Tag Archive | "DNA"

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Where’s The Outcry To Stop GMO Grass Seed?

Posted on 18 August 2011 by admin

Announced by the United States Department Agriculture back on the afternoon of July 1 — when most people were shopping for beer and burgers for the long holiday weekend — the word that the government was allowing Scotts Miracle Gro to further contaminate our lawns SHOULD HAVE BEEN front-page news. The story about the world’s largest retailer of legal lawn poisons being handed a license to sell even more Roundup SHOULD HAVE been the top story for whomever was filling in for Brian Williams that night.

Instead, the year’s most shocking environmental story was relegated to the blogosphere and, to his credit, Andrew Pollack at the New York Times.

THE BACKGROUND

It might sound like hyperbole to put this story ahead of, say, the epic drought, or the decline of the oceans or this year’s earlier bombshell that the federal government was going to allow genetically modified alfalfa. Certainly all those issues are having more impact today and tomorrow. But what about next year and beyond when Miracle Gro will be allowed to sell Roundup Ready lawn grass — unless we all stand up and do something about it?

This “Miracle GMO” lawn seed story has been unfolding for more than a decade, ever since Scotts Miracle Gro revealed its plans to test its new genetically modified creeping bentgrass in Oregon in 2001. Despite the protests of the environmental community back then, Scotts was allowed to plant test GMO seed, which then predictably escaped the confines of the trial farms and cross-pollinated with other related grasses in the wild. Since pollen from grasses typically rides the wind from plant to plant, this kind of “gene flow” is unavoidable.

The government had the good sense five years ago to block Scotts’ creeping bentgrass experiment gone amok, and even fined the company several hundred thousand dollars for letting the untamable cow out of the proverbial barn. Astory out late last year showed that the government is still spending lots of time and money running from ditch to ditch in the Pacific Northwest to dig up Scotts’ runaway grass.

Back then, in November of 2010, however, Scotts sounded strangely undaunted by the government’s slap on the wrist — as if the chemical giant knew something we didn’t. This year, on July 1, the end game was revealed: the bullish company had convinced the impotent matadors at the USDA to wave the towel, step aside and let the mutant cash cow rush past.

Make no mistake, this deal for Scotts is potentially huge. Whereas bentgrass is grown on golf course greens and a few home lawns in the Northwest, Kentucky bluegrass is grown virtually everywhere in the temperate climates of North America. North of the line that runs from DC in the East to San Francisco in the West, bluegrass is the predominant species on our soccer and football fields, on our home lawns and, in fact, in many farmer’s fields where livestock graze. In the view of Jim Hagedorn, the CEO at Miracle Gro, all that bluegrass will be his one day, to be sprayed several times a year by the toxic weed-killer known as Roundup — which is already his to sell, by the way, given his long-standing retail agreement with the manufacturer, Monsanto.

WHY THIS IS SO BAD . . .

Entire books have been written about the concerns related to genetically modified plants, but this GMO lawn issue essentially boils down to two major factors: 1) undoubtedly more spraying of Roundup, which has been linked to everything from cancer to birth defects and beyond; and 2) the modified bluegrass will most assuredly escape lawns and soccer fields and jump to fields where animals forage. The USDA’s secretary of agriculture, Tom Vilsack, admitted as much in a letter he wrote to Scotts essentially asking the company to self-regulate its latest product.

This comes from the man in charge of protecting our food supply:

“The USDA recognizes that if this GE variety were to be commercially released, producers wishing to grow non-GE Kentucky bluegrass will likely have concerns related to gene flow between the GE variety and non-GE Kentucky bluegrass. Exporters of Kentucky bluegrass seed, growers of non-GE Kentucky bluegrass seed, and those involved in the use of non-GE Kentucky bluegrass in pastures will likely have concerns about the loss of their ability to meet contractual obligations.

“USDA therefore strongly encourages Scotts to discuss these concerns with various stakeholders during these early stages of research and development of this GE Kentucky bluegrass variety and thereby develop appropriate and effective stewardship measures to minimize commingling and gene flow between GE and non-GE Kentucky bluegrass.”

Minimize commingling? That statement is simply beyond absurd. You’d have to build a wall as far and as high as the wind itself can blow if you want to stop genetically modified bluegrass from contaminating the bluegrass that’s growing all around us. Even if you would never even think of spraying Roundup on your own lawn when this mutant bluegrass inevitably shows up, you simply must understand that we’re setting ourselves up for the day when all of our animals are foraging on genetically modified material. The health implications of this — for the animals and for us — are predicted to be catastrophic by many scientists.

THE LEGAL ISSUES

Scotts deftly got around the existing laws that regulate genetic modification of plants and animals with clever legal maneuvering. Operating under The Federal Plant Pest Act of 1957, the USDA has had the power to restrict the introduction of organisms that might harm plants. It had used this power to regulate GMO crops until this July 1 announcement. The reasoning is that most GMO crops qualify as “plant pests” because the DNA from natural plant pathogens and microbial material — such as bacteria and fungi — had been the primary source of material used in the genetic engineering of various plants up to now.

Since Scotts had genetically engineered its bluegrass using genes taken from rice, corn and the Arabidopsis plant, from the mustard family, the company asked the USDA that its new GMO grass not be considered a plant pest under this 54-year-old law. The agency, shockingly or not, agreed.

The USDA’s other jurisdiction in this matter concerns invasive weeds. In other words, if a plant such as purple loosestrife or asiatic bittersweet shows that it roguishly moves where it’s unwanted, the USDA can play sheriff and place the plant on its Most Unwanted list. Folks can’t thereafter legally plant the stuff.

But since Scotts’ new mutant bluegrass hasn’t yet proven itself to be a weed, and existing bluegrass is not considered a weed, the USDA acquiesced to the position that it had no jurisdiction over Scotts’ new product.

To those of us in the environmental community, this is the same kind of legal wrangling that let O.J. and a certain mother walk free. It doesn’t, in other words, pass the common sense test. Scotts’ genetically modified Kentucky bluegrass will cross-pollinate with existing Kentucky bluegrass — there’s no way it won’t — but because of a legal loophole our government can’t, or won’t, do anything about it.

But that’s under existing laws. What about a new law that bans the genetic modification of plants that are wind pollinated? Can we get a politician to propose it? What about a law that bans the genetic modification of perennial plants that come back year after year? That could score some political points. Genetic modification of annual plants like corn, soy and canola at least leaves open the possibility that we can put the cow back in barn. We could conceivably eliminate these annual crops when enough consensus evolves that these crops are bad. But in the case of perennial grasses like alfalfa and bluegrass, there’s no turning back — EVER.

We need to put our government to its best use and implore our Congressional leaders to do something about it. Immediately.

WHAT WE NEED TO DO

In this world of social media, the possibilities are almost endless. You can write Letters to the Editor, letters for your elected officials, or start your own blog. I did manage to find a Facebook page that’s taking dead aim at this issue, but as of this writing it has a whopping 28 “Likes:” http://www.facebook.com/pages/Boycott-Scotts-Miracle-Gmo-Products/234083576622986.

Another strategy would be to call Scotts and demand the company put an end to this nonsense. There’s no way in hell that Jim Hagedorn would ever voluntarily walk away from a dollar, but you can get the satisfaction of making your voice heard. Here’s the Scotts Miracle Gro number: 888-270-3714.

Then there’s Thomas Vilsack and Barack Obama. All of this potential tragedy has happened on their watch. Don’t stand for it: http://action.foodandwaterwatch.org/p/dia/action/public/?action_KEY=5450.

Source: safelawns.org

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Obama Tells Farmer No Need to Worry About Over-Regulation of Agriculture

Posted on 18 August 2011 by admin

Obama Tells Farmer No Need to Worry About Government Over-Regulation of Agriculture

Thursday, August 18, 2011 – by Mike Adams

Mike Adams

(NaturalNews) During a town hall meeting yesterday, when an Illinois farmer told President Obama he was concerned about upcoming regulations regarding the Food Safety Modernization Act and would rather be farming than “filling out forms and permits,” Obama had choice words to offer in reply: “Don’t always believe what you hear.”

For once, Obama has told the truth. “Don’t always believe what you hear” should be the rally cry for all the farmers, raw dairy producers and consumers harmed by government actions taking place under the Obama administration – actions which can only be called war against the People and crimes against nature.

It was Obama’s USDA, for example, that approved genetically modified alfalfa to be openly planted everywhere, thereby contaminating non-GMO alfalfa crops with DNA pollution that’s impossible to remove from the harvest. This is the same USDA that also recently said it would do nothing to halt the release of GMO yard grass seeds into the marketplace.

Because of that decision, by the Spring of 2012, we could see genetically engineered lawns spouting up in neighborhoods all across America, where they will be frequently sprayed with toxic Roundup herbicide chemicals.

It was under President Obama that the FDA masterminded the recent armed raids on American raw dairy farmers by bringing a SWAT team to an L.A. food distribution center. There, under the watchful eye of federal government thugs, agents proceeded to pour all the milk down the drain, then seize and destroy tens of thousands of dollars worth of cheese, watermelons, mangos and other valuable food.

Obama, of course, could have stopped this outrageous incarceration of raw dairy farmers at any time but he stood back and said nothing. Perhaps he was too busy going on vacation to take any meaningful action to try to protect American farmers from gun-toting government tyrants.

It was under Obama’s watch that Michigan gardener Julie Bass was threatened with 93 days of jail time for growing tomatoes in her own front yard. While this wasn’t a federal case (it was drummed up by local tyrants who run the city of Oak Park), Obama could have easily intervened with a national message about “the freedom to garden.”

