Thursday, December 31, 2009


Photo credit: David Gould / Getty Images

GMO Bans, Laws, and Labels from Around the World
by Collin Dunn, Corvallis, OR, USA on 12. 3.09
Food & Health
Prince Charles has called them the "biggest environmental disaster of all time,"
while agriculture industrialists like Monsanto swear they're safe for human consumption and a boon for the environment. Genetically modified foods are nothing if not controversial, and that controversy spans the globe. From Ireland and the European Union to Africa and Japan, and all the way back to the U.S., various bans, laws, and labels can make GMOs difficult to keep up with. Here's a roundup of the world in GMOs.

Corn is one of the world's most modified crops.
Ireland Bans Growth of GMOs

Ireland recently banned the growth of any genetically modified foods, and the country has also made available a GMO-free label that can be placed on animal products like meat, poultry, eggs and dairy, fish, and crustaceans, that are raised with feed free of GMOs. The government's two coalition partners signed the agreement [pdf] that officially declares Ireland a "GM-free Zone." That's good news for no-GMO advocates in the United States, since it imports a good bit of Irish dairy; lots of casein for cheese production comes to the U.S. from Ireland.
Egypt Bans Import/Export of GMOs
In a move that has as many implications for world trade as it does for agriculture, Egypt has banned the import and export of GMOs. That means that none can come in -- meaning they can't import from any countries growing GMO foods they want -- and none can leave -- meaning they can't grow any GMOs, either. This sets in motion a complex agripolitical dance involving many countries where agriculture is a big part of foreign trade.

For example, "A non-GMO policy would not cause difficulties for sunflower oil but it would for soyoil," according to one European trader. "It would mean that soyoil imports would only be possible from Brazil and not from the U.S. or Argentina." The countries are the world's three largest producers, so Egypt's decision cuts two out of that equation; it remains to be seen if the ban will leverage more GMO-free growth in other countries.
Japan Says No to GMO
Though Japan imports a lot of food from countries still growing and exporting GMO foods -- Australia, the U.S., and Canada, to name a few -- they are staunchly opposed to consuming GMOs. Most of the soy and corn -- two of the most frequently modified foods -- that enter Japan is carefully sourced explicitly as "non-GM," using expensive traceability schemes, but that doesn't cover all of their bases. Keisuke Amagasa, of the Tokyo-based No! GMO Campaign, summed it up:

Japan does not produce any GM crops. However, because Japan imports GM canola from Canada, GM contamination has already occurred and it is spreading to a much greater degree than one could imagine. Judging by the ominous precedent of Canada, once GM crops are cultivated, segregation between GM and non-GM will become almost impossible, and keeping pure non-GM varieties away from GM contamination will be very hard.

France Defines GMO-free Labeling

Currently, there is no European regulation on what constitutes GMO-free, although products that contain more than 0.9 percent genetically modified ingredients must indicate GM content on their labels. That doesn't apply to animals, though, and their meat and dairy products don't require a distinction whether they were fed GMO foods or not.

In France, the Haut Conseil des Biotechnologies is attempting to clear things up, when it comes to the labeling used to identify GMOs; their recent recommendations are expected to become law in the second half of 2010. These recommendations include an upgrade to a threshold of 0.1 percent for genetically modified material in plant products and animal feed, and a minimum distance between apiaries and fields where GM crops are grown (though that distance was not specified). Labels could then designate plant products as 'GMO-free,' animal products as 'fed on GMO-free feed' or 'derived from animals fed without GM feed,' and honey as 'biotech-free.' Stay tuned for final results on this one.

GMO Sorghum has made inroads in Africa.
GMO Sorghum Comes to Africa

Despite the growing tide against GMOs, they're finding their way (legally) into the food systems in some places. In South Africa, the government gave permission to proceed with trials of genetically modified sorghum, with the blessing of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and DuPont, among other supporters. The justification is that, while it is one of the few crops that grows well in arid regions, it lacks most essential nutrients and it has poor protein digestibility; modifying it allows more nutrients to be "put" back in. Opponents of the decision are concerned that the introduction of the GMO crop threatens one of Africa's most important heritage crops.
The U.S. Bans GMOs. In Missouri. In a National Wildlife Refuge
While the U.S. has engaged in a much-publicized holdout from widespread GMO bans, a few small events have started the GMO-free ball rolling. A federal judge issued a ruling in Missouri stating that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife shouldn't have allowed genetically modified crops on a national wildlife refuge. That may not sound like much, but, thanks to the ruling, 37 farming contracts -- many being used for GMO soybean and corn crops -- have been canceled.

Will it lead to more widespread action? Whole Foods Market is on board with a GMO ban, having its store-brand products independently tested to certify that they contain zero GMO content -- who'll be next?


rBGH Hormone Being OPPOSED for BEEF & DAIRY!

Groups Applaud American Public Health Association for Opposition to Hormone Use in Beef and Dairy Production
For Immediate Release: December 22 2009

Washington, D.C.—Public health and consumer groups today applauded the decision of the American Public Health Association (APHA) to oppose the use of growth hormones in beef and dairy production by calling for a ban on the use of recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH) in dairy cows and a slate of growth hormones in beef cattle.

APHA is the oldest and largest association of public health professionals in the world, representing 50,000 professionals nationwide. APHA’s resolution follows an official position statement released last year by the American Nurses Association opposing rBGH. The past president of the American Medical Association (AMA) last year asked all AMA members to serve only rBGH-free milk in hospitals.

Full text:
The APHA resolution can be viewed at:

Contacts: David Wallinga, M.D., Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, 612-423-9666

Rich Bindell, Food & Water Watch, 202-683-2457

Rick North, Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility, 503-968-1520

Martin Donohoe, M.D., Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility, 503-819-6979

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


US Working Group on the Food Crisis

What You Can Do to End Corporate Concentration in the Food System!

Urgent! Before December 31st, send a letter to the US Department of Justice telling them about your experience of corporate concentration in the food system! Visit our pages on sample letters and letter ideas to get started.

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Department of Justice (DOJ), will hold a series of public hearings around the country on anti-trust violations, i.e. corporate dominance, in food and agriculture, beginning in March. Numerous topics are being addressed, and they are encouraging members of the public to submit comments based on either personal experience, technical expertise, or even general concern about the dangers and problems of corporate dominance in the food system.

Resources for those writing submissions to the Department of Justice/USDA. To get involved, contact dave (at) maryknoll (dot) org.


Published on Tuesday, December 15, 2009 by Gaea Times
Monsanto Awarded 'Angry Mermaid' Lobbying Prize

COPENHAGEN - Biotech giant Monsanto won a dubious honour Tuesday when an online poll awarded it the "Angry Mermaid" prize for what critics see as misleading lobbying on the issue of climate change.

The award was unveiled in Copenhagen, home to an iconic statue of Hans Christian Andersen's fairytale character the Little Mermaid, on the sidelines of United Nations talks on fighting global warming.

"Monsanto was nominated for promoting its genetically modified (GM) crops as a solution to climate change and pushing for its crops to be used as biofuels. The expansion of GM soy in Latin America is contributing to major deforestation and greenhouse-gas emissions," the nomination ran.

In a web-based poll of 10,000 people, some 3,700 tipped Monsanto as the most aggressive and inappropriate lobbyist, ahead of oil giant Shell (1,800 votes) and the American Petroleum Institute (1,400 votes).

"Monsanto has attracted thousands of votes from individuals who are outraged that such an environmentally-damaging form of agriculture should be put forward to tackleclimate change," said organizer Paul de Clerk of environmental group Friends of the Earth.

"Big business must not be allowed to sabotage action against climate change by promoting their vested interests. All the candidates for the ‘Angry Mermaid' award have lobbied to protect their own profits and prevent effective action to tackle climate change," he said.

The award was set up by Friends of the Earth and five other groups to "highlight those business groups and companies that have made the greatest effort to sabotage the climate talks, and other climate measures, while promoting, often profitable, false solutions."

Hundreds of activists have descended on Copenhagen in recent days to push for a worldwide deal on fighting climate change and cracking down on pollution.

The event has spawned a number of ironic awards targeting groups seen as hostile to a deal.

