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Thread: Monsanto big wig may become US food safety czar

  1. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Lemkin View Post

    This is a tricky 'hit piece' againt organic foods. First, OF DO have higher vitamin and anti-oxidant levels; Second, they are almost always fresher and tastier; Third, they do not have the burden of toxic chemicals that come with the normal food and add to our burden of diseases and cancer and Lastly, they are GM free. Other than that there is no difference - oh and one more thing - OF support local, small, environmentally-conscious farmers/growers/sellers as opposed to agrobusiness and corporations.
    Also it would be interesting to know about the funding and other sources for that research quoted. Due to the changes in agricultural practices the soil quality and trace minerals are also much depleted and most of the nutritional information from pre-war studies are hopelessly out of sync now with the out comes of the new production techniques. You will know more about this Peter.
    "I think it would be a good idea." Mahatma Gandhi, when asked what he thought of Western civilization.

    The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is to change it.
    Karl Marx.

    "Well, he would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies, 1963, replied Ms Rice Davies when the prosecuting counsel pointed out that Lord Astor denied an affair or having even met her.

  2. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Damien Lloyd View Post
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8174482.stm

    Just found this on the BBC, reminded me of this thread

    Organic food is no healthier than ordinary food, a large independent review has concluded.
    To the extent that there is confusion in public perceptions of the precise meanings of 'Organic' and 'Genetically modified' when applied to food, this sort of study is manna from heaven for the likes of Monsanto - which makes a grizzly old cynic like me just an itsy-bit suspicious that industry funding is probably responsible for it in some measure too.

    Using the present definition of 'organic' (ie the growing practices and standards required to gain certification) the difference in nutritional values is debatable and may indeed be marginal. That however is a whole separate issue from the SAFETY of genetically modifying foods.

    Arnad Puztai's career was abruptly terminated for demonstrating that tumour and development deformity incidence in rats fed on a diet of GM potatoes (modified to be insect attack resistant - ie producing their own 'insecticide') was vastly greater than those fed none GM. That study has NEVER been rebutted - just obfuscated by people and organisations that the public are conditioned to trust, then quietly swept under the carpet.

    Today, Monsanto GM seed supply contracts stipulate that they cannot be used in any scientific experiments whatsoever without the express approval of Monsanto. That is one serious barrier to genuinely disinterested and independent scientific research. In the US the net effect of Monsanto's Congressional approved doctrine of 'substantial equivalence' is that there are no requirents for safety testing of new GM strains at all. Also, their power is such that it is also forbidden by law to label milk (for example) as being GM growth hormone free)

    We are already well into a nightmare world of supplier controlled food safety - or rather its opposite - with the EU trying to 'hold the pass' but running out of ammo with no reinforcements in sight.

    William Engdahl's latest piece on Global Research is worth reading.
    Last edited by Peter Presland; 07-30-2009 at 07:27 AM.
    Peter Presland

    ".....there is something far worse than Nazism, and that is the hubris of the Anglo-American fraternities, whose routine is to incite indigenous monsters to war, and steer the pandemonium to further their imperial aims"
    Guido Preparata. Preface to 'Conjuring Hitler'
    "Never believe anything until it has been officially denied"
    Claud Cockburn


  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Presland View Post

    ...Using the present definition of 'organic' (ie the growing practices and standards required to gain certification)....
    The lobbyists against what we know as organic farming movement are trying to use the word 'organic' as any in any carbon based life form (a la organic chemistry).
    "I think it would be a good idea." Mahatma Gandhi, when asked what he thought of Western civilization.

    The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is to change it.
    Karl Marx.

    "Well, he would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies, 1963, replied Ms Rice Davies when the prosecuting counsel pointed out that Lord Astor denied an affair or having even met her.

  4. #14

    Default Petition against appointment of Monsanto shill

    Here is a petition to stop the appointment of the Monsanto shill to the office of Food Safety.
    http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o...aign_KEY=27042

    GMOs Aren't Safe! Don't Let Obama Put GMO Boosters in Charge of Food Safety!

