September 16, 2014

Urban Chicken Consultant Helps Start Backyard Flocks

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Photo courtesy UrbanChickenConsultant.wordpress.com

by Emily Badger
The Atlantic Cities

Excerpts:

Jennifer Murtoff’s best marketing device is her rubber chicken purse. People always ask about the rubber chicken purse. That gives her an in to talk about chickens, about how she started raising them in the 4th grade in rural Pennsylvania, about how she has loved them ever since and now loves helping other people figure out how to raise them, too.

Then she pulls out her business card. It’s got a photo of her holding a chicken on one side and this quote from Frank Lloyd Wright on the back: “Regard it as just as desirable to build a chicken house as to build a cathedral.” When she hands it to people, she introduces herself as Jennifer Murtoff, urban chicken consultant.

“And then they usually say ‘That’s the funniest thing I’ve ever heard! How do you make any money at that?’” Murtoff laughs.

This may be the best (or at least, our favorite) indication yet that food-conscious city-dwellers are increasingly bypassing the supermarket for the back-yard urban farmstead: There is someone in Chicago who works as an urban chicken consultant.

This isn’t just happening in Chicago. People are constantly sending Murtoff links to articles about chickens in Dallas, chickens in San Francisco, chickens in New York City. People contact her for help changing local regulations in towns that aren’t chicken-friendly. She may have to add this to her menu of services: chicken character witness. Murtoff has never, though, come across anyone else who does what she does, and she is certainly the only game in Chicago.

Read the Full Article Here: http://www.theatlanticcities.com/arts-and-lifestyle/2011/09/urban-chicken-consultant/187/

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Costa Rica Supreme Court: GMO Approval Process Unconstitutional

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In a ruling lauded by Costa Rica’s anti-GMO activists, the country’s Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court struck down the government’s regulatory framework on genetically modified organisms, declaring the process of approval for GMO projects unconstitutional.

In the court’s opinion, Chief Justice Gilbert Armijo Sancho wrote that the regulations violate the Costa Rican Constitution because the secrecy allowed to GMO companies in terms of the genetic information of their products violates the constitutional right to freedom of information.

“This is an important precedent that shows the interests of companies linked to this type of activity – among them the multinational Monsanto which is seeking permits to plant corn – have benefited from the granting of permits in a manner that violates the fundamental rights of the population,” FECON said.

GMO Golden Rice not so “Golden” After All: Farmers Call to Stop GMO Rice Trials

GMO Golden Rice not so “Golden” After All: Farmers Call to Stop GMO Rice Trials

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GM Golden Rice was developed at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) in the Philippines with the hope that it could provide more vitamin A through beta carotene. The project was a huge disaster, however, and basically shelved for years. But then Bill Gates came along, the college-drop-out-turned-billionaire who started Microsoft Corp., looking for something to spend his billions of dollars to promote. All of a sudden, with big money providing jobs to pursue a failed project, GM Golden Rice had new life.

There’s just one problem: the Asian farmers don’t want it. Philippine farmers have called for a halt to field trials after very poor results, large debts, and a concern for their native rice seeds.

Are Experimental Vaccines Growing in a GMO Corn Field Near You?

Are Experimental Vaccines Growing in a GMO Corn Field Near You?

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With more and more people waking up to the dangers and false claims being made for vaccines today, it is becoming more difficult for the pharmaceutical lobbyists to enact mandatory vaccination laws at the local level. A recent bill in Colorado was defeated when citizens turned out to oppose legislation that would have prohibited vaccine exemptions. Are pharmaceutical companies now looking for new ways to market their vaccines that bypass the freedom to choose completely without the consumer even realizing they are consuming their products? The chemical industry, after all, has been successful for years in getting municipalities to put fluoride in public water supplies completely bypassing consumer choice.

Recently obtained information through a freedom of information act shows that pharmaceutical companies and biotech are teaming up to produce genetically modified corn that will contain vaccines like hepatitis B. There are secret locations along California’s Central Coast where plots of experimental genetically engineered corn are producing proteins for industrial and pharmaceutical uses, including an experimental vaccine for hepatitis B.

Guatemala Strikes Down ‘Monsanto Law’

Guatemala Strikes Down ‘Monsanto Law’

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In a close vote, Guatemala’s Congress rejects genetically modified seeds in country’s agricultural development. The law would have authorized stricter property rights and risked monopolizing agricultural processes in the country by placing copyrights on agriculture for the next 25 years.

Asian Farmers and Scientists Say No to GMO Golden Rice

Asian Farmers and Scientists Say No to GMO Golden Rice

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GM Golden Rice was developed at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) in the Philippines with the hope that it could provide more vitamin A through beta carotene. The project was a huge disaster, however, and basically shelved for years. But then Bill Gates came along, the college-drop-out-turned-billionaire who started Microsoft Corp., looking for something to spend his billions of dollars to promote. All of a sudden, with big money providing jobs to pursue a failed project, GM Golden Rice has new life.

There are multiple problems with GMO Golden Rice, including the fact that the people from rice-producing countries do not want it!

Recently many top scientists and farmer advocates from rice-producing countries met in the Philippines in an effort to try and stop more field testing, and the commercialization of Golden Rice. The science behind Golden Rice does not prove benefits, and it threatens genetic diversity among traditional rice varieties which is necessary in many parts of the world that experience natural and man-made disasters. Like any GMO seed crop, Golden Rice would take the future of farming in rice-producing countries away from the control of the farmers and give it to multinational corporations that would then control the rice seed supplies.

MASIPAG (Farmer-Scientist Partnership for Development) in the Philippines hosted the event earlier this year, and has recently provided video interviews from some of the participants in English.

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