Where was Michelle Obama on this point in particular? The president’s wife can grow a garden on the White House lawn, but a mom in Oak Park Michigan can’t do the same on her own private property? Insane.

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Rawesome Foods Raid – SWAT Poured Out RAW Milk!

Posted on 03 August 2011 by admin

Rawesome Foods raid!

Cops poured out the milk!

(2683 views) Uploaded 8/6/2011 12:42:04 PM by HealthRanger

http://www.naturalnews.tv/v.asp?v=C39F34B67FDA804B2D94CD9BBA3F0A0A

Video Information

From the Rawesome Foods raid in Venice, California, this video is from the day of the raid and reveals how the government terrorists poured all the raw milk down the drain! Video courtesy of RealFoodRights.com

Video Keywords: food    health freedom    tyranny    raw milk    raw dairy    food freedom    rawesome foods   government raids

 

Health Ranger: ‘FDA fights organic farmers’

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EbE3SfvuL1g

 

 

(Rawesome Foods Raid) What Happened – by an employee


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjmYOoa14XY

Rawesome Raid August 3, 2011

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lI1gvPmA_c8

 

Massive public protest announced against government-sponsored terrorism of Rawesome Foods in California

(NaturalNews) As promised, a massive public protest is now being announced to give the members of the public an opportunity to voice their outrage against today’s arrest of three raw foods advocates who are all being charged with conspiracy.

The protest will be held at the LA County Courthouse located at:
210 West Temple, Division 30
Los Angeles

Arrive there at 7:45 am to join the protest, which needs to be in full swing early, because the court hearing for James is scheduled at 8:30.

Please keep your protests non-violent in nature and bring your signs, shirts and more. LA newspapers and media have already indicated they will be on scene. NaturalNews video journalists will also be on the scene filming whatever goes down. Videos will be posted on www.NaturalNews.TV

Bring your own cameras, too, and record your own photos and videos. Please post on NaturalNews.TV and we will likely link to your video in upcoming coverage of this event.

We apologize for the very short notice of this public protest, but we are publishing details about this story as quickly as we can. The story is breaking big and has already reached millions of listeners on the Alex Jones Show (www.InfoWars.com) and millions of readers through the Drudge Report (www.DrudgeReport.com), which has linked to NaturalNews as the breaking news source for this story.

Once the mainstream media starts covering this story, they will twist it around and LIE about it as they always do. NPR already did a hatchet job on this group following a previous raid. Only independent media (like NaturalNews) can be trusted to bring you the honest story on this without some corporate or government agenda.

There are already misinformed accusations that Rawesome Foods was not licensed as a retail business. But that’s incorrect information: Rawesome Foods is a private buying club and not a retail business that’s open to the general public. People can’t just walk in off the street and shop there like a regular grocery store. Thus, Rawesome does not have to be licensed like a regular grocery store. They are a private buyer’s club.

What went down in Venice, California today was clearly an act of government-sponsored terrorism against innocent citizens who are only “guilty” of selling healthful foods that are in huge demand by happy, healthy members (customers). That the selling of healthful raw milk cannot even be tolerated by the thuggish, corrupt government criminals who run the state of California (and the federal government) today is a powerful statement of just how much freedom we’ve already lost… and how hard we’re all going to have to fight back against tyranny to restore our basic food freedoms.

Watch NaturalNews for more developments on this story, and thank you for spreading the word about this latest assault on food freedom in America.

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/033223_Rawesome_Foods_public_protest.html

 

“Rawesome” Raw Milk Farm Raided…Again

Rawesome Foods Co-Op

It has been reported this morning (August 3rd, 2011), that raw milk farm “Rawesome” in Venice, California has been raided once again by members of the SWAT team. With guns drawn, two of the owners arrested, and over $10,000 worth of raw milk dumped out, the freedoms of Americans are diminishing. There is, however, something we can do about it.

Rawesome Raid – Based on Public Health?

The excuse given for these absurd raids (that honestly casts embarrassment over the police force) is that raw milk is a health threat that causes listeria, e. coli disease and death. This certainly can be true for raw milk — but only if you are drinking raw milk from animals that are being raised in inhumane and poor conditions.

The actual excuse for the arrests and the raids have not yet been officially stated. Stay tuned for that news.

Clean, fresh raw milk from grass fed, free ranging animals, however, does not need to be pasteurized. Milk you purchase from a traditional grocery store does require pasteurization, as the farmers who raise these cows raise them in poor, dirty and sanitation conditions. Pasteurization is the answer for man’s dirty mistakes! Nature does not need to be cleaned, and man does not know more than nature.

Raw Milk Proven Safer than Other Commonly Sold Foods

Recent data from researcher Dr. Ted Beals, M.D., shows that between 1999 through 2010 illnesses resulting in raw milk consumption totaled to around462, which is about 42 illnesses per year. Out of the 47.8 million food borne illnesses each year from foods such as raw meat (which is readily available at every grocery store), peanut butter and spinach, it is very curious as to why raw milk is targeted so violently.

Up to 2011, it is estimated that close to 10 million individuals drink raw milk as its popularity rises. More and more individuals are starting to realize and wake up to the fact that are rights as citizens, when it comes to what we consume or inject in our bodies, are slowly being taken away.

We are supposed to be free. We are supposed to be able to make informed decisions on our health. With the majority of the population overweight, diabetic and prediabetic, shouldn’t we focus more attention on the foods that are actually threatening the health of the American population? Shouldn’t we be performing raids on sugary cereals that surpress immune function and accelerate cancer growth, learning disorders and blood sugar instability?

Read Natural News’ article on the illegal actions of the SWAT members and the raid.

http://thehealthyadvocate.com/2011/08/03/rawesome-raw-milk-farm-raided-again/

 

Breaking news: Multi-agency armed raid hits Rawesome Foods, Healthy Family Farms for selling raw milk and cheese

(NaturalNews) This is a NaturalNews exclusive breaking new report. Please credit NaturalNews.com. A multi-agency SWAT-style armed raid was conducted this morning by helmet-wearing, gun-carrying enforcement agents from the LA County Sheriff’s Office, the FDA, the Dept. of Agriculture and the CDC (Centers for Disease Control).

This story is now being followed and widely reported on InfoWars (www.InfoWars.com) and the Drudge Report (www.DrudgeReport.com). See updates below…

Rawesome Foods, a private buying club offering wholesome, natural raw milk and raw cheese products (among other wholesome foods) is founded by James Stewart, a pioneer in bringing wholesome raw foods directly to consumers through a buying club. James was followed from his private residence by law enforcement, and when he entered his store, the raid was launched.

Law enforcement demanded that all customers (members) of the store vacate the premises, then they demanded to know how much cash James had at the store. When James explained the amount of cash he had at the store — which is used to purchase product for selling there — agents demanded to know why he had such an amount of cash and where it came from.

James was handcuffed, was never read his rights and was stuffed into an unmarked car. While agents said they would leave behind a warrant, no one has yet had any opportunity to even see if such a warrant exists or if it is a complete warrant.

Law enforcement then proceeded to destroy the inventory of the story by pouring the milk down the drain and / or confiscating raw cheese and fresh produce for destruction. Video now posted at NaturalNews.TV: http://www.naturalnews.tv/v.asp?v=A…

Note to NaturalNews readers: We believe this was an ILLEGAL raid being conducted mob-style by government thugs who respect no law and no rights. This is an all-out war by the government against people who try to promote healthy raw and living foods.

James is now being held at the Pacific division police department at Centinela and Culver in Los Angeles. He is being held at $123,000 bail with no possibility of using bail bonds. Law enforcement has demanded that if he comes up with the money to cover bail, he must disclose to them all the sources of that money. (This is an illegal demand!)

Massive public protests are needed to teach these criminal law enforcement agencies that they cannot illegally arrest and persecute individuals merely for buying and selling raw milk and cheese. We are organizing a public protest day in cooperation with James. Please watch NaturalNews for an announcement of that. Story is developing…

Right now, James needs help raising money with his legal defense needs. Our non-profit Consumer Wellness Center is currently serving as the collection point for donations. You may donate right now at www.ConsumerWellness.org (100% of the donations go directly to James’ legal defense needs, the Consumer Wellness Center keeps nothing).

See this video of James Stewart talking about his farm:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=foKg…

Story on InfoWars.com:

http://www.infowars.com/raw-food-ra…

Here’s background on Healthy Family Farms which was also targeted in the raid:

Healthy Family Farms in Santa Paula, California:

“Healthy Family Farms is a sustainable, pasture-based farming operation. We raise all our livestock on pasture. We raise all of our animals from birth. We do not feed any of our animals soy, choosing instead to feed animals as they are designed to be fed. This results in healthy, sturdy animals needing no hormones, antibiotics, or other artificial “enhancements.” We harvest our animals humanely by hand before they are delivered to the farmers markets. We never freeze our products. In addition to farmer’s markets sales, we have an active CSA, which offers discounts to our valued members.”

Watch NaturalNews.com for more breaking news on this story. We are fed up with these illegal mob-style raids against the raw foods community! It is time to protest and fight back against tyranny!

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/033220_Rawesome_Foods_armed_raids.html

 

Rawesome Foods founder to be prosecuted under special environmental crimes unit in LA

(NaturalNews) Details are still sketchy on this, as we’re breaking this news straight from the front lines in the aftermath of the government raid on Rawesome Foods in Venice, California (http://www.naturalnews.com/033220_R…), but NaturalNews is now being told that the LA County District Attorney will not be prosecuting James Stewart and the other “conspirators” who were arrested yesterday for selling raw milk. Instead, a special “environmental crimes” prosecutor will reportedly be prosecuting the case, which now consists of 13 criminal charges, some of which are felony crimes.