    Genetically modified foods are not safe. The only reason they're in our food supply is because government bureaucrats with ties to industry suppressed or manipulated scientific research and deprived consumers of the information they need to make informed choices about whether or not to eat genetically modified foods.
    Now, the Obama Administration is putting two notorious biotech bullies in charge of food safety! Former Monsanto lobbyist Michael Taylor has been appointed as a senior advisor to the Food and Drug Administration Commissioner on food safety. And, rBGH-using dairy farmer and Pennsylvania Agriculture Secretary Dennis Wolff is rumored to be President Obama's choice for Under-Secretary of Agriculture for Food Safety. Wolfe spearheaded anti-consumer legislation in Pennsylvania that would have taken away the rights of consumers to know whether their milk and dairy products were contaminated with Monsanto's (now Eli Lilly's) genetically engineered Bovine Growth Hormone (rBGH).
    Please use the form below to send a message to President Obama, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack, and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (oversees FDA) demanding Michael Taylor's resignation, and letting them know that you oppose Dennis Wolff's appointment.

    >>Learn More
    "I think it would be a good idea." Mahatma Gandhi, when asked what he thought of Western civilization.

    The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is to change it.
    Karl Marx.

    "Well, he would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies, 1963, replied Ms Rice Davies when the prosecuting counsel pointed out that Lord Astor denied an affair or having even met her.

  5. Default Canada - No Safety Assessment of GE Corn

    Thread has gone a bit off-topic so this is probably best put here too. Press release from CBAN - my emphasis:
    Canada Ignores International Food Safety Guidelines
    Ottawa, Wednesday July 29, 2009. Today the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN) demanded that the federal government immediately withdraw authorization for ‘SmartStax,’ a genetically engineered (GE), eight-trait corn, until Health Canada undertakes exhaustive and independent tests.

    CBAN made the demand after learning that Health Canada has not assessed the human health safety of ‘SmartStax’. Safety assessment of multi-trait crops is part of the guidelines adopted by the Codex Alimentarius—a United Nations body that develops food-safety guidelines recognized by the World Trade Organization (WTO) and used to settle trade disputes.
    ‘SmartStax,’ a multi-herbicide tolerant and multi-insecticide-producing corn developed by Monsanto and Dow AgroSciences, has been authorized by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency but not by Health Canada.
    “Health Canada did not conduct or require any testing for this new eight-trait GE corn and did not even officially authorize it for release into the food system,” said Lucy Sharratt, CBAN’s Coordinator. “Health Canada has entirely abdicated its responsibility and just shrugged off the potential health risks of eating eight GE traits in one corn flake.”
    “Combining many GE traits together can give rise to unintended effects which could adversely affect health, such as creating new allergies or toxins, or exacerbating existing allergies,” said Dr. Michael Hansen of the Consumers Union in the US, a leading global expert on the potential health risks of GE.
    “This GE crop should have gone through a new safety assessment, as recommended by Codex in its ‘Guidelines for the Conduct of Food Safety Assessment of Foods Derived from Recombinant-DNA Plants’ adopted in 2003. Codex standards and guidelines are used to settle trade disputes and the lack of a new safety assessment for this GE corn means that other countries could reject ‘SmartStax’ without running afoul of WTO rules,” said Dr. Hansen.
    “Canada is ignoring the Codex guideline to test stacked-trait plants – a guideline our government negotiated. Our standards should be at least as high as Codex, if not higher,” said Sharratt. “This scandal exposes the deepest and most dangerous nonchalance of Health Canada towards the risks of GE foods and the safety of Canadians,”
    “Health Canada is protecting the interests of biotechnology corporations rather than the health of Canadians,” said Dr. Shiv Chopra, a former scientific evaluator for Health Canada and whistleblower in Health Canada’s review of Monsanto’s recombinant bovine growth hormone.
    “Releasing ‘SmartStax’ without evaluating safety, just a day after the release of the blistering report on the listeriosis crisis, confirms deep structural problems and government mismanagement of GE foods and crops,” said Éric Darier from Greenpeace Canada.
    It was potatoes modified to make them 'multi-insecticide producing' that Arpad Pusztai fed to Rats, the results of which when hinted at during an authorised television appearance, cost him his job. Seems to me that Pandora's Box has already been opened and the lid thrown away.
    Peter Presland

