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Jun 21, 2010
Focus: Health
Action Request: Write E-Mail
Location: Canada

Received from CBAN:

You can write a new letter to your MP instantly from

Let your MP know that on June 7th, alfalfa farmers told the House of Commons Agriculture Committee that they support the Bill C-474:

“Bill C-474 is the first step in offering some protection in the
future for Canadian family farms. Market acceptance must be made part of the evaluation process and incorporated into the Seeds Regulation Act.” - Kelvin Einarson, Director and Secretary Treasurer, Manitoba Forage Seed Association Inc.

Read a strong collection of quotes here:

This summer you can take action in your community to support Bill
C-474 and alfalfa farmers. MPs need to hear from you this Summer and then again in the Fall, before the final vote on Bill C-474. For
information and action options check

More excerpts from June 7th testimony:

“Forage producers support Bill C-474 because we believe it would have the ability to protect the alfalfa industry from the truly dangerous effects of introducing GMO varieties that are not approved by our customers.” - Jim Lintott, Chairman, Manitoba Forage Council.

“The bill is perfect the way it stands. It's a perfect requirement.
Why would you produce anything with no market for it?” - Jim Lintott, Chairman, Manitoba Forage Council.

“…the point is that we have a situation where we have a large
corporate entity that does not care about the farmer's ability to
market that product. They are moving that product, specifically the
Roundup Ready alfalfa, and pushing that thing through regardless of market resistance from the producer and the consumer end.” - Jim Lintott, Chairman, Manitoba Forage Council.

“In closing, it has been said that Bill C-474 will create another
layer of “red tape” for seed companies to go through in order to sell
seeds in Canada. I feel this is better than creating “red ink” on the
producer's bottom line.” - Kurt Shmon, President, Imperial Seed Ltd.

Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator
Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN)
Collaborative Campaigning for Food Sovereignty and Environmental Justice
431 Gilmour Street, Second Floor
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K2P 0R5
Phone: 613 241 2267 ext.6
Fax: 613 241 2506

Jun 3, 2010
Focus: Health
Action Request: Protest
Location: Canada

Received from CBAN:

Montreal Urgent Action: Friday June 4 Solidarity with Haiti’s Farmers

Union Payasanne, Action SOS Haiti, and the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network call on people in Montreal to gather outside the Haitian Consulate to express solidarity with Haitian peasant groups who are rejecting Monsanto’s donation of hybrid corn seeds. Haitian peasant farmers will march Friday June 4 in Haiti and are asking groups around the world to “Struggle Against Monsanto and its associates.”

DATE: Friday, June 4, 2010
TIME: 10:00 AM
LOCATION: 1100, Boul. René Lévesque Ouest (corner of René Lévesque and Peel – Station Bonaventure)

This is a symbolic action in solidarity. A delegation will deliver a letter to the Haitian consulate in support of the farmers’ concerns.

Solidarity actions were called for by the Haitian Peasant Movement of Papay (MPP) and supported by La Via Campesina. Please see below. (You can also check and

The current political framework and the processes of economic integration carried out by governments and transnational capital together make it necessary for us to unify our vision and strengthen our action strategies against this new imperialist attack.

The earthquake which occurred in Haiti on the 12th January killed 300 000 people, injured 500 000 others and left thousands of people homeless…35 seconds made 3 million disaster victims. Haiti’s vulnerability in the face of natural catastrophes has many causes underlying which are the actions of the colonial and neo-colonial powers, principally Spain, France, United States, as well as the policies of the International Financial Institutions and of transnational corporations and the national groups  holding  political and economical power.

With their deadly gift to the Ministry of Agriculture of 475 tonnes of hybrid seeds, Monsanto and its accomplices are worsening the situation of the Haitian peasantry. This is a new earthquake; together with our national and international friends and the Via Campesina we must struggle against it.
That is why, we, Haitian organizations members of the Via Campesina, are calling for a large-scale demonstration and march on June 4th 2010 at the Papay Peasant Movement “Lakay” training centre in Papaye. The primary goal of this mobilization is to “Struggle against Monsanto and its Accomplices in Haiti “. We will begin the demonstration by sowing native varieties of corn and planting trees in order to celebrate World Environment Day and to show once more our commitment to protect Haiti and the whole planet. After that, we will march, accompanied by the rhythm of  drums, to Charlemagne Peralte de Hinche to burn Monsant’s seeds.

