The world is marching on Monsanto on May 25, 2013. To find information about your location you can go to this Facebook page. If you’re not on Facebook, please visit www.march-against-monsanto.com. If you’re not sure why this is important, continue reading.
If you haven’t heard about GMO’s, you might want to read and understand what this term is before making a trip to your local grocery store.
GMO stands for Genetically Modified Organism, or better known as much of the food you eat today. You the consumer have no way of knowing if your food has been genetically altered, including with fish or even human DNA.
In the constant struggle by farmers to plant, grow and harvest a full crop each year, without using poisonous sprays (such as DDT before 1972), companies like Monsanto have paid biologists to find alternate solutions to chemical pesticides. What they found was genetically altering the DNA of a fruit or vegetable would essentially poison the pest that fed on that fruit or vegetable.
The results assist farmers in bringing a fuller crop to market. While that’s great for the farmer and for the corporations creating these genetically altered seeds, we have yet to know exactly what this is doing to the people who consume these products. If an insect can become sterile, or die from ingesting this food, what can happen to animals and humans?
Monsanto states they do extensive testing. Recently, Monsanto Exec Hugh Grant stated that “activists are not playing fair” in their use of social media against the GMO giant. Who is it though that really isn’t playing fair?
- Mike Taylor who was at one time a Monsanto Vice President is now the Deputy Commissioner for Foods at the FDA. While in this role, GMO’s were approved in the US without undergoing tests to determine if they were safe for human consumption. This would indicate a conflict of interest. This raises the question, is it the FDA’s practice to bring high ranking corporate officials into high ranking FDA positions, and for what purpose?
- Monsanto has described current research into GMO crops as inconclusive, and has lobbied hard in Washington and around the globe to continue manufacturing lab-made foods without the oversight demanded by activists.
- In March, Congress passed a biotech rider dubbed the ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ that effectively allows Monsanto and other companies that use GMOs to plant and sell genetically altered products even if legal action is taken against them later.
- A recent ruling by the U.S. Supreme court forces a 75 year old Indiana family farmer into bankruptcy, forcing him to pay $84,000 in damages to Monsanto for unknowingly planting second generation seeds.
The world is watching though. In an article in the World Public Union on May 15, 2013, it was noted that Hungary has chosen to destroy and ban all Monsanto corn. Hungary does not allow genetically modified foods. Peru has also placed a ten year ban on genetically modified foods.
Recently, the Vermont House and Connecticut Senate voted to force food companies to declare GMO ingredients on their packages. More states need to follow but that will be difficult because just two days prior to the march on Monsanto, the Senate squashed a bill allowing states to require labeling of GMO products. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), the bill’s sponsor, told the Huffington Post before the vote.“In the European Union, in many other countries around the world, dozens and dozens of countries, people are able to look at the food that they are buying and determine through labeling whether or not that product contains genetically modified organisms.”
Even though the Monsanto paid Congress is against Senator Sanders, tens of thousands of supporters are rallying in support of his goals because, said Sanders “The people of American have a right to know what is in the food they eat.”
Join the march. If you can’t, encourage someone else to. At minimum, be aware of what you are putting on the dinner table for your family.