April 24, 2014

Posts tagged as: #GMOs back to homepage

Russia Bans Import of GMO Products – Promotes Organic Food Russia Bans Import of GMO Products – Promotes Organic Food

Russia will not import GMO products, the country’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said, adding that the nation has enough space and resources to produce organic food.

Moscow has no reason to encourage the production of genetically modified products or import them into the country, Medvedev told a congress of deputies from rural settlements on Saturday.

“If the Americans like to eat GMO products, let them eat it then. We don’t need to do that; we have enough space and opportunities to produce organic food,” he said.

EPA Approves Bt Residues in Soy Foods from GM Crops as Legal EPA Approves Bt Residues in Soy Foods from GM Crops as Legal

In what could easily be classified as one of the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) worst decisions yet, a final rule released by the EPA earlier this month creates an exemption for residue tolerance levels of genetically modified (GM) Bt toxin in GM soy foods and feed.

Essentially, the Agency has approved unlimited residues of GM Bt toxin in your food!

Monarch Butterfly Numbers Drop to Lowest Level Since Records Started – GMO Crops Blamed Monarch Butterfly Numbers Drop to Lowest Level Since Records Started – GMO Crops Blamed

The monarch butterfly — an orange and black icon that is Minnesota’s state insect — is facing dire population declines that have resulted in the smallest wintertime habitat since surveys began in 1993, an international team of conservation scientists warned Wednesday.

This year, conservationists say the area where the butterflies winter in Mexico was reduced by 44 percent, to just 1.7 acres.

Karen Oberhauser, a University of Minnesota entomologist who’s spent 30 years studying the butterflies, says the expansion of genetically modified crops in the Corn Belt is the primary culprit behind precipitous monarch declines over the past three years. These crops allow farmers to use herbicides later in the growth cycle, which has led to vast reductions in native milkweed and nectar plants that the butterflies rely on during the breeding cycle.

The monarch’s decline may be an indicator of larger ecological problems, she said.

“What is happening to monarchs is also happening to many other uncounted organisms — organisms whose loss would be equally tragic,” Oberhauser said.

Stop the GMO Apple Stop the GMO Apple

If you haven’t heard, apples are the single most popular fruit served in school lunchrooms across the U.S. and a fruit so iconic it was the fruit that inspired Isaac Newton’s theory of gravity and the heartbeat of the phrase, “as American as apple pie”!

Tragically, a Canadian firm has created a new GMO apple, using a new “gene silencing” technique that could interfere with the expression of genes in humans, even silencing vital human genes, potentially causing serious health problems.

Right now, the Obama administration is considering the approval of the world’s first genetically engineered apple, known as the ArcticApple®, which has been engineered to silence the natural browning enzyme that may help apples fight disease and pests.

Dow Chemical Readies for a New Era of Superweeds – By Getting USDA to Approve Older Toxic Pesticide for GMO Seeds Dow Chemical Readies for a New Era of Superweeds – By Getting USDA to Approve Older Toxic Pesticide for GMO Seeds

One of the empty promises originally made when genetically modified technology was developed was that crops would need fewer pesticides. More than ten years later, however, we are seeing that not only have the genetically modified seeds developed resistance to pesticides, but so have many weeds, as we are seeing a new breed of superweeds that are resistant to Monsanto’s glyphosate (Round-up Ready).

Now, Dow Chemical has petitioned U.S. regulators to allow them to use an older pesticide on their genetically modified corn and soybean seeds, 2,4-D, which was part of the infamous “Agent Orange”. Agent Orange was the Vietnam War defoliant that was blamed for numerous health problems suffered during and after the war. Although the main health effects of Agent Orange were blamed on the other component of the mixture (2,4,5-T) and dioxin contamination, critics say 2,4-D has significant health risks of its own.

Earlier this month (January 2014), the USDA gave Dow Chemical the green-light to proceed after issuing an Environmental Impact Statement.

GMO Golden Rice: Myth, not Miracle GMO Golden Rice: Myth, not Miracle

Wheat is a main staple in the diet of many cultures, and hence getting approval to grow GM wheat is one that has eluded Monsanto and others until now. Once released into the environment, there is no turning back. Last year it was reported that some GM wheat had turned up in a farmer’s field in Oregon, the result of a field trial years earlier. But so far, there is no evidence that there has been widespread “drift” from GM wheat trials.

