My Plantcentric Journey

Posts tagged ‘prop 37’

GMO Labeling Efforts Change Course After California Defeat

mage courtesy of Jean-Marc Desfilhes

November 9th, 2012

Reuters
By Carey Gillam and Lisa Baertlein

“Labeling of GE (genetically engineered) foods is not a question of whether, but when.”

Read more at:  http://www.cornucopia.org/2012/11/gmo-labeling-efforts-change-course-after-california-defeat/

1st Step in Avoiding Concentrated GMOs

Now that Prop 37 has failed in California, and there currently is no state forcing Big Food to label which food products contain GMOs, it looks like we consumers are going to have to make intelligent guesses and vote with our wallets until we can get something passed.

Get educated.  Educate others.  There is a lot of info on this blog, and I will continue putting on more and showing you the sites where I got them so that you can visit them yourself.

Please feel free to share these posts.  My intention is to bring together the most relevant information on nutrition and health from all different sources, kind of like Huffington Post or Drudge Report.  Laura

 

 “The 1st step to avoiding concentrated sources of GMOs, pesticides, veterinary meds, & other toxins is to minimize/eliminate animal products.”

@PlantDietitian

Julieanna Hever

http://www.PlantBasedDietitian.com

More Celebrities Come Out for GMO Labeling

This Man is Lying About Your Food

This Man is Lying About Your Food

NOTE: This is a guest post from John Robbins.

You may have never heard of Henry I. Miller, but right now he is attempting to determine the future of food in this country. And he has enormous financial backing.

Mr. Miller is the primary face and voice of the “No on Prop 37″ campaign in California. At this very moment, Monsanto and other pesticide companies are spending more than $1 million a day to convince California voters that it’s not in their best interest to know whether the food they eat is genetically engineered. And Henry I. Miller is their guy.

If you live in California today, he’s hard to miss. You see him in TV ads, hear him in radio spots, and his face is all over the expensive fliers that keep showing up uninvited in your mail box. Initially, the ads presented Miller as a Stanford doctor. But he isn’t. He’s a research fellow at a conservative think tank (the Hoover Institute) that has offices on the Stanford campus. When this deceptive tactic came to light, the ads were pulled and then redone. But they still feature Miller telling the public that Prop 37 “makes no sense,” and that it’s a “food-labeling scheme written by trial lawyers who hope for a windfall if it becomes law.”

Actually, Prop 37 makes all the sense in the world if you want to know what’s in the food you eat. It was written by public health advocates, and provides no economic incentives for filing lawsuits.

Who, then, is Henry I. Miller, and why should we believe him when he tells us that genetically engineered foods are perfectly safe?

Does it matter that this same Henry Miller is an ardent proponent of DDT and other toxic pesticides? Does it matter that the “No on Prop 37″ ads are primarily funded by pesticide companies, the very same companies that told us DDT and Agent Orange were safe?

I find it hard to avoid the impression that Henry Miller is a premier corporate flack. He was a founding member of the Philip Morris backed front group that tried to discredit the links between tobacco products and cancer. After the nuclear meltdown in Fukushima, he argued that exposure to radiation from the disaster could actually provide health benefits. He argues that drug companies, not the FDA, should be responsible for testing new drugs. And he is a board member of the George C. Marshall Institute which, funded by oil and gas companies, is notorious for its denial of climate change.

Now he’s telling us that we should vote No on 37 because, he says, the labeling law contains exemptions included “for special interests.” As if the corporations he fronts for weren’t the biggest “special interests” of all. And by the way, the exemptions in Prop 37 conform to those found in GMO labeling laws in the 61 other nations around the world, including the European Union, that already require labeling for foods that are genetically engineered.

Miller and the No on 37 campaign say that labeling would increase family food bills by hundreds of dollars per year. Interestingly, the study they cite to justify this claim was paid for by the No on 37 campaign itself. It was the work of a Maine public relations firm, Northbridge Consulting, that has no economic expertise, but has worked on behalf of Coke and Pepsi against laws that would require the recycling of soda pop bottles.