NaturalNews has not yet learned the name of this special environmental prosecutor, but the explanation smacks of the new environmental police who have been promoted through various propaganda outlets as being upstanding protect-the-Earth cops who arrest people for burning too much gas or using non-recyclable cups to drink beverages.

The issue of environmental police has been covered extensively by Alex Jones at InfoWars.com, where he refers to them as eco fascists. See this page to read more about how propaganda ads are being used to get people comfortable with the idea that “environmental crimes” should result in police slamming your face into the ground and handcuffing you:

http://www.infowars.com/audis-eco-f…

The videos on that page have been disabled, but here’s an alternate link of the green police Superbowl Ad:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wq58

(Astonishing ad. You MUST watch it.)

The real aim of the green police agenda

Far from being a campaign merely to protect the Earth (which would be great if it were true), the new “green police” agenda is now being used as a way to terrorize innocent Americans as we’re seeing right now with Rawesome Foods. What’s especially frustrating about all this is that some of the Al Gore followers who largely supported the idea of the green police are, in fact, the very same people who are now being targeted for advocating raw milk. They had been misled, sadly.

You see, eco fascism was never really about protecting the planet and promoting sustainable living. It was always about enslaving the population, destroying health freedom, and mandating total corporate conformity at gunpoint. That’s the lesson we’re now learning from the Rawesome Foods raids, where LA County Sheriffs literally poured thousands of dollars worth of wholesome raw milk down the drain and arrested the buying club owner who will be prosecuted as by a special environmental prosecutor.

For the record, I’m a huge advocate of green living, renewable energy, and green consumer practices — but NOT at the cost of surrendering our Constitutional freedoms to a group of government badge-wearing eco terrorists who raid our raw milk clubs and charge people with conspiracy crimes for “mislabeling cheese.” I believe in solar power, I raise my own chickens and grow a portion of my own food NOT because Al Gore told me to, but because it just makes common sense in today’s unpredictable world to be prepared for food supply disruptions and power grid failures.

I try to minimize my eco-footprint on the planet not because some bureaucracy forces me to, but because I want to support the long-term continuation of sustainable life on our planet. Yes, I’m “green” in my daily practices, and at the same time I’m strongly invested in the powerful ideas of liberty and freedom for individuals. “Green” should never mean we have to mean we give up our freedoms. Forcing people to “go green” at the end of a gun isn’t acceptable. It must be done through education and awareness.

Green cops are no better than regular corrupt cops

It’s very clear to me that much of the political talk about saving the planet and going green was really just a campaign to encourage people to surrender their freedoms to yet another tyrannical enforcement bureaucracy that will abuse its power just like every other government agency abuses its power. “Green police” is just another excuse to put tens of thousands of new badge-wearing power trippers on the streets who will terrorize innocent citizens.

And that’s really, really sad, because I think the core idea of “going green” in our day-to-day lives is extremely valuable and valid. We should stop pouring toxic chemicals down the drain. We should collect rainwater and drink that instead of drinking toxic city water. And for that matter, our own government should stop dumping toxic fluoride chemicals into the water supply in the first place!

Meanwhile, the real environmental threats to our planet — such as the Fukushima meltdowns, the toxic chemicals produced by Big Pharma, and the DNA contamination of our planet with GMOs — remains totally ignored. That’s how this game always works: The big corporate criminals run free while the little people are persecuted in the name of “green.”

How insane is it, really, that this raw milk and cheese buyer’s club is now being prosecuted by the very same people who were given power by the green police movement?

All I can say is, beware of creating new police in any form, because when you create police, military or political forces that have power of your lives, they will ALWAYS abuse that power. Eventually, every bureaucracy or institution becomes totally corrupted by corporate influence, and then it no longer serves the people but the corporatocracy that really runs the show.

Notice that all the wealthy elite who pay no corporate taxes and fly around in private jets aren’t being targeted for arrest by the green police? There’s a reason for that. The whole campaign is designed to muzzle the little guy and remind the slaves that they’re really just slaves.

Pay attention, SLAVE. Drink your dead pasteurized milk, take your psychotropic drugs, gulp down your fluoridated water and shut the hell up. You’re under the control of the new eco fascists now, and it’s no longer just talk. It’s all coming to a farm near you.

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/033233_green_police_environmental_crimes.html

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FDA is Considering Adding Agent Orange to Your Dinner Plate

Posted on 02 July 2011 by admin

Total Video Length: 1:12:45
Download Interview TranscriptHere, Andrew Kimbrell, Executive Director of the Center for Food Safety since 1997, and one of the United States’ leading environmental attorneys, shares his ideas about the ideal future of food.

Visit the Mercola Video Library

Dr. Mercola’s comments:

Mr. Kimbrell is one of the United States’ leading environmental attorneys, and an author of articles and books on environment, technology and society, and food issues. He’s also the Executive Director of the Center for Food Safety, which he founded in 1997 as a way to prevent genetic engineering and sewage sludge remediation from becoming acceptable practices under the organic laws.

Organics and Beyond

But the Center for Food Safety has far grander goals than simply fighting for pro-organic laws.

“[W]e call it “Organic and Beyond,” Kimbrell says.

“We do that because we have to defend the organic standards. Over the last eight years, virtually the entire government’s all three branches, from judiciary to executive to congress, were trying to undermine the organic rule. It didn’t get as much publicity as it should have…

But we don’t want just to defend the organic rule in food. We want to evolve the ethic.

While organic is great and we need to defend that, we also want to make sure that we extend it to include for instance issues of animal welfare… We want to have bio-diverse crops… We want to make sure that our farming is local, in appropriate scale. We also want to make sure that we’re socially just. Just because we’re organic it doesn’t mean that we’re treating farm workers in a socially just manner.

Those are the beyond organic aspects of the future of food that we’re really interested in, which is a humane, local, appropriate scale, biodiverse, and socially just [system].

If we can think of the organic not as the ceiling for our food in the future but as the floor and we build this house, our future food house with those other elements… then I think we really will have done something.”

Saying “No” to Some Things is Saying “Yes” to Others

As you probably know, we are inundated with tens of thousands of chemicals these days, which have never before existed on Earth—many of which are extremely toxic. Much of the rise in chronic disease can be traced back to the excessive exposure to toxins from our food, air, water supply, and many of the personal- and household products we use on a daily basis.

What led us to this point?

In a word, technology.

For all the benefits and wonders many technologies bring, there are also some profound downsides, especially when they’re introduced without proper safety testing and forethought of the long-term consequences. Nuclear energy is just one glaring recent example. But this applies to food as well, as biotech has crept in to modify nature’s bounty in all sorts of ways, and mass-producing farms have altered the way food is grown to include massive amounts of chemicals.

“[O]rganic is really amazing because organic says: we’re looking at chemicals, and fertilizers and pesticides and we’re saying no. We’re looking at genetic engineering and we’re saying no. We’re looking at irradiated foods and we’re saying no,” Kimbrell says.

“We’re saying, progress sometimes means saying no to these technologies and saying yes to a far more natural, a far more sustainable way of doing business. It’s quite a remarkable revolution, not just because of the food, but because of the consciousness.

It’s saying progress doesn’t mean more and more exploitation and manipulation of nature through technology, it means more and more integrating the human into the entire natural context and learning to live within that context.”

“We Defend what We Love”

Kimbrell’s passion for this work stems from learning to love nature through his brother, who was an avid outdoorsman. He also worked on a farm for two and a half years before going to law school, and while he loved it, he wasn’t very good at it. The farmer he worked for suggested he go to law school instead, and “see what you can do for farms and for the whole community of life that makes for a healthy farming system.”

It turned out to be good advice. Some of his first work as an environmental attorney was in defending rivers and natural areas from exploitation, which, over time “evolved into an understanding of how technologies were hurting the natural world.”

“Those two things – my love of the natural world and my work on a farm– sort of coalesced, if you will, to create my desire to use my legal skills and whatever skills we have, to accomplish the goals that we just talked about,” Kimbrell says.

Food and the Environment

As Kimbrell states in this interview, food is the most intimate relationship you have with your environment.

“I’m always amused when people say, I’m not interested in food issues, I’m interested in environmental issues. I would say, “Whoa, let’s sit down for a second to talk about that.” There is no more intimate relationship that we have with the environment than what we eat.

To me it is a great moment for everybody out there to say, ‘I’m making a choice every day—a choice that I can control to a great extent—of what I eat, what my family eats, and to a certain extent what people around me eat.

That is to me a really important moment, because in that moment, you can reflect your views on social justice, your views on animal welfare, your views on the environment, on protecting our waters, protecting our air, protecting our soil, protecting our farm communities and protecting our community health. All of that is based in that decision that we all make several times a day.”

The Dangers of Genetically Modified Foods

From Kimbrell’s perspective, as well as my own, genetically modified (GM) food is one of the biggest threats to life and health we currently face on this planet.

“It turns out that [genetic engineering] is a lot more difficult than people thought,” Kimbrell says. “There are a couple of reasons for that. For example, folks may remember the Human Genome Project. We were supposed to have about 100,000 to 140,000 genes. We only have about 20,000 genes it turns out. That’s about as many as a worm.

A kernel of corn has, any cell on that kernel has 35,000 genes… They just did the genome of wheat and it has 80,000 genes. So wheat has four times as many genes as humans.

It turns out that the biology of these crops isn’t some simple thing but extremely complex and it turns out there is a huge amount we do not know. So this idea that you can take a little piece of DNA called a gene and switch it around between plants and animals, and human and plants, and bacteria and plants, and get predictable results turn out not to be true.”

