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class action lawsuit to ban GMOs and pesticides in argentinaG

From Sustainablepulse.com

A federal judge in Argentina has ruled that an unprecedented class action lawsuit, demanding a ban on the release of GMOs and their associated pesticides, can proceed.

court argentina

Source:  www.lacapital.com.ar (Spanish)

Translated by GM Watch

The lawsuit asks the government to provisionally suspend the uncontrolled open release of GMOs – for example, the sale of RR2 Pro/Liberty soybeans – on the grounds that they violate seed laws. The lawsuit also demands labeling of GMOs.

The lawsuit further argues for “a ban on the application of pesticides used for farming until their safety for the environment, ecosystems, biodiversity, the health of living beings, the cultural heritage of the Argentine people, and the sustainability of the production model is scientifically proven”.

The lawsuit primarily attacks GMOs for their contribution to the trend towards monoculture, direct seeding with consequent reduction of rural labor, economic concentration in the hands of few producers, and impacts on the health of rural populations and the environment.

The lawsuit demands that the commercialization of new GMOs is not permitted in the country. It is titled, “Gimenez Alicia Fanny and others against the national government, Monsanto and others, over environmental damage”.

The defendants are the Argentine national government, the Federal Council for the Environment, and a group of companies, including Monsanto, Syngenta, DuPont, Novartis, Nidera, Dow Agrosciences, Pioneer, Agrevo, Ciba Geigy, Argenbio and Bayer, that produce and sell GMOs and the agrochemicals tied to their use.

The lawsuit also urges the Legislature to pass a biosafety law, set minimum standards for use of soil resources, and order the defendants to “rebuild” or “repair” environmental damage caused by the GMO farming model. This would be achieved through the reintroduction of non-GMO cultivars and wild species, and the rebuilding of soil. If these measures are not possible, the lawsuit demands that the companies be ordered to pay compensation.

The expert lawyers who presented the case to the Court are: Jorge Mosset Iturraspe, Daniel Salaberry, Graciela Cristina Vizcay Gómez, Miguel Araya, Horacio Belosi and Santiago Kaplun.

The joint action has been taken to represent the following cases:

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE!


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usda develops label to verify “gmo free”

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Agriculture Department has developed a new government certification and labeling for foods that are free of genetically modified ingredients.

USDA’s move comes as some consumer groups push for mandatory labeling of the genetically modified organisms, or GMOs.

The certification is the first of its kind, would be voluntary — and companies would have to pay for it. If approved, the foods would be able to carry a “USDA Process Verified” label along with a claim that they are free of GMOs.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack outlined the new certification in a May 1 letter to USDA employees, saying it was being done at the request of a “leading global company,” which he did not identify. A copy of the letter was obtained by The Associated Press.

A USDA spokesman confirmed that Vilsack sent the letter but declined to comment on the certification program. Vilsack said in the letter that the certification “will be announced soon, and other companies are already lining up to take advantage of this service.”

Companies can already put their own GMO-free labels on foods, but there are no government labels that only certify a food as GMO-free. Many companies use a private label developed by a nonprofit called the Non-GMO Project. The USDA organic label also certifies that foods are free of genetically modified ingredients, but many non-GMO foods aren’t organic. To read more, click HERE!


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bill nye the science guy now supports monsanto?

“I went to Monsanto and I spent a lot of time with the scientists there, and I have revised my outlook. And I’m very excited about telling the world. When you’re in love, you want to tell the world.”   -Bill Nye

In his book Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation, published just last November, Nye reiterated these points. His concern about GMOs centered mainly on unintended consequences of growing them over large expanses—he cited the example of crops engineered to resist herbicides, which have been linked pretty decisively to the decline of monarch butterflies, which rely on abundant milkweeds, which in turn have been largely wiped out in the Midwest by GMO-enabled herbicide use. Nye praised certain GMOs, such as corn engineered to repel certain insects, but concluded that “if you’re asking me, we should stop introducing genes from one species into another,” because “we just can’t know what will happen to other species in that modified species’ ecosystem.”

