Friday, September 18, 2015


Govt decides to ban GMO food production in Russia

Share of GMOs in the Russian food industry has declined from 12% to 0.01% over the past 10 years, official statistics say
EXCERPT: The law ordering obligatory state registration of GMO products that might contact with the environment will come into force in mid-2017.

Govt decides to ban GMO food production in Russia – deputy PM

Russia Today, 18 Sept 2015

A senior Russian government member told reporters the cabinet decided that any food production in the country will completely exclude any genetically-modified organisms or parts thereof.

“As far as genetically-modified organisms are concerned, we have made decision not to use any GMO in food productions,” Deputy PM Arkady Dvorkovich said at an international conference on biotechnology in the Russian city of Kirov.

At the same time the official emphasized that there was a very clear line between this decision and the development of science, medicine and some other branches.

“This is not a simple issue, we must do very thorough work on division on these spheres and form a legal base on this foundation,” he said.

In February 2014, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev ordered the creation of a national research base for genetically-modified organisms that would provide the authorities with expert information and allow for further legislative movements and executive decisions. Medvedev also warned against perceiving GMO products as “absolute evil,” but said that the government did not support their use in the food industry.

At the same time a group of MPs backed by parliamentary majority party United Russia drafted the bill that severely restricted the imports of genetically-modified agricultural produce, and completely banning its domestic production. This draft has not passed through parliament, but later in the year the State Duma approved a package of amendments imposing fines on businesses which sell products containing genetically-modified organisms without adequate labeling to warn consumers.

According to official statistics the share of GMO in the Russian food industry has declined from 12 percent to just 0.01 percent over the past 10 years, and currently there are just 57 registered food products containing GMO in the country. The law ordering obligatory state registration of GMO products that might contact with the environment will come into force in mid-2017.


France bolsters ban on GM crops

EU’s largest grain grower and exporter asks to be excluded from some GM maize crop cultivation
In opting out of GMO cultivation, France joins GermanyScotlandLatvia, and GreeceHungary and Slovenia are also expected to opt out.

UPDATE 2 - France bolsters ban on genetically modified crops

(Adds detail on seed producers)
Reuters, 17 Sept 2015

France is to use a new European opt-out scheme to ensure a ban on the cultivation of genetically modified crops in the country remains in place, it saidon Thursday.

The European Union's largest grain grower and exporter has asked the European Commission for France to be excluded from some GM maize crop cultivation under the new scheme, the farm and environment ministries said in a joint statement.

As part of the opt-out process, France also passed legislation in the National Assembly that would enable it to oppose the cultivation of GM crops, even if approved at EU level, on the basis of certain criteria including environment and farm policy, land use, economic impact or civil order, the environment ministry added.

Widely grown in the Americas and Asia, GM crops have divided opinion in Europe. France had already banned cultivation of U.S. group Monsanto's GM maize, saying it had serious doubts that it is safe for the environment.

Monsanto says its maize (corn) is harmless to humans and wildlife.

The EU opt-out, agreed in March, allows individual countries to seek exclusion from any approval request for GM cultivation in the 28-member bloc or varieties already cleared as safe by the EU.

Monsanto's MON810 maize is the only GM crop grown in Europe, where it has been cultivated in Spain and Portugal for a decade, but other maize crops are in the process of being approved at EU level.

One of them is an insect-resistant maize known as 1507. Its developers, DuPont Pioneer and Dow Chemical, have been waiting nearly 15 years for the EU executive to authorise its cultivation in the bloc.

The French request concerns nine GM maize strains. Producers also include Switzerland's Syngenta, a spokesman for the environment ministry said.

Germany also intends to make use of the new EU rules to stop the growing of GM crops, documents seen by Reuters showed last month.

The European Commission is responsible for approvals, but under the new rules requests for opt-outs also have to be submitted to the company making the application.

Monsanto has said it will abide by requests from Latvia and Greece to be excluded from its application to grow a GM crop in the EU but accused them of ignoring science.

(Reporting by Sybille de La Hamaide, Gus Trompiz and Valerie Parent; Editing by Jane Merriman and David Goodman)

Tuesday, September 15, 2015


OCTOBER 5, 2015

Sacramento, California
September 4, 2015: CA Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA), State Agency which administers Proposition 65* (Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986), announced that it will publish a notice of intent to list glyphosate, malathion, and two other chemicals which will require product labeling, on the State’s Proposition 65 list. This notice of intent starts a 30 day public comment period until October 5, 2015, before a final determination is made.

This is in response to the April 2015 request by the CSG (formerly California State Grange) and the Sacramento Community Grange, jointly submitted with the Environmental Working Group, to the California OEHHA, (part of the Cal/EPA, California Environmental Protection Agency), to the list glyphosate (RoundUp) as a Proposition 65, carcinogen.  Glyphosate, both herbicide and antibiotic, is one of the most commonly used herbicides in the world, most closely associated with GMO (genetically modified organism) crops engineered to possess traits making them resistant to this herbicide, allowing more to be applied without danger to the life of the plant.

A March 20, 2015 finding by the IARC of the WHO (World Health Organization) confirms glyphosate is a probable carcinogen to humans.


TO COMMENT on this law change and demand that OEHHA classify GLYPHOSATE as a carcinogen:

Written comments must be received by
5:00 p.m.,  Monday, October 5, 2015, to be considered.
1)       Please submit comments in electronic form, rather than in paper form.
2)       Comments transmitted by e‑mail should be addressed to
3)       Please include “NOIL” and the GLYPHOSATE in the subject line.
4)       Comments received during the public comment period will be posted on the OEHHA web site after the close of the comment period.
5)       Comments submitted in paper form may be mailed, faxed, or delivered in person to the address below.

Mailing Address: Ms. Esther Barajas-Ochoa
Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment
P.O. Box 4010, MS-19B
Sacramento, California 95812-4010
Fax: (916) 323-2265

Street Address: 1001 I Street
Sacramento, California 95814

Questions? Please contact Esther Barajas-Ochoa at or at 

*What is Proposition 65?
Proposition 65 requires the State to publish a list of chemicals known to cause cancer or birth defects or other reproductive harm. This list, which must be updated at least once a year, has grown to include approximately 800 chemicals since it was first published in 1987. Proposition 65 requires businesses to notify Californians about significant amounts of chemicals in the products they purchase, in their homes or workplaces, or that are released into the environment.

PROP 65 ACTION ALERT links below to add your Comments to the CALIFORNIA EPA Toxics list, mandating a label on any products containing glyphosate (RoundUp) used in air, water, food or soils application in California....

Seeking 1 Million Public COMMENTS by October 5, 2015
(just a few weeks!!). They prefer online comments but will accept snail mail comments as well....

This addition of glyphosate to the TOXICS list happened only because citizens went to the CA EPA and demanded it be added to the list after the March 2015 WHO (World Health Organization) determined glyphosate to be a human carcinogen (causing cancer)!