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August 23 2012

Dave Gutknecht -- Farmers Fight Monsanto's Threats and Intimidation

A major lawsuit against Monsanto was denied in at the district court and has been appealed. On July 5, 2012, seventy-five family farmers, seed businesses, and agricultural organizations representing over 300,000 individuals and 4,500 farms filed a brief with the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C., asking the appellate court to reverse a lower court's decision from February dismissing their protective legal action against agricultural giant Monsanto's patents on genetically engineered seed.

The plaintiffs brought the pre-emptive case against Monsanto in March 2011 in the Southern District of New York (Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association et al. v Monsanto) and specifically seek to defend themselves from nearly two dozen of Monsanto's most aggressively asserted patents on GMO seed. They were forced to act pre-emptively to protect themselves from Monsanto's abusive lawsuits, fearing that if GMO seed contaminates their property despite their efforts to prevent such contamination, Monsanto will sue them for patent infringement.

Lead plaintiff in the suit (and the main source for this report) is the Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association (www.osgata.org), a not-for-profit agricultural organization made up of organic farmers, seed growers, seed businesses and supporters. OSGATA is committed to developing and protecting organic seed and its growers in order to ensure the organic community has access to excellent quality organic seed – seed that is free of contaminants and adapted to the diverse needs of local organic agriculture.

Dangerous Drift

Seed and pollen can drift great distances, in some cases as far as 10-15 miles, increasing the likelihood of contamination of organic crops with genetics from Monsanto's laboratories. The latter seeds and crops are referred to as "transgenic," and have had DNA of foreign organisms inserted into their DNA through human engineered processes. The suit plaintiffs use and sell non-transgenic seed, more commonly referred to as heirloom, organic, or conventional seed.

Read more.. http://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/445-farm-and-food-policy/13042-focus-farmers-fight-monsantos-threats-and-intimidation?tmpl=component&print=1&page=

Dave Gutknecht -- Farmers Fight Monsanto's Threats and Intimidation

A major lawsuit against Monsanto was denied in at the district court and has been appealed. On July 5, 2012, seventy-five family farmers, seed businesses, and agricultural organizations representing over 300,000 individuals and 4,500 farms filed a brief with the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C., asking the appellate court to reverse a lower court's decision from February dismissing their protective legal action against agricultural giant Monsanto's patents on genetically engineered seed.

The plaintiffs brought the pre-emptive case against Monsanto in March 2011 in the Southern District of New York (Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association et al. v Monsanto) and specifically seek to defend themselves from nearly two dozen of Monsanto's most aggressively asserted patents on GMO seed. They were forced to act pre-emptively to protect themselves from Monsanto's abusive lawsuits, fearing that if GMO seed contaminates their property despite their efforts to prevent such contamination, Monsanto will sue them for patent infringement.

Lead plaintiff in the suit (and the main source for this report) is the Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association (www.osgata.org), a not-for-profit agricultural organization made up of organic farmers, seed growers, seed businesses and supporters. OSGATA is committed to developing and protecting organic seed and its growers in order to ensure the organic community has access to excellent quality organic seed – seed that is free of contaminants and adapted to the diverse needs of local organic agriculture.

Dangerous Drift

Seed and pollen can drift great distances, in some cases as far as 10-15 miles, increasing the likelihood of contamination of organic crops with genetics from Monsanto's laboratories. The latter seeds and crops are referred to as "transgenic," and have had DNA of foreign organisms inserted into their DNA through human engineered processes. The suit plaintiffs use and sell non-transgenic seed, more commonly referred to as heirloom, organic, or conventional seed.

Read more.. http://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/445-farm-and-food-policy/13042-focus-farmers-fight-monsantos-threats-and-intimidation?tmpl=component&print=1&page=

Dave Gutknecht -- Farmers Fight Monsanto's Threats and Intimidation

A major lawsuit against Monsanto was denied in at the district court and has been appealed. On July 5, 2012, seventy-five family farmers, seed businesses, and agricultural organizations representing over 300,000 individuals and 4,500 farms filed a brief with the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C., asking the appellate court to reverse a lower court's decision from February dismissing their protective legal action against agricultural giant Monsanto's patents on genetically engineered seed.