At the present time, the most prominent genetic modification of crops is the modification to make plants immune to herbicides.

Since you can spray these crops with large amounts of chemicals without killing the crop, this, in theory, should significantly reduce weed growth. However, in the years since the introduction of “RoundUp ready” corn and soy, we’ve witnessed increasingly profound downsides to these unnatural seeds, including brand new “super weeds” that are also impervious to RoundUp (glyphosate).

According to Kimbrell, we now have 10-20 million acres of these super weeds that you can’t kill. They’re the thickness of a baseball bat, and they loom six to seven feet tall!

GM Crops Demand HIGHER Levels of Toxic Herbicides and Pesticides

Additionally, what many fail to realize is the incredible increase in toxic chemicals being used on these crops, which eventually ends up in your stomach.

“[I]n the last two years we’ve sprayed 153 million more pounds of herbicide on our crops because of the corn and soy Roundup-ready crops…” Kimbrell says.

This dilemma is leading us further and further into a quagmire of increasingly toxic remedies.

“Right now, the FDA is looking to approve crops resistant to 2,4-D, which is an element in Agent Orange,” Kimbrell says. “I kid you not, Dow Chemical is doing this. Corn and soy that has been genetically engineered so you can spray as much 2,4-D (Agent Orange) on these crops as you want and it won’t kill them.

Now that Roundup is becoming less and less useful, they’re looking for newer and more toxic herbicides that they will bathe our crops in, in order to make money…

Monsanto is now coming up with Dicamba, which is extremely dangerous. It’s a volatilizing herbicide. In other words, you spray it and under certain weather conditions it’s going to go back up from the ground, re-volatilizing to a cloud and it could go a mile or two away and come back down and it will kill everything green. It’s a very toxic herbicide.”

This poses tremendous challenges for organic farmers, threatens our environment and human health everywhere, whether you happen to live in an agricultural area, or simply eat the food produced from these now highly toxic crops.

  • Where is the breaking point?
  • When will the food produced become too toxic to eat?
  • And what do we do then?

GM Foods Line the Pockets of Chemical Companies

There can be little doubt that the technology of genetically engineered crop seeds has little to do with saving the planet, and a lot to do with promoting herbicide use and increasing herbicide sales. The major purveyors of GM crop seeds also make the chemicals and herbicides to go along with those seeds.

These companies include:

Monsanto Dow Dupont
Syngenta Bayer BASF

“These are herbicide companies that have invented a way to sell a lot more of their chemicals,” Kimbrell says.

In the end, we may be over-run with superweeds that cannot be killed even by dousing it with Agent Orange, and GM crops that contaminate all its conventional and organic counterparts. That will be their legacy to our children and grandchildren…

Only Sustainable, Smaller-Scale Farming Can Successfully Feed the Planet

“I think one of the great things about the Organic and Beyond movement is that we are trying to go back and learn,” Kimbrell says. “We can use some modern technologies that help us better understand agronomy, but basically go back into a sustainable, smaller, more localized farming system.

What makes this so great is that two studies just came out of the UN, and it turns out that the way to feed the world is through small and medium sized organic and sustainable farms because they are creating a lot more food!

Right now, we have so many acres devoted to corn but you cannot live on corn alone. As a matter of fact you shouldn’t be living on much corn at all really. That’s not really food. That’s a crop. It’s a crop that’s used to feed animals, for biofuels and for fructose corn syrup and other additives.

Small medium sized farms have numerous diverse crops and animals. It’s a far more sustainable way to not produce massive crops but actual food.”

Change is an Uphill Battle that Oftentimes Requires Litigation

Unfortunately, despite the evidence showing that our current agricultural system is unsustainable, if not downright dangerous, change is hard to come by. The agricultural committees are primarily run by the agribusiness industry, which will always vote to protect their own best interests.

One effective way to slow down the madness, as it were, is through litigation. According to Kimbrell, litigation has halted the introduction of a number of genetically engineered crops, such as GM:

  • Wheat
  • Rice
  • Bentgrass

Market campaigns also successfully thwarted the introduction of GM tomatoes and potatoes.

“We can vote with our dollar in the marketplace by buying organic, by buying non-GMO,” Kimbrell says. “But we can also then make sure that we use the courts as best we can to halt some of these damaging technologies while we promote this Organic and Beyond vision. And everyone can get involved.”

Current Campaigns to Eliminate GMOs

The Center for Food Safety, along with a number of other organic businesses, organic organizations, and non-governmental organizations, are now starting a campaign to demand labeling of all GM foods.  This is the most sensible strategy as over 90 percent of the public do not want GM foods and if they had a choice they would avoid Them. We don’t need legislation to outlaw GM, we just need an informed public to make the right choice.

Genetically engineered foods are required to be labeled in the 15 European Union nations, Russia, Japan, China, Australia, New Zealand, and many other countries around the world, but not the US or Canada…

“You’re looking at a food that offers you risk and no benefits. It is true because the companies and the government have never looked at it. We don’t know the exact extent of that risk but we know the risk is there.

What rationale person would ever pick a food if it was labeled? … The GMO offers me no additional benefits, and only additional health risks. What would you choose?

No one is going to choose the GMO version. That’s why they don’t want labeling.”

Another very important aspect of labeling is traceability of health effects. This can literally become a life and death issue. This is yet another reason why the industry is fighting tooth and nail to avoid labeling, because they know that without labeling it’s virtually impossible to trace any health effects that may be associated with the GM ingredients. This releases them from liability.

During the Presidential campaign of 2008, Obama put in writing a promise to support mandatory labeling on GMOs.

It’s time to hold him to that promise!

I urge you to sign the petition for mandatory labeling, and to share it with everyone you know!

Also, if you don’t already have a copy of the Non-GMO Shopping Guide, please print one out and refer to it often. It can help you identify and avoid foods with GMOs. Also remember to look for products (including organic products) that feature the Non-GMO Project Verified Seal to be sure that at-risk ingredients have been tested for GMO content. Many health food stores will carry these products.

You can also download the free iPhone application that is available in the iTunes store. You can find it by searching for ShopNoGMO in the applications.

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Hermaphrodite GMO Goats Modified with Human Genes to be Milked in New Zealand

Posted on 24 June 2011 by admin

By Steffan Browning
Soil & Health Association of New Zealand

AgResearch’s genetically engineered (GE) goat experiments have a new bizarre twist with surviving GE pregnancies producing mostly [hermaphrodite*] offspring, that AgResearch staff term ‘goys,’ according to the Soil & Health Association of NZ.

An AgResearch farm manager recently revealed to Soil & Health and GE Free NZ, during a tour of its Ruakura GE animal field trial site, that most of the GE goats produced were [hermaphrodite]. It appeared that about 75% were “goys” with the remainder female.

“The “goys”, females in sterile male bodies, are to be induced into milking to ascertain whether the intended genetically engineered (GE) human protein will be expressed in the milk,” said Soil & Health – Organic NZ spokesperson Steffan Browning.

Previous GE cattle pregnancies have only 5% success, with the goats reported to have a success rate of possibly 15%, although one flock of about 18 recipient does failed to hold one GE embryo of a particular experiment. AgResearch has a track record of resultant GE offspring prone to a variety of disabilities including arthritis, respiratory distress, deformities and ruptured ovaries.(1)

“The 15 “goys” we saw had four true sisters, with one induced to milking at six months following AgResearch’s in-house ethics committee approval.”(2)

“Although grateful to AgResearch for hosting GE Free NZ President Claire Bleakley and myself for a tour of the AgResearch Ruakura GE animal facility, we were concerned at the continued animal welfare issues and the level of contaminated surface water that was draining off the experimental  property.”

“Considering that a recent report showed AgResearch scientists intentionally corrupting monitoring research of risky microbial horizontal gene transfer (HGT), these unnatural reproductive outcomes and continued animal welfare issues, should spell the end of the Ruakura GE experiments,” said Mr Browning.(3)

“Good animal welfare records and a GE free reputation are very important for New Zealand’s trading image and increasingly demanded by consumers. Cruel experiments for a GE farming future are not what either New Zealanders or valuable overseas consumers want.”(4)

“AgResearch is at the cruel operator end of a business partnership with a dirty drug manufacturer, Genzyme, who has been investigated and fined by the US Food & Drug Administration (FDA) for poor manufacturing practices.” (5)

“Knowing that it would be a nuisance for AgResearch and its overseas partners, the government disbanded the New Zealand Bioethics Council two years ago in full knowledge that distressing animal welfare issues are clearly predictable in GE research. The Bioethics Council had been calling for ethics reviews of all GE animal experiments.” (6)

“The AgResearch Ruakura facility currently is the only active GE field trial operating in the country, although Scion intends planting some GE pine trees at its GE field trial site in Rotorua this winter.”

Closing both field trials could return Aotearoa New Zealand’s environment to a full GE free status.

Soil & Health wants AgResearch’s cruel and unnatural animal experiments stopped immediately, the reinstatement of the New Zealand Bioethics Council, and for the government to move quickly towards desirable high value sustainable, animal friendly, GE free, and organic production.

NOTES:

(1) http://www.ermanz.govt.nz/no/compliance/agresearch.html ERMA Annual reports on GMF98009 and GMD 02028

(2) Photographs attached and available at a higher resolution.

