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Destroying the Food Industry in America

Food Freedom
SWAT-style raids upon small, family farms are being conducted by the FDA, USDA, FBI, and other corporate/government organizations in the name of “protecting the public” from the “evils” of sustainable eco-agriculture as practiced by farmers who give a damn about the quality of food they make and sell to willing consumers who covet their fresh, natural products. The movie, Farmageddon, sheds some great insight on how freedom of food is being replaced by food fascism as the Government-Big Food-Industrial Agricultural complex works to stamp out the free-market competition from small, sustainable, American farms.


COK Investigates:
Cruelty Exposed at Iowa Factory
Farm and Hormel Supplier

Anti-whistleblowers laws promoted by agribusiness interests in the U.S. makes the undercover videos showing animal cruelty in farming practices illegal. These laws are designed to cover-up the abusive practices on factory farms. They go as far as labeling those convicted under these laws as terrorists.

In 2012, Iowa Governor Terry Branstad (R) signed that states ag-gag bill making whistleblowing exposes on factory farms like the the video to the right illegal. The video shows the day-to-day miseries forced upon thousands of female pigs. Piglets born at this Iowa factory farm will be slaughtered at around six months of age, and some of the meat will be marketed under the brand name Hormel.

I've got to admit that I've struggled with the factory farming issue. I don't oppose these methods because I'm a vegetarian, in fact I love eating meat and can't imagine giving it up. On one hand millions of people want affordable food and large scale food production is clearly necessary to make this happen. On the other hand, there has got to be a way to accomplish this without abusing the animals.

Slaughterhouse Investigation:
Cruel and Unhealthy Practices

This video shows an investigation by the Humane Society of the United States revealing one of the leading suppliers of the national school lunch program permitting sick and injured dairy cows to enter the food supply. In February 2013, the California state Assembly introduced the "Animal and Ecological Terrorism Act" (AB343), sponsored by the California Cattlemen's Association, the trade group representing ranchers and beef producers. The bill was withdrawn "amid stiff and growing opposition", according to the Associated Press. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the bill would have "require[d] somebody recording a video at a farming operation to turn it over to law officers within 24 hours – in other words, before investigators could document any illegal activity under federal food-handling and safety laws. Fail to turn it in, and you pay a fine."

Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO)
A genetically modified organism (GMO) is an organism whose genetic material has been altered using genetic engineering techniques. These techniques, generally known as recombinant DNA technology, use DNA molecules from different sources, which are combined into one molecule to create a new set of genes. This DNA is then transferred into an organism, giving it modified genes.

The GMO Threat

Using the principle of substantial equivalence, the biotechnology industry has imposed it's bogus claims that GMO food is no different than non-GMO food and therefore safe for the consumer to eat. Along with it's millions of dollars in campaign contributions and revolving door of executives of Monsanta becoming U.S. government regulators, politicians from both parties have been influenced to protect the multinational bio industry while the American public gets sicker and sicker.

Industry leader Monsanto has been at the forefront of this GMO revolution and now owns nearly 90% of staple GMO crops such as corn, soy, and cotton. Interestingly, Monsanto began a chemical company that brought the world poisons like Agent Orange and Roundup. Today, Monsanto virtually owns the Washington political and regulatory agencies.

The FDA doesn’t even test the safety of GMO crops. Instead, all GMO foods are assumed to be safe unless there is already evidence to the contrary. In other words, the FDA relies on self-reported data from the companies that manufacture the crops as to their safety.

Even worse, due to legal and copyright restrictions surrounding GMO patents, independent scientists have to ask the biotech companies’ permission before publishing research on their products. As a result, almost all of the long-term animal feeding studies that have ever been conducted on GMOs have been carried out by the biotech companies themselves, on their own rules and with their own standards of reporting.

