News regarding the dangers of GMOs and biotech, and the advantages of organic sustainable agriculture.
A 12-year-old boy suffering from cancer is among the newest plaintiffs taking on Monsanto and its German owner Bayer AG in growing litigation over the safety of Roundup herbicides and Monsanto’s handling of scientific concerns about the products. Lawyers for Jake Bellah were in court Monday in Lake County Superior Court in Lakeport, California arguing that Bellah’s young age and diagnosis of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) qualified him for “trial preference,” or a speedy trial. Lawyers representing Bellah said the child was exposed to Monsanto’s glyphosate-based herbicide products repeatedly over many years as he played in his family’s yard and around their garden area where his father frequently sprayed the chemicals. Bellah developed B-cell lymphoma and has been hospitalized and treated with chemotherapy and is currently in remission, according to Pedram Esfandiary, one of the family’s attorneys.
Gov. Ron DeSantis signed SB 82, legislation protecting the right of all Floridians to grow vegetables and fruit on their own property. For one Miami-area couple, this represents the end of a years-long struggle that started when their town ordered them to dig up the garden they had been growing for 17 years. Starting July 1, any local ordinance that expressly limits or prohibits growing vegetables on one’s own property will be “void and unenforceable.” In 2013, the Institute for Justice (IJ) filed a lawsuit on behalf of Hermine Ricketts and Tom Carroll seeking to strike down the Village of Miami Shores’ prohibition on front yard gardens as an unconstitutional violation of property rights.
Miller's Organic Farm is our century-old Amish family farm in Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania - serving its Private Member Association. The farm raises its animals and other pure foods the way nature intended and we are proud to be entirely chemical, cruelty and GMO-free. The animals are born and raised without antibiotics or hormones and they spend their entire lives naturally and stress-free out on pasture. All of the farm’s food is traceable, pure and grown on nutrient dense soil, under traditional time-honored methods. The farm is now under attack by the USDA who is suing the farm to comply with USDA laws, concerning the way the farm animals are processed and how our food is labeled. The farm and its members believe that we have the right of free assembly and the right to choose how our food is processed and consumed without the USDA dictating to the farm.
Many pesticides still widely used in the USA, at the level of tens to hundreds of millions of pounds annually, have been banned or are being phased out in the EU, China and Brazil. Of the pesticides banned in at least two of these nations, many have been implicated in acute pesticide poisonings in the USA and some are further restricted by individual states. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) has all but abandoned its use of non-voluntary cancellations in recent years, making pesticide cancellation in the USA largely an exercise that requires consent by the regulated industry.
New Tests Confirm Children’s Foods Made from Oats are ALL Contaminated with Cancer-Causing Glyphosate
A new report released this week (June, 2019) by The Environmental Working Group (EWG) confirms previous reports that America's breakfast cereals, consumed primarily by children, are contaminated with the toxic herbicide, glyphosate. Glyphosate is the active ingredient in Monsanto's RoundUp, and has been linked to cancer. Juries in recent court cases have awarded billions of dollars in damages to cancer victims who were exposed to glyphosate. This most recent report published by Olga Naidenko, Ph.D., senior science advisor, and Alexis Temkin, Ph.D., Toxicologist, at EWG, tested 21 oat-based cereal and snack products, and found all of them had high levels of the toxic glyphosate. EWG is asking the public to sign a petition to have the major food companies remove glyphosate from their products. While this is a noble venture, it is impossible for any company producing products from American grains to remove glyphosate from their products. Companies producing these products do not have a choice to remove glyphosate from their products. It is impossible. Petitioning them to do so will not accomplish anything, because they are powerless to change this.
A recent study published in the journal Food Additives & Contaminants analyzed 200 random samples of honey in Canada. The study was conducted by the Agri-Food Laboratories, Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Their analysis found that almost 99% of the honey samples analyzed were contaminated with the herbicide glyphosate, the active ingredient in RoundUp that has been linked to cancer. "Two hundred randomly chosen honey samples, which were submitted to our laboratory for other testing, were analysed using the online SPE-LCMS/MS method to obtain information regarding baseline levels of glyphosate, its main degradation product AMPA, and the other acidic herbicide, glufosinate. Glyphosate was detected in almost all honey samples analysed with 197 out of 200 samples (98.5%) having residues..."