    ".....there is something far worse than Nazism, and that is the hubris of the Anglo-American fraternities, whose routine is to incite indigenous monsters to war, and steer the pandemonium to further their imperial aims"
    Guido Preparata. Preface to 'Conjuring Hitler'
    "Never believe anything until it has been officially denied"
    Claud Cockburn


  6. #16

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    Greenpeace reveals GM contamination trail: from Monsanto's US laboratories to Britain's chicken McNuggets


    GM Shipment

    'GM-free' claims questioned by new research

    A Greenpeace investigation, 'Smuggling GM in through the back door' has revealed a trail of GM contamination which leads from Monsanto's US laboratories to British consumers of McDonald's chicken McNuggets. The investigation also undermines the claims by many supermarkets, producers and fast food chains to be 'GM-free'.

    The trail of GM contamination starts when Monsanto's GM soya, grown in the US is transported to the UK via US company Cargill, the world's largest grain carrier. GM contaminated feed is then fed to chickens by Sun Valley, the UK's largest poultry producer, also owned by Cargill. Sun Valley's largest customer is McDonald's.

    "A few big players in the food industry are keeping alive a market for GM contaminated food despite widespread consumer rejection," said Greenpeace food campaigner Jim Thomas. " People who have said 'No' to GM food sending ripples across the industry may find themselves unwittingly tucking into an egg or portion of chicken McNuggets contaminated by GMOs."

    "What Greenpeace has uncovered is merely one chain of supply. This trail of contamination is repeated time and time again with our pork, fish, eggs and milk," Thomas added.

    Soya is the largest US export crop. Thirty million hectares of soya was planted in 1999, mainly in the states of Illinois, Iowa and Ohio. Of this, 57% was a GM variety of soya produced by Monsanto. Monsanto sells the GM soya via seed companies like Cargill. In the US, GM soya is mixed together with conventional soya, either at the harvest or in the grain elevators. Cargill's US soya is shipped from New Orleans in ocean going grain carriers to European ports such as Rotterdam, Hamburg, Barcelona and Liverpool.

    At Liverpool, Cargill operates the UK's only soya crushing mill at Gladstone dock. After the material is processed, the oil is sold for human consumption and the remaining GM material is sold to farms and feed mills to provide the staple diet for cows, pigs, chickens and fish. In the UK 60% of all soya used for animal feed is fed to poultry.

    The UK's largest poultry producer in the UK is Sun Valley, which has plants in Herefordshire, North Wales and Wolverhampton. Sun Valley is wholly owned by Cargill and through Sun Valley's own branded chicken products, Cargill's control of GM food from seed to supermarket shelf is complete.

    Sun Valley is well known for its processed and coated chicken products, such as Sun Valley's Garlic Butter Chicken Kiev, which it claims, is 'The Nations favourite Kiev'. However, Sun Valley's biggest customer is McDonald's, the world's largest and best-known food company, for whom Sun Valley produces chicken McNuggets and sandwich patties. One third of Sun Valley's Balliol plant in Wolverhampton is given over to producing food for McDonald's.

    Despite McDonald's claims that they aim to go 'GM-free', when pressed on the issue of GM animal feed, McDonald's is less keen, blaming feed suppliers for the lack of non GM-feed. (1)

    "Consumers don't want excuses, they want food free of GM contamination. Other food retailers are already taking action. McDonald's has the same opportunity," said Thomas.

    The investigation into animal feed follows on from the launch of a major campaign by Greenpeace to stop GMOs contaminating the food chain and the environment through the 'back door' as animal feed. The 'True Feed campaign' began with a national newspaper advertising campaign featuring chickens fed on GM animal feed.

    Greenpeace has also demonstrated internationally against US exports of GM animal feed. Today (Wednesday) in Hamburg, Greenpeace volunteers positioned themselves in the water in front of freighter Unison bringing in corn gluten feed from the US. On Tuesday Greenpeace volunteers blocked a railroad from Veracruz harbour in Mexico to prevent a train loaded with GE maize from leaving the port. During the past week the organisation has also demonstrated in the US and France against GM exports.

    "Greenpeace is opposed to the pollution of our food chain and environment by GM crops. GM animal feed is another step along the contamination trail. It's time to stop the planting and export of these crops and insist that the animals that provide our meat and dairy products, are reared on a GM-free diet," said Thomas.

