County Officials Are Forcing This Organic Farm to Spray Roundup on Food Crops

I must admit that when I heard that a 2000-acre organic farm that had maintained its organic status for 18 years is being forced by the local government to spray pesticides on their crops, I was appalled, and a bit disbelieving. After all, what right do a few elected municipal officials have to destroy the food, the USDA certified organic status and the livelihood of those running and working an organic farm? Sadly, it is the reality facing Azure Farms in Moro, Oregon. Officials of Sherman County are forcing the farm to spray noxious pesticides on their farm or be quarantined.

But Azure Farms is fighting back. Nathan Stelzer, the farm’s manager, is asking for public support against the county’s requirements. He went to social media for help in spreading the message about their farm’s plight. He also asks that people phone Lauren, the court’s administrative assistant, at 541-565-3416 to voice their concern over the county’s policies. Sherman County may issue a court order requiring Azure Farms to spray Roundup and other toxic pesticides on the farm by as early as May 22 or to quarantine the farm while county officials spray the pesticides on the farm. The County is also threatening to place a lien on the farm to cover the costs of the chemicals and labor to spray the farm.

The safety over Monsanto’s Roundup and other glyphosate-based pesticides is questionable, with studies linking it to cancer. Recent reports have ghostwritten its own so-called independent research to suggest the pesticides are safe. Meanwhile the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer, cites research linking glyphosate to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and declaring glyphosate a “probable carcinogen.”

According to wheat farmers in Sherman County, the “weed problem” has gotten progressively worse over the years, and the farmers blame Azure for not spraying its organic food crops. While it is easy for people to seek out someone to blame for the problems they face, it is a serious oversimplification of the situation to simply point the finger at the local organic farm, for a number of reasons.

First, weeds are part of a natural and healthy ecosystem. Farms and weeds like those in question (Morning Glory, Canada Thistle and Whitetop) have co-existed for centuries, if not millennia. They are found throughout North America, so how can the wheat farmers accurately identify Azure as the culprit in spreading them to the wheat farms? Second, if they are spraying their crops to keep weeds down then the pesticides should be resolving the problem. But, the reality is that the pesticides are CAUSING super-weeds in the same way that antibiotics are linked to the development of super bugs.

Pesticides like Roundup have been used in increasing amounts in an effort to combat weeds that the pesticides were supposed to eradicate. According to a study released in February 2016, and published in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Sciences Europe, 18.9 billion pounds (8.6 billion kilograms) of glyphosate have been used globally to date. Additionally, the use of the herbicide has risen almost 15-fold since “Roundup Ready” genetically-engineered crops were introduced in 1996.

Third, the farmers insist that they don’t cause chemicals to drift onto the organic farm so they don’t want weed seeds from the organic farm on their territory. The reality about pesticides is that they drift in the air and in ground water, so this claim by the wheat farmers is simply not founded in fact. Fourth, forcing the organic farm to spray chemicals on their produce destroys their organic farm status and business and its related jobs, which total $6 million annually in payroll. I doubt that any chemical-based wheat farmers would want to be shut down, but this is exactly what they are trying to force on Azure by insisting that the farm spray noxious chemicals on its soil and crops. And, it is unlawful to destroy another’s livelihood when that livelihood isn’t breaking any laws. Since when is growing food in the same way it has been grown for thousands of years a crime? Frankly, it seems completely tyrannical than the county’s wheat farmers and municipal authorities think they have the right to force the farm to destroy its pristine soil and organic status.

Please sign my petition asking Sherman County to stop forcing Azure Farms to spray Roundup and other noxious pesticides on their organic farmland.

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Dr. Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, DNM is the publisher of the free e-news World’s Healthiest News, president of PureFood BC, and an international best-selling and 20-time published book author whose works include: Be Your Own Herbalist: Essential Herbs for Health, Beauty & Cooking.


Joette B
Joette B22 hours ago

100% insanity there are tv reports of round up toxic effects What is wrong with those people!

Summerannie M
Summerannie Myesterday

Dear me thats seriously not good is it?

Ruth S
Ruth S4 days ago

This article says "Pesticides like Roundup" ??? Since when is Roundup a Pesticide? It is a Herbicides to kill weeds.

william Miller
william Miller5 days ago


Bill Arthur
Bill Arthur6 days ago

BTW I have just finished planting my 53rd crop and have used Glyphosate since it was introduced in the 1970ies and am still going strong with NO medical problems. Have not even seen a doctor for 8-10 years since I no longer have a drivers license requiring a medical as it becomes harder to keep one after you turn 65 years old. All those bad chemicals including the less hazardous glyphosate are having a hard time getting to me.

Bill Arthur
Bill Arthur6 days ago

Yes Julie W, your choice if you wish to take litres of the carcinogen alcohol directly into your system and it is your choice not to ever come near any glyphosate which is not anywhere as dangerous. If you are getting it in your food then it is in very minute quantities and probably because someone used it incorrectly but it is far more dangerous for you to drink a known carcinogen like alcohol and yet many do willingly and then try to stop farmers from using a very effective solution to help them produce cheap and clean healthy food. And for those who think 'organic' methods will give them clean food they should see the sample the comes off a field contaminated with weeds and the juice from those weeds and then tell me it is clean. It will also be more expensive and there will be lesson it off any given area. Many do not know what they are asking for.

Janis K
Janis K7 days ago


Laura K
Laura K7 days ago

I heard they had so many responses they decided to let them use less toxic means to control weeds. YAY! WIN!

Steven L Jones
Steven L Jones8 days ago

Farmers Cope With Roundup-Resistant Weeds ---------------

Jaime J
Jaime J8 days ago

Thank you