Would the passing of Prop 37 actually raise the price consumers pay for food? Henry Miller adamantly proclaims that it would. But according to the only fully independent economic analysis of Prop 37, prepared by researchers at Emory University School of Law, “Consumers will likely see no increase in prices as a result of the relabeling” required by the bill.

Somehow I keep getting the feeling that Henry Miller may not be the man you want to listen to when your health is at stake. But Monsanto and its allies are seeing to it that this man’s face and beliefs are everywhere in California today. One television viewer in San Francisco reported seeing ads featuring Miller no less than 12 times in a single day.

Other “No on 37″ ads feature a physician, Ronald Kleinman, dressed of course in the obligatory white coat. Though the ads don’t mention it, Dr. Kleinman’s ethical principles don’t seem to hamper him from being a highly paid voice for the interests of the junk food companies. While working for Coca-Cola, he advocated for “the safety … of sugar, artificial colors and nonnutritive sweeteners in children’s diets.

Not content with misrepresenting Stanford University (three times), the pesticide and junk food companies behind No on 37 have also:

  1. Misled voters in the state voter guide by claiming falsely that the world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, believes GMO foods are safe.
  2. Illegally affixed the official US FDA seal to their campaign propaganda, and attributed a fabricated quote to the FDA, falsely implying that the FDA has taken a position against Prop 37.

Regrettably, this deluge of deceptive propaganda seems to be having an impact. Although polls originally showed that more than 80% of the California public want genetically modified food to be labeled, more recent polls are showing a virtual dead heat on Prop 37, with the advertising deluge only increasing in intensity.

Some daily newspapers in California are contributing to this unhappy trend by coming out against Prop 37, with editorials that use entire paragraphs directly from the “No on 37″ press releases. Might this have anything to do with the fact that processed foods companies are the primary source of advertising revenue for newspapers today? And that the lobby for the processed food companies, the Grocery Manufacturers Association, has called the defeat of Prop 37 its single highest priority for the year?

The famed food author Michael Pollan wrote recently that Proposition 37 is the litmus test for whether or not there is actually a food movement in this country. Public health activist Stacy Malkan adds that it also may be the litmus test for whether there is democracy left in this country.

These are good points. There is no food movement if Monsanto has its way with us. And there is no democracy without an informed citizenry.

The question now is whether we are going to allow special interests to dictate what we are allowed to know about the food they sell us.

In this case, ignorance is not bliss. It’s subservience to the agenda of Monsanto and the other pesticide companies. Without labeling, we are eating in the dark, with potentially disastrous consequences.

What remains to be seen is whether Californians will, come November 6th, allow Monsanto and its allies to control what you are allowed to know about the food you eat.

Find out more and get involved here.

Sign a petition to Congress calling for labeling of genetically engineered foods here.

John Robbins is cofounder of the Food Revolution Network, which provides information and inspiration to help you heal your body and your world with food. He is the author of many bestsellers, including The Food RevolutionNo Happy Cows, and Diet For A New America. He is also the recipient of the Rachel Carson Award, the Albert Schweitzer Humanitarian Award, the Peace Abbey’s Courage of Conscience Award, Green America’s Lifetime Achievement Award and many other accolades.

 

To learn more about his work, visit http://www.johnrobbins.info

Related Stories:

Rats Eating GMO Corn Get Tumors and Die Early

Nestle Exec Says: GMOs are Unnecessary But Our Customers Demand Them

California Gets Mandatory GMO Labeling on the Ballot

Read more: http://www.care2.com/causes/this-man-is-lying-about-your-food.html#ixzz2A92umouc

New Study: Genetically Modified Food Linked to Tumors and Organ Damage

by PAT ANSON, EDITOR on SEPTEMBER 19, 2012

A provocative new study is adding fuel to the debate over the potential health effects of genetically modified food. European researchers say rats fed a diet of genetically modified corn developed large tumors and multiple organ damage that led to premature death.

The study, published in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology, is believed to be the first peer-reviewed, long-term animal study of a genetically modified food. It was funded by the Committee for Research and Independent Investigation on Genetic Engineering (CRIIGEN), which lobbies against pesticides and genetically modified food.

