calling on President Obama and Secretary Vilsack to halt the sale and planting of Monsanto’s Roundup Ready alfalfa and sugar beets until more independent science can be conducted to evaluate this recently discovered threat to our farmers and our food supply. Unfortunately, the Obama administration is continuing to ignore the implications these new findings have in relation to our food supply.

Dr. Huber's Warning to Vilsack

Dr. Huber warned Secretary Vilsack that approving more Roundup Ready GMO crops could be disastrous and have serious economic and health consequences. As a retired scientist, he was willing to step forward on behalf of the team of scientists who are working behind the scenes to identify an organism that has been linked to rising crop failures and massive stillbirths in livestock. And not only do GMO corn and soybean form the foundation of livestock feed in the U.S., but they also can be found in more than 75% of the processed food that Americans are eating! 

Tell President Obama and Secretary Vilsack it’s time to put farmers and public health over corporate profits.

Last week at the "Future of Food" conference in Washington DC, filmmaker Deborah Koons Garcia asked Secretary Vilsack about his decision to approve GMO alfalfa and the need for labeling of foods containing GMOs in the U.S. In his answer, Secretary Vilsack, called to have a conversation about this important issue, one that takes into account “sound science” and respects the opinions of all sides. And while we couldn’t agree more with that sentiment, it’s time that the Obama administration stop listening to only one side.

Now is the time for us to start that conversation with our friends and spread it to a wider audience. As many of you know, there is a growing body of evidence pointing to the real and potential harm caused by the rapid approval of agricultural biotech products without adequate safety and toxicological testing.

Help us get to our new goal of more than 50,000 citizens calling for a halt to the sale and planting of Monsanto’s Roundup Ready until proper testing can be completed to ensure their safety – and help spread the word about Dr. Huber’s warning to Secretary Vilsack.

Already the extended 20-minute interview has been viewed more than 7,000 times by people concerned about this issue in more than 50 countries. It’s important that we get Dr. Huber’s vital warning out to a broader public audience.

If you’ve already signed the letter, please forward this message to 3 friends that you know who care about protecting the integrity of our food supply.

Sign the letter:

When we reach 50,000 co-signers, we’ll fly out to DC ourselves and deliver the letter. We’ll show Secretary Vilsack photos of affected plants and livestock, and ask him directly how he can justify letting planting go ahead while these serious questions are unanswered.  

Thank you for participating in food democracy-

Dave, Lisa and the Food Democracy Now! Team 


1."Senior Plant Pathologist Warns Secretary Vilsack of Discovery of New Organism, Threat to U.S. Agriculture", Food Democracy Now! February 27, 2011.

2."Scientist Warns of Safety of Monsanto's Roundup", Reuters, February 24, 2011.

3. "Mystery Science: More Details on the Strange Organism That Could Destroy Monsanto", BNET, May 5, 2011.

4. "USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack Answers Questions at the Future of Food Conference" The Washington Post, May 10, 2011.

5. "Why is Damning New Evidence About Monsanto's Most Widely Used Herbicide Being Brushed Aside", Alternet, April 27, 2011.

6. "U.S. Approves Genetically Modified Alfalfa", New York Times, January 27, 2011.

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