As well as the Angry Mermaid, for example, environmentalists have created a "fossil of the day" prize to target the country or company which is seen as having done most to block progress.
© 2009 Gaea Times

Monday, December 7, 2009


Look at what is (or isn't) on the labels: If a product is not labeled as being GMO-free, most likely it contains some GM ingredients.

The shopping guide also has a long list of so-called invisible GM ingredients that can make their way into one's diet.

For more information, go to:

There are plenty of other websites with detailed information on GM foods and genetic engineering, some of which also provide downloadable shopping guides for consumers. Some of them include:


Birth defects and deformities in frogs have been proven in research for many years. Not only do our crops get bombarded with such weed killers, these "killers" are absorbed into the crops we eat, leached into soils, and run off into our water tables, streams and rivers. (Reuters image)

What kinds of crops need so many weed killers? Mostly the GMO crops that not only require by contract, the use of their "designer" herbicides, but studies show that the need for such "killers" is escalating year after year as target species gain resistance to them. Billions of tons of chemical fertilizers, herb/pesticides are poured into our planet every year with no real regulation. What are we doing in Copenhagen at all if the G20 does not target GMO food industries, admittedly now the largest source of greenhouse gases on Earth (U.N. Report 2009), on their agenda for complete overhaul? -Clean Food Earth Woman

Published on Monday, December 7, 2009 by Reuters
Study Finds Weed Killer Affects Frogs Sexually

OTTAWA - The widely used weed killer atrazine affects the sexual development of frogs, raising questions about the effects of its use in the environment, the University of Ottawa said on Thursday.

[The widely used weed killer atrazine affects the sexual development of frogs, raising questions about the effects of its use in the environment, the University of Ottawa said on Thursday. (Reuters image)]The widely used weed killer atrazine affects the sexual development of frogs, raising questions about the effects of its use in the environment, the University of Ottawa said on Thursday.
A study by researchers at the university found that at low levels comparable to those measured in the Canadian environment, fewer tadpoles reached the froglet stage and the ratio of females to males increased.

"Atrazine is one of the top-selling herbicides used worldwide and was designed to inhibit weed growth in cornfields," the university said in a statement.

"It is so widely used that it can be detected in many rivers, streams and in some water supplies. This has raised the alarm on the possibility of other serious detrimental environmental effects."

Syngenta AG, a major Swiss manufacturer of atrazine, has long defended its safety.
The company has said it is one of the best-studied herbicides available and pointed to previous safety reviews from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and World Health Organization, among others.

The EPA said in October that it was reviewing the health impacts of the herbicide. Some studies have tied it to birth defects, low birth weight and premature babies.
(Reporting by Randall Palmer; editing by Peter Galloway)


December 7, 2009
12:33 PM

WASHINGTON - December 7 - Nutrition Facts labels on packaged foods have helped guide Americans' food choices for 15 years. But in that time, companies have cooked up a number of schemes to trick consumers about what's in-or isn't in-packaged foods. Today, the Center for Science in the Public Interest-the group that campaigned for the 1990 law requiring nutrition labeling-exposes some of the tricks that occur on the front of the label, and unveils makeovers of the Nutrition Facts panel and ingredient lists to last for the next 15 years.

CONTACT: Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI)
Phone: 202-332-9110
Food Label Makeovers Proposed by CSPI
Designs for New Nutrition & Ingredient Facts Labels Unveiled in Nutrition Action Healthletter

Friday, December 4, 2009


Sign here:

Food has a profound effect on the health and well-being of a community. The purpose of the NYC Sustainable Food Charter is to set forth the values and principles essential to a just, vibrant, and sustainable food system, and to spur the creation of such a food system for all New Yorkers. (A detailed breakdown of the following points is available in the full text link for the petition. -Clean Food Earth Woman)

1. Human Right
2. Equality
3. Health
4. Environment
5. Economy
6. Labor
7. Education
8. Community
9. Collaboration
10. Food Policy
Sign Petition:

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Now that Unsustainable Agriculture (CAFO's, GMO's) has been reported to yield worse pollution than all transportation combined, Copenhagen MUST ACT to shift all agriculture to sustainables only, planet-wide. NO MO GMO'S!!!! WE must stop the madness of poisoning our food, air, land and water for BIG AG BS!
-Clean Food Earth Woman
If you can get to Copenhagen:
Please Join
The Center for Food Safety & Navdanya International
for the Panel Discussion
“Say No to GMOs – Why Genetically Modified Crops Are Not a Climate or Food Security Solution”
With Dr. Vandana Shiva of Navdanya International, Debbie Barker of Center for Food Safety, and Others
Friday, December 11, 2009
1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Klimaforum09, Blue Room
DGI-byen, Tietgensgade 65
1704, København V, Denmark
For more information, please contact Rose Clouston at or 1.571.289.7974

And Please Join theInternational Commission on the Future of
Food & Agriculture for a panel discussion on the seminal publication
“Manifesto on Climate Change & the Future of Food Security”
with Dr. Vandana Shiva, Scientist, Activist, Ecologist & Author;
Dr. Giampiero Maracchi, Agrometeorological Institute, National Research Council, Italy;

Debbie Barker, Center for Food Safety; and
Maria Grazia Mammuccini, ARSIA/Region of Tuscany, Italy

Sunday, December 13, 2009
1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Klimaforum09, Orange Room
Copies of the Manifesto will be distributed.
The session will be in English and translated for others.

For more information, please contact Caroline Lockhart at

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Climate Agreement Must Support Shift Toward Sustainable Agriculture
New paper series tackles climate challenges for agriculture
MINNEAPOLIS - December 1 - To effectively address global climate change, policy solutions must support a transition toward more sustainable agriculture systems that recognize the critical role agriculture plays in the world, concludes a series of issue briefs released today by the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP). The papers are being published a week before global climate talks begin in Copenhagen.

“We cannot truly address climate change without getting it right on agriculture,” said IATP President Jim Harkness. “Agriculture is a contributor to climate change, but just as importantly it profoundly affects land use around the world, and has the potential to be part of the solution. Smart climate policy for agriculture can help address hunger, support rural livelihoods, improve water quality and biodiversity, and strengthen our energy security.”

The climate series covers a wide range of topics:

· Agriculture and Climate—The Critical Connection, by Jim Kleinschmit, gives an overview of the science of agriculture and climate change.

· Putting Agriculture on the Global Climate Agenda, by Anne Laure Constantin, sets benchmarks for including agriculture within global climate negotiations.

· U.S. Climate Policy and Agriculture, by Julia Olmstead, reviews how agriculture is considered in U.S. legislation and makes recommendations for a better approach.

· Speculating on Carbon: The Next Toxic Asset, by Steve Suppan, analyzes how Wall Street speculators could influence agriculture and climate goals.

· Eye of the Storm: Integrated Solutions to the Climate, Agriculture and Water Crises, by Shiney Varghese, explains water’s role in the climate and agriculture crises.

· Climate Inequity, by Shalini Gupta and Dr. Cecilia Martinez, traces the historical inequities that have contributed to climate change, and proposes a more equitable climate policy.

“We are at a unique moment in history that compels us to face several crises at the same time,” said Harkness. “In addition to global warming, there are now over one billion people around the world who are hungry. Our financial meltdown has led to growing unemployment, particularly in rural communities. A shift toward low-input, sustainable agriculture systems is a crucial part of building a greener, more stable economy and addressing each of these crises.”

IATP is sending a delegation of eight to Copenhagen and will conduct a series of workshops on climate and agriculture. You can read all the issue briefs, watch videos with the authors and find out more about IATP’s activities in Copenhagen at:
The Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy works locally and globally at the intersection of policy and practice to ensure fair and sustainable food, farm and trade systems.

Ben Lilliston
Communications Director
(612) 870-3416

Friday, November 27, 2009

Here it is...your moment of Zen.....

There's only one way to avoid the collapse of this human experiment of ours on Planet Earth: we have to consume less.

So this November 27 (November 28 in Europe and overseas), we're calling for a Wildcat General Strike. We're asking tens of millions of people around the world to bring the capitalist consumption machine to a grinding - if only momentary - halt.
--Adbusters link:
(Full text)

Thursday, November 26, 2009


When you run a corporation that specializes in poison production and applies it to the global food supply for obscene profit, what else will you tell the public? -Clean Food Earth Woman

Michael Mack, the chief executive of the Swiss agribusiness firm Syngenta, says organic farming is “categorically worse” for the planet. (Syngenta)

"If the whole planet were to suddenly switch to organic farming tomorrow, it would be an ecological disaster," he said.