Researchers fed the rats with corn genetically modified (GM) to be resistant to Roundup, a widely used herbicide, or gave them water containing the weed killer at levels permitted in drinking water in the United States. They suffered mammary tumors, severe liver and kidney damage, and died at an earlier age than rats fed a standard diet.

“This is the most thorough research ever published into the health effects of GM food crops and the herbicide Roundup on rats. It shows an extraordinary number of tumors developing earlier and more aggressively – particularly in female animals.  I am shocked by the extreme negative health impacts,” said Michael Antoniou, molecular biologist at London’s Kings College and a member of the CRIIGEN scientific council

“The rat has long been used as a surrogate for human toxicity. All new pharmaceutical, agricultural and household substances are, prior to their approval, tested on rats. This is as good an indicator as we can expect that the consumption of GM maize and the herbicide Roundup, impacts seriously on human health,” said Antoniou.

Researchers studied 10 groups of rats, each containing 10 males and 10 females, over the course of two years, their normal lifetime. They were given different levels of Roundup in their drinking water and different amounts of NK603 maize, the corn genetically modified to be resistant to Roundup.

Many of the female rats in the study developed large mammary tumors.

They found that NK603 and Roundup both caused similar damage to the rats’ health, whether they were consumed on their own or together. Females developed fatal mammary tumors and pituitary disorders. Males suffered liver and kidney damage, skin tumors and developed problems with their digestive system. Researchers say even the lowest doses were associated with health problems. The lowest dose was below safety levels for glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup.

Up to 50% of the males and 70% of the females died prematurely. After two years, over half the females had developed large tumors.

“The research findings raise serious questions about the current regulatory process for licensing industrial chemicals, pesticides and other novel crops. The scientists observe that GM crops have been approved safe for consumption on the basis of 90-day animal feeding trials. They also point out that only Roundup’s active principle, glyphosate, has been tested rather than the commercial product, which includes ingredients that enable the glyphosate to penetrate plants more efficiently,” CRIIGEN said in a statement.

Seventy percent of processed foods sold in the U.S. and 85% of the corn grown in the U.S. is genetically modified, according to CRIIGEN.

“On the basis of this study, we have to conclude that there is now a serious question mark over the safety of at least one GM crop. This suggests that all currently licensed GM crops should be re-evaluated and that in future safety studies in laboratory animals must be conducted over significantly longer periods of time that are equivalent to the animals’ normal life span not simply their adolescence,” said Patrick Holden, founder of the Sustainable Food Trust, which lobbies for food safety.

Genetically modified foods are unpopular in Europe, but are widely available and often unlabeled in the United States. Monsanto, which makes Roundup, first introduced a soybean genetically altered to tolerate the weed killer in 1996. Monsanto said it would need time to review the CRIIGEN study.

“Numerous peer-reviewed scientific studies performed on biotech crops to date, including more than a hundred feeding studies, have continuously confirmed their safety, as reflected in the respective safety assessments by regulatory authorities around the world,” said Monsanto spokesman Thomas Helscher.

Some experts raised questions about the CRIIGEN study.

“If the effects are as big as purported, and if the work really is relevant to humans, why aren’t the North Americans dropping like flies? GM has been in the food chain for over a decade over there,” said Mark Tester, a research professor at the Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics at the University of Adelaide, in an emailed statement to Reuters.

In California, supporters of Proposition 37 moved quickly to call attention to the study. Prop 37 would require that all genetically modified food sold in the state be labeled.

“The results of this study are worrying. They underscore the importance of giving California families the right to know whether our food is genetically engineered, and to decide for ourselves whether we want to gamble with our health by eating GMO foods that have not been adequately studied and have not been proven safe,” said Gary Ruskin, manager of the Yes on Proposition 37 California Right to Know campaign.

If Monsanto and Dow believe GE foods are safe, why are they spending millions of dollars to fight California’s GE labeling ballot initiative? Watch and share this short eye-opening video on corporate health claims:

GMOs: Your Right to Know

lindBreaking News: Corporations Stab Organic Consumers in the Back — Familiar Brands Funding Attack and Consumers Right to GMO Labeling

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