    Notes to Editors:
    (1) In a letter to Greenpeace 05.11.99, Mike Love, Director of Communications for McDonalds wrote: "There are difficulties of segregation within the animal feed supply chain industry-wide and therefore we currently don't make a specification regarding GM ingredients in animal feed."

    Further information:
    Contact:
    Greenpeace press office on: 020 7865 8255
    “If there is no struggle there is no progress. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.” - Frederick Douglass
    "Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws. - Mayer Rothschild
    "Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience! People are obedient in the face of poverty, starvation, stupidity, war, and cruelty. Our problem is that grand thieves are running the country. That's our problem!" - Howard Zinn

  7. #17

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    A Cancerous Conspiracy to Poison Your Faith in Organic Food
    Despite its obvious benefits for our health and for the environment, organic food continues to be denigrated by the political and corporate establishment in Britain. The food industry, in alliance with pharmaceutical and big biotechnology companies, has waged a long, often cynical campaign to convince the public that mass-produced, chemically-assisted and intensively-farmed products are just as good as organic foods, despite mounting evidence to the contrary.


    What is truly misguided is not the increasing popularity of organic goods, but the Food Standards Agency’s determination to instead promote genetic modification. By Johanna Blythman
    The latest assault in this propaganda exercise comes from the Food Standards Agency, the government’s so-called independent watchdog, which has just published a report claiming that there is no nutritional benefit to be gained from eating organic produce.
    Those forces bent on promoting GM crops and industrialised production, would have been delighted by the widespread media coverage of the Agency’s report, portraying enthusiasm for organic foods as little more than a fad among neurotic consumers that would pass once the public is given the correct information.
    But what is truly misguided is not the increasing popularity of organic goods, but the Food Standards Agency’s determination to halt this trend and instead promote genetic modification.
    The new report from the FSA highlights this. For all the publicity it has attracted, the document does not contain any new material.
    In fact, it is just an analysis of existing research carried out by other bodies. Moreover, the organisation that conducted this second-hand study, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, is not renowned as a leading centre in this field.
    Indeed, there is far more significant work currently being done on organic foods by several other bodies, some of it funded by the European Union, though the FSA has chosen to ignore it.
    It is difficult to avoid the conclusion that the FSA has decided to give such loud backing to this report because it can bend the findings to suit its political, pro-GM, anti-organic agenda.
    Ever since its creation in 2000, the Food Standards Agency has been biased against organic farming. The first chairman, Sir John Krebs, was supportive of the biotechnology lobby and only too keen to promote GM as the future of farming.
    In fact, one early review of the FSA’s work, by the Labour peer Baroness Brenda Dean, warned there was a risk of the Agency losing its ’objectivity’ and ’rigour’ in its support for GM crops and its opposition to organic production.
    The departure of Sir John Krebs has not brought any change in policy, since the Agency is now largely run by plodding bureaucrats all too keen to follow the correct official corporate line.
    Yet even in the context of the latest report from the FSA, the spin does not match the reality. For, contrary to all the hype this week, the Agency’s own published research shows that organic foods are clearly far better for the consumer even just in nutritional terms.
    According to the FSA’s findings, organic vegetables contain 53.6 per cent more betacarotene - which helps combat cancer and heart disease - than non-organic ones.
    Similarly, organic food has 11.3 per cent more zinc, 38.4 per cent more flavonoids and 12.7 per cent more proteins.
    In addition, an in-depth study by Newcastle University, far deeper than the one conducted by the FSA, has shown that organic produce contains 40 per cent more antioxidants than non-organic foods, research the FSA appears to have overlooked.
    But the concentration solely on nutrition is to play into the hands of the anti-organic, pro-industrial lobby.
    As most of the British public understands, but the FSA fails to acknowledge, the benefits of organic food go far beyond this narrow point.
    The fact is that organic production is much better for personal health, food quality, the environment and the welfare of livestock.
    Organic farming works in tune with the rhythms of the earth, gently harnessing the changing seasons, the natural cultivation of crops or the rearing of animals for our benefit.
    In contrast, the vast biotech, processed food industry is at permanent war with nature, continually trying to manipulate, overwhelm and conquer. Organic farming is all about harmony, non-organic about chemicalised ascendancy.
    The most obvious way this difference is manifested is in the use of pesticides on crops, banned from organic farming but eagerly promoted by big industry.
    Fifty years ago, agro-chemicals hardly existed in British farming, but today they dominate this sector. But their rise has not been without justifiable concerns about the side-effects.
    There is now a wealth of evidence to show that pesticides not only poison the soil and harm wildlife, but also promote cancer and a host of other diseases because of their toxicity.
    This is, after all, only common sense. Anything that can kill insects is bound to have an impact when consumed by humans.
    It has been shown that ordinary pears are sprayed with pesticides no fewer than 17 to 18 times during one seasonal growing cycle. A third of all the food we eat, and no less than half of all our fruit and vegetables, contains such chemicals.
    The Government airily dismisses any worries about the risks, but this kind of complacency is based on old, outdated science.
    As the agro-chemical industry tightens its grip, the worse the dangers become. Organic farming, however, offers the opportunity to eat without these dangers. All organic food is free from chemical residues and thus the health threats are much lower.
    Even the most die-hard GM enthusiast would have to admit that organic meat, fruit and vegetables taste much better than the mass-produced fare turned out by major suppliers.
    Non-organic produce is not just grown with chemicals, it is also filled with additives, colourings, flavourings, salt and water simply so it has an acceptable appearance to the consumer once it reaches the shelves.
    Again, this battery of synthetic additives which appears in many processed foods, ready meals and take-aways has a detrimental effect on our health, something that is avoided with organic produce.
    Intensive farming also has a brutal impact on the well-being of animals, which in turn undermines both the quality of meat and our own health.
    Organic poultry, eggs and bacon not only taste much better, but they have also not been pumped full of growth hormones and antibiotics, like industrialised produce.
    Putting pigs and hens in battery cages inside vast hangars is a sure recipe for the spread of disease, akin to locking up a large group of children in an overheated, overcrowded nursery.
    In this environment, the only way to combat germs is to dish out the antibiotics, but there are now scientific concerns that the overuse of such chemicals is weakening resistance in animals and also reducing the effectiveness of antibiotics among humans.
    Giving animals a decent life through organic, traditional husbandry is better for them - and for us. All the cheerleading for the agro-chemical giants cannot hide the fact that industrialised farming represents a cul-de-sac for mankind.
    We cannot go on as we are, pumping chemicals into our livestock and into the earth. The future has to be organic.
    If it has any genuine interest in nutrition, the Food Standards Agency would be supporting a shift away from intensification, not pushing for more of it.
    The FSA was meant to be an organisation for improving our food. Now it is just getting in the way.