The plaintiffs brought the pre-emptive case against Monsanto in March 2011 in the Southern District of New York (Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association et al. v Monsanto) and specifically seek to defend themselves from nearly two dozen of Monsanto's most aggressively asserted patents on GMO seed. They were forced to act pre-emptively to protect themselves from Monsanto's abusive lawsuits, fearing that if GMO seed contaminates their property despite their efforts to prevent such contamination, Monsanto will sue them for patent infringement.

Lead plaintiff in the suit (and the main source for this report) is the Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association (www.osgata.org), a not-for-profit agricultural organization made up of organic farmers, seed growers, seed businesses and supporters. OSGATA is committed to developing and protecting organic seed and its growers in order to ensure the organic community has access to excellent quality organic seed – seed that is free of contaminants and adapted to the diverse needs of local organic agriculture.

Dangerous Drift

Seed and pollen can drift great distances, in some cases as far as 10-15 miles, increasing the likelihood of contamination of organic crops with genetics from Monsanto's laboratories. The latter seeds and crops are referred to as "transgenic," and have had DNA of foreign organisms inserted into their DNA through human engineered processes. The suit plaintiffs use and sell non-transgenic seed, more commonly referred to as heirloom, organic, or conventional seed.

Read more.. http://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/445-farm-and-food-policy/13042-focus-farmers-fight-monsantos-threats-and-intimidation?tmpl=component&print=1&page=

August 22 2012

Ed Bauman -- Studies Show Microwaves Drastically Reduce Nutrients In Food

I can remember the days growing up in the 1950's and 1960's, when we prepared foods without a microwave oven. Water was boiled on the stove. Chicken was baked in an oven. Vegetables were steamed, baked, or sautéed. Food was whole and fresh. Even a TV dinner was baked in the oven, which took about 15 minutes to warm. And then, modern science and technology brought us the microwave oven that could heat food rapidly, from 30 seconds to a couple of minutes.

The industry has claimed that microwave cooking protects the nutrient content of foods. Somehow, in tasting foods that came out of a microwave oven, the texture was changed as was the flavor. Foods cooked or reheated in microwave ovens became rubbery and lacked the savory smells and layered flavors that come from cooking foods slower and longer.

Nevertheless, people bought the convenience aspect, the speed, the simplicity of heating and eating prepared foods. The science, which has been supported by the food industry, has continued to claim the health benefits of microwave cooking. Recently, published data from reliable sources questions the health benefits of microwaved food.

Does this mean an occasional microwaved meal will be harmful? Not likely. But what about a steady diet of eating foods cooked at such a high heat? Do the sensitive compounds in food, such as amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins and phytonutrients change? It appears so. Read on to follow the scientific literature surrounding the depletion of our soil, foods, and health as a result of modern farming, food processing, microwave cooking, and not eating enough fresh, natural, uncooked, organic whole foods.

  • Three recent studies of historical food composition have shown 5-40% declines in some of the minerals in fresh produce, and another study found a similar decline in our protein sources (1)
  • A 1999 Scandinavian study of the cooking of asparagus spears found that microwaving caused a reduction in vitamins (3)
  • In a study of garlic, as little as 60 seconds of microwave heating was enough to inactivate its allinase, garlic's principle active ingredient against cancer (5)
  • A study published in the November 2003 issue of The Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture found that broccoli "zapped" in the microwave with a little water lost up to 97%of its beneficial antioxidants. By comparison, steamed broccoli lost 11% or fewer of its antioxidants. There were also reductions in phenolic compounds and glucosinolates, but mineral levels remained intact (6).
  • A recent Australian study showed that micro- waves cause a higher degree of "protein unfolding" than conventional heating (2)
  • Microwaving can destroy the essential disease-fighting agents in breast milk that offer protection for your baby. In 1992, Quan found that microwaved breast milk lost lysozyme activity, antibodies, and fostered the growth of more potentially pathogenic bacteria (4).

Quan stated that more damage was done to the milk by microwaving than by other methods of heating, concluding: "Microwaving appears to be contraindicated at high-temperatures, and questions regarding its safety exist even at low temperatures."

Read more.. http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/studies-show-microwaves-drastically-reduce-nutrients-food

Paula Alvarado -- A landmark ruling against agrochemicals in Argentina receives mixed reactions

Argentine activist Sofia Gatica did not win the Goldman Environmental Prize this year for a small reason: for more than a decade, she has been leading a joint complaint with neighbors from her town Ituzaingo, in Cordoba province, against producers who were spraying agrochemicals too close to the community, making people sick. (The public attorney claimed 169 people from the 5,000 neighbors got cancer from pollution from 2002 until 2010.)

