Organic Integrity, Monsanto Men & Corporate Crime


#217, March 25, 2010

Health, Justice and Sustainability News
from the Organic Consumers Association

Edited by Alexis Baden-Mayer and Ronnie Cummins


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Quote of the Week

"The future belongs to those who understand that doing more with less is compassionate, prosperous, and enduring, and thus more intelligent,  even competitive."

-Paul Hawken, Author of Natural Capitalism and the Ecology of Commerce



Urge USDA to Act on New Report on the Integrity of the National Organic Program

From the Cornucopia Institute:

After an extensive audit and investigation of alleged improprieties at  the USDA's National Organic Program, the federal Office of Inspector  General (OIG) made public their formal report, dated March 9,  echoing criticisms made by the OCA and our allies - that under the Bush administration, the USDA did an inadequate job of enforcing federal organic law.

Since 2002, when the USDA adopted the federal organic regulations, the  agency has been plagued by inadequate funding as well as a cozy relationship with large corporations that dominate organic sectors such as dairy and body care.



Tell Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas to Remove Himself from Supreme Court GMO Sugar Beet Case

J.E.M. Ag Supply v. Pioneer Hi-Bred, 534 U.S. 124 (2001) granted large biotech corporations like Monsanto extensive patent protection over genetically modified seeds. This case was authored by Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, former General Counsel for Monsanto.

In Monsanto v. Geertson Seed Farms, No. 09-475, the U.S. Supreme Court will review an appellate court decision ruling that the USDA illegally approved Monsanto's GM sugar beets without determining whether organic  farmers, consumers or the environment would be adversely effected.

Justice Thomas has an obvious conflict of interest and should recuse himself, but he has decided to reserve his power to rule on the GM  sugar beet case.

As one blogger put it, "Fox, meet henhouse."



OCA Needs Your Help to Spread the Organic Revolution


OCA and our international network of organic consumers and farmers understand that we have a positive life-affirming solution for the global food, health, and climate crisis: organic food, farming, and ranching. But to get out our all-important message we need your support. Please send us a tax-deductible donation today.



Corporate Crime Reporter: OCA Exposes Intimidation Tactics of the 'Organic Mafia:' Whole Foods Market and UNFI


The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) carries a big public interest stick. It can mobilize the 850,000 people in its network to pressure  corporations and governments. The goal: clean, safe, organic foods and products for America. One way that OCA raises money is by charging for ads on the group's popular web site,

Two companies had purchased logo space on the OCA web site - Organic  Valley and Nature's Path. Until last year. That's when the groups dropped their sponsorship. Under pressure from Whole Foods Market and United Natural Foods - the two companies that dominate the organics market in the United States...



Ronnie Cummins on Planet Erstwild Radio


Ronnie Cummins talks with Host James Moore about the climate  catastrophe and how organic agriculture and green technology can help  us survive the 21st century.



San Francisco Officials Sink Deeper in Sewage Sludge Controversy


In January, SF Mayor Gavin Newsom hired Tony Winnicker away from his post as the Communications Director for the SF Public Utilities Commission where he served from 2004-2010, creating PR for city programs including their now infamous toxic sludge giveaway program to unsuspecting backyard gardeners and schools. But as the San Francisco Bay Guardian reports this week, Mayor Newsom's press secretary still doesn't know anything about sludge. 

"Winnicker said he was not aware that San Francisco's well-tested biosolids were being mixed with those of other areas, and that Newsom would defer to SFPUC experts on how to handle the situation." 

If the SPFUC's own people don't know about the hundreds of toxic chemicals and pathogens in the sludge they're spreading all over the Bay Area, how can Mayor Newsom tell the public that it's safe?

Visit the Organic Consumers Association booth at the San Francisco Green Festival, April 10th & 11th, 2010 where we will be shedding more light on the national problem of toxic sewage sludge, organic labeling fraud, and the Whole Foods/UNFI "greenwashing" phenomenon.



Video of the Week: Fishy Business: Uncovering the Truth Behind Cheap Salmon


In its latest film the Ecologist Film Unit (EFU) travels to Peru to  investigate a host of unreported environmental and social costs -  including pollution and health problems, overfishing, and impacts on  ecosystems and wildlife - arising from the production of fishmeal and  fish oil, principal ingredients in farmed salmon feed.



Little Bytes


Will Allen: A Different Way of Dealing with our Bathroom Waste
We could save $90 billion by replacing our aging sewage system with composting toilets. READ MORE

Battle Over GMOs Heats Up in Europe
The European Commission is beginning to approve GM crops, even as France, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Greece and Luxembourg have banned them. READ MORE

Worse Than Peak Oil? We're Quickly Running Out of a Chemical Essential to Growing Food
In the not-too-distant future, demand for phosphorus could outstrip supply, playing out a familiar scenario of scarcity, price shocks, riots, starvation and war. READ MORE

A Deforestation-Based Diet
Beef, palm oil, soy, rice, shrimp, corn and sugarcane are destroying the world's forests, from the precious Amazon to coastline-protecting mangroves. READ MORE




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