In terms of yields, he continued, organic food is the "productive equivalent of driving an S.U.V."

Mr. Mack also addressed what he called the "mistaken belief that natural is always better."

Pesticides that help crops to grow more efficiently in this country, he argued, "have been proven safe and effective and absolutely not harmful to the environment or to humans," and have been certified as such by the Food and Drug Administration or the Environmental Protection Agency.

The implication of not believing that pesticides are safe, he said, is that you don't trust the government's findings.

"Once you go down that path, I don't know where the guard rails are," he said.

Mr. Mack dismissed the notion that Syngenta, a company that sold nearly $12 billion of seeds and "crop protection" technologies last year, felt threatened by the organic movement.

His concern, he said, was to make people aware of the limitations of organic food.

"It underplays the significance of agricultural productivity," he said.
Copyright 2009 The New York Times Company
Full text copy and paste:

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Revolution will NOT be Televised

Pictured (l-r) Dr. Jim Quigley, Bob DeLuca, Eileen Weilbacher, Linda Stasiak, Matthew Doris, Steve Storch, Moderator (standing): Clean Food Earth Woman

Thursday, November 19, 2009, Stony Brook University, Southampton, NY. The GMO FREE FOOD COMMUNITY ADVOCACY program sizzled in the Avram Theatre, to a lively crowd of some 150 participants. As I facilitated a panel of community experts, student volunteers passed petitions throughout the audience, and ran the mic through the crowd during a thoughtful and provocative Q & A, after the screening of acclaimed film, "The World According To Monsanto."

Veteran environmentalists and health practitioners, Dr. Jim Quigley, professor of both Environmental Planning and Political Science at Stony Brook University Southampton; Bob DeLuca, President of nonprofit environmental organization, Group for the East End; Eileen Weilbacher, Be Healthy Now, Certified Holistic Health Counselor and Artist; Linda Stasiak, Organic Cosmetics Holistic Esthetician and Certified Holistic Health Teacher; Matthew Doris, Food Service Director / Chef, Tuckahoe School K-12, Bridgehampton, NY and graduate of Culinary Institute of America; Steve Storch, Halsey family Green Thumb organics and biodynamic CSA Farm founded in 1640, and organic garden work Stony Brook University Southampton campus, fielded questions ranging from the local to the sublime from the community.

"Where is the outrage in our community about our food?" Stony Brook Student, Caroline Dwyer, called out from up front. "What about people who cannot afford to pay more for organic produce," another guest asked. "Are organic foods really organic?" "When are we going to dissolve our arrogance and recognize our relationship to all other organisms on this planet?" "How do we get our food back in our control?" Spirited feedback flew out and back from the panel as the Power Point screen flashed info on Food Bills in the Congress, Non GM Foods, Organic Food Producers of Meat, Dairy, Baby Foods, Snack foods, and an array of vital tips and pointers to unite our community to bring collective legislative action.

I send a huge, embracing shout out of my gratitude to the relentless effort and tireless ass-kicking of my brilliant and priceless Writing and Advocacy Independent Study Advisor, resident genius, Professor Heather Dune Macadam, who kept me focused, had me rolling on the floor in stitches, silly string, and saw this charter food project through with meticulous detail, aplomb and timing.

One more shout out to Professors Marc Fasanella (for in the nick of time know-how), James Corrigan (musical and pix support), Bill Burford (Bat Phone call from Texas to ask what he could do to help the day of the event) and Dr. Jim Quigley!

Thank you for the overwhelming support from communities across the globe (shout out to MADGEAustralia ) and to the unsurpassed support of the Stony Brook University Southampton Student Activists, Faculty, Administration, and Library for groking the entire vibe!

Onward to future adventures and merry prankster food events!
Stay tuned…
We're on a misssssssiooooonnnnnnn from Gaaaaaaahhhhhhhddddddd. -Clean Food Earth Woman

Tuesday, November 10, 2009




Followed by a Q & A on the realities of Genetically Modified Foods


A Writing & Advocacy Education Outreach Independent Study
Project, Sponsored by Professors Heather Dune Macadam and
Dr. Harold Quigley. Contact: 916-397-1588

Monday, November 9, 2009


November 16, 2009
2:49 PM

CONTACT: Earthjustice
David Guest, Earthjustice, (850) 228-3337
Judge Approves Historic EPA Settlement: EPA and Florida Must Set Limits on Fertilizer and Animal Waste Pollution in State Waters
Polluters’ arguments rejected in favor of the environment

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - November 16 - A federal judge in Tallahassee today approved a historic consent decree which requires the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to set legal limits for the widespread nutrient poisoning that triggers harmful algae blooms in Florida waters.

The change in federal policy comes 13 months after five environmental groups filed a major lawsuit to compel the federal government to set strict limits on nutrient poisoning in public waters.

Nutrients like phosphorous and nitrogen poison Florida's waters every time it rains; running off agricultural operations, fertilized landscapes, and septic systems. The poison runoff triggers slimy algae outbreaks which foul Florida's beaches, lakes, rivers, and springs more each year, threatening public health, closing swimming areas, and even shutting down a southwest Florida drinking water plant.

Ruling from the bench, U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle rejected arguments made by polluters who sought to delay cleanup and get out of complying with the Clean Water Act. Florida Agriculture Commissioner Charles Bronson, the Florida Pulp and Paper Association, four of the state's five water management districts, sewage plant operators, the Florida Farm Bureau, and others tried to derail the settlement.
Full Text:


Several White House Administrations have allowed AGRIBIZ
to mow down food regulation, the mass production of GM crops,
heavy dosing of drugs/chemicals mixed into livestock feed
and injected with no testing of short or long term health
risks to our bodies and ecosystems. Cloned livestock are
already here, and AGRIBIZ is fighting to get cloned meat
into stores with NO labeling. Let's get the Kucinich Bills moving!
-Clean Food Earth Woman


IATP's JoAnne Berkenkamp and USDA Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan talked about farm to school efforts in Minnesota recently. IATP is partnering with the MN School Nutrition Association to build a state-based model for farm to school expansion that can be duplicated around the country.

* Minnesota farm to school efforts catch eye of USDA Deputy Secretary Merrigan Press release | Nov 5 | PDF
* Video: USDA Deputy Secretary Merrigan introducing Farm to School Forum. | Nov 5
* IATP's work on healthy school food

Sunday, November 8, 2009


Published on Monday, November 16, 2009 by Inter Press Service
Farmers Not Invited to Food Summit?

by Sabina Zaccaro

ROME - World farmers are not part of the official delegations at the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) food summit on food security that opened here Monday. But they came anyhow to express their views, since, they say, it is their communities that are most impacted by the food crisis.

[Activists from the International Peasant Movement (La Via Campesina) take part in a demonstration outside the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) headquarters in Rome November 16, 2009. (REUTERS/Giampiero Sposito)]Activists from the International Peasant Movement (La Via Campesina) take part in a demonstration outside the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) headquarters in Rome November 16, 2009. (REUTERS/Giampiero Sposito)
Small-scale producers from the Amazonian rainforest, from Africa, the Pacific islands and the Himalayas gathered in Rome for the Peoples' Food Sovereignty Forum (Nov. 13-17), held in parallel to the FAO meetings, to discuss the serious effects of the crisis in their communities.

Small farmers and other small food producers number more than 1.5 billion in the world, the civil society forum estimates. "They produce more than 75 percent of the world's food needs through peasant agriculture and small scale livestock production, and with artisanal fishing," organisers say.

According to the FAO, the number of hungry people rose this year to 1.02 billion people, as a result of the global economic crisis, high food and fuel prices, drought and conflict.

"The amount of hungry people announced by the FAO includes, for the vast majority, those who produce food," Antonio Onorati, of the International Civil Society Planning Committee (IPC), told IPS. "And this represents the most incredible aspect of hunger."

Indigenous knowledge and practices have the potential to improve local and global food security, farmers' organisations say, but they still struggle to be recognised.

Key issues on the table of farmers' and peasants' organisations these days basically concern who decided food and agricultural policies; where these decisions were taken; who controls food producing resources; how food is produced; and how to help people who do not have direct access to food, namely the urban poor.