Argentina being the third largest exporter of soybeans and a consumer of over 50 million gallons of glyphosate and endosulfan, her efforts were not small. In fact, she became the voice for a problem nobody wants to talk about.

Since the government depends on soy exports to collect taxes and keep the economy alive, the subject is not one eagerly discussed politically. There was a call by president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner to create a commission to investigate agrochemicals in 2009, but its final recommendation, as IPS notes, was, "Because there is not enough data in Argentina on the effects of glyphosate on human health, it is important to promote further research."

The media is not crazy about it either, and you can see why by flipping the pages of the Country supplements from the nation's major newspapers, filled with ads from Monsanto et al. In 2009, a local scientist presented a study with evidence of the impact of glyphosate on amphibious embryos and received death threats plus an aggressive discredit campaign.

But this afternoon, Gatica and other environmental movements pushing the issue were preparing to receive a pat in the back. A court in Cordoba Province was going to give its final ruling on whether two farmers and an aviator were guilty of causing environmental damage and potential health hazards to the people of Ituzaingo.

Five hours after the initial time of the announcement, the verdict was in: one farmer was absolved due to lack of evidence, but the other and the aviator were found guilty and sentenced to three years of jail. Well, actually, conditional jail. Which means they can very much get out of doing any time, although they will be obliged to do social work.

Read more.. http://www.treehugger.com/environmental-policy/a-landmark-ruling-against-agrochemicals-in-argentina-receives-mixed-reactions.html

Paula Alvarado -- A landmark ruling against agrochemicals in Argentina receives mixed reactions

Argentine activist Sofia Gatica did not win the Goldman Environmental Prize this year for a small reason: for more than a decade, she has been leading a joint complaint with neighbors from her town Ituzaingo, in Cordoba province, against producers who were spraying agrochemicals too close to the community, making people sick. (The public attorney claimed 169 people from the 5,000 neighbors got cancer from pollution from 2002 until 2010.)

Argentina being the third largest exporter of soybeans and a consumer of over 50 million gallons of glyphosate and endosulfan, her efforts were not small. In fact, she became the voice for a problem nobody wants to talk about.

Since the government depends on soy exports to collect taxes and keep the economy alive, the subject is not one eagerly discussed politically. There was a call by president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner to create a commission to investigate agrochemicals in 2009, but its final recommendation, as IPS notes, was, "Because there is not enough data in Argentina on the effects of glyphosate on human health, it is important to promote further research."

The media is not crazy about it either, and you can see why by flipping the pages of the Country supplements from the nation's major newspapers, filled with ads from Monsanto et al. In 2009, a local scientist presented a study with evidence of the impact of glyphosate on amphibious embryos and received death threats plus an aggressive discredit campaign.

But this afternoon, Gatica and other environmental movements pushing the issue were preparing to receive a pat in the back. A court in Cordoba Province was going to give its final ruling on whether two farmers and an aviator were guilty of causing environmental damage and potential health hazards to the people of Ituzaingo.

Five hours after the initial time of the announcement, the verdict was in: one farmer was absolved due to lack of evidence, but the other and the aviator were found guilty and sentenced to three years of jail. Well, actually, conditional jail. Which means they can very much get out of doing any time, although they will be obliged to do social work.

Read more.. http://www.treehugger.com/environmental-policy/a-landmark-ruling-against-agrochemicals-in-argentina-receives-mixed-reactions.html

July 16 2012

Lisa Cerda - Monsanto: A Modern Day Plague

Monsanto’s history is one steeped with controversial products, deadly consequences, massive cover ups, political slight of hand, and culminates as a modern day plague on humanity, a plague that is about to peak to biblical proportions. Created in 1901, the company started producing its first form of poison, the artificial sweetener saccharin. The rise in use of saccharin really began 70 years later. Monsanto had plenty of time for a realistic and long term study on the impact of saccharin on human health. Instead, Monsanto learned how to finagle political support and grow its empire despite the growing consensus that saccharin caused cancer.

