Medford, OR - A group of organic and non-GMO farmers and gardeners who feel threatened by the recent introduction of genetically engineered crops within crosspollination range, plan to ask voters to pass a County ordinance that will protect their livelihood, farms and gardens from damage by prohibiting the growing of genetically engineered crops in Jackson County. A student from Ashland High School, spoke Tuesday night at the Ashland City Council meeting, alerting them to the fact that gene drift threatens their ongoing seed-saving efforts for beets and chard due to the growing of genetically engineered sugar beets in Ashland.
The group has filed a prospective petition with the Jackson County Clerk that details the proposed ordinance. If passed by voters in November, the law would take effect the following year.
Volunteers are preparing to gather signatures on the initiative petition as soon as it is approved for circulation, which is expected to be around Memorial Day. They will have until August 8th to obtain 4,668 valid signatures of registered voters in the County.
For more information or to become involved in these efforts, GMO-Free Jackson County can be contacted at 541-708-3151, www.gmofreejacksoncounty.org, on Facebook, and at the Master Gardener Spring Fair at the Jackson County Expo this weekend.
Organic and Non-GMO Farmers and Gardeners File Petition to Prohibit Growing Genetically Engineered Crops in Jackson County, Oregon
Group expects measure to be placed on the November ballot by initiative petition.
GMO-Free Jackson County, May 3, 2012
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