Outcomes of their work will be presented at the FAO summit Wednesday.

Farmers' issues are not so distant from those the FAO and participant governments will be discussing. What is different is their perspective. "Those whom the World Trade Organisation (WTO), The World Bank (WB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) consider as victims are in fact the real protagonists, they are able to produce enough food for themselves, if they are allowed to," Onorati said.

Among the causes of food insecurity for indigenous communities, farmers point to the loss of land, territories and resources, and the non-recognition and violation of their indigenous rights.

According to Renée Vellvé of the global Ngo GRAIN, access and right to land should be given priority. "The land-grabbing trend that is going on right now is where countries that have money, but depend on the outside for the food - like Saudi Arabia, Korea and others - are going to Africa and Asia to get farmlands to produce their own food outside," she told IPS.

"Investment companies are trying to do the same just to make money, so you see governments and industries coming in and throwing farmers off their lands, especially where they don't have secure titles; this affects women first, especially in Africa."

Nettie Weibe of La Via Campesina agrees that returning lands to the small- scale farmers is critical. "It is so obvious - but it has been forgotten - that food production is absolutely necessary to food security, and that it is farmers who produce food and put it into the market," she told IPS.

"But we are now so increasingly distant from our food, particularly in developed countries, that the farmer part of it has been forgotten, and in fact it has been erased by a corporate, industrial production."

According to Weibe, local agriculture and local markets can even cool the planet. "Real genuine agrarian reform, which has been put on hold for decades, would do far more for the climate that any deal that could result from the upcoming negotiations in Copenhagen," she said.

Vellvé said farmers' organisations no longer believe in codes of conduct, guidelines and principles that are being discussed at the FAO. "The problem is how far they will push that, and how the governments feel about it."

So beyond economic resources, what small producers ask for is a change in the decision process that has an impact on their lives. "This can only happen if the local community have a role in the decision process, and if they get access and control over the local productive resources," Onorati said.

FAO's director Jacques Diouf - who embarked on a 24 hour hunger strike over the weekend in solidarity with the world's hungry - asked rich countries to increase the amount they give each year in agricultural aid from 7.9 billion dollars to 44 billion.

But the draft declaration that will most probably be adopted includes only a commitment to "substantially increase the share of official development assistance (ODA) devoted to agriculture and food security based on country- led requests."

"If healthy countries do not increase investment in agriculture as requested by the FAO, this initiative will lack the concrete tools to effectively fight hunger," Sergio Marelli, president of the civil society advisory group to the summit, told IPS.

"We know that in the last phases of negotiations, even the reference to 2025 as the deadline for the eradication of hunger has disappeared from the final declaration," he said.
Copyright © 2009 IPS-Inter Press Service

Saturday, November 7, 2009


On Friday, November 6, 2009, I spoke with Congressman Dennis Kucinich's staff about the bills he sponsored: HR BILLS 6635, 6636, 6637, requiring labeling of GM food ingredients, long term testing of all GM foods, drugs, and chemicals before inoculation to livestock or their feed, open field experiments, and to protect the farmers from big AG regarding lawsuits and property seizure under financial duress.

Where are they? They are (I know you'll be shocked, so you might want to sit down) stuck in Committee. The Subcommittee on Specialty Crops, Rural Development and Foreign Agriculture. Since the Summer of 2008. Why? Can you say "Healthcare Taffy-Pull," boys and girls? I was informed that we can breathe some life back into these by pushing our representatives to support these bills, so let's get with it! Get with your reps to support HR 6635, HR 6636, HR 6637!! -Clean Food Earth Woman

Monday, November 2, 2009


This is an Eater's Battle. If you eat, if your friends eat, if their children eat, they they all need to be able to choose whether or not they want to eat or avoid FrankenFoods. The right to choose clean, unadulterated food is a basic human right since unlabeled, but weaponized and adulterated food makes us sick against our will and without our knowledge.

The hazards of genetically modified organisms, food or fibers, drug-producing plants or animals, soil bacteria, trees, cotton, etc., are suppressed but we are all experiencing them, thanks to the fact that 80% of the American Diet contains these dangerous ingredients and GMO cotton has been implicated in emerging new diseases and deaths among consumers and farmers alike.

Please spread the word and tell everyone you know about this critical campaign: take back clean food from the Biotech companies and their government cronies!

Send this link,, to everyone on your list and ask them to get involved.

Thank you,
Dr. Rima, Natural Solutions Foundation
Permalink to this blast:

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Transgenic Seed Platforms: Competition Between a Rock and a Hard Place?

Report by Diana L. Moss October 23, 2009 Executive Summary

With the widespread adoption by farmers of corn, cotton, and soybean seed containing transgenic technology, the U.S. seed industry has changed rapidly in the past twenty years. The largest changes include the creation of strongholds of patented technology and the gradual elimination of the numerous regional independent seed companies through consolidation. Resulting increases in concentration in affected markets has been driven largely by the industry’s dominant firm, Monsanto.

A threshold question to consider is whether Monsanto has exercised its market power to foreclose rivals from market access, harming competition and thereby slowing the pace of innovation and adversely affecting prices, quality, and choice for farmers and consumers of seed products. If the answer to this question is yes, remedying the intractable competitive situation that prevails in the transgenic seed industry may require antitrust enforcement, legislative relief, or both. The problem highlights both the importance of competition policy and the security and diversity of a key
agricultural sector.
(EXCERPT FROM: The American Antitrust Institute )

Halloween Food Fright

Boooooooooooooooooooo! Is it FRANKENFOOD????????

With all the worry over what candy to get for the kids trick or treating, there is so much on the shelves of the candy we all grew up and devilshly rotted our teeth on. Snickers, whoppers, gummy bears, tootsie roll pops, kit kats, almond joy, mounds, krackel, m&m's, the sweet treats are endless. And so, it seems is the high fructose corn syrup used to make so many of them. Are any of these candies non GMO? I stopped in to see many of the food supply managers in the grocery stores in town. NONE of them had a clue what foods are and what foods are not genetically modified. That's because there is no law to make the GM manufacturers label these foods in the U.S. Most other industrialized nations mandate labeling for all GM ingredients. Support the HR 6636 Genetically Engineered Food Right To Know Act, HR 6635 and HR 6637! See info below. Eat smart, eat joyfully, eat good, healthy, organic foods! -Clean Food Earth Woman

Monday, October 26, 2009


3 Bills in the House: all introduced by Ohio Congressman, Dennis Kucinich, to MANDATE GM food labeling, protection of farmers, safety requirements.

H.R. 6636, The Genetically Engineered Food Right To Know Act, which would require mandatory labeling of all foods that contain or are produced with GM material. All GMO foods are REQUIRED to be labeled in most of the industrialized world already, so these same labels can be used. No such labeling is permitted at this time in the US.

H.R. 6635, The Genetically Engineered Safety Act, which would require that GE foods follow a food safety review process to prevent contamination of food supplies by pharmaceutical and industrial crops. This Act would also require that the FDA screen all GE foods to ensure they are safe for human consumption. No such safety review is permitted at this time in the US.

H.R. 6637, The Genetically Engineered Technology Farmer Protection Act, places liability from the impacts of GM crops on the biotechnology companies that created the GMOs, and protects farmers from lawsuits by biotechnology companies. No such liability exists at this time for pharmaceutical plants and animals once approval is granted by the acting agencies for the organism and the same is true for non drug modifications as well.



I am proposing a FOOD IN idea. GREAT FOR SCHOOLS

Go see local food providers and farmers with the intent of involving them.

About the FOOD IN:

1) A Team of students go through the Student Center Food supply with the Cafe staff/manager and determine what is and is not GM/Organic.
2) Booths for different focuses can be set up: GM foods, Organics (including promotion of your fabulous LOCAL organic school garden), Farm To School Programs, Patenting, Cloning, CAFO'S, Pesticides & Fertilizers, Codex Alimentarius, Food-related House Bills before Congress, TAKE ACTION booth, etc.
3) Pot luck or prepared menu of simple, healthy refreshments for the event.
4) Open the FOOD IN event to the public where they can bring their food(s) of choice in for us to determine whether or not they are GM....and if we cannot make that determination...and if we can't determine yes or no...
5) Have form letters available and envelopes to complete and send right out to the manufacturers to ask for confirmation on GM or no GM foods.
6) Someone tracks all of the letters/contacts, websites, etc. to food manufacturers.
7) Someone would track all the foods and create a report.
8) Someone else would be assigned letter campaigns to legislators...for a school credit project or extra credit. yadda yadda....surveys, etc.
9) Press Conference where we unveil report and call to action.