Obama Promises to Label GMOs

What few independent studies have been conducted on GMO products have shown a range of adverse health effects from reduced fertility to immune system dysfunction, liver failure, obesity and cancer. A Russian study has concluded near-total sterility in GMO-soy-fed hamsters by the third generation; and other animal studies have shown potentially pre-cancerous cell growth, smaller brains, livers, and testicles, partially atrophied livers, and damaged immune systems. According to a comprehensive article by Jeffrey M. Smith that also highlights the process of intimidation that even well-regarded scientists have been subjected to when publishing their research.

Yet still, for some reason Obama’s “Food Czar” Michael Taylor refuses to make FDA testing of GMO safety mandatory…I wonder if it’s because he used to be the Vice President for Public Policy at Monsanto? Hired in the Bush era, Taylor was largely responsible for the deregulation of the biotech industry and inclusion of the substantial equivalence policies in effect today. President Obama appointed Taylor the Deputy Commissioner of Foods in 2009 and Taylor currently overseas all food safety policy for the federal government and continues to keep GMOs from rigorous independent scientific testing and off of US consumer food labels.

mikescottnz / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

Monsanto shill, Tom Vilsack, United States Secretary of Agriculture since 2009, influences US agriculture and food safety. Vilsack has repeatedly demonstrated a preference for large industrial farms and genetically modified crops. As Iowa state governor, he originated the seed pre-emption bill in 2005, effectively blocking local communities from regulating where genetically engineered crops would be grown. On March 28, 2012, Vilsack came out publicly defending the use of "pink slime" added in ground beef.

In this study from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and published in the journal Entropy in 2013, Glyphosate, the most widely used herbicide around the world, was found to be highly toxic to mammals and residues have been found in the main components of the western diet, such sugar, corn, soybean, and wheat. It inhibits enzymes that play a crucial role in the proper functioning of organisms and interferes in the synthesis of amino acids in the intestine, causing several diseases ranging from gastrointestinal problems, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, depression, autism, and infertility to cancer and Alzheimer's disease.

JeepersMedia / Foter / CC BY

The Word Health Organization (WHO) report on glyphosate in 2015 confirmed the world’s most used herbicide probably causes cancer. Documents from 1991 show how the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) themselves were fully aware of glyphosate’s carcinogenic potential.

One of the world’s leading experts on cancer risk, Dr. Christopher Portier, told an international conference in London that he is certain that glyphosate, the weed killer most commonly used with genetically engineered crops or “GMOs,” can damage human DNA in ways that could lead to cancer. “Glyphosate is definitely genotoxic,” said Portier. “There is no doubt in my mind.” A genotoxic substance is one that can lead to mutations or other genetic changes in DNA that could cause cancer. [Monsanto’s GMO Weed Killer Damages DNA]

GMOs are largely banned in the European Union due to what activists say are uncertain effects on health and the environment. In 2012, Germany’s BASF SE -- fed up with public hostility to GM crops -- halted research on them in Europe and moved remaining operations to the U.S., where they are in wide use.

In 2013, Mexico became a GM maize-free territory, when a Federal Judge issued the precautionary measure that suspended authorizations to plant any genetically modified corn. Monsanto had claimed that its transgenic technology reduces the use of pesticides and increases the productivity of crops for the benefit of farmers.

5 GMO Myths Busted

The truth is that GMOs do not have higher yields and, regarding the use and abuse of chemical pesticides, Monsanto's cure is worse than the disease. Contrary to what corporate propaganda claims, GM crops have increased the application of toxic agricultural chemicals. This has led to an unprecedented rise in the use of increasingly more toxic herbicides and insecticides, creating serious problems for the environment and public health.

President Barack Obama signed a spending bill, HR 933, dubbed the Monsanto Protection Act to avoid a government shutdown in 2013. The Act effectively bars federal courts from being able to halt the sale or planting of controversial genetically modified (aka GMO) or genetically engineered (GE) seeds, no matter what health issues may arise concerning GMOs in the future.

