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USDA Madness #1: Government Poised to Approve Agent Orange Corn
Monsanto's RoundUp Ready genetically engineered crops (soy, corn, cotton, sugarbeets and canola) are a failure, responsible for new breeds of super-weeds, millions of gallons of toxic pesticides sprayed on farm crops, and the propagation of a deadly new micro-monster that attacks plants, animals, and humans alike. Monsanto's Roundup, even in the wake of this trail of destruction, is still the most widely used herbicide on the planet.
Now, rather than moving away from chemical and energy-intensive GMO crops and deadly pesticides, the USDA is preparing to escalate, letting chemical/biotech companies force a new wave of genetically engineered herbicide-tolerant crops, mutants that can survive being sprayed with the infamous herbicide 2,4-D, an Agent Orange ingredient with documented, uncontested major health problems that include cancer, reproductive problems, neurotoxicity, and immunosuppression..
We have until February 27, 2012 to try to convince the USDA not to approve Dow Chemical's new 2,4-D-tolerant corn.
USDA Madness #2: USDA Approves Monsanto's Bogus "Drought-Tolerant" GMO Corn
Genetic diversity and organic soil management - not genetic engineering - is the key to growing crops in the current era of global warming. Only traditional cross-breeding methods, coupled with ecological or organic farm practices that promote soil health, have proven capable of producing normal crop yields under drought or near-drought conditions.
The USDA's review of Monsanto's own data shows that years of investment into so-called "drought-resistant" biotech crops have been nothing more than a risky and very expensive failure.
Monsanto and the USDA have both admitted that MON 87460, the so-called "drought-tolerant" GMO corn, will fare only modestly better than current conventional varieties under low-and moderate-level drought conditions. Of course, corn grown organically not only retains significant more moisture in the soil than GMO or chemically-raised crops, but eliminates completely the use of toxic pesticides and chemical fertilizers.
Data from U.S. researchers indicates that conventional breeding is producing drought tolerance two to three times faster than genetic engineering.
The danger is, now that MON 87460 has been fully deregulated, it will inevitably contaminate truly drought-tolerant varieties of organic and conventional corn, destroying the rich genetic diversity that the world's farmers have cultivated in the planet's infinitely varied micro-climates.
The USDA decision is final. All we can do now is complain to Congress and President Obama - who promised during the 2008 campaign that he would respect consumers' right to know and label GMOs! Of course, just like the other new GMOs approved by Obama's USDA (alfalfa, sugar beets, etc.), MON 87460 was approved without a labeling requirement.
USDA Madness #3: Genetically Engineered Nutraceuticals in Organic Baby Food
Beginning when Bush was president, and continuing now in the Obama Administration, the USDA National Organic Program has allowed biotech giant DSM, owner of Martek Biosciences, to market genetically engineered nutraceuticals DHA and ARA to organic food companies, including infant formula and baby cereal manufacturers.
So far, organic food companies using GMO DHA and ARA have received complaints from 6,710 OCA members.
Thanks to everyone who took action! If you did, you probably received a letter back from Happy Baby, which makes Happy Bellies cereal with DHA, disputing our GMO claim.
We've updated our action alert with their letter and our reply.
Learn More and Take Action!
Support the OCA and the OCF
Thank you for supporting our work in 2011!
You've made it possible to continue the transition to an organic future by safeguarding organic standards and fighting back against the biotech bullies and their indentured politicians, supporting progressive legislation, educating the public, and organizing nationwide protests.
In 2012, we plan to fight even harder. With the 2012 California ballot initiative, and GMO labeling legislation gaining momentum in Vermont, Washington, Connecticut and other states, we have a real chance to hit Monsanto with the skull and crossbones they fear so much - mandatory labels on genetically engineered food. We also plan to step up our efforts to strengthen organic standards and significantly expand the market for organic food and products, especially those produced locally and regionally.
Please be as generous as you can this post-holiday season.
Donate to the Organic Consumers Association (tax-deductible)
Donate to the Organic Consumers Fund (non-tax-deductible, but necessary for our efforts in California)
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Join the OCA-Endorsed National Buying Club for Organic and Non-GMO Foods: The Green Polka Dot Box
OCA is happy to announce the formation of a new national distribution service for home delivery of organic and non-GMO foods, at 30-50% below the cost of retail, with free shipping on orders of $150 or more. The new national distribution club is called the Green Polka Dot Box (GPDB).
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