We are calling on all peasant organizations and national and international social movements to show their solidarity by participating, directly or indirectly, in this large-scale march against Monsanto. People who are not able to be present in Haiti can organize a solidarity action wherever they are. Those who are able to do so can interview the leaders of la Via Campesina in Haiti by telephone while the march is taking place:

Chavannes Jean Baptiste  Mouvement Paysans de Papaye et membre du CCI : 509-34 55 15 86
Filfrant St. Nare  Mouvement Paysans de Papaye (MPP): 509 34 46-23 82
Festil Pierre Doudou,  Mouvman Peyizan National Kongrè Papay (MPNKP): 509 34 57 37 09
Rose Edith Raymonville,  Mouvman Peyizan National Kongrè Papay (MPNKP: 509 3669-74 24
Rosenel Jean Baptiste, Tet Kole Ti peyizan Ayisyen (TK): 509 37 7 1 86 32
Iderle Brenus , Appuie Technique de la Via Campesina de la Caraibe : 509 3427- 5622


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Posted: Jun 3, 2010 4:46am
May 18, 2010
Focus: Health
Action Request: Write E-Mail
Location: Canada
* Please distribute widely *
Write to the Minister of Health instantly from
Health Canada could soon approve the first genetically modified (GM) animal for human consumption. The University of Guelph has applied for food safety approval of its GM pig - they call it “Enviropig™”.
The GM pig contains genetic material from a mouse and E-coli bacteria, and is engineered to excrete less phosphorus in its feces. Its owners claim that “Enviropig™” can reduce water pollution caused by excess pig manure that comes from industrial factory farms. A GM pig is not needed to solve this problem. Pigs can be raised without causing phosphorus pollution - by making changes to production practices or using an enzyme feed supplement that helps pigs digest grains.
“Enviropig™” is not needed by farmers and is not wanted by consumers. “Enviropig™” is unacceptable and will harm the markets for Canada’s hog producers at a time of severe economic crisis in the industry.
Health Canada is wasting precious public resources trying to assess the safety of a GM animal that no one wants. Health Canada does not have the capacity to regulate this complex technology for human safety.
Write to the Minister of Health today from and tell her that GM animals are not acceptable in our food system. Tell her that you don’t want to eat “Enviropig™”
For more information on “Enviropig™” and how you can join the campaign visit 
This action alert was issued May 18 2010, by the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network in partnership with Beyond Factory Farming Join us in building the campaign.

Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator 
Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN) 
Collaborative Campaigning for Food Sovereignty and Environmental Justice 
431 Gilmour Street, Second Floor 
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K2P 0R5 
Phone: 613 241 2267 ext.6
Fax: 613 241 2506 

Take action to Stop "Envriopig™": No GM Animals
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Posted: May 18, 2010 10:21am
Apr 29, 2010
Focus: Health
Action Request: Write E-Mail
Location: Canada

Urgent Action Alert – Support GM Food Labeling - Take action before May 5, 2010.

Tell the Minister of Health that Canada must support the right of countries to label genetically modified (GM) foods.
Send a letter instantly from

Canada could work to shut down negotiations on GM labeling at the UN Codex meeting next week in Quebec City.

May 3-7, governments will negotiate food labeling standards at the UN Codex meeting, including recommendations on GM labeling. The US is trying to stop the negotiations from continuing, and Canada may also try to end the negotiations.

Developing countries want support from Codex for their right to label GM foods. The US and Canada want to make sure this doesn’t happen because Codex recommendations on GM labeling could protect developing countries from challenges brought through the World Trade Organization.

Canada and the US also argue that GM foods are not any different from foods created through conventional methods. This is not supported by science, including Codex’s own food safety guidelines!