The FOOD IN goal is to bring swift attention and action on:
-Labeling foods (most other nations require GM labeling on their foods. The US does NOT.)
-Patenting of seed, crops, trees and animals.
-December 31, 2009 Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC) global
implementation of "food safety standards."

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Label Reading 101 TELLY AWARD WINNER
(copy and paste to address bar)
Starring Stephen Michael Young

Thursday, October 22, 2009



(excerpted from): "Michael Moore's Action Plan: 15 Things Every American Can Do Right Now"
You've Seen the Movie (If not, treat yourself! -My plug, not Michael's -Clean Food Earth Woman) -- Now It's Time to ACT!
Thursday, October 22, 2009


It's the #1 question I'm constantly asked after people see my movie: "OK -- so NOW what can I DO?!"

You want something to do? Well, you've come to the right place! 'Cause I got 15 things you and I can do right now to fight back and try to fix this very broken system.

Here they are:


5. Save this fragile planet and declare that all the energy resources above and beneath the ground are owned collectively by all of us. Just like they do it in Sarah Palin's Alaska. We only have a few decades of oil left. The public must be the owners and landlords of the natural resources and energy that exists within our borders or we will descend further into corporate anarchy.


1. Each of us must get into the daily habit of taking 5 minutes to make four brief calls: One to the President (202-456-1414), one to your Congressperson (202-224-3121) and one to each of your two Senators (202-224-3121). Take just one minute on each of these calls to let them know how you expect them to vote on a particular issue. Let them know you will have no hesitation voting for a primary opponent -- or even a candidate from another party -- if they don't do our bidding. Trust me, they will listen. If you have another five minutes, click here to send them each an email. And if you really want to drop an anvil on them, send them a snail mail letter!

C'mon people -- we can do this! I expect nothing less of all of you, my true and trusted fellow travelers!

Michael Moore "

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

WORLD TO: UN General Assembly Olivier de Schutter: NO TO SEED PATENTS!!!!!

Global alert against 'Monsantosizing' our food
UN General Assembly to discuss patents on seeds and right to food

No Patents on Seeds, 21 October 2009

Today a global alert is being filed by farmers and development and environmental organisations warning about a new class of patents covering plants and animals and endangering innovation and food security. It is being presented on just the same day as the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Olivier de Schutter, is presenting his new report in front of the UN General Assembly, warning that seed patents might increase food crises. New rules to restrict patents on seeds and animals therefore have to be enacted urgently.

The global appeal is being filed by the international coalition "no patents on seeds", organised and supported by farmers and development and environmental organisations. The alert is directed at governments, parliaments and patent offices like the European Patent Office, and warns about a new class of patents covering plants and animals derived from conventional breeding. These patents even claim harvests and derived food products such as milk, butter and bread. By speaking of 'Monsantosizing' the signatories are warning that the whole chain from seed to food production might be controlled by a few big international companies like Monsanto, DuPont and Syngenta, leading to a process of oligopolies and increasing concentration.

"A radical change in both patent legislation and the practice of patent offices is needed to eliminate patents on plants and farm animals," says François Meienberg of the Berne Declaration. "Corporations should not be allowed to continue to misappropriate and monopolise seeds, plants and farm animals via patent law. If they are, these patents will become a major threat to global food security, food sovereignty and innovation."

The alert was initiated by the organisations Berne Declaration, Swissaid, Misereor No Patents on Life , Greenpeace and The Development Fund (Norway), and is supported by farmer organisations from Europe, South America and Asia. They include Coldiretti in Italy, COAG in Spain, dairy farmers from Germany, Federacion Agraria Argentina and Bharat Krishak Samaj, an Indian farmer organisation. "The big companies are about to control seed, harvest, trade and even food production," warns Luis Contigiani at Federación Agraria Argentina. "We can see how Monsanto tries to license fees on soy production , imposing embargoes on European importers of Argentinian soy and derivatives based on patents that are not valid in our country. This is an example of the consequences when genetic resources are subjected to the logic of monopolisation by patent rights."

In a vein very similar to the global alert, the background report by the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to food (A/64/170), Olivier de Schutter, raises concerns that seed patents might increase food crises. As it explains: “The oligopolistic structure of the input providers’ market may result in poor farmers being deprived of access to seeds, a productive resources essential for their livelihoods, and it could raise the price of food, thus making food less affordable for the poorest.”

The No Patents on Seeds coalition and its supporting farmers' organisations welcome the UN report. “We will keep on fighting against patents on seeds and animals,” says Miguel López Sierra, General Secretary of COAG , one of the biggest European farmers’ organisations. “We are urging the European Union and the European Patent Office to stop granting these patents, which steal the common goods of farmers and traditional breeders. The concerns as raised by farmers, NGOs and the report of the United Nations no longer can be ignored.”

Download of the global alert:,
Download of the UN Report “Seed policies and the right to food”
Further contacts: François Meienberg, Berne Declaration, +41 44 277 70 04;, Christoph Then, expert for Greenpeace, +49 15154638040


Here they are, hiding in plain sight. Ready to patent what's left of the world's plants and animals, alllllllll in the name of "food safety." NOT! Read and seach
their site and TELL EVERYONE YOU KNOW! CAN YOU SAY, "FOOD IN," boys and girls???
-Clean Food Earth Woman


The Codex Alimentarius Commission was created in 1963 by FAO and WHO to develop food standards, guidelines and related texts such as codes of practice under the Joint FAO/WHO Food Standards Programme. The main purposes of this Programme are protecting health of the consumers and ensuring fair trade practices in the food trade, and promoting coordination of all food standards work undertaken by international governmental and non-governmental organizations.


Codex Trust Fund application deadline 31 October 2009

The FAO/WHO Project and Fund for Enhanced Participation in Codex (Codex Trust Fund) is now accepting applications for support for developing countries and countries with economies in transition to participate in Codex meetings scheduled for 2010.
Information concerning these applications and eligibility of countries can be found on the Codex Trust Fund website at:
All applications and queries must be sent by the official Codex Contact Point in the country to the Codex Trust Fund Secretariat using the Trust Fund e-mail ( Applications sent through other channels may fail to meet the deadline and will not be receivable.
Deadline for submitting applications: 31 October 2009.

Final version of CAC32 report

The final version of the report of the 32nd Session of the Codex Alimentarius Commission in English is available here.

Call for expressions of interest for a mid-term review of the Codex trust fund

The FAO/WHO Codex Trust Fund is seeking a private consultant/consulting firm, academic institution, or specialized center to conduct a mid-term review of the Codex Trust Fund.
Deadline for applications: 9 October 2009
For application information, please go here.

Biotechnology (GM food)

The application of modern biotechnology to food and food production (GM food) presents new opportunities and potential benefits, as well as challenges in ensuring consumer protection. Recent developments have posed concerns, both real and perceived, about the safety of these technologies.

Member Countries, especially developing ones, look to FAO to provide sound and unbiased advice on the safety of GM food, and AGNS, in collaboration with international bodies such as Codex, has been involved in a wide range of biotechnology related issues, including:

* Science-based safety evaluation and risk assessment systems to objectively determine the benefits and risks of GM food
* Recommendations for the labelling of foods obtained through biotechnology
* Assessing nutritional aspects of food derived from modern biotechnology;
* Detection of protein and/or DNA in GM food

In 1999 the Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC), established an Ad hoc Intergovernmental Task Force on Foods Derived from Biotechnology to consider the health and nutritional implications of such food. It is tasked with developing standards, guidelines or recommendations, as appropriate, for foods derived from biotechnology or traits introduced into foods by biotechnology.

The scientific basis for the work of Task Force is provided by FAO and WHO through a series of scientific expert consultations on the safety and nutritional aspects of GM food. These expert consultations, while addressing issues which are closely related to the work of the Task Force, are completely independent from the inter-governmental negotiation process, and treat the subject from a purely scientific perspective.

