Category Archives: Organic Food

FDA RULES THREATEN ORGANIC FARMERS

Organic Produce 1024x834 FDA RULES THREATEN ORGANIC FARMERSThe Food and Drug Administration was given permission by Congress in 2010 to regulate practices on farms across the nation. Now small farms, many of whom use organic farming techniques, are finding that the methods they have been using for years, including spreading house-made fertilizers, tilling their farmland with grazing animals, and irrigating with water from open creeks, are coming under assault. 
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The 2010 act, titled the Food Safety Modernization Act, was a response to data that showed 3,000 people die every year in the U.S. from tainted food, while tens of millions are made ill from eating food that is tainted. Concerns about bioterrorism also played a role.

In 2011, 33 people died across the nation from eating tainted cantaloupes, which triggered the FDA to be more aggressive in pursuing its supervision of farms.

Dave Runsten, policy director for Community Alliance with Family Farmers in Davis, Calif., said, “They are going to drive farms out of business. The consumer groups behind this don’t understand farming. They talk out of both sides of their mouth. They demand these one-size-fits-all regulations, then say, ‘I don’t want to hurt those cute little farmers at the farmers market. I shop at the farmers market.’ It is frustrating.”

It doesn’t help the FDA’s case when they sound out-of-touch; just recently Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) chastised Michael Taylor, a deputy commissioner with the FDA, noting that one draft set of rules from the FDA wrote that kale is “never consumed raw.” She responded, “I was going to offer to make a kale salad for you. It causes you to wonder if those who are writing these rules have ever set foot on a farm.”

But Caroline Smith DeWaal, food safety director at the Center for Science in the Public Interest in Washingtonhad a different view, saying, “We don’t believe large facilities are the only place where outbreaks are happening.” She noted that farm-to-fork growers need to see that E. coli and other bacteria are a danger to their produce just as much as they are to the produce of giant processing plants. She added, “At the end of the day, consumers will be paying a little bit more for this. But a few cents here may help avoid a severe illness.”

Meanwhile, examples abound of farms losing business as a result of the FDA’s rules; Don Bessemer, the owner of the last working farm in Akron, Ohio, which had fed locals for 117 years, gave up, and 30 workers lost their jobs. Bessemer commented to the Akron Beacon Journal that he would fight pests and even drought, but not bureaucrats.

Taylor pointed out that the FDA is softening its stance; and added that thousands of the smallest farms would be exempt from new inspections.

Source: Breitbart.com

Organic food shortage hits U.S. stores

(NaturalNews) Organic food is seemingly no longer just a trend, but a necessity. A recent report by MyFox New York states that all-natural grocers can hardly keep up with the demands for organic food. Bloggers have been capturing signs that read, “Organic eggs are currently in short supply due to increased consumer demand and limited availability. This is an industry-wide shortage and is not specific to ShopRite stores or our operation.” Similar signs are being seen in grocery stores across the nation.
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Cage-free, organic eggs and certain types of organic produce are among the products in shortage across the country. Experts are blaming the season as the reason for the shortage, with many Americans making good on their New Year’s resolutions to diet and lose weight. However, others are saying the secrets of large corporate food producers have been exposed, leaving consumers more apt to purchase cleaner, healthier organic foods instead.

Current demand and cold weather conditions have caused organic food prices to skyrocket. Organic strawberries for example, are being priced in the double digits in some grocery stores. While high prices can currently be seen as a downfall, overall it’s immensely positive that consumers are waking up to the dangers of genetically modified (GM) foods that are scientifically proven to cause all sorts of health problems.

If you look at the big picture, more consumers interested in buying organic should overall lower the prices in the long run, and hopefully drive GM food producers out of business. Organic food availability depends highly on your geographic location. Take Austin, Texas, for example. In most Texas grocery stores, there are more cage-free, organic, free-range and non-antibiotic eggs than regular commercially produced eggs.

GM food consumption has been proven to cause a series of health problems including cancer, infertility, allergies, weight gain, diabetes, accelerated aging, autoimmune disorders and gastrointestinal complications, just to name a few.

The first ever long-term study on GMO toxicity conducted in France and released in 2012, showed that rats fed Monsanto’s GM corn developed massive tumors and had their life spans cut significantly. Female rats seemed to be overall more affected. Similar studies are unable to be conducted in the US because of patents that big companies like Monsanto and DuPont maintain on their products. They knowingly prohibit these studies in an attempt to keep the public in the dark about the dangers surrounding their food products and the chemicals sprayed on agriculture fields.

Luckily for the consumer, information regarding the dangers of GM foods has been consistently reported in the alternative media, and now the mainstream media, resulting in a major movement advocating for the labeling of GM foods.

Today, 20 states have proposed legislation that would require food labeling. Last year, Connecticut became the first state to enact GMO labeling, and as of Jan. 9 Maine has become the most recent state to enact similar laws. However, due to the push back from corporate food giants, certain clauses have been added prohibiting states from implementing legislature until surrounding states adopt similar laws.

Last year, California proposed Proposition 37, which would’ve required GMO labeling, but despite overwhelming polls showing Californian’s support for the bill, the initiative failed after the biotech industry used sneaky and arguably illegal tactics to persuade voters into voting against it. Some question whether the votes were counted accurately.

Despite the loss, the proposition led to massive awareness and began a snowball effect resulting in many states pursuing their own GMO labeling laws. Several states on the East Coast are considering implementing similar legislation, creating a major headache for the biotech industry. GMO corporations spent $67 million alone fighting ballot initiatives in California and Washington state.

With the processed food industry searching for an out, the Grocery Manufacturer’s Association has called for a “voluntary scheme,” or the legal term, “preemption,” that would remove the states’ ability to require labeling through a federal law. Instead of the biotech industry working out a compromise on labeling, it’s asking the federal government to make it outright illegal for states to implement labeling laws. This action would essentially end all grassroots movements petitioning for labeling. Much of the original court documents are redacted; however, they’re available to view online at the end of Politico‘s report.

Sources include:

http://www.myfoxny.com

http://www.panna.org

http://www.righttoknow-gmo.org

http://voterguide.sos.ca.gov

http://www.eatdrinkpolitics.com