No surprise then that the company continued on a path of controversy. Here’s a bullet point history.
•    Contributed to the research on uranium, for the Manhattan Project, during WWII.
•    Operated a nuclear facility for the U.S. government until the late 1980s.
•    Top manufacturer of synthetic fibers, plastics and polystyrene (EPA’s 5th ranked chemical production that generates the most hazardous waste).
•    A top 10 US chemical company.
•    Agriculture pesticides producer.
•    Herbicide producer – herbicides 2,4,5-T, Agent Orange, Lasso, and DDT.

•    Agent Orange (used in Vietnam), had the highest levels of dioxin and contaminated more than 3 million civilians and servicemen of which only partial compensation awarded.
•    Nearly 500,000 Vietnamese children were born deformed and never compensated.
•    Lasso was banned in USA, so weed killer “Roundup” is launched in 1976.
•    A major producer of both dioxins and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), which generated many law suits and environmental cleanups
•    $180 million settlement for Vietnam War veterans exposed to Agent Orange
•    Fined $1.2 million for concealing the discharge of contaminated waste water
•    Ordered to pay $41.1 million due to hazardous waste dumping
•    Paid $600 million in settlement claims to more than 20,000 Anniston residents in Abernathy v. United States.
•    Produced GM cattle drug, bovine growth hormone (called rBGH or rBST)
•    Acquiring seed companies from the 1990’s and forward.
•    Monsanto Filed 144 lawsuits against struggling farmers and settled out of court with 700 farmers, for reportedly violating seed patents.  A full time staff of 75 Monsanto employees investigates patent infringement. They are dedicated solely to finding farms that have been contaminated by their unwanted seed. As of 2007, Monsanto was awarded in 57 recorded judgments against farmers a total of $21,583,431.99. Monsanto vs. Farmers.

Read More:

http://wakeup-world.com/2012/07/16/monsanto-a-modern-day-plague/


June 21 2012

[Call to Action] URGENT! Tell your Senators to support GMO labeling – Americans shouldn’t have wait to find out what’s in their food!

Take action today to stop agribusiness lobbyists from giving away billions in federal subsidies to the agribusiness lobby.

A photo of a genetically-engineered glowing to...

Urgent Calls needed – Senate votes on GMO labeling amendment today!

Yesterday was a better day in the U.S. Senate for family farmers, eaters and the environment, with several key amendments protecting vital conservation programs passing in floor votes. (Please see below for the updates).

We want to thank Food Democracy Now! members and our allies for achieving some significant victories in the Farm Bill this week. As you know, we are up against some of the most powerful corporations on the planet, but this shows if we all work together we can help create significant change. In the past week Food Democracy Now! members have made more than 15,000 phones calls to the Senate, but we have one more hurdle this week.

Another urgent vote will take place in the Senate in the next few hours and your Senator could cast the deciding vote on the Sanders amendment #2310 that clarifies state’s existing rights to require labeling of genetically engineered foods. This vote will require 60 affirmative votes to pass so we need A LOT of calls!

Click here to tell your Senator it’s time to label GMOs! Americans shouldn’t have to wait, nearly 50 other countries around the globe already require GMO labeling!

In the past year, more than a dozen states have introduced legislation to allow their citizens the right to know what’s in their food and how it’s produced, but massive corporate lobbying by Monsanto and thebiotech industry has brought these bill to a halt in key states like Connecticut and Vermont.

Americans can no longer allow the threats of corporations to deny us our simple Right to Know what’s in our food, nor live under the hypocritical and pseudo-scientific theory of “substantial equivalence”, which was established by the FDA in 1992 and continues this politically motivated charade of not allowing the labeling of food that has been genetically engineered in laboratories.

Tell your Senators, “I support GMO labeling and you should too!

Last week Senator Sanders introduced amendment #2310 (the Consumers Right to Know About Genetically Engineered Food Act) in an impassioned speech on the Senate floor.

Senator Sanders’ words were a welcome relief of reasonable and common sense logic on a topic that has long since been plagued by bureaucratic double-speak.

“All over this country, people are becoming more conscious about the foods they are eating and the foods they are serving to their kids, and this is certainly true for genetically engineered foods. I believe that when a mother goes to the store and purchases food for her child, she has the right to know what she is feeding her child,” Sanders said on the Senate floor.

Senator Sanders went on to state basic facts about food labeling policies in the U.S. and abroad that should make all Americans think long and hard as to why GMOs are not labeled in America.