We’ve been reporting for years on the negative health effects of glyphosate, the active ingredient in the Roundup herbicide. While world bodies like the World Health Organization say that glyphosate is a “probable carcinogen,” the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) maintains that glyphosate is safe. Let’s not forget, though, that cronyism mars the EPA decision: unsealed court documents showed that a top EPA official (Jess Rowland) promised Monsanto he would quash efforts by the Department of Health to conduct its own review of glyphosate. So much for the federal government protecting the interests of people rather than special interests. There are now 13,400 cases pending that allege Roundup causes cancer. We hope these legal developments accomplish what government regulators were unable (or unwilling) to do: get glyphosate off the market for good.
After less than two full days of deliberations, a California jury ordered Monsanto to pay just over $2 billion in punitive and compensatory damages to a married couple who both developed non-Hodgkin lymphoma they say was caused by their many years of using Roundup products. After listening to 17 days of trial testimony, jurors said Monsanto must pay $1 billion to Alberta Pilliod, who was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma brain cancer in 2015, and another $1 billion to her husband Alva Pilliod, who was diagnosed in 2011 with non-Hodgkin lymphoma that spread from his bones to his pelvis and spine. The couple, who are both in their 70s, started using Roundup in the 1970s and continued using the herbicide until only a few years ago. The jury also awarded the couple a total of $55 million in damages for past and future medical bills and other losses. In ordering punitive damages, the jury had to find that Monsanto “engaged in conduct with malice, oppression or fraud committed by one or more officers, directors or managing agents of Monsanto” who were acting on behalf of the company. Pilliod v. Monsanto is the third Roundup cancer case to go to trial. And it is the third to conclude that Monsanto’s glyphosate-based herbicides can cause cancer and that Monsanto has long known about – and covered up – the risks.
Relying heavily on confidential industry research, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has proposed to re-approve glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup. EPA’s conclusion that glyphosate poses no risks to humans contradicts a 2015 World Health Organization analysis of the leading independent research that determined glyphosate is a probable carcinogen. “American consumers have no reason to trust the EPA’s deeply flawed assessment of glyphosate’s safety,” said Nathan Donley, a senior scientist at the Center for Biological Diversity. “As with past EPA studies, the agency has relied heavily on confidential industry research that can’t be reviewed by independent scientists. This is an industry-friendly conclusion that’s simply not based on the best available science.” In addition to the WHO’s conclusion, other U.S. federal agencies have acknowledged evidence of glyphosate’s link to cancer. This includes the EPA’s Office of Research and Development and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. Within the past nine months, two juries have ordered Monsanto/Bayer to pay multimillion-dollar awards to glyphosate users suffering from non-Hodgkin lymphoma, which independent research has linked to glyphosate. A third trial is currently underway, and lawsuits involving roughly 13,000 people have been filed against the company for failing to warn consumers of the pesticide’s cancer risks.
Monsanto Not Only Problem Facing Bayer: Investors Question Ethics in Selling Banned Pesticides in Brazil
Bayer CEO Werner Baumann recently lost a crucial confidence vote as investors questioned his handling of the $63 billion Monsanto deal and the wave of US lawsuits that followed. In what Bloomberg called "a stunning development for the German drugs and chemicals company", about 55 percent of shareholders voted against absolving Baumann and other managers of responsibility for their actions in the takeover last year. The vote threw Baumann's future into question and prompted an immediate supervisory board session. While much of the investor unrest undoubtedly focuses on financial liability, strong concerns are being raised about Bayer's ethics. At Bayer's annual general meeting, Christian Russau from the umbrella organization, the Critical Shareholders, made a speech in which he launched a scathing attack on the company for its "double standards". According to Russau, Bayer sells pesticides in Brazil that are banned in the EU. Russau said he feared that companies such as Bayer will continue to participate, perhaps more than ever, in the sale and distribution of highly toxic agrochemicals in Brazil. As a survival tactic in the face of Monsanto's multi-billion dollar acquisition, Bayer will go for growth at any price. Any poison which can be sold will be sold.