Now, Nye’s doubts have evidently fallen away like milkweeds under a fine mist of herbicide. In a February interview filmed backstage on Bill Maher’s HBO show (starting about 3:40 in the below video), Nye volunteered that he was working on a revision of the GMO section of Undeniable. He gave no details, just that he “went to Monsanto and I spent a lot of time with the scientists there.” As a result, he added with a grin, “I have revised my outlook, and am very excited about telling the world. When you’re in love, you want to tell the world!” Click HERE to read more!


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interview with claire hope cummings, seed advocate extraordinaire!

Interview can be found on ethicalfoods.com!

Seeds live at the heart of our food system. Seeded plants provide us with just about everything we need to live, from most of our foods, clothing, shelter, and even the air we breathe! Seeds are living organisms and part of the great web of life. So to have a private company buy up valuable seed collections, own them, and patent the genetic basis for our most vital food crops is a real threat to our food security. Seeds are a gift of creation, and the natural world belongs to all humanity, it is our common wealth. Now, a handful of companies decide what plants are useful to them for profit and discard the rest. This is an ignorant approach to life on earth.

Very few people know that agro-chemical companies privately own almost of all useful seeds and they do not have the public interest in mind. They decide what seeds are available. In some areas farmers can’t get any seeds other than what Monsanto makes available. And Monsanto, for instance, forbids farmers and researchers to study and improve basic food and fiber plants. This threat is largely invisible but it will become an issue for everyone the next time we need ways to cope with droughts or diseases, because public access to the greatest amount of genetic diversity is the key to both our abundance and survival. When people still had the means to grow food and save seeds locally, that dispersed food system was far more resilient than what we have now. Even if certain crops don’t get grown, we will regret allowing the privatization of our seed supply.

Click HERE to read her answers to the following questions:

What threat does genetic engineering pose to human and environmental health?

How has genetic seed engineering impacted small-scale and subsistence farmers in particular?

Why do you think America in particular has charged headlong into genetic modification while other countries have largely banned or strictly regulated GMO foods?

What is your take on Synthetic Biology, or synbio, and its agricultural applications? Could synbio have potential benefits as the world population grows, or will it further endanger our food systems?

Is there any hope of saving traditional farming methods and biodiversity?

How can backyard farmers and gardening enthusiasts ensure their seeds have not been genetically altered?


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maui voters support gmo moratorium, monsanto strikes back!

Screen Shot 2014-11-13 at 5.03.47 PM

KAHULUI, Hawaii —The cheers went well into the night. A small army of Maui residents rose up against the big guys and forced a moratorium on genetically modified organisms or GMOs.

Now they have to dig in because this fight’s not over. One of the big guys is already battling back. Monsanto released a statement Wednesday saying it plans to take steps to ask the court to declare that this initiative is legally flawed and cannot be enforced.

“This is just the start and it is no surprise that Monsanto would turn to legal means and do whatever it takes to suppress the will of the people,” said Mark Sheehan of the Shaka Movement. To read more, CLICK HERE!


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china refuses gmo corn from USA, cargill loses 90 million dollars

CHICAGO, Sept 12 (Reuters) – Cargill Inc has suffered more than $90 million in damages from China’s rejections of U.S. corn containing a genetically modified trait developed by Syngenta AG, the grain trader said in a lawsuit on Friday.

The damages are a “direct and proximate result” of Syngenta’s decision to sell its Agrisure Viptera corn, known as MIR 162, before China approved the variety for import, according to the lawsuit.

Cargill sued a unit of Syngenta, the world’s largest crop chemicals company, in Louisiana state court for damages stemming from the rejections. To read more about this AGRIBUSINESS DRAMA, CLICK HERE!


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letter sent to pope francis regarding GMOs

At the request of major peasant organizations, a group of scientists and agricultural experts sent a letter and document on the problem of genetically modified seeds to the Vatican on April 30, 2014.  Signed by eight experts from Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, India and Canada, the letter and accompanying document call upon His Holiness to speak out against the negative impacts of GM seeds on the world’s peasants and    global food security. 
 
The document questions the scientific basis of GM technology, its failure to increase yields, the exponential increase in pesticide use, the dangers of transgenic  contamination of peasant crops, the threat to human health and the concern that GM seeds are patented and monopolized by a handful of transnational corporations. To read more and follow this letter’s progress, CLICK HERE—->

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