One grain that is a staple in more people’s diets than even wheat, is rice. Like wheat, the trend towards developing new breeds of GM rice have been rather cautious, knowing how many people in the world’s population can be affected once the crop is out in the wild.

GM Golden Rice was developed with the hope that it could provide vitamin A through beta carotene, but the project was a huge disaster and basically shelved for years. But then Bill Gates came along, the college drop out billionaire that 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.

Thanks to GM Watch, we have some real information about Golden Rice, and its danger to Asia and the rest of the world.

True Cost of GMOs Seen in Hawaii: 80% Loss in Papaya Market due to GMO Papayas True Cost of GMOs Seen in Hawaii: 80% Loss in Papaya Market due to GMO Papayas

When discussing the impact of genetically modified crops, what is seldom mentioned is the economic impact of introducing GMO crops. While the science behind GMOs can certainly be debated, the economic impact is not debatable, but a reality.

Earlier this year (2013), we published an article from the Alliance for Natural Health (ANH) titled: Lack of GMO Labeling is Reducing our Exports and Costing the U.S. Jobs. Regardless of what the science says, the fact is that consumers overwhelmingly do not want to consume GMO foods. 69% of the world’s population live in countries that label and restrict GMO foods. So every time the United States approves another GMO product, which has been shown to NOT be controllable in the environment, inevitably cross-pollinating with non-GMO seeds, we drastically restrict our export market to our trading partners that refuse to import GMO products.

In a report just published in The Modern Farmer, Jesse Hirsch documents the development and economic impact of GMO papayas in Hawaii. While the GM papaya was developed to solve a problem (diseases in papayas that were destroying crops), the unintended result was that Hawaii’s largest customer purchasing Hawaiian papayas, Japan, refused to buy them once they were genetically modified, reducing the market by 80%.

Nearly 300 Scientists and Experts Agree GMOs not Proven Safe Nearly 300 Scientists and Experts Agree GMOs not Proven Safe

The number of scientists and experts who have signed a joint statement saying that GM foods have not been proven safe and that existing research raises concerns has climbed to 297 since the statement was released on 21 October.

Dr Angelika Hilbeck, chair of the European Network of Scientists for Social and Environmental Responsibility (ENSSER), which published the statement, said, “We’re surprised and pleased by the strong support for the statement. It seems to have tapped into a deep concern in the global scientific community that the name of science is being misused to make misleading claims about the safety of GM technology.”

The statement indirectly challenges claims by EU chief science adviser Anne Glover that there is no evidence that GM foods are any riskier than non-GM foods.

Russian Food Security Experts Fight GMO Registrations in Supreme Court Russian Food Security Experts Fight GMO Registrations in Supreme Court

A group of scientists and food security experts have taken the Russian Government resolution, which will allow the registration of GM crops and products containing GMOs from June 1, 2014, to the Supreme Court.

On December 16 the group, which includes representatives of non-profit organizations and experts in the field of biological and food security, filed a suit in Russia’s Supreme Court to challenge the adoption of Russian Government Decree 839 of 23 September 2013, regarding the state registration of GMOs.

According to the experts, this Government resolution violates the constitutional rights of Russian citizens, including the right to a healthy environment, and food safety information.

Australian Children to be Used as Guinea Pigs for New GMO Vaccine Australian Children to be Used as Guinea Pigs for New GMO Vaccine

A US vaccine company has applied for permission to infect up to one thousand individuals in Australia, including children, with genetically modified live bacteria contained in an oral vaccine. PaxVax recently submitted their application for permission to begin the first of three international clinical trials for the new oral cholera vaccine “via oral ingestion of the GMOs”. PaxVax claims to have several safeguards in place to “restrict the spread and persistence of the GMOs and their introduced genetic material” during this clinical trial. That precaution itself should lead any parent to question the wisdom of administering genetically modified live bacteria to their child.

Unfortunately, this is not the first GM vaccine in the market. There are other GM vaccines currently in use or proposed for use in the near future, including at least one flu shot, a vaccine which has come under heavy scrutiny recently for its ineffectiveness.



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