Welcome to New Codex Member

It is with great pleasure that we welcome Somalia as a member of the Codex Alimentarius Commission (Region: Africa). This brings the membership of the Commission to 183 members (182 member countries and one member organisation).

Having spent the past twelve months investigating Codex Alimentarius, I am deeply disturbed by the almost total lack of awareness (or even interest) with regard to the implications of this pernicious global Commission, particularly amongst those most affected by the excesses of this restrictive legislation.

In the words of the National Health Federation[i], the aims and objectives of Codex Alimentarius are as follows:

* Only low-potency, “me too” supplements available that will do nothing for your health.

* All or most foods genetically-modified.

* Beneficial supplements unavailable or sold by prescription only.

For many people, this agenda is so outrageous, they cannot believe such goals are achievable; yet this may well be the reality as soon as 31st December 2009, if the Codex Alimentarius Commission continues to disregard input from those who offer a counter perspective to the combined forces of Big Farmer & Big Pharma.
(site: )
Antigua and Barbuda
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Brunei Darussalam
Burkina Faso
Cape Verde
Central African Republic
Cook Islands
Costa Rica
Côte d'Ivoire
Czech Republic
Democratic People's Republic of Korea
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Dominican Republic
El Salvador
Equatorial Guinea
European Community
Iran (Islamic Republic of)
Lao People's Democratic Republic
Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
Maldives (Republic of)
Micronesia (Federated States of)
New Zealand
Papua New Guinea
Republic of Korea
Russian Federation
Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Lucia
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Sao Tome and Principe
Saudi Arabia
Sierra Leone
Solomon Islands
South Africa
Sri Lanka
Syrian Arab Republic
The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
Trinidad and Tobago
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom
United Republic of Tanzania
United States of America
Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of)
Viet Nam

Saturday, October 17, 2009

To NAIS: 90% of Farmers say NO!

(NAIS National Animal Identification System) At issue in the Wisconsin cases is that we are witnessing the first enforcement actions in the implementation of NAIS. The fines in the charges brought against Miller and the Monchilovichs are between $200 and $5,000. Premises identification is just the first step of NAIS, second is the identification of one's animals, and third is the tracking of each and every movement of one's animals. The final component is enforcement, which is now coming to bear in Wisconsin.

More than 90 percent of those who attended USDA's recent “listening” sessions on NAIS said “No NAIS. Not Now, Not Ever!” If we mean that, then we must stand in support of these Wisconsin people being charged with NAIS violations.

* Background: 1) Miller trial,; 2) Stephen Blair, Australia,; and, 3) Dobbin/UK,

** Contact R-CALF USA Communications Coordinator Shae Dodson-Chambers to request photo and/or bio information on R-CALF USA Animal Health Committee Chair Kenny Fox. Op-Ed is 720 words.
(site: )

Kucinich Secures Funding for Organic Farming Research!

* The Office of Congressman Dennis Kucinich, October 7, 2009
Straight to the Source

Washington D.C. (October 7, 2009)
"Organic foods and products should be able to, at a minimum, compete equally with foods and products made with pesticides, chemical fertilizers, and genetic manipulation," said Kucinich.

Congressman Kucinich (D-OH) secured a legislative victory for organic farmers and consumers by ensuring that the US Department of Agriculture will collect and share economic data that is essential to help the organics industry compete with agribusiness. The $500,000 for the Organic Production and Market Data Initiative was secured as part of the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriation Act.
(Text: OCA site: )


La Via Campesina carries out Global Day of Action against Monsanto

(Mexico, 16 October 2009) Yesterday, International World Food Day, as declared by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, La Via Campesina mobilized globally along with allies in an overwhelming expression of outright rejection of Monsanto and Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), in the name of food sovereignty.
Peasants, landless workers, migrants, indigenous peoples and consumers, identified transnational corporations, especially Monsanto, which, together with Syngenta, Dupont and Bayer control over half of the world’s seeds, and are thus the principal enemies of peasant sustainable agriculture and food sovereignty for all peoples. La Via Campesina is in a daily struggle to protect native seeds, patrimony of humanity, from corporations and patents. Today, October 16, the strength of the movement is pushing the public opinion to reject Monsanto’s take-over of the food system.

“It’s time for all civil society to recognize the gravity of this situation, global capital should not control our food, nor make decisions behind closed doors. The future of our food, the protection of our resources and especially our seeds, are the right of the people,” said Dena Hoff, coordinator of Via Campesina North America.
Globalize Hope!! Globalize the Struggle!!
Interviews and information:

* Dena Hof, United States + 1 406-939-1839 (in English)
* Alberto Gomez, Mexico + 525541777846 (en español)
( Site Link:


The World's Top 10 Seed Companies

Company - 2007 seed sales (US$ millions) - % of global proprietary seed market

1.Monsanto (US) - $4,964m - 23%
2.DuPont (US) - $3,300m - 15%
3.Syngenta (Switzerland) - $2,018m - 9%
4.Groupe Limagrain (France) - $1,226m - 6%
5.Land O' Lakes (US) - $917m - 4%
6.KWS AG (Germany) - $702m - 3%
7.Bayer Crop Science (Germany) - $524m - 2%
8.Sakata (Japan) - $396m - <2%
9.DLF-Trifolium (Denmark) - $391m - <2%
10.Takii (Japan) - $347m - <2%
Top 10 Total - $14,785m - 67% [of global proprietary seed market]
Source: ETC Group

The top 10 seed companies account for $14,785 million - or two-thirds (67%) of the global proprietary seed market.

The world's largest seed company, Monsanto, accounts for almost one-quarter (23%) of the global proprietary seed market.

The top 3 companies (Monsanto, DuPont, Syngenta) together account for $10,282 million, or 47% of the worldwide proprietary seed market.

ETC Group conservatively estimates that the top 3 seed companies control 65% of the proprietary maize seed market worldwide, and over half of the proprietary soybean seed market.

Based on industry statistics, ETC Group estimates that Monsanto's biotech seeds and traits (including those licensed to other companies) accounted for 87% of the total world area devoted to genetically engineered seeds in 2007.

The company claims that it licenses its biotech traits to an additional 250 companies. In 2007, almost half (48%) of DuPont's seed revenue came from products that carried a biotech trait. UK consultancy firm, Cropnosis, puts the global value of GM crops in 2007 at $6.9 billion.

The Gene Giants aim to convince governments, farmers and reluctant consumers that genetic engineering is the essential adaptation strategy to insure agricultural productivity in the midst of climate change. According to Monsanto, "everyone recognizes that the old traditional ways just aren't able to address these new challenges" - so the only hope is "climate ready" GM crops.

Bottom line: …Patented gene technologies will not help small farmers survive climate change, but they concentrate corporate power, drive up costs, inhibit public sector research and further undermine the rights of farmers to save and exchange seeds. By contract, IT IS A CONTRACT VIOLATION (law suits!) FOR FARMERS GROWING GM CROPS TO USE SEEDS FROM HARVEST. THEY MUST BUY THEM EVERY HARVEST SEASON FROM THE GM CORPORATION ALONG WITH THE "DESIGNER" PESTICIDES AND FERTILIZERS THE GM CORP DESIGNATES.
(More: )

Feed the World Week Oct 15 -21, 2009

What is Feed the World Week?

Feed the World Week (Oct 15 -21) is based on the simple principle:"that for one day, the world should experience a wholesome, nonviolent, karma-free diet, and thus pave the way for a peaceful and hunger-free world." Your Feed the World Week event, therefore, should promote this message so that your recipients can grasp the deeper meaning behind the free food.

For the members of Food for Life, Feed the World Week (FWW) is also a tribute to the founder (Swami Prabhupada), as much as it is an open community event for raising awareness of the world hunger problem. We aim to do this through the following four objectives:

1. Expose meat consumption as a major cause of world hunger.
2. Promote that the internal cause of hunger is greed resulting from spiritual ignorance.
3. Promote "karma-free" vegetarianism/veganism as a positive solution to the world hunger and chronic malnutrition.
4. Unite the world through food.

Food for Life Global should be acknowledged as the pioneers of this event.
full text: (FFL site: )

Thursday, October 15, 2009


The following excerpt from the recent report is horrifying. We are assured by the FDA that they can assure alomost NO SAFTEY in the food imports in our grocery stores. Feeling confident about those labels on food from other nations? So, what do they ACTUALLY inspect? Uhhhhhhhhhhhh, huh? Isn't that LEGAL stuff?
-Clean Food Earth Woman, enraged!