    Johanna Blythman is a British investigative food journalist and writer. As of 2006, she has won five Glenfiddich Awards for her writing as well as numerous other awards for her work in general. Her better known books include The Food We Eat, Shopped, How to Avoid GM Food and The Food Our Children Eat.
    Source: dailymail.co.uk
    "I think it would be a good idea." Mahatma Gandhi, when asked what he thought of Western civilization.

    The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is to change it.
    Karl Marx.

    "Well, he would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies, 1963, replied Ms Rice Davies when the prosecuting counsel pointed out that Lord Astor denied an affair or having even met her.

  8. #18

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    Laboratory rats offered GM and non-GM foods, always choose non-GM foods.....and as in the Hitchiker's Guide To The Galaxy are more intelligent than humans.
    “If there is no struggle there is no progress. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.” - Frederick Douglass
    "Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws. - Mayer Rothschild
    "Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience! People are obedient in the face of poverty, starvation, stupidity, war, and cruelty. Our problem is that grand thieves are running the country. That's our problem!" - Howard Zinn

  9. #19

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    GM foods are just 'normal' foods, with some special genetic component.....for example this GM pumpkin - normal?!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    “If there is no struggle there is no progress. Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.” - Frederick Douglass
    "Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws. - Mayer Rothschild
    "Civil disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is civil obedience! People are obedient in the face of poverty, starvation, stupidity, war, and cruelty. Our problem is that grand thieves are running the country. That's our problem!" - Howard Zinn

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