Despite polls that show over 80% of Canadians want mandatory labeling of GM foods, the Canadian government continues to bow to intense pressure from the biotech industry and refuses to label GM foods.

Help protect the rights of developing countries to label GM foods! Take action before May 5, 2010 at

For more updates and for information on labeling and Codex see

This action alert was issued by the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network, April 29, 2010

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Posted: Apr 29, 2010 9:29am
Apr 17, 2010
Focus: Health
Action Request: Write E-Mail
Location: United States
Please circulate this call for action. Issued: April 17, 2010

April 17 is the International Day of Peasant Struggle called by La Via
Campesina, the international small-scale farmers movement, with the
theme “Say “No” to Corporate Control of Agriculture and Food.” Stop
Monsanto’s GE Alfalfa!

This April, take Action to stop contamination.

Send some tiny alfalfa seeds to your Member of Parliament! Tell the government to stop Monsanto’s genetically engineered (GE) alfalfa. Help your Member of Parliament see how tiny alfalfa seeds really are – and why no one will be able to stop contamination if they allow Monsanto’s GE alfalfa in Canada.

Send a letter today to the Minister of Agriculture and your MP with a tiny alfalfa seed or two! Go to

1. Print out our sample letter or write your own letter to the Minister and/or to your MP.
2. Look up your MP’s mailing address at
3. Buy some organic alfalfa seeds at your local health food store.
Tape a few alfalfa seeds to your letter or draw a picture of this tiny
4. Post - No stamp necessary!

This action continues through the Spring –you can also:
• Organize a little alfalfa sprout stand at your local health food store (contact CBAN for an action kit).
• Screen the “The World According to Monsanto” for your community or
friends (order your copy from CBAN).

You can also work to support Bill C-474 in April and May – a Bill that
could stop GE alfalfa! For more information:

For more information on GE alfalfa:

Thank you for taking action to support Canadian farmers and stop Monsanto – in solidarity with small-scale farmers across the world.

Why is alfalfa important? Alfalfa seeds are tiny but play a huge role in food and farming - that means big trouble if GE alfalfa contaminates our crops. It’s not just the green sprouts in your sandwich – alfalfa is fed to dairy and beef cows, and organic farmers use it to improve soil fertility without chemical fertilizers. GE contamination of alfalfa would severely impact the entire food system.
As well as negatively affecting conventional grain growers and livestock farmers, GE alfalfa could end organic grain and livestock
farming as we know it.

What is the Day of Peasant Struggle? On April 17th 1996, nineteen landless Brazilian peasants who were defending their right to produce food by demanding access to land were massacred by the military police. Since the massacre at El Dorado dos Carajás, every year on this date actions are organised around the world by farmers’ organisations, communities, student groups, non-governmental organizations and activists, in order to demand food sovereignty and
peasants’ rights to produce food.
La Via Campesina says that transnational corporations (TNCs) “exacerbate poverty and economic recession, worldwide. As they
consolidate their control over lands and agricultural markets, TNCs expel small farmers and peasants from their lands and reduce employment opportunities in rural areas, thereby swelling urban slums with even more desperate and unemployed families. TNCs are making huge profits while hunger and poverty are on the rise.”

This action is called by the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network and
endorsed by National Farmers Union and Union
Paysanne , CBAN members who are also members of La Via Campesina.
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Posted: Apr 17, 2010 5:35am
Mar 22, 2010
Focus: Health
Action Request: Write E-Mail
Location: Canada
E-mal received from CBAN:
Action Alert. Please distribute widely.

Action Alert #2:

Support Bill C-474 – before Monday March 29, 2010 - Support Canada’s Farmers! You can stop GE Alfalfa and GE Wheat!

Write a letter to your MP instantly from  Take action this week! before March 29, 2010.

Your actions gave the Bill another chance! Private Members Bill C-474 will be debated for a second hour in Parliament March 29. The vote will happen a few days later. Even if you have already written your MP, you are encouraged to send another letter before March 29

Your concrete action could stop genetically engineered (GE) seeds from causing chaos in Canadian farming!

