A Big Win for GMO Labeling Efforts

By David Blyweiss, M.D., Advanced Natural Wellness

July 07, 2014

  • Victory in Vermont
  • Genetically altered foods are taking over our food supply
  • Let’s strike hard while the iron is hot

Last month we had a huge win here on the home front.

The tiny state of Vermont became the first state in the nation to require the labeling of genetically altered foods! It won’t happen immediately. Food manufacturers have until mid-2016 to comply with the new requirements.

Still, this is big news. Just over a year ago, California rejected a GMO-labeling bill for the second time in two years. And, in November of last year, a similar bill was defeated in Washington.

One of the most important things to come out of this victory is that other states may jump on the bandwagon. Both Maine and Connecticut have already passed GMO-labeling laws. But they won’t go into effect unless other nearby states pass similar laws, first. An additional 25 states are currently talking about the same sort of legislation.

Of course, Monsanto and the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) are threatening to sue the state of Vermont.

And now, the fight has spilled over to Congress. A new federal bill, named the “Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act,” has been introduced. This bill would prohibit any mandatory labeling of genetically engineered food at both the state level and federal level.

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But there is nothing safe or accurate about the bill. In fact, many people are calling it the “Deny Americans the Right-to-Know Act” (DARK Act).

The rules? A product would only require GMO labeling if there were a material difference that would make it “necessary to protect health and safety or to prevent the label or labeling of such food from being false or misleading.”

At the same time, genetically altered foods would be allowed to be labeled as “natural.”

Talk about false and misleading!

And, by the way… the bill clearly states that the use of bioengineering does not, by itself, constitute a material difference.

Well, I beg to differ.

The GMA says that about three-quarters of the foods we eat here in the U.S. contain genetically altered ingredients. And, they appear to be pretty happy about using these tainted ingredients in their products.

Their website touts GMOs are protecting the environment. How they’re safe, healthy and will save the world from hunger. I’m guessing they haven’t read up on how these foods are actually destroying our health – and our environment at the same time.

Monsanto’s Roundup-ready crops are genetically altered so the popular weed-killer, Roundup, won’t harm them. This means farmers can spray as much Roundup on these crops as necessary to get rid of weeds.

Now, get this… data from the Organic Center shows genetically altered crops have increased herbicide use by 383 MILLION pounds in the U.S. from 1996 to 2008.

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This is great news for Monsanto. They not only create Roundup-ready seed for crops… they are also the manufacturers of Roundup! So, they’re making a lot of money from poisoning our food supply.

Of course, it’s not so good for you and me…

Glyphosate, the main chemical in Roundup, damages DNA, causes cancer and acts as an endocrine (hormone) disruptor in human cells. Some research shows it even causes cell damage and death at the levels found in Roundup-ready crops.

Some of Monsanto’s crops also contain Bt toxins. These act as a pesticide to prevent crops from damage. But it’s not just harmful to pests. It appears these toxins may damage red blood cells, which are needed to deliver oxygen throughout your body. They also punch holes in the food animal’s gut… just like how it works as a pesticide. (Oh, and we’re finding this in humans, too.)

It’s not just human health that’s at stake here. There are also environmental concerns.

All sorts of “super-weeds” are cropping up that are Roundup-resistant. So, more and more herbicides are required to keep weeds at bay. Plus, insects are developing resistance to Bt toxins. And, once again, more chemicals are required. Hence, enough is not enough… and we need to use even more.

You might not realize it, but all of those chemicals end up on your dinner table.

It’s also messing with our natural food supply. It’s simply impossible to keep organic crops from being cross-pollinated with GMO crops. Over time, this could lead to a crisis for organic farmers.

So, what should you do?

Big food giants are fighting tooth and nail against GMO labeling. That, in itself, should tell you there’s something they don’t want you to know. So, the most important thing you can do is support proposed GMO-labeling efforts in your state. The more states that get onboard, the more pressure there is on the industry. Let them know you have a right to know what’s in your food.

Right now is the best time for your voice to be heard. We have one big win in Vermont. I say let’s strike hard while the iron is hot.

You can support state-labeling requirements and speak up against the proposed “Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act” here. (Remember, this Act is not safe and it’s not accurate.)

You can also contact your Congressman and Senator and let them know that you won’t be kept in the dark about the GMO status of the food you feed your family. It’s important to make sure your voice is heard on this subject.

In the meantime, watch out for the “Big 3” GMO foods. Here in the U.S., a surprising 95% of sugar beets, 93% of soybeans and 86% of corn grown are genetically modified. So, make an effort to avoid foods containing processed sugars, corn syrup, corn oil, corn starch and soy.

It will help if you stick with grass-fed beef, organic free-range poultry and produce that carry the “100% Certified Organic” label.

You can also use this Non-GMO Shopping Guide when you go to the grocery store. If you have an iPhone or use an android interface, you can search in your apps for a NON-GMO guide. They are widely available free of charge.

Sources:
Koller VJ, et al. “Cytotoxic and DNA-damaging properties of glyphosate and Roundup in human-derived buccal epithelial cells.” Arch Toxicol. 2012 May;86(5):805-13.

Gasnier C. et al. “Glyphosate-based herbicides are toxic and endocrine disruptors in human cell lines.” Toxicology. (2009) 262: 184–191.

Mezzomo BP, et al. “Hematotoxicity of Bacillus thuringiensis as Spore-crystal Strains Cry1Aa, Cry1Ab, Cry1Ac or Cry2Aa in Swiss Albino Mice.” J Hematol Thromb Dis 1:104. 2013.

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