(3) http://www.organic-systems.org/journal/Vol_6(1)/pdf/6(1)-Heinemann-pp3-19..pdf

(4) http://www.organicnz.org/soil-and-health-press/1007/kiwi-poll-rejects-ge-animals/%20

(5) http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN2124303620100421

(6) http://www.mfe.govt.nz/website/closed-sites/images/bioethics.jpgNew Zealand Bioethics Council, August 2004 Report: The Cultural, Ethical and Spiritual Dimensions of the Use of Human Genes in Other Organisms.

Ed. Note: The press release uses the term “transgender” which is a misnomer. Transgender means to change gender, whereas hermaphrodites are born (usually sterile) with sex organs of both genders, or with the physical appearance of one gender and the DNA of the other. (See, e.g. Wikipedia on Hermaphrodite and on Intersex, which applies to humans.) Relating to humans, see this Intersex Society of North America FAQ page.

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California votes to label (but not ban) GMO Frankenfish

Posted on 04 May 2011 by admin

With the USDA expected to approve genetically modified (GMO) salmon in the near future – without any serious safety research – it may devolve on the states to try to minimize the potential negative impact.

The California Assembly Health Committee in Sacramento on May 3 approved a bill requiring that all GMO salmon sold in California contain clear and prominent labeling.

Assemblymember Jared Huffman introduced the bill, AB 88, due to widespread dissatisfaction by consumer, fishing and environmental groups and Indian Tribes with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) current review of the first-ever proposed commercialization of genetically engineered (GE) Aqua-Bounty salmon.

How would GMO salmon be raised? See: Salmon farms are the filthy feedlots of the sea

“Knowing whether our salmon is genetically engineered is important for a host of reasons, including risks to our native salmon species, and allowing consumers to make dietary choices consistent with concerns they may have for the environment, food safety, and religiously or ethically based dietary restrictions,” said Assemblymember Huffman, in explaining the reason for introducing the bill.

Keep it real, keep it safe

The Center for Food Safety (CFS), a co-sponsor of the bill, and other groups applauded the Health Committee for protecting the public’s right to know how their food is produced.

“The FDA has indicated that it will not require these GE fish to be labeled once they are approved,” said Rebecca Spector, West Coast Director of the Center for Food Safety. “As such, it is incumbent on the California State legislature, starting with the Health Committee, to let the people of California make informed choices about the food they eat by requiring the labeling of GE fish sold in California.”

What’s our beef with GMO salmon? See: The trouble with Monsanto and GMO – Dr David Suzuki spells it out

AB 88 “would provide that food is misbranded if the food is a genetically engineered fish or fish product, as defined, and its labeling does not conspicuously identify the fish or fish product as genetically engineered,” according to the bill language.

Coauthors of the bill include Assembly Members Michael Allen (D-Santa Rosa), Tom Ammiano (D-SF), Wesley Chesbro (D-Arcata), and Bill Monning (D-Carmel). AB 88 will make a stop in the Appropriations Committee before being taken up by the full Assembly.

The right to know

Public opinion clearly and consistently calls for food labeling, according to Spector. Recent polls indicate that 95% of the public want labeling of genetically-modified foods, and that nearly 50% of the public would not eat seafood that has been genetically engineered. Consumers sent nearly 400,000 public comments to FDA demanding the agency reject this application and require mandatory labeling of this transgenic salmon should it decide to approve it.

The Center for Food Safety and other organizations throughout the country recently called on the FDA to recognize the immense public outcry for mandatory labeling of untested, unproved transgenic salmon. If approved, the transgenic salmon – nicknamed “Frankensalmon” or “Frankenfish” by many opponents of GMO food – would be the first genetically engineered animal intended for human consumption.

“Until FDA completes an adequate environmental and human health review of genetically engineered salmon, it is up to individual states to protect consumers and their families,” said Spector. “California has always been a leader in environmental and food safety laws, and AB 88 continues this tradition by protecting the public from a potentially harmful food technology. More importantly, it gives consumers the right to know what they are eating and gives them a choice in the marketplace.”

Broad coalition

Supporters of the legislation include the California State Grange, Consumers Union, Center for Food Safety, California Coastkeeper Alliance, Clean Water Action California, Coastal Environmental Rights Foundation, Commercial Fishermen’s Organization of Morro Bay, Crab Boat Owners Association, Food & Water Watch, Golden Gate Fishermen’s Association, Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations, Sierra Club California, Small Boat Commercial Salmon Fishermen’s Association and South Yuba River Citizens League.

“Although most of Food & Water Watch’s efforts have been focused on national legislation to ban GE salmon such as HR 521 and S 230, rather than to label it, we are campaigning hard for AB 88 because California often sets the precedent for the nation in these sorts of matters,” stated Marie Logan of Food and Water Watch. “Passing AB 88 will send a strong message to legislators nationwide that consumers in California are concerned about genetic engineering of animals. The owner of the company producing GE fish has even admitted publicly that labeling the fish would be tantamount to banning it — so our work is cut out for us.”

“It is clear that California consumers want to know where their food comes from, how it’s made, and if it has been genetically engineered,” explained James Ferro, Policy Analyst for Ocean Conservancy’s aquaculture program. “This bill empowers California consumers to vote with their wallets when it comes to genetically engineered seafood.”

Ferro noted that California is not the only state concerned with the federal government’s potential approval of engineered fish; thirteen other states have introduced similar legislation this year to require labeling of genetically engineered fish or other engineered food.

->Next page: You can’t keep a lid on it

More on Salmon, MLPA and California’s water wars:

Source: Red Green & Blue (http://s.tt/12zxW)

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Scientists Use Human Genes in Animals, So Cows Produce Human-Like Milk—Or Do They?

Posted on 03 April 2011 by admin

Don’t expect to see any human-like milk products on store shelves. That’s just a trick of redirection, hoping you won’t notice the ethical issue of patenting human genetics.

by Heidi Stevenson

3 April 2011

Calf and baby in grass

 

The latest in genetic engineering involves implanting human genes into cow embryos to produce human-like milk. You can imagine who the intended recipients are, can’t you? Just think: There’ll be no need for mommy to risk saggy breasts to feed her baby! Baby won’t know the difference between a bottle and mommy’s breast! No more guilt for not feeding babies what’s best!

Or maybe not.

Scientists in China are claiming to have produced a human-like milk by introducing a human gene into 300 Holstein cows. They’ve inserted the gene for human lysozome (HLZ), which is involved in significantly more than production of milk. It’s an organelle, which is found in most cells, that’s involved in intracellular digestion. Thus, the entire cow’s body has been turned over to production of human-like cellular digestion.

No mention is made of how this affects the cows, but it’s difficult to believe that it’s anything but harmful, likely resulting in misery for the animals. Nor does it look like the result is anything that even approaches human-like milk.

Human-Like Milk?

The authors of the study, “Characterization of Bioactive Recombinant Human Lysozyme Expressed in Milk of Cloned Transgenic Cattle”, published in PLoS, state that HLZ “increases the levels of beneficial intestinal microflora and strengthens disease resistance in infants”. This is fine, but this is the only thing that they’ve introduced into cows’ milk. They have not duplicated the nutrient composition, though their hype would have you believe that’s been done.

Professor Ning Li, the project leader, stated, “The milk tastes stronger than normal milk.” That alone clarifies the fact that the result is far removed from human milk. The single most significant taste difference between human milk and cow’s milk—or most others—is its sweetness, not its strong taste.

 

Milk is, of course, the perfect food for the offspring of the mother. It provides perfect nutrition and a natural source of antibodies to prevent disease in the young. A breast-fed baby is known to have lower risk of disease and better development.

Obviously, the physiology and diet of the mother will have a great deal to do with the quality and substance of the milk—and the simple fact is that a cow is not a human. A cow doesn’t eat the same sort of food a human does. A cow has four stomachs, instead of a human’s single stomach. A cow’s digestion process includes chewing its cud. When was the last time you saw someone chewing cud?

A cow is never going to produce human milk, even with a human gene imposed on it. A cow’s physiology is simply too different. So what is this human-like milk?

Real Purpose of the Human-Like Milk

The primary intention of the researchers can be discerned in this quote from the second paragraph of the study report:

Furthermore, some reports have shown that HLZ has anti-fungal and anti-viral activities. Moreover, changes in the HLZ concentration in serum or urine is used as a diagnostic marker for certain diseases. Also, HLZ is under study as a potentially useful material for use in food products, cosmetics (as a preservative), medicine feed, baby formula, and so on.

 

The researchers are focused primarily on using HLZ as a chemical. Cows are being genetically modified so that they will produce a chemical that they hope to use as a drug, diagnostic product, and additive to foods and cosmetics. If they can also convince the public that it’s a health food, then the profits will be even greater.

The scientists have also created cows that produce milk with the protein lactoferrin, which assists the immune system in babies. In other instances, they have increased the milk fat and changed the milk solids. However, each of these is a single change. They have not been combined.

The reality is that there has not been any milk produced by cows that comes near duplicating human milk. All that’s been done is the recreation of single human molecules in cow’s milk.

Suffering and Death of the Cows

While the scientists are claiming that their cloning and GM technologies are harmless, the fact is that their experiments have been extremely harmful to the animals. During two of them, 42 calves with human genes were born. However, 10 died shortly after birth and 6 died within six months. Only 26 survived. Most of the deaths were from gastrointestinal disease. That does not bode well for the health or comfort of the surviving animals.

The Director of GeneWatch UK stated:

We have major concerns about this research to genetically modify cows with human genes. There are major welfare issues with genetically modified animals as you get high numbers of still births.

There is a question about whether milk from these cows is going to be safe for humans and it is really hard to tell that unless you do large clinical trials like you would a drug, so there will be uncertainty about whether it could be harmful to some people.

Ethically there are issues about mass producing animals in this way.