(EXCERPT:) CBP, FDA, and FSIS have taken steps to address challenges in ensuring the safety of the increasing volume of imported food. For example, CBP maintains the system that importers use to provide information to FDA on food shipments; FDA electronically reviews food imports and inspects some foreign food production facilities to prevent violative food from reaching U.S. shores; and FSIS employs an equivalency system that requires countries to demonstrate that their food safety systems provide the same level of protection as the U.S. system. However, gaps in enforcement and collaboration undermine these efforts. First, CBP’s computer system does not currently notify FDA or FSIS when imported food shipments arrive at U.S. ports, although efforts are underway to provide this information to FDA for air and truck shipments. This lack of communication may potentially increase the risk that unsafe food could enter U.S. commerce without FDA review, particularly at truck ports. Second, FDA has limited authority to ensure importers’ compliance with its regulations. Third, CBP and FDA do not identify importers with a unique number; as a result, FDA cannot always target food shipments originating from high risk importers. Finally, CBP faces challenges in managing in-bond shipments—those that move within the United States without formally entering U.S. commerce—and such shipments possibly could be diverted into commerce.
FDA generally collaborates with select states and foreign governments on imported food safety. FDA has entered into a contract, several cooperative agreements, and informal partnerships for imported food with certain states, and some state officials told GAO that they would like to collaborate further with FDA on food imports. However, citing legal restrictions, FDA does not fully share certain information, such as product distribution lists, with states during a recall. This impedes states’ efforts to quickly remove contaminated products from grocery stores and warehouses.
Full PDF Downloadable text:

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Farm Workers and Allies Ask Gov't to Protect Kids From Toxic Pesticide Drift

Petition to EPA includes immediate no-spray buffer zones around homes, schools, day care centers for most toxic pesticides

LINDSAY, Calif. - October 14 - Luis Medellin and his three little sisters - aged 5, 9 and 12 - live in the middle of an orange grove in this small Central Valley town. During the growing season, Luis and his sisters are awakened several times a week by the sickly smell of nighttime pesticide spraying. What follows is worse: searing headaches, nausea, vomiting.

But if a coalition of farm worker, public health, and children's advocates are successful, Luis and his little sisters may one day be able to sleep through the night without these toxic disruptions.

The public interest law firms Earthjustice and Farmworker Justice filed a petition today (PDF) asking the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to set safety standards protecting children who grow up near farms from the harmful effects of pesticide ‘drift' - the toxic spray or vapor that travels from treated fields. The groups are also asking the agency to immediately adopt no-spray buffer zones around homes, schools, parks and daycare centers for the most dangerous and drift-prone pesticides.

October 14, 2009
1:50 PM
CONTACT: Farm Workers and Allies
Kathleen Sutcliffe
Earth Justice (202) 667-4500, ext 235;

Heather Pilatic
Pesticide Action Network

Barb Howe
Farmworker Justice (202) 293-5420, ext.307


Did you know that modified crops are being grown all over O`ahu? How about Kauai?
The U.S. Military lands are being used for experimental GMO crops, and you can stop them.

Join Hawaii SEED and GMO Free Oahu for this free event:

October24th, 25th, 2009
Saturday Oct. 24th: Specific Strategies for Addressing the GMO issue on O`ahu
Sunday October 25th: Training: Learn how to more effectively create change in Hawai`i

Strategy/Training Session Includes:
The 101 of GMO’s: History of the movement in Hawai`i
Effective Activism: Tools for Organizing Training in:
Effective leadership, media, recruiting and
keeping volunteers, fundraising,
grant writing, meeting facilitation
legislative tactics and more…

Register with Sarah Sullivan

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


GREAT Day of Action - 12 October 2009

Support for Mexico's Traditional Culture of Maize and Food Sovereignty


*We call on the population to demand that all produce we consume on a daily basis is GMO-free.

*We call on international agencies to condemn the Government of Mexico for violating peasant ancestral rights, as well as disrespecting biodiversity and food sovereignty, and ignoring the principle of precaution in the center of origin of basic crops that nowadays nourish the world.

*On 12 October, invite everyone to protest at the [nearest] Mexican Embassy against transgenic maize in Mexico!

Why this Call for Action on 12 October?

Monsanto has just lost 18 of 24 requests for experimental maize open-field testing in the northern regions of Mexico. These regions are Monsanto's most-wanted areas due to their commercial maize farming background: most of the everyday tortillas of the Mexican inhabitants come from there.

Therefore, the risk of having native varieties contaminated is huge and Monsanto is pressing the Government to have its requests attended [granted]. This has not happened yet, but might happen very soon.

In Mexico, October 12 is a national holiday known as Di-a de la Raza, or Day of the Race. It's a day to celebrate Mexican traditions and culture.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


Big Meat has tantrum over Oct 15 Michael Pollan talk at CalPoly
By Ethicurean @ 11:36 am on 8 October 2009.

RIP, academic freedom: Writer Michael Pollan—aka “elitist,” and apparently Agribiz Public Enemy No. 1—will now be part of a panel discussion at Cal Poly on Oct. 15 instead of giving a planned one-hour lecture. Harris Ranch Beef Company Chairman David E. Wood wrote to Cal Poly President Warren Baker threatening to withdraw a pledged $500,000 donation for a new meat processing facility on the campus if Pollan’s “unchallenged forum to promote his stand against conventional agricultural practices” was not rethought. Now, Gary Smith, Monfort Endowed Chair in meat science at Colorado State University, and Myra Goodman, cofounder of organic vegetable company Earthbound Farms, will join Pollan for a more “balanced” forum. (We guess Goodman will be providing the neglected veggie perspective.) (New Times SLO)
(Full text: )

Wednesday, October 7, 2009



Andy Bichlbaum and Mike Bonanno are two guys who just can't take "no" for an answer.

They have an unusual hobby: posing as top executives of corporations they hate. Armed with nothing but thrift-store suits, the Yes Men lie their way into business conferences and parody their corporate targets in ever more extreme ways - basically doing everything that they can to wake up their audiences to the danger of letting greed run our world.

One day Andy, purporting to be a Dow Chemical spokesperson, gets on the biggest TV news program in the world and announces that Dow will finally clean up the site of the largest industrial accident in history, the Bhopal catastrophe. The result: as people worldwide celebrate, Dow's stock value loses two billion dollars. People want Dow to do the right thing, but the market decides that it can't.

The reality hits Andy and Mike like a ton of bricks: we have created a market system that makes doing the right thing impossible, and the people who appear to be leading are actually following its pathological dictates. If we keep putting the market in the driver's seat, it could happily drive the whole planet off a cliff.

At conference after conference, the Yes Men try to wake up their corporate audiences to this frightening prospect, in the process taking on some of the world's biggest and baddest corporations. Just one example: as Exxon, Andy and Mike demonstrate a new biofuel made from climate-change victims. It's a gut-busting laugh riot - one of several in the film - to see the unsuspecting audience learn that the lit candles they hold are made out of dead people.

On their journey, the Yes Men act as gonzo journalists, delving deep into the question of why we have given the market more power than any other institution to determine our direction as a society. They visit the twisted (and accidentally hilarious) underworld of the free-market think tanks, where they figure out a way to defeat the logic that's destroying our planet. And as they appear on the BBC before 300 million viewers, or before 1000 New Orleans contractors alongside Mayor Ray Nagin, the layers of lies are peeled back to reveal the raw heart of truth - a truth that brings with it hope.

Hope explodes at the end of this film with a power that may take audiences straight out of the theater and into the barricades. A word of warning to theater owners: make sure your seats are securely screwed down.

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Bonus: This film has one of the very few underwater ballet scenes you will ever see in a political documentary!

This film is dedicated to the ongoing struggle of the people of Bhopal to achieve a crucial global precedent.