“In the United States, food labels already must list more than 3,000 ingredients ranging from gluten, aspartame, high-fructose corn syrup, trans-fats or MSG, but not genetically altered ingredients. Around the world, by contrast, 49 countries require labels on foods that contain genetically engineered ingredients,” said Sanders.

Who knows what the biotech industry is afraid of? But that’s not our concern. As an American, we each have a basic inalienable right to know what’s in our food, whether it was raised on an organic farm or genetically engineered in a laboratory.

Corporations shouldn’t be allowed to deny us our fundamental rights and neither should your Senators!

Tell your Senators, “I support GMO labeling – and you should too!

Senate Food and Farm Bill Floor Vote Roundup

We want to thank everyone who made urgent phones calls in the past week and let you know that your persistence and hard work paid off!

Here’s a updated list of the amendments that Food Democracy Now! and our allies for a healthy, sustainable food system supported during the Senate vote on the 2012 Food and Farm Bill.

  • VICTORY – Chambliss Amendment No. 2438 Links the receipt of federally subsidized crop insurance to basic conservation requirements.
  • VICTORY – Durbin-Coburn Amendment No. 2439 Limits the amount of insurance subsidies for the wealthiest farmers.
  • LOSS – Gillibrand Amendment Restores funding for vital nutrition programs and limits excessive payments to crop insurance companies.
  • VICTORY – Merkley Amendment Creates a fair crop insurance program for organic farmers.
  • VICTORY – Brown Amendment Provides mandatory funding for Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development.
  • LOSS – Tester Crop Diversity Amendment to maintain access to the best varieties of seeds for farmers and future generations.

The sad news is that there were important amendments that we lost in this fight, but Food Democracy Now! proved once again, that if we work together, we can accomplish victories.

Together we can make GMO labeling a reality!

Thanks for participating in food democracy,

Dave, Lisa and the Food Democracy Now! Team

Tags: GMO

June 06 2012

GMOs and Glyphosate Linked to Infertility, Botulism and SIDS

Introduction and Background Information

I have heard much confusion and doubt about a man I admire much… Dr. Huber. When I first met Dr. Huber over four years ago, listened to his presentation, then reviewed his work in my hotel room, I began to realize what this meant for mankind. I wept, I cried some more, realizing how much evil was behind this; my tears are still on my notes of his work, I did not sleep, realizing how much work needed to be done. I have seen countless friends and family affected by the evil stemming from this crony capitalism network. Huber’s work is sound, his character strong, and he needs help spreading truth and clearing confusion. I am now asking for help from you, any of my friends, to equip yourselves with knowledge, as knowledge is power. This may bore many of you; too difficult for others, but it is the #2 thing to understand in your life other than God. If we can stop this, Dr. Huber is deserving of any earthly honor we can give him. I urge anyone who comprehends any of what I write to share this with as many as you can. It is a matter of utmost importance right now to ALL life on this planet. 

Ephesians 6:12 “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”

Read More:

http://farmwars.info/?p=8543

 

High and Dry: Why Genetic Engineering Is Not Solving Agriculture's Drought Problem in a Thirsty World (2012)

High and Dry is the third in a series of reports highlighting genetic engineering’s limitations and demonstrating the importance of increasing public investment in more effective—but often neglected—agricultural technologies. The first two reports in the series are Failure to Yield and No Sure Fix.

Droughts can be devastating to farmers and to the people who depend on the food those farmers produce. The historic Texas drought of 2011 caused a record $5.2 billion in agricultural losses, making it the most costly drought on record.

While extreme droughts capture the most attention, mild and moderate droughts are more common and collectively cause extensive damage. Climate scientists expect the frequency and severity of such droughts to increase as the global climate heats up.

Furthermore, agriculture accounts for the lion's share of water extracted from rivers and wells, setting up conflicts between food production and other uses. Other important organisms, such as fish, also compete with humans for fresh water. So there is a vital need for crop improvements that will increase drought tolerance and water use efficiency (WUE).

Biotechnology companies such as Monsanto have held out the promise that genetic engineering can accomplish these goals, creating new crop varieties that can thrive under drought conditions and reduce water demand even under normal conditions. High and Dry offers an analysis of the prospects for delivering on that promise.