 

Deformed calves are being brought into the world to suffer horrendously so that a few people can make profits from their anguish. And we haven’t any reason to believe that these products are safe for humans.

False Claims for the Technology

Biology Professor at the University of Nottingham, Keith Campbell, states:

Genetically modified animals and plants are not going to be harmful unless you deliberately put in a gene that is going to be poisonous. Why would anyone do that in a food? Genetically modified food, if done correctly, can provide huge benefit for consumers in terms of producing better products.

 

Of course, Mr. Campbell doesn’t offer any basis on which he makes his claims. That’s because he can’t. There are no studies to document them.

Hype and Human Genes

So why are the scientists making irrational claims for their research? The answer is in the ultimate goal: profits. By creating buzz about what they’re doing, they can bring interest to their projects, while redirecting attention away from their real goal. The scientists are working in conjunction with Beijing GenProtein Biotechnology Company. This association is so close that four of them are employees.

Everything about the project is focused on publicity. The lead researcher, Ning Li, makes claims about the experiments that are simply not justified by the results. He stated:

The modified bovine milk is a possible substitute for human milk. It fulfilled the conception of humanising the bovine milk.

 

As explained above, that claim is far from reality. When a scientist makes such claims that are unjustified by studies, it can only be explained by a desire to sell products.

Perhaps they will ultimately manage to create cows that produce a human-like milk. First, though, the only thing that makes sense is that they intend to use the human molecules produced by the cows’ milk to evade questions about patenting human genes.

While everyone’s attention is focused on the idea of producing human-like milk from cows—a feat they aren’t even close to accomplishing—they will be working away at producing patentable products based on human genes by the convenient sleight-of-hand of slipping them into cows.

Don’t expect to see any human-like milk products on store shelves. That’s nothing but a trick of redirection away from the genuine ethical issue of patenting human genetics.

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GMO Cows produce ‘Human’ Milk

Posted on 02 April 2011 by admin

Scientists have created genetically modified cattle that produce “human” milk in a bid to make cows’ milk more nutritious.

Scientists have created genetically modified cattle that produce human milk in a bid to make cows' milk more nutritious.

Researchers say they are able to create cows that produce milk containing a human protein called lysozyme Photo: PA

The scientists have successfully introduced human genes into 300 dairy cows to produce milk with the same properties as human breast milk.

Human milk contains high quantities of key nutrients that can help to boost the immune system of babies and reduce the risk of infections.

The scientists behind the research believe milk from herds of genetically modified cows could provide an alternative to human breast milk and formula milk for babies, which is often criticised as being an inferior substitute.

They hope genetically modified dairy products from herds of similar cows could be sold in supermarkets. The research has the backing of a major biotechnology company.

The work is likely to inflame opposition to GM foods. Critics of the technology and animal welfare groups reacted angrily to the research, questioning the safety of milk from genetically modified animals and its effect on the cattle’s health.

But Professor Ning Li, the scientist who led the research and director of the State Key Laboratories for AgroBiotechnology at the China Agricultural University insisted that the GM milk would be as safe to drink as milk from ordinary dairy cows.

He said: “The milk tastes stronger than normal milk.

“We aim to commercialize some research in this area in coming three years. For the “human-like milk”, 10 years or maybe more time will be required to finally pour this enhanced milk into the consumer’s cup.”

China is now leading the way in research on genetically modified food and the rules on the technology are more relaxed than those in place in Europe.

The researchers used cloning technology to introduce human genes into the DNA of Holstein dairy cows before the genetically modified embryos were implanted into surrogate cows.

Writing in the scientific peer-reviewed journal Public Library of Science One, the researchers said they were able to create cows that produced milk containing a human protein called lysozyme,

Lysozyme is an antimicrobial protein naturally found in large quantities in human breast milk. It helps to protect infants from bacterial infections during their early days of life.

They created cows that produce another protein from human milk called lactoferrin, which helps to boost the numbers of immune cells in babies. A third human milk protein called alpha-lactalbumin was also produced by the cows.

The scientists also revealed at an exhibition at the China Agricultural University that they have boosted milk fat content by around 20 per cent and have also changed the levels of milk solids, making it closer to the composition of human milk as well as having the same immune-boosting properties.

Professor Li and his colleagues, who have been working with the Beijing GenProtein Biotechnology Company, said their work has shown it was possible to “humanise” cows milk.

In all, the scientists said they have produced a herd of around 300 cows that are able to produce human-like milk.

The transgenic animals are physically identical to ordinary cows.

Writing in the journal, Professor Li said: “Our study describes transgenic cattle whose milk offers the similar nutritional benefits as human milk.

“The modified bovine milk is a possible substitute for human milk. It fulfilled the conception of humanising the bovine milk.”

Speaking to The Sunday Telegraph, he added the “human-like milk” would provide “much higher nutritional content”. He said they had managed to produce three generations of GM cows but for commercial production there would need to be large numbers of cows produced.

He said: “Human milk contains the ‘just right’ proportions of protein, carbohydrates, fats, minerals, and vitamins for an infant’s optimal growth and development.

“As our daily food, the cow’s milk provided us the basic source of nutrition. But the digestion and absorption problems made it not the perfect food for human being.”

The researchers also insist having antimicrobial proteins in the cows milk can also be good for the animals by helping to reduce infections of their udders.

Genetically modified food has become a highly controversial subject and currently they can only be sold in the UK and Europe if they have passed extensive safety testing.

The consumer response to GM food has also been highly negative, resulting in many supermarkets seeking to source products that are GM free.

Campaigners claim GM technology poses a threat to the environment as genes from modified plants can get into wild plant populations and weeds, while they also believe there are doubts about the safety of such foods.

Scientists insist genetically modified foods are unlikely to pose a threat to food safety and in the United States consumers have been eating genetically modified foods for more decades.

However, during two experiments by the Chinese researchers, which resulted in 42 transgenic calves being born, just 26 of the animals survived after ten died shortly after birth, most with gastrointestinal disease, and a further six died within six months of birth.

Researchers accept that the cloning technology used in genetic modification can affect the development and survival of cloned animals, although the reason why is not well understood.

A spokesman for the Royal Society for the Protection of Animals said the organisation was “extremely concerned” about how the GM cows had been produced.

She said: “Offspring of cloned animals often suffer health and welfare problems, so this would be a grave concern.

“Why do we need this milk – what is it giving us that we haven’t already got.”

Helen Wallace, director of biotechnology monitoring group GeneWatch UK, said: “We have major concerns about this research to genetically modify cows with human genes.

“There are major welfare issues with genetically modified animals as you get high numbers of still births.

“There is a question about whether milk from these cows is going to be safe from humans and it is really hard to tell that unless you do large clinical trials like you would a drug, so there will be uncertainty about whether it could be harmful to some people.

“Ethically there are issues about mass producing animals in this way.”

Professor Keith Campbell, a biologist at the University of Nottingham works with transgenic animals, said: “Genetically modified animals and plants are not going to be harmful unless you deliberately put in a gene that is going to be poisonous. Why would anyone do that in a food?

“Genetically modified food, if done correctly, can provide huge benefit for consumers in terms of producing better products.”

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2 Mexican States Ban GMO Corn

Posted on 05 March 2011 by admin

The Mexican States of Tlaxcala and Michoacán each passed legislation banning the planting of genetically modified corn to protect natural plants from further contamination of transgenes.  Together, both states produce about a third of all of Mexico’s corn. Below this story is a detailed timeline of genetic contamination and legislation in Mexico.

By Aleira Lara
Greenpeace

It’s been an exciting couple of months in the debate over Mexican maize with some good news for Mexican agriculture and biodiversity. However, the consequences of recent frosts in northern states and the aggressive propaganda of the industry is still putting at risk Mexican’s basic grain. Here’s the latest:

GM FREE STATES ARISING IN MEXICO:

Because of the lack of interest of federal government to protect the large diversity of Mexican maize against the contamination of GM crop, Michoacán State congress passed by a majority the “Law of Promotion and Protection of Native Maize as Alimentary Patrimony of Michoacán State”, which will allow the protection of 18 of the 59 races of this crop that exist in Mexico. Michoacán is the fourth largest maize producer on a national scale and represents 30 percent of Mexico’s total maize crop area.

Michoacán’s initiative follows the recent approval of the “Law of Promotion and Protection of Native Maize as an original patrimony, in constant diversification, and alimentary for Tlaxcala State”. Both states decided to go ahead with the protection of such an important crop for Mexican society.

This process is directly related to the lack of political will of the federal government to promote local production and the fierce interest of multinational companies such as Monsanto, Syngenta, Pioneer and Dow Agroscience to impose GM maize within Mexican territory. We hope that this process will continue and that more and more states will protect their maizes races, especially the northern states that are currently developing GM maize experimental trials such as “Sinaloa” and “Chihuahua”.

Learn more about the origin and diversity of maize in the American continent, TlaxcalaMichoacán.

ANOTHER DEFEAT FOR MONSANTO

In January, the secretary of agriculture announced his decision to deny pilot trials to Monsanto in the State of Sinaloa – principal producer of white corn for human consumption in Mexico. Pilot trials are the next step after the experimental stage.We have been working hard in this state, facing the will of local authorities that are closely linked to the industry and have distributed GM maize propaganda widely within the region.

Recently we’ve released a new report ““Cultivos transgénicos: cero ganancias” (GM crops,zero profit”) in local meetings. Moreover, in 2007 we made a formal complaint to theProcuraduría General de Protección al Ambiente (Profepa) (Environment Protection Agency).We received additional information in 2010 related to the irregularities in GM trials in Sinaloa state. We published this information and we asked for the suspension of experimental trials in the country. Here is the what the government press release had to say: This is why all Federal Government resolutions are based in scientific principles are decided impartially according to the Law of Biosafety of Genetically Modified Organisms and all the implications it has of official institutions that are concerned”

Read the whole press release in Spanish.