Bill C-474 would require that “an analysis of potential harm to export markets be conducted before the sale of any new genetically engineered seed is permitted.” The Bill could stop GE alfalfa and GE wheat.

This Bill is critically important because, as we know from experience, the introduction of new genetically engineered (GE) crops can cause economic hardship to farmers. Farmers are at risk when GE crops are commercialized in Canada without also being approved in our major export markets.

Flax farmers in Canada are now paying a heavy price because of this exact problem. Late last year, Canadian flax exports were discovered contaminated with a GE flax that is not approved in Europe or in any of our other export markets (except the U.S.). Flax farmers actually foresaw that GE contamination or even the threat of contamination would close their export markets. That's why they took steps in 2001 to remove GE flax from the market. Despite this measure, flax farmers were not protected. The GE flax contamination closed our export markets in 2009. It has created market uncertainty and depressed prices. Farmers are also paying for testing and cleanup and may be required to abandon their own farm-saved flax seed and buy certified seed instead. These costs are an unnecessary and preventable burden.

We cannot allow GE seeds to harm our export markets. Please support Bill C-474 and protect Canada’s farmers.

Write a letter to your MP instantly from  Take action before March 29, 2010.

Bill C-474 was introduced by Alex Atamanenko, the NDP Agriculture Critic and MP for British Columbia Southern Interior.

For updates, more info and action options  see or contact Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator, Canadian Biotechnology Action Network 613 241 2267 ext. 6

This action alert was issued by the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN)

Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator 
Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN) 
Collaborative Campaigning for Food Sovereignty and Environmental Justice 
431 Gilmour Street, Second Floor 
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K2P 0R5 
Phone: 613 241 2267 ext.6
Fax: 613 241 2506 
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Posted: Mar 22, 2010 10:13am
Feb 5, 2010

Your Food, Your Choice: Grounds for Change

Posted: 04 Feb 2010 08:00 AM PST

Do you recognize that guy in the picture? (Art via COG Toronto)

COG Toronto is holding its annual conference with an impressive line up of speakers in the organics movement including Baerbel Hoehm, the first Agricultural Minister for the German Green Party and Michael Schmidt, the raw milk dairy farmer. The event will happen on Saturday, February 20, 2010 9 am to 5 pm at the University of Toronto Conference Centre (89 Chestnut St.., Toronto).


Baerbel Hoehm, the first Agricultural Minister for Germany from the Green Party will be sharing insights on what the German Government accomplished under her direction to support organic farming. In addition, we have just confirmed Michael Schmidt, the dairy farmer from Durham who was recently acquitted of all criminal charges relating to the sale and distribution of raw milk and raw milk products.

Check out our website for the latest on the conference program and our speakers.

In Summary

COG Toronto’s Annual Conference
Saturday, February 20, 2010
9:00 am – 5:00 pm
University of Toronto Conference Centre
89 Chestnut St., Toronto


We are also looking forward to hearing from Percy Schmeiser, the Saskatchewan farmer who challenged Monsanto, Rick Smith, Executive Director of Environmental Defence Canada to speak as one of the panel on Land vs Development: Questions about the Greenbelt, Tom Manley, President of Homestead Organics, who will speak on the panel about Slow Money, and Megan Westgate, Executive Director of the Non-GMO Project which is helping retailers take products containing GMO’s off their shelves.


There will be other great sessions in three streams, one for the Grower, one for the Eater and one for the Reformer, as well as a delicious organic lunch, a special song composed especially for the conference, a reading by Margaret Webb, author of Apples to Oysters: A Food Lover’s Tour of Canadian Farms, and a presentation to Wilhelm and Barnhild Pfenning of the Lifetime Organic Hero Award. This conference is not to be missed!


Presented by Canadian Organic Growers in association with The Big Carrot
$65 ($85 after Jan. 31); COG members $55
Rates for seniors, students and unwaged
Organic lunch included !
Info and registration: or 416-466-4420

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Posted: Feb 5, 2010 6:57am


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