Photo courtesy GMO Free Jackson County Facebook Page.

Health Impact News Editor Comments:

I think the citizens of Jackson County in Oregon have taken the right approach towards GMOs: forget about trying to force companies to label them, just ban them outright!

The state of Oregon exports a large amount of their organic and non-GMO crops outside the U.S. to places in Asia, where countries like Japan and China either forbid or restrict the import of U.S. GMO crops. Last year, when an Oregon farmer discovered unapproved GMO wheat in his field, presumably the result of field trials by Monsanto many years earlier, several countries banned the import of wheat from the U.S., bringing economic hardship on farmers in Oregon.

Now the farmers and citizens of two Oregon counties have taken political action and passed laws banning the cultivation of GMO crops in their counties.

Oregon counties ban cultivation of GMO crops



Despite the flood of corporate money poured into two small Oregon counties, local residents voted to ban genetically engineered crops from being planted within their borders.

Although Jackson County itself is home to less than 120,000 registered voters, the measure to ban genetically modified crops (GMOs) made headlines around the nation when it was revealed that large biotech companies like Monsanto were pouring hundreds of thousands of dollars into the area in order to affect the vote’s outcome.

Monsanto and five other corporations spent at least $455,000 in an attempt to defeat the initiative, and opponents of the GMO ban had gained an eight-to-one spending advantage as of April. According to the Associated Press, nearly $1 million of the $1.3 million spent during the campaign was used by opponents.

When the results were tallied, however, 66 percent of Jackson County residents voted in favor of the ban.

Meanwhile, a similar measure in Josephine County passed with 57 percent of the vote, despite the fact that a new Oregon law labeled the state itself as the only regulator of seeds. Jackson’s proposal had already qualified to be on the ballot then, so it was granted an exemption. The initiative in Josephine did not qualify for an exemption since it was proposed later, but residents went ahead with their own vote anyway and have decided to let the courts determine its legality.

Full Article Here.


“We fought the most powerful and influential chemical companies in the world and we won.” —Elise Higley, Our Family Farms Coalition
Photo courtesy GMO Free Jackson County Facebook Page.


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