Read More:

http://www.ucsusa.org/food_and_agriculture/science_and_impacts/science/high-and-dry.html

High and Dry: Why Genetic Engineering Is Not Solving Agriculture's Drought Problem in a Thirsty World (2012)

High and Dry is the third in a series of reports highlighting genetic engineering’s limitations and demonstrating the importance of increasing public investment in more effective—but often neglected—agricultural technologies. The first two reports in the series are Failure to Yield and No Sure Fix.

Droughts can be devastating to farmers and to the people who depend on the food those farmers produce. The historic Texas drought of 2011 caused a record $5.2 billion in agricultural losses, making it the most costly drought on record.

While extreme droughts capture the most attention, mild and moderate droughts are more common and collectively cause extensive damage. Climate scientists expect the frequency and severity of such droughts to increase as the global climate heats up.

Furthermore, agriculture accounts for the lion's share of water extracted from rivers and wells, setting up conflicts between food production and other uses. Other important organisms, such as fish, also compete with humans for fresh water. So there is a vital need for crop improvements that will increase drought tolerance and water use efficiency (WUE).

Biotechnology companies such as Monsanto have held out the promise that genetic engineering can accomplish these goals, creating new crop varieties that can thrive under drought conditions and reduce water demand even under normal conditions. High and Dry offers an analysis of the prospects for delivering on that promise.

Read More:

http://www.ucsusa.org/food_and_agriculture/science_and_impacts/science/high-and-dry.html

High and Dry: Why Genetic Engineering Is Not Solving Agriculture's Drought Problem in a Thirsty World (2012)

High and Dry is the third in a series of reports highlighting genetic engineering’s limitations and demonstrating the importance of increasing public investment in more effective—but often neglected—agricultural technologies. The first two reports in the series are Failure to Yield and No Sure Fix.

Droughts can be devastating to farmers and to the people who depend on the food those farmers produce. The historic Texas drought of 2011 caused a record $5.2 billion in agricultural losses, making it the most costly drought on record.

While extreme droughts capture the most attention, mild and moderate droughts are more common and collectively cause extensive damage. Climate scientists expect the frequency and severity of such droughts to increase as the global climate heats up.

Furthermore, agriculture accounts for the lion's share of water extracted from rivers and wells, setting up conflicts between food production and other uses. Other important organisms, such as fish, also compete with humans for fresh water. So there is a vital need for crop improvements that will increase drought tolerance and water use efficiency (WUE).

Biotechnology companies such as Monsanto have held out the promise that genetic engineering can accomplish these goals, creating new crop varieties that can thrive under drought conditions and reduce water demand even under normal conditions. High and Dry offers an analysis of the prospects for delivering on that promise.

Read More:

http://www.ucsusa.org/food_and_agriculture/science_and_impacts/science/high-and-dry.html

Jim Hightower - What's Really in Your Expensive Steak? You'd Be Surprised

Attention foodies: Let's chow down!

Forget organic, locavore, omega3, umami, artisanal and all the other signposts of the healthy, ethical and refined "good food" movement, there are important advances in CuisineWorld that are going 180 degrees in the opposite direction -- advances that literally are reshaping what we eat (while also reshaping us).

Let's start with red meat. Perhaps you're one who enjoys a steak dinner now and again. If so, let me ask this question: Do you prefer it with a nice Bernaise sauce, a side of garlicky spinach -- or maybe some transglutaminase?

Trans-what-did-he-say?

Transglutaminase is an enzyme made by the fermentation of bacteria and added to meat pieces to make them stick together. Yes, "meat glue" -- it's what's for dinner!
This is yet another dandy product from industrialized food purveyors that keep inventing new ways to mess with our dinner for their own fun and profit. Right about now, you're probably asking yourself, "Why do they need to glue meat together?"

Read More:

http://www.alternet.org/story/155742/what%27s_really_in_your_expensive_steak_you%27d_be_surprised

June 05 2012

U.S. FDA checks dictionary on corn syrup vs sugar

U.S. food and beverage makers who add high-fructose corn syrup to soda, breakfast cereal and other items will not be able to label it "corn sugar," under a decision by federal officials that frustrated corn processors but won praise from the sugar industry and some health advocates.

Both sides say they have consumers' interests at heart and are trying to minimize confusion about the term "sugar."