BIOTECH INDUSTRY’S PROPAGANDA AFTER BAD HARVESTS

On the other side, the consequences of recent frosts in northern states on maize production and the aggressive propaganda of the industry is still putting Mexican’s basic grain at risk.

Our warnings to the Mexican government have fallen on deaf ears and now the tragic loss of more than 5 millions foods grain confirms our worse fears: a model that neglects and excludes indigenous and small corn producers from public policies, that ignores and doesn’t take care of the ecological production and instead concentrates the nation’s resources in mono-crop industrial agriculture is vulnerable to massive failure. The biotech industry won’t hold back and wants to take advantage of the recent crisis to push forward the planting of its transgenic seeds as the magic tool against climate extremes. We are fighting hard to counter these false statements despite of their strong lobbying. The biotech companies are trying to take advantage of a dramatic situation directly related to the economical model they represent.Our struggle for Mexican maize, people and agriculture is still on, and we hope that this year will be full of victories for our campaign, in order to prevent Mexico to be a center of origin of a basic grain to liberate the GM crop on a commercial scale within its territory.

TIMELINE

(Data thru 2006 from History Commons)

1998: Mexico Bans GM Crops

Mexico bans the planting of genetically modified crops. [Mother Jones, 7/9/2002]

July 1999: Grupo Maseca Says it will Stop Using GM Corn

Grupo Maseca, Mexico’s top producer of corn flour, says it will phase out its use of genetically modified corn. Mexico purchased $500 million of US corn in 1998. [Food & Drink Weekly, 9/13/1999Canadian Business, 10/8/1999]

October 2000: Genetically Modified Genes Found in Native Mexican Maize

Dr. Ignacio Chapela, a microbial ecologist, and his assistant, David Quist, a graduate student at UC Berkeley, discover the presence of genetically modified (GM) genes in native Mexican maize growing in the remote hills of Oaxaca, Mexico. The contaminant genes contain DNA sequences from the cauliflower mosaic virus, which is often used as a promoter to “switch on” insecticidal or herbicidal properties in GM plants. Contamination is also found in samples from a government food store that purchases animal feed from the US. The Oaxaca region is considered to be the birthplace of maize and the world’s center of diversity for corn, “exactly the kind of repository of genetic variation that environmentalists and many scientists had hoped to protect from contamination,” the New York Times reports. Scientists worry that the genes could spread through the region’s corn population reducing its genetic diversity. Critics of genetically modified crops have long argued that the technology cannot be contained. According to Dr. Norman C. Ellstrand, evolutionary biologist at University of California at Riverside, the discovery “shows in today’s modern world how rapidly genetic material can move from one place to another.” The findings are not good news for the biotech industry which is currently lobbying Brazil, the European Union, and Mexico to lift their embargoes on genetically modified crops. [New York Times, 10/2/2001; Manchester Guardian Weekly, 12/12/2001; BBC, 3/13/2002] It is later learned that the contamination resulted from Oaxacan peasants planting kernels they purchased from a local feed store. Though there’s a moratorium on the growing of GM crops, there’s no such ban on animal feed containing GM seed. [Cox News, 10/2/2001]

September 18, 2001: Mexican Government Says It Has Found GM Contamination in Native Mexican Maize

Mexico’s Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources announces that it has found genetically modified (GM) corn growing in 15 different localities. It began investigating potential GM contamination after two Berkeley scientists found maize growing in Oaxaca (see October 2000) that was contaminated with genetically engineered DNA sequences from the cauliflower mosaic virus. [New York Times, 10/2/2001] Mexico does not release its study until January 2002 (see January 2002).

(Late 2001): Ecologist Warned Not To Publish Study on GM Contamination in Mexico

When Dr. Ignacio Chapela, a microbial ecologist who recently discovered the presence of genetically modified (GM) genes in Mexican maize (see October 2000), meets with a Mexican agricultural official to discuss the GM contamination, he is warned not to publish his research. Chapela later recalls in an interview with BBC Newsnight, “He [told] me how terrible it was that I was doing the research and how dangerous it would be for me to publish.” When he refuses to back off the issue, the official suggests that Chapela join a research team tasked with proving that the suspected GM genes are actually naturally occuring gene sequences similar to the ones in GM corn. “We were supposed to find this in an elite scientific research team of which I was being invited to be part of and the other people were two people from Monsanto and two people from Dupont supposedly… .” Monsanto denies its scientists were involved in any such study. Chapela also meets with Mexico’s Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources, whose officials are concerned about the discovery. They launch their own investigation and also find evidence of contamination (see September 18, 2001). [BBC, 6/2/2002]

Late November 2001: Berkeley Scientists Publish Study on GM Contaminated Maize in Mexico

Berkeley grad student David Quist and Dr. Ignacio Chapela, a microbial ecologist, publish the results of a study (see October 2000) finding that native Mexican maize has been contaminated with genetically modified genes. The study—published by the British journal Nature after an eight-month long peer-review process—presents two arguments. In addition to reporting the discovery that some of Oaxaca’s maize contains transgenic material, the paper says they found transgene fragments scattered throughout the plants’ modified DNA. [Quist and Chapela, 11/29/2001 ]The study’s second conclusion causes a controversy because it contradicts the assertions of the biotech industry that genetic engineering is a safe and exact science, and that the technology is capable of controlling precisely where the modified sequences are positioned, how they will be expressed, and whether or not they will be passed on to successive generations. One of the main arguments of the technology’s detractors is that the methods used to insert trangenic genes into an organism’s DNA cannot be done with accuracy and therefore are liable to produce unpredictable and undesirable effects. Following the publication of Quist and Chapela’s article, other Berkeley biologists—who work in a Berkeley University program partially funded by Syngenta, a major biotech firm—criticize the study, leading Quist and Chapela to acknowledge that the analyses of two of the eight gene sequences in their paper were flawed. However they stand by their conclusions that the remaining six sequences contained scattered modified gene sequences. Critics of the article also note that both Quist and Chapela strongly oppose the genetic engineering of crops and participated in an unsuccessful effort to block the Berkeley-Syngenta partnership. The issue soon grows into a very large controversy that some suggest is fueled by the efforts of the biotech industry, and in particular, the Bivings Group, a PR firm on Monsanto’s payroll. Forum postings at AgBioWorld.org are reportedly traced to a Bivings’ employee. It is also noted that another person posting on the forum makes “frequent reference to the Center for Food and Agricultural Research, an entity that appears to exist only online and whose domain is [allegedly] registered to a Bivings employee.” Bivings denies that it is in any way connected to the forum postings. In spite of the controversy surrounding the article’s second finding, the other conclusion, that Mexico’s maize has been contaminated, is largely uncontested, and is buttressed by at least three other studies (see January 2002February 19, 2003-February 21, 2003). [Associated Press, 4/4/2002East Bay Express, 5/29/2002;BBC, 6/2/2002Mother Jones, 7/9/2002]

January 2002: Mexican Environmental Ministry Publishes Study on Transgenic Contamination in Mexican Maize

Mexico’s Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources publishes the results of its study (see September 18, 2001) on transgenic contamination in Oaxaca and nearby Puebla. The study found contamination levels between 3 and 13 percent in eleven communities and between 20 and 60 percent in four others. Tests conducted on maize sold in government food stores revealed that 37 percent contained the GM genes. [East Bay Express, 5/29/2002]

April 2002: British Science Journal Pulls Support for Article on GM Contamination in Mexico

In an unprecedented move, Nature runs an editorial pulling its support for a controversial study by Berkeley scientists David Quist and Dr. Ignacio Chapela on genetic contamination of native Mexican maize. The study, published the previous fall (see Late November 2001), reported that native maize in Oaxaca had been contaminated with genetically modified (GM) genes and that transgene fragments were found scattered throughout the plants’ modified DNA. Immediately after being published, the article came under attack by pro-GM scientists who disputed Quist’s and Chapela’s second finding. “In light of these discussions and the diverse advice received, Nature has concluded that the evidence available is not sufficient to justify the publication of the original paper,” the journal’s editor, Philip Campbell, writes. “As the authors nevertheless wish to stand by the available evidence for their conclusions, we feel it best simply to make these circumstances clear, to publish the criticisms, the authors’ response and new data, and to allow our readers to judge the science for themselves.” Though the journal withdraws its support, it does not retract the article. [Associated Press, 4/4/2002East Bay Express, 5/29/2002Mother Jones, 7/9/2002] The decision to withdraw support is based on the opinions of three unnamed independent experts whom Nature consulted. Only one of those experts, however, disputed Quist’s and Chapela’s finding that there was evidence of contamination. All three agreed that the second finding—that transgene fragments were scattered throughout the plants’ modified DNA—was flawed. [BBC, 6/2/2002]

April 18, 2002: Mexico Finds More Evidence of GM Contamination in Native Mexican Maize

Jorge Soberon, the executive secretary of Mexico’s biodiversity commission, announces that government scientists have confirmed that genetically modified (GM) corn is growing in Mexico. The finding supports what two US scientists reported several months earlier (see Late November 2001) in a highly controversial paper published in the journal Science. Calling it the “world’s worst case of contamination by GM material,” he says 95 percent of the sites sampled in Oaxaca and Puebla were found to have GM maize. Samples taken from these sites indicated a contamination level as high as 35 percent. [Daily Telegraph, 4/19/2002Mother Jones, 7/9/2002]