Both parties are corrupt and many of the politicians have sold out to corporate interests funded by the Agra-Industrial-Complex. Sen. Roy Blunt, Republican of Missouri, actually worked with Monsanto on a provision in HR 933 that in effect allows them to keep selling seeds, which can then go on to be planted, even if it is found to be harmful to consumers. “In this hidden backroom deal, Sen. [Barbara] Mikulski turned her back on consumer, environmental and farmer protection in favor of corporate welfare for biotech companies such as Monsanto,” Andrew Kimbrell, executive director of the Center for Food Safety, said in a statement. “This abuse of power is not the kind of leadership the public has come to expect from Sen. Mikulski or the Democrat Majority in the Senate.”

Recent Headlines...

Italian Government Research Institute – Immune System Disturbance from GM Maize
GM crop could cause liver failure - The West Australian
GM Food Increases Body Weight in Rats - Washington's Blog
Study says genetically modified corn causes tumors, but other scientists skeptical about research - CBSNews
China Genetically Modifying Cows To Produce Human Breast Milk - MyNews
Peru approves 10 year ban on GM crops - GM Watch
Colombia to ban coca spraying herbicide glyphosate - BBC

The European Patent Office (EPO) is about to grant 30 patents on plants derived from conventional breeding to Monsanto and its affiliated companies. The Swiss company Syngenta can expect to receive around a dozen patents very soon. Many of the patents claim vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, cauliflower, carrots and lettuce.

The US Supreme Court’s 1980 decision in Diamond v. Chakrabarty held that a live, man-made microorganism is patentable subject matter under Section 101 of the US Patent Act. The biotechnology industry has literally exploded in the 25 years since Chakrabarty. The number of patent applications and issued patents on biotechnology-related inventions also has risen dramatically since Chakrabarty. Data complied by the Biotechnology Industry Organization, based in Washington, DC, shows that the number of biotechnology patents granted by the PTO rose from 2,160 in 1989 to 7,763 in 2002. Since 1998, that total has averaged over 7,000 patents each year.

The agricultural biotech industry is controlled by six multinational corporations (Monsanto, Syngenta, DuPont, Dow AgroSciences, Bayer, and BASF) that hold the monopoly on seeds by means of patent protection on the most important crops for humanity.

The implications of this include:

  • With their vast capacity for lobbying and corrupting governments, the agicultureal biotech industry are privatizing biodiversity in widening the scope of patents to cover living beings (such as seeds) and not only the technological processes.
  • Farmers are prevented from saving seeds from one harvest to the next. Instead, they are required to repurchase seeds for each year's crop. The adoption of seed that has to be purchased at the start of each cropping cycle paying royalties to the patent owner, creates dependence and increases costs.
  • Neighboring farmers not growing with GMO seeds are sued by Monsanto when GMO crops contaminate non-GMO crops.
  • As mentioned earlier, researchers are prevented from using Monsanto owned GMO seeds in their research.

Monsanto recently made a bid to take over European agrichemical giant Syngenta, the world's largest pesticide producer. The $45 billion bid was rejected, but there's still a chance for a merger between these two chemical technology giants forming a singular agribusiness behemoth, a company that controls a third of both the globe's seed and pesticides markets.

Monsanto and Syngenta continue to be working with their investment banks Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs respectively on a deal. [Reuters] Monsanto has countered saying it plans to divest Syngenta Ag's seeds and genetic traits businesses as well as some overlapping chemistry assets to win regulatory approval for a takeover of Syngenta. If Monsanto takes over Syngenta, it would gain a broad portfolio of fungicides, insecticides and other herbicides. Bayer, the world's second-largest crop chemicals provider after Syngenta, is seen as a potential buyer of assets that could be sold as part of a takeover of Syngenta by Monsanto.

14 year old girl picks fight
with bully TV host - and WINS!

Food Labels
It seems to me that as consumers, we should have the right to know what is in our food. Yet, the Agri-controlled lawmakers in Washington seem more concerned about protecting Monsanto than protecting the health of Americans.