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which decides what goes on food labels, has ruled against the corn groups. The agency said calling high-fructose corn syrup "sugar" would mislead people - and could harm them.

"FDA's approach is consistent with the common understanding of sugar and syrup as referenced in a dictionary," the agency said in a letter posted on its website late on Wednesday.

The United States is the biggest consumer and manufacturer of high-fructose corn syrup. The sweetener was added to beverages such as Coca-Cola in the 1980s, but in recent years food makers have been trying out a return to sugar after some studies linked corn syrup to obesity.

Read More:

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/31/us-fda-sugar-idUSBRE84U19V20120531

June 04 2012

Alexis Baden-Mayer and Ronnie Cummins - Meet the Corporate Front Groups Fighting to Make Sure You Can't Know What's in Your Food

What do a former mouthpiece for tobacco and big oil, a corporate-interest PR flack, and the regional director of a Monsanto-funded tort reform group have in common?

They’re all part of the anti-labeling PR team that will soon unleash a massive advertising and PR campaign in California, designed to scare voters into rejecting the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act.

In November, California voters will vote ‘yes’ or ‘no’ on a law to require mandatory labeling of all GMO ingredients in processed foods, and ban the routine industry practice of mislabeling foods containing GMO ingredients as ‘natural.’

Polls show that nearly 90% of the state’s voters plan to vote ‘yes.’  But when November rolls around, will voter support still be strong? Not if the biotech, agribusiness, and food manufacturers industries can help it.

It’s estimated that the opposition will spend $60 million - $100 million to convince voters that GMOs are perfectly safe. They’ll try to scare voters into believing that labeling will make food more expensive, that it will spark hundreds of lawsuits against small farmers and small businesses, and that it will contribute to world hunger.  None of this is true. On the contrary, studies suggest just the opposite.

Here’s what is true: The opposition has lined up some heavy-hitters and industry-funded front groups -- masquerading as “grassroots” organizations -- to help spin their anti-labeling propaganda machine.

Read More:

http://www.alternet.org/story/155675/meet_the_corporate_front_groups_fighting_to_make_sure_you_can%27t_know_what%27s_in_your_food

Martha Rosenberg - 8 Surprising Things That May Be Making Americans Fat

A third of the U.S. population is now overweight, making it just a matter of time before normal-size people are actually in the minority. Americans have so ballooned in size, government safety regulators worry that airline seats and belts won't restrain today's men who average 194 pounds and women who average 165 pounds, in a crash. 

Not everyone agrees that obesity is always a health problem. You can be overweight and still have normal blood pressure, blood sugar, HDL cholesterol and other metabolic markers if you exercise, say some, pointing to U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin, who hiked the Grand Canyon in 2010 despite her extra poundage.

But others say fitness and exercise will not reverse the health effects of obesity. The British medical journal The Lancet recently reported that rising obesity in the U.K. will cause an extra half a million cases of heart disease, 700,000 cases of diabetes and 130,000 of cancer by 2030. And the overweight and obese are 80 percent more likely to develop dementia writesKerry Trueman on AlterNet.

And there are other obesity "negatives." The obese are less likely to be employed, earn less than people of normal weight and "have more days of absence from work, a lower productivity on the job and a greater access to disability benefits," reports the Paris-based policy group Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Obesity raises Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance costs and affects national security, writes David Gratzer on KevinMD.com, "since thousands of recruits are turned away from military service because of failed physicals and poor overall health." It also shortens "the lifespan of millions of decent Americans who deserve better," he writes.

Yet eating too much and exercising too little, considered the root of obesity, are not the only probable culprits. Here are some other factors that are often overlooked.

Read More:

http://www.alternet.org/story/155682/8_surprising_things_that_may_be_making_americans_fat

Tom Philpott - How California Could Force the Rest of the U.S. to Label GMO Foods

In November, California voters will decide on a ballot initiative that would require labeling of all foods containing ingredients from genetically modified crops. The initiative made it to the ballot after almost 1 million Californians signed a petition in favor of it—nearly double the 504,760 signatures needed under the state's proposition rules. The campaign that organized the push to get the measure on the ballot focused on possible health effects of GMO foods.