Please visit and contribute whatever you can - your money, your talents, your time.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


Ready for nettles and dandelions on your plate? Langdon Cook talks foraging, the next (cheap!) step in local food

By Sarah Karnasiewicz

Read more: Food and Travel

from Salon

Oct. 6, 2009
| It's been three decades since Alice Waters made microgreens a culinary cliché, and by now most diners take the lingo of local food for granted: chefs who raise their own heritage chickens, restaurants with hand-lettered blackboards that outline the lineage of every lamb chop, and salads that sport farmers' Christian names. But what if the next menu you picked up offered nettle pesto picked from the ditch next to Route 6? Or garlic-sautéed dandelion greens gathered from the overgrown lot behind the grocery store? As the meanings of "organic" and "local" grow ever more slippery -- and in lean times, when fewer folks than ever can afford to pay a premium for dinner -- are wild edibles poised to emerge as the next gastronomic zeitgeist?
(full text:


Brazil Cattle Industry Giants Unite in Banning Amazon Destruction

October 5, 2009
4:23 PM

CONTACT: Greenpeace
Daniel Kessler, Greenpeace USA Press Officer, 510.501.1779
Lindsey Allen, Greenpeace Forest Campaigner, 415.710.5601
Paulo Adario, Greenpeace Amazon Campaign director, +55 92 8115 8928

SAO PAULO, Brazil - October 5 - In a major step forward for climate protection, today four of the biggest players in the global cattle industry -- Marfrig, Bertin, JBS-Friboi and Minerva - joined forces to ban the purchase of cattle from newly deforested areas of the Brazilian Amazon from their supply chains, backing Greenpeace's call for zero deforestation in the rainforest. (1)

The move follows the release of the Greenpeace report ‘Slaughtering the Amazon' in June, which exposed the link between forest destruction and the expansion of cattle ranching in the Amazon. This prompted calls for action from key international companies, including Adidas, Nike and Timberland, which committed to cancel contracts unless their products were guaranteed to be free from Amazon destruction, encouraging today's move.
(Full text:

Monday, October 5, 2009


Published on Monday, October 5, 2009 by Associated Press
More Americans Growing Food on Small `Hobby Farms'

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's most recent farm census shows that while the nation's largest farms keep getting larger, a growing number of small farms also are sprouting across the nation.

February's census report found that the number of farms under 50 acres soared nearly 15 percent between 2002 and 2007 to about 853,000 nationwide. Farms under 10 acres grew even more, with their numbers rising about 30 percent to 232,000.

Nearly 300,000 new farms began production since the last census in 2002, and they tended to have fewer acres, lower sales and younger operators who also work off-farm, said Ginger Harris, a demographer with National Agricultural Statistics Service, a branch of the USDA.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Monday, September 28, 2009


Powering the plunder, fueling the fire: Tuna today, gone tomorrow

Posted by: greenpeace_guest_blogger | 19 Sep 09 | Leave a comment | Permalink
greenpeace_guest_blogger Mary Ann Mayo was the webbie onboard the Greenpeace ship Esperanza during the first leg of the Defending Our Pacific 2009 tour.

The last refuge of the last relatively healthy stocks of tuna is found right here in the Pacific. Scientists have been warning for years that the fishing pressure on Pacific tuna must be reduced, yet the Taiwanese-owned, American-flagged super-seiner the American Legacy left the shipyard in Taiwan only last year. Amidst warnings of overfishing and calls for restraint, this brand new super-seiner joined the already vast number of fishing vessels out at sea that are chasing fewer and fewer fish.

Saturday, September 26, 2009


Take action to protect the world's most important food source -RICE- from the bio-tech industry!


Islands at Risk: Genetic Engineering in Hawaii
A film by Earthjustice, 2006
The film can be viewed in its entirety online at:

To purchase the DVD:

Review by Claire Robinson (excerpted review from

How did a place so blessed by nature (Hawaii) find itself targeted, in the chilling words of one activist, as a "national and international sacrifice area for biotech and genetic modification research"? How did its fertile fields get to be occupied by monocultures of experimental plants with Guantanamo-style bags over their heads? Answer: by stealth. A film by the Hawaiian nonprofit environmental law firm Earthjustice, Islands at Risk, features an interview with local hunter and activist Walter Ritte, who says, "We knew nothing about GMO until one day there was a rumour that there were strange things being grown in our cornfields. The whole farming community was changing and we didn't even know." In a process subsidized by US taxpayers and assisted by the state government of Hawaii, the islands' soils have become the open-air laboratories of chemical and biotech giants DuPont, Monsanto, Dow, and Syngenta, for the testing of GM crops.

The film shows that the entire enterprise has been cloaked in secrecy from the start. Even lawmakers are not allowed to know what is being planted and where. What is known is that on the island of Oahu, over 2000 field tests of GM crops have taken place. These include pharma plants producing AIDS, hepatitis and swine diarrhoea vaccines, and crops producing industrial compounds. And the experimental fields are within spitting distance of residential areas, schools and old people's homes. The industry claims it's safe as there is no rising incidence of disease. But this is exposed in the film as a lie. Lorrin Pang, MD and consultant to the World Health Organization, points out that the ten years since GMOs have been introduced have seen rises in prematurity, cancers, attention deficit disorder, and adult onset diabetes in children. Pang adds that no one can draw any conclusions as to the cause, as GMOs in food are not labeled.

Friday, September 25, 2009


Food Sovereignty & Climate Change

What is Food Sovereignty?
Food sovereignty is the right of individuals, communities and countries to define their own food, agriculture, fishing, labor and land policies. These food and land policies are socially, ecologically, economically and culturally appropriate to the people who define them. Food sovereignty also guarantees people the right to produce their own food and to have access to necessary food-producing resources like seeds, land and water.

Food security is different than food sovereignty in that it is not culturally specific, and it does not guarantee people the right to produce their own food under ecologically, socially, culturally and economically appropriate circumstances. (RAN factsheet)

What does Food Sovereignty have to do with Climate Change?
Before we let the energy companies colonize our agricultural land touting questionably climate friendly solutions like agrofuels, lets look a little at some of the deep seeded issues within our current food system that are not only perpetuating climate change but will be impacted and taxed greatly as the climate changes.

Our current food system relies heavily on fossil fuel derived fertilizers and pesticides, gas guzzling farm machinery, and transporting farm inputs and products over long distances. The average food item bought at a supermarket has traveled on average over 1,500 miles. The modern agricultural system is completely unsustainable as the climate continues to change due to the excessive burning of fossil fuels by humans.

No one knows exactly what will happen as climate change takes shape, but we can predict that climate change will have an affect on how, what, and where we grow food. Many areas will be plagued by drought or floods or both and the acreage of the earth suitable for agriculture will shift, perhaps dramatically.

California COMPOSTING! SF is in and so is LA!

Los Angeles Begins Composting Food Scraps, Yard Wastes

The cities are finding out about composting…about time.

Los Angeles Asks Residents To Recycle Food Scraps:

Wednesday, September 23, 2009



The current bill sitting in congress right now is known as HR 875 - designed supposedly to make foods more safe. Effectively, what this bill does is give power to the large agri-businesses and lobbyists from Monsanto, ADM Cargill and other factory farm organizations to regulate food. It also takes power away from the states and gives more power to the federal government. It is a scary proposal which will certainly affect organic growers, home gardeners and even hunters. And the worst part yet is that it clearly is going to be a partisan vote. I am urging you to read into the whole bill, and encourage your colleagues to do the same. This could be a devastating and dangerous way to control food "safety." (Full text:
Pay special attention to

* Section 3 which is the definitions portion of the bill-read in it's entirety.
* section 103, 206 and 207- read in it's entirety.

Red flags found and there's sure to be more...........

* Legally binds state agriculture depts to enforcing federal guidelines effectively taking away the states power to do anything other than being food police for the federal dept.
* Effectively criminalizes organic farming but doesn't actually use the word organic.
* Affects anyone growing food even if they are not selling it but consuming it.
* Affects anyone producing meat of any kind including the processing wild game for personal consumption.
* Legislation is so broad based that every aspect of growing or producing food can be made illegal. There are no specifics which is bizarre considering how long the legislation is.
* Section 103 is almost entirely about the administrative aspect of the legislation. It will allow the appointing of officials from the factory farming corporations and lobbyists and classify them as experts and allow them to determine and interpret the legislation. Who do you think they are going to side with?
* Section 206 defines what will be considered a food production facility and what will be enforced up all food production facilities. The wording is so broad based that a backyard gardener could be fined and more.
* Section 207 requires that the state's agriculture dept act as the food police and enforce the federal requirements. This takes away the states power and is in violation of the 10th amendment.