According to Consumer Reports, consumers want to know more than ever about their food, including what’s in it, where it’s from, who made it and how it’s produced. According to recent polls done by the Organic Consumers Association (OCA), over 90 percent of the public definitely wants to know what's in their food. Yet, Congress seeks to block the consumers right to know with GMO labeling.

Representatives Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) and G. K. Butterfield (D-N.C.) introduced federal legislation ("Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015") dubbed the “Deny Americans the Right-to-Know” Act (DARK Act) which passed passed the House of Representatives and will be introduced in the Senate soon. This legislation does not promote "safety" or "accurate food labels." The Act states, a food can be labeled as non-GMO even if it is produced with a GMO processing aid or enzyme or derived from animals fed GMO feed or given GMO drugs. How's that for accuracy?

Now get this... the act would "require the developer of a bioengineered organism intended as food to submit a premarket biotechnology notification to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)." That's Monsanto, for example. "The premarket notification must include the developer’s determination that food from, containing, or consisting of the GMO (GMO food) is as safe as a comparable non-GMO food" (substantial equivalence). In other words, Monsanto get's to decide if it's products are as safe as a comparable non-GMO food. How do you think the wolf will decide when he's in charge of the hen house?

This Act would:

  • Preempt states from requiring labeling of GMO food.
  • Virtually eliminate FDA’s ability to craft a national GMO labeling system.
  • Codify the current, broken voluntary labeling system.
  • Create a GMO “safety” review system based on industry science.
  • Allow “natural” foods to contain GMO ingredients.

Videos You Should Watch...

Robyn O'Brien | TEDxAustin 2011
Seeds of Death: Unveiling The Lies of GMO's
Monsanto Documentary
The World According to Monsanto
GMO | How Monsanto Controls the Government
GMO Food — It's Worse Than We Thought
GMO Food is Poison! Learn the Truth Watch - Fed Up
GMO Poison - Ticking Time Bomb
Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) - Myths and Truths
Genetic Roulette
Genetically Modified Food: Panacea or Poison
Food Inc.
Food Fight: The Debate over GMO Labels
The Gene Revolution, The Future of Agriculture: Dr. Thierry Vrain at TEDxComoxValley
Why Genetically Engineered Foods Should be Labeled: Gary Hirshberg at TEDxManhattan 2013
Jeffrey Smith interviews Dr. Stephanie Seneff about Glyphosate
The Future of Food

Codex Alimentarius
John McCainA bill recently introduced to the U.S. Senate, the Dietary Supplement Safety Act of 2010 (S. 3002), by Senators John McCain and Byron Dorgan is possibly the most direct assault on natural health freedom we have seen for some time. If passed into law, this bill would require all dietary supplement manufacturers, distributors, and holders all the way down to the retail store level to be comprehensively registered. It would also allow for the arbitrary banning of nutritional supplements by the FDA and the introduction of deceitful reporting of adverse events related to them.

The Dietary Supplement Safety Act of 2010 would require registration of any “business or operation engaged in manufacturing, packaging, holding, distributing, labeling, or licensing a dietary supplement for consumption in the United States,” definitions which could possibly include even retail stores that sell herbal and nutritional products. (DSSA p.2) Currently, under the Dietary Supplements and Non-Prescription Consumer Protection Act, small retailers are not required to register. This, however, will change with the passage of McCain-Dorgan’s bill. (NHF)

While the Dietary Supplement Safety Act of 2010 is an egregious attack on Americans’ freedom of choice, it is also a symptom of an even larger problem. The McCain-Dorgan bill is not just another silly attempt by corrupt politicians to demonstrate that they still have some value to their constituents, but an attempt to implement Codex Alimentarius at the national level and move the United States away from our Common Law heritage. The European Union has already passed similar legislation in the European Union Food Supplements Directive which has decimated open access to natural dietary supplements. Canada has passed laws to the same effect in recent weeks as well.

Recent Headlines...

FDA finally admits chicken meat contains cancer-causing arsenic - Natural News
Canada Moves One Step Closer to Outlawing Natural Health Products - National Post
UN body sets global maximum melamine levels in food - CNN

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