Saturday, February 5, 2011

NO NO to GMO Alfalfa

play time in our organic alfalfa field
photo source: www.lavalakelamb

NO NO to GMO Alfalfa

Air, water, food, the sustenance for breath, for life. When compromised, polluted, when the integrity of nature's balance is violated, life itself is violated. As an educator, activist and an environmentalist, I have seen, read, been told, and personally experienced, the devastation of health brought about by toxins, pollutants, and pesticides. A food, a seed, genetically engineered to be grown with an infusion of pesticides is in violation of the balance nature has gifted to us. I say 'us' for seed is not to be under the exclusive domain of any corporation, any government power, any regime of control.

Utter dismay, deep disappointment, and profound disillusionment have come forward in response to the 'go ahead' decision of the USDA to allow GMO alfalfa. The approval by President Obama MUST BE RESCINDED. This is not an expression of a political position. This is an expression of NEED that is not defined by party allegiance, but defined by the present and future well being of all humanity.

It is this very issue that has prompted the initiation of this blog, The APOGEE Forum. Postings on FaceBook, petition requests, alerts, reported proceedings in regard to the proposed approval and subsequent approval have been put forth in abundance. Organizations, parent groups, farm groups, and individual citizens, in great number have voiced their position and their resounding plea NOT TO APPROVE GMO Alfalfa. A deaf ear has been turned to this hue and cry by the USDA and President Obama. It is not a silenced plea. It will continue to gain momentum. Right intention shall prevail.

Avail yourself of the information presented and the means of contact in the links provided. Join the discussion, and most importantly allow your voice, your stand, your position to be heard. NO to GMO!

Your comments are so very welcomed. Thank you for caring.

Rose Marie Raccioppi

Background Information:

Genetically Modified Food - GM Foods List and Information:

Information and Links:

U.S. looks to Monsanto to feed the world | Pesticide Action Network

What the Heck Happened? The Politics of GM Alfalfa Explained | | AlterNet

Food Democracy Now | Obama Goes Rogue on GMOs - Tell him to say NO to Monsanto
Tell President Obama not to cave to Monsanto!
Broken promises - misguided allegiance... VOICE/PETITION your objection to Monsanto's GMO planting planned this Spring. Call for the Precautionary Principle. Our children deserve our Action to protect the natural order of seed. Link to sign!

"Unbelievably, over the past 12 days the Obama administration has approved not one, but two of Monsanto's Round Up Ready genetically modified (GMO) crops. On Thursday January 27th, the USDA made the decision, under the directive of the White House, to fully deregulate Roundup Ready alfalfa, followed by the partial deregulation of Roundup Ready sugar beets this past Friday, opening the door for the planting of both of these GMO crops this spring.

Together, these decisions send a clear signal that the Obama administration has abandoned all objectivity and scientific scrutiny when it comes to regulating biotech crops and has adopted a policy of rapid approval in order to overcome growing public outrage and concern about the harmful effects that Monsanto’s monopoly power has on family farmers, American citizens, our common environment and our democracy.

We need to continue to stand up to this influence in the halls of power of the United States. If you haven't signed this letter telling Obama to rescind the decision for deregulation of GMO crops, now is the time. Tell President Obama it’s time to put family farmers, our food security and America’s citizens over Monsanto’s bottom line".

USDA Completely Deregulates Genetically Engineered Alfalfa—It is Time to Demand Congressional Hearings! (Action Alert)
Posted article:
February 1, 2011

"Let’s really put the pressure on! Let the USDA and your senators and representative know there’s a steep political price for this decision, which if left unchanged, will have devastating consequences for organic agriculture.

On January 27, the US Department of Agriculture reached a decision on genetically engineered Roundup Ready® alfalfa, having reached the end of the review period for the environmental impact statement (EIS). Out of the three possible options—regulation, partial deregulation, and complete deregulation—the USDA chose the worst possible option: full non-regulated status.

This was unexpected news, as the USDA had been hinting that it would partially deregulate. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack previously suggested that the agency would “pursue compromise.”

There is evidence that the USDA was subjected to intense lobbying by Monsanto at the last minute, and possible collusion with Monsanto by the White House. According to Food Safety News, “Sources familiar with the negotiations at the USDA…believe the White House asked Vilsack to drop proposed regulations so the Administration would appear more friendly to business.”

Deregulation is dangerous. Without regulation, GM alfalfa will encroach on non-GM alfalfa, irretrievably contaminating it. There have already been over 200 episodes of transgenic contamination, costing farmers hundreds of millions of dollars in lost sales. If genetically engineered crops spread, the word “organic” will be virtually meaningless, affecting crops, the cattle who eat the alfalfa, and consumers who eat both.

Moreover, Roundup Ready® alfalfa will substantially increase herbicide use. The USDA’s own data shows that just 7% of alfalfa acres are currently treated with herbicides. USDA’s projections in the EIS show that substantial adoption of Roundup Ready®increases in herbicide use of up to 23 million pounds per year. alfalfa would trigger

Where do we go from here? We have to take our stand right here, with GMO alfalfa, because it cannot be contained. It will contaminate other crops. We believe a multi-pronged approach has the best chance of overturning this disastrous decision:

The Center for Food Safety has announced it will file a lawsuit against the USDA over the decision, and ANH-USA will try to become a co-plaintiff in that suit.

We need to blanket Congress with protests, asking senators and representatives and oversight committees to review the deregulation decision. We want to mount a massive grassroots campaign to show Congress that there is a steep political price to be paid for supporting genetically engineered organisms, especially alfalfa which cannot be contained. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) have issued a statement condemning the USDA decision, so we are not alone in our desire to see this reversed.

And we need to put pressure on the USDA and the Obama administration. They need to understand how angry American citizens are, and why we feel so betrayed. It is time for crony capitalism to end.

In 1781, Thomas Jefferson wrote, “If people let the government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.”

Our Action Alert will take you to a letter you can send to the decision-makers: your president, your senators, your representative, and the USDA. Please take what we’ve written and add your own thoughts. Pour out your thoughts and make your voice heard. Show them we will not allow the government to poison us and our children with frankenfoods. Please contact them today! "


Click to go to the Action Alert page. Once there, fill out the form with your name and address, etc., and customize your letter. We have a suggested message for you, but please feel free to add your own comments to the letter.

Help Needed:

If you're interesting in helping organize or coordinate a Millions Against Monsanto and Factory Farms Truth-in-Labeling campaign in your local community, sign up here:

To pressure Whole Foods Market... and the nation's largest supermarket chains to voluntarily adopt truth-in-labeling practices sign here, and circulate this petition widely:

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