January 2003-August 2003: More GM Contamination Discovered in Mexico

A study conducted by a coalition of North American civil society organizations finds that cornfields in nine Mexican states—Chihuahua, Morelos, Durango, Mexico State, Puebla, Oaxaca, San Luis Potosi, Tlaxcala, and Veracruz—are contaminated with genetically modified (GM) DNA. A total of 2,000 plants from 138 farming and indigenous communities are tested. Contaminated corn is discovered in 33 of these communities, or 24 percent. Contamination levels vary from 1.5 percent to 33.3 percent. Some plants are found to contain as many as four different types of GM DNA—one herbicide-resistant variety and three Bt varieties, including Starlink, which is banned for human consumption in the US. Several plants in at least one of the contaminated fields are deformed. “We have seen many deformities in corn, but never like this,” Baldemar Mendoza, an indigenous farmer from Oaxaca, says during a news conference. “One deformed plant in Oaxaca that we saved tested positive for three different transgenes. The old people of the communities say they have never seen these kinds of deformities.” [ETC Group, 10/11/2003]

October 29, 2004: Canada and Mexico Adopt Looser Standards Regulating the Import of GM Contamination Feed

The US, Mexico, and Canada enter into a trilateral agreement that allows food and grain shipments to have GM contamination levels as high as 5 percent. Shipments containing less than the five percent level will only have to bear a label indicating that the grain may contain genetically modified organisms. Additionally, accidental contamination of corn shipments into Mexico will not trigger any labeling requirements. Only the distributor will have to be informed of the contamination. The Mexican government enters into the agreement without the Mexican Senate’s approval. [Associated Press, 2/26/2004] Critics of the deal say the US is attempting to protect agricultural biotech companies and US agriculture. A large percentage of the country’s crop is genetically modified and as a result US farmers and biotechs are having a tough time finding markets abroad. Raising the acceptable contamination limits in other countries will help increase US grain exports. Critics also say that the deal could have a dramatically adverse effect on the genetic diversity of Mexico’s maize. It could result in the planting of more genetically modified corn since small farmers have been known to occasionally plant feed as seed. A few years before, maize growing in Oaxaca and Puebla was discovered to contain genetically modified genes (see October 2000April 18, 2002). It is believed that the contamination was caused in part by farmers who had planted feed from local stores selling grain imported from the US. The ETC Group, a Canadian-based organization that is opposed to genetically modified crops, warns that if Mexico permits the import of grain with such high levels of contamination, the country’s “maize crop would be riddled with foreign DNA from the Rio Grande to Guatemala in less than a decade.” [ETC Group, 2/26/2004]Greenpeace believes that US efforts to convince countries to lower the accepted levels of contamination are aimed at undermining the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (see January 24-29, 2000), which has been set up to regulate transboundary shipments of genetically modified organisms.[Greenpeace, 2/11/2004]

October 9, 2006: Mexico Denies Permits to Biotechs to Plant GE Corn in Northern States

The Mexican Department of Agriculture turns down all seven requests filed by biotech companies to plant experimental fields of genetically engineered corn in northern Mexico. Companies that applied for permits included Monsanto, Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc., and others. [Associated Press, 10/18/2006]

March 6, 2009 Mexico lifts ban on GM maize

Mexico has lifted the ban on experimental cultivation of transgenic maize imposed in 1999 in this country where the crop was first domesticated and shaped human culture. Biotech giants have put forward two dozen projects for approval and have announced investments of 382 million dollars up to 2012. The green light was given by the government of conservative President Felipe Calderón to the trials, by means of an executive decree which came into force early this month. [Farming UK, 3/19/09]

Calderon took office under a storm of controversy over election fraud in the 2006 election, prompting millions to protest. The protests were crushed by US and Mexican military. (Click here for links to several news reports, plusthis one by Al Giordana.)

Also see Phantoms in the machine: GM corn spreads to Mexico by author and filmmaker Marie-Monique Robin (The World According to Monsanto), Aug. 19, 2010.

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Health Risks of GMO Foods – Seeds of Deception

Posted on 16 October 2010 by admin

The Health Risks of GM Foods: Summary and Debate

This section summarizes the health risks of genetically modified foods and serves as a forum for a global discussion and debate. It is organized around the 65 main point summaries presented on the left side of the two-page spreads in Part 1 of Genetic Roulette. Each section linked below offers the opportunity for people to submit updates, corrections, challenges and responses. Before making a submittal, please review the full content in that section of the book.

Contents at a Glance:

Part 1: The Documented Health Risks of Genetically Engineered Foods

Section 1: Evidence of reactions in animals and humans.

1.1 GM Potatoes Damages Rats (see full content)

1.2 Rats Fed GMO Tomatoes got bleeding stomachs, several died

1.3 Rats Fed Bt Corn had multiple health problems

1.4 Mice Fed GM Bt Potatoes had intestinal damage

1.5 Workers exposed to Bt cotton developed allergies

1.6 Sheep died after grazing in Bt cotton fields

1.7 Inhaled Bt corn pollen may have triggered disease in humans

1.8 Farmers report pigs and cows became sterile from GM corn

1.9 Twelve cows in Germany died mysteriously when fed Bt corn

1.10 Mice fed Roundup Ready soy had liver cell problems

1.11 Mice fed Roundup Ready soy had problems with the pancreas

1.12 Mice fed Roundup Ready soy had unexplained changes in testicular cells

1.13 Roundup Ready Soy Changed Cell Metabolism in Rabbit Organs

1.14 Most offspring of rats fed Roundup Ready soy died within three weeks (see full content)

1.15 Soy allergies skyrocketed in the UK, soon after GM soy was introduced

1.16 Rats fed Roundup Ready canola had heavier livers

1.17 Twice the number of chickens died when fed Liberty Link corn

1.18 GM peas generated an allergic-type inflammatory response in mice

1.19 Eyewitness reports: Animals avoid GMOs

1.20 A GM food supplement killed about 100 people

Section 2: Gene insertion disrupts the DNA and can create unpredictable health problems.

2.1 Foreign genes disrupt the DNA at the insertion site.

2.2 Growing GM crops using tissue culture can create hundreds or thousands of DNA mutations. 

2.3 Gene insertion creates genome-wide changes in gene expression. 

2.4 The promoter may accidentally switch on harmful genes. 

2.5 The promoter might switch on a dormant virus in plants. 

2.6 The promoter might create genetic instability and mutations. 

2.7 Genetic engineering activates mobile DNA, called transposons, which generate mutations. 

2.8 Novel RNA may be harmful to humans and their offspring. 

2.9 Roundup Ready soybeans produce unintentional RNA variations. 

2.10 Changes in proteins can alter thousands of natural chemicals in plants, increasing toxins or reducing phytonutrients 

2.11 GM crops have altered levels of nutrients and toxins. 

Section 3: The protein produced by the inserted gene may create problems.

3.1 A gene from a Brazil nut carried allergies into soybeans.

3.2 GM proteins in soy, corn and papaya may be allergens. 

3.3 Bt crops may create allergies and illness.

3.4 The Bt in crops is more toxic than the Bt spray.

3.5 StarLink corn’s built-in pesticide has a “medium likelihood” of being an allergen.

3.6 Pollen-sterilizing barnase in GM crops may cause kidney damage. 

3.7 High lysine corn contains increased toxins and may retard growth. 

3.8 Cooking high lysine corn may create disease-promoting toxins. 

3.9 Disease-resistant crops may promote human viruses and other diseases. 

Section 4: The foreign protein may be different than what is intended.

4.1 GM proteins may be misfolded or have added molecules. 

4.2 Transgenes may be altered during insertion. 

4.3 Transgenes may be unstable, and rearrange over time. 

4.4 Transgenes may create more than one protein. 

4.5 Weather, environmental stress and genetic disposition can significantly change gene expression. 

4.6 Genetic engineering can disrupt the complex relationships governing gene expression. 

Section 5: Transfer of genes to gut bacteria, internal organs, or viruses.

5.1 In spite of industry claims, transgenes survive the digestion system and can wander. 

5.2 Transgene design facilitates transfer into gut bacteria.

5.3 Transgenes may proliferate in gut bacteria over the long-term.

5.4 Transgene transfer to human gut bacteria is confirmed.

5.5 GM foods might create antibiotic-resistant diseases. 

5.6 The promoter can also transfer, and may switch on random genes or viruses.

5.7 If Bt genes transfer, they could turn our gut bacteria into living pesticide factories.

5.8 Genes may transfer to bacteria in the mouth or throat. 

5.9 Transfer of viral genes into gut microorganisms may create toxins and weaken peoples’ viral defenses. 

Section 6: GM crops may increase environmental toxins and bioaccumulate toxins in the food chain.

6.1 Glufosinate-tolerant crops may produce herbicide “inside” our intestines.

6.2 Herbicide-tolerant crops increase herbicide use and residues in food.

6.3 Tiny amounts of herbicide may act as endocrine disruptors.

6.4 GM crops may accumulate environmental toxins or concentrate toxins in milk and meat of GM-fed animals. 

6.5 Disease-resistant crops may promote new plant viruses, which carry risks for humans.

Section 7: Other types of GM foods carry risks.

7.1 Milk from rbGH treated cows may increase risk of cancer and other diseases. 

7.2 Milk from rbGH-treated cows likely increases the rate of twin births.

7.3 Food additives created from GM microorganisms pose health risks.

Section 8: Risks are greater for children and newborns.

8.1 Pregnant mothers eating GM foods may endanger offspring.

8.2 GM foods are more dangerous for children than adults. 

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