This news will not likely be applauded by my friends over at Crop life America, the main trade group of the GM seed/agrichemical industry. The big GMO crops—corn, soy, sugar beets, and cotton—are processed into sweeteners, fats, and additives used widely by the food industry. Everything from high fructose corn syrup-sweetened Coke to soybean oil-containing Hellman’s would have to bear a label reading something like "Contains GMO ingredients."

That would send a shockwave through the food industry—one that could ultimately be felt on the industrial-scale U.S. farms that have been devoting their land to GMO crops for years, and the companies that profit from selling them patented seeds and matching herbicides. The reason isn't just that California represents an imposing chunk of the U.S. food market. It's also that a food-labeling law that starts in California is unlikely to stay in California.

Read More:

http://www.nationofchange.org/how-california-could-force-rest-us-label-gmo-foods-1338536857

Tom Philpott - How California Could Force the Rest of the U.S. to Label GMO Foods

In November, California voters will decide on a ballot initiative that would require labeling of all foods containing ingredients from genetically modified crops. The initiative made it to the ballot after almost 1 million Californians signed a petition in favor of it—nearly double the 504,760 signatures needed under the state's proposition rules. The campaign that organized the push to get the measure on the ballot focused on possible health effects of GMO foods.

This news will not likely be applauded by my friends over at Crop life America, the main trade group of the GM seed/agrichemical industry. The big GMO crops—corn, soy, sugar beets, and cotton—are processed into sweeteners, fats, and additives used widely by the food industry. Everything from high fructose corn syrup-sweetened Coke to soybean oil-containing Hellman’s would have to bear a label reading something like "Contains GMO ingredients."

That would send a shockwave through the food industry—one that could ultimately be felt on the industrial-scale U.S. farms that have been devoting their land to GMO crops for years, and the companies that profit from selling them patented seeds and matching herbicides. The reason isn't just that California represents an imposing chunk of the U.S. food market. It's also that a food-labeling law that starts in California is unlikely to stay in California.

Read More:

http://www.nationofchange.org/how-california-could-force-rest-us-label-gmo-foods-1338536857

Tom Philpott - How California Could Force the Rest of the U.S. to Label GMO Foods

In November, California voters will decide on a ballot initiative that would require labeling of all foods containing ingredients from genetically modified crops. The initiative made it to the ballot after almost 1 million Californians signed a petition in favor of it—nearly double the 504,760 signatures needed under the state's proposition rules. The campaign that organized the push to get the measure on the ballot focused on possible health effects of GMO foods.

This news will not likely be applauded by my friends over at Crop life America, the main trade group of the GM seed/agrichemical industry. The big GMO crops—corn, soy, sugar beets, and cotton—are processed into sweeteners, fats, and additives used widely by the food industry. Everything from high fructose corn syrup-sweetened Coke to soybean oil-containing Hellman’s would have to bear a label reading something like "Contains GMO ingredients."

That would send a shockwave through the food industry—one that could ultimately be felt on the industrial-scale U.S. farms that have been devoting their land to GMO crops for years, and the companies that profit from selling them patented seeds and matching herbicides. The reason isn't just that California represents an imposing chunk of the U.S. food market. It's also that a food-labeling law that starts in California is unlikely to stay in California.

Read More:

http://www.nationofchange.org/how-california-could-force-rest-us-label-gmo-foods-1338536857

Ethan A. Huff - 'Label It Yourself' campaign urges the People to begin labeling GMOs now

 Rather than continue to put up with endless stonewalling and excuse-making by federal and state governments that refuse to require mandatory labeling of genetically-modified organisms, a massive, grassroots effort is currently underway to spur individuals across the country to begin labeling GMOs right now.

The Label It Yourself (LIY) campaign, which describes itself as a "decentralized, autonomous grassroots campaign born out of our broken food system," is cultivating a nationwide network of concerned individuals that are willing and able to take it to the grocery stores in pursuit of full transparency in food labeling.

The campaign is urging the "99 percent," which of course represents the common man, to download and print labels that say, "Warning, May Contain GMOs," and affix them on various processed and non-organic food products that likely contain GMOs. The 1.5 inch by 1.5 inch stickers, which feature a skull head and two ears of corn, draw attention to the presence of GMOs, and direct consumers to the LIY website.

You can access these GMO warning stickers here: http://labelityourself.org/liy/

Read More:

http://www.naturalnews.com/036051_GMOs_label_it_yourself_activism.html

Tags: GMO Health
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