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How to Fight GMO Foods at Home

How to Fight GMO Foods at Home

This post is part of a series of Care2 Earth Day posts. Click here for more in this series.

The understanding that genetically modified foods should be banned from our food supply has spread worldwide. As the earth’s populace works to combat the manipulation of companies, such as Monsanto Corporation, to take over worldwide food production, the issue at present centers around labeling all foods containing transgenically engineered (TE) genes. It is a tough fight and some of the best non-profits are fighting it on behalf of both the human and non-human species. Presently the Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) is working to control the fallout from the USDA’s decision to deregulate Genetically Engineered (GE) Roundup Ready alfalfa, followed soon with the planting of sugar beets this spring.

According to NOFA’s website “The rulings assure that there will be certain and amplified contamination of the organic food supply, adversely affecting organic farmers and consumers alike. The GE crop varieties are proven highly promiscuous, spreading by wind-blown pollen and cross-fertilized by bees over long distances. Alfalfa is a mainstay of the organic and GE-free dairy and beef industries – and sugar beets readily cross-pollinate with table beets and chard. And even away from the field, labeling mix-ups and comingling contamination are rife in the seed handling system.”

Earth Day is the annual awakening to the plight of Earth’s environmental struggle. There are plenty of petitions to sign, congressmen and women to contact and protests to attend; but what is the most effective action you can take from a grassroots level? To begin with, each consumer should use their voice and wallet to demand non-GMO foods. So, what does this look like?

Farmers Markets
Some communities have banned GMO foods from being sold in their markets, others tolerate it and ask the farmers to label their produce. Something you can do when unsure about what is being sold is to ask questions of the farmers and those selling food products:
Are you using GMO seeds to grow your produce?
Are you feeding your cows, goats, chickens GMO feed?

Lisa Kelly, local activist and organic gardener reminds us that all it can take is a small group of people repeatedly asking and then refusing to buy if the answer to the questions is Yes. But those same farmers need to know how switching from GMO to organic can eventually pay the bills. When they hear people asking for organic, and when there is education and support from the local community farmers can move towards changing their growing methods. The demand for organic food is growing and the numbers prove there are eager buyers for non-GMO foods.

In rural areas where GMO corn is grown it can be cheaper for animal farmers to purchase GMO feed than to order organic corn from a distant state. Miriam MacGillis, co-founder of Genesis Farm in Blairstown, NJ, lays out a plan for transition.  In New Jersey there are thousands of acres of old farmland in preservation, which can be used by farmers to grow organic feed while their fields are cleansed of toxic pesticides. This opens a whole new market for the farmer to sell to local consumers seeking organic grains to feed chickens, goats, cows and other farm animals at an affordable price. A win-win situation for the farmer, consumer and the land.

Grocery Stores and Food Markets
Food stores are driven by money. They want your business and they want to know what you will and won’t buy. Be vocal. According to justlabelit.org, 92 percent of Americans want the FDA to label genetically engineered foods and 900,000 people have submitted comments to the FDA in favor of labeling. The next step is to speak directly with your food store managers and ask them a few questions (naturally in a considerate and friendly manner), about whether there are GE foods in any of their food products, packaged and fresh alike. For the most part they may not know and you can make your point by suggesting they label the foods they sell and you will only buy non-GMO products. Spread the word amongst your friends and family to do the same and then consistently make your concerns known.

Most importantly educate yourself about the dangers of GMO foods and share this information with those that you know and here in the Comment section. When you meet a farmer who needs more information track it down and make sure he receives it. While your petitions and letters to Congress and President Obama make their way through the government labyrinth you and your community can be making an extraordinary impact at the local level just by speaking up and making organic choices with your money.

Related:
8 Ways Monsanto is Destroying our Health
10 Ways to Take Action Against Monsanto

This post is part of a series of Care2 Earth Day posts. Click here for more in this series.

Read more: Blogs, Community Service, Eco-friendly tips, Environment, Green, Make a Difference, Nature, News & Issues, Rejuvenate your Body with Delia Quigley, , ,

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Delia Quigley

Delia Quigley is the Director of StillPoint Schoolhouse, where she teaches a holistic lifestyle based on her 30 years of study, experience and practice. She is the creator of the Body Rejuvenation Cleanse, Cooking the Basics, and Broken Bodies Yoga. Delia's credentials include author, artist, natural foods chef, yoga instructor, energy therapist and public speaker. Follow Delia's blogs: brcleanse.blogspot.com and. To view her website go to www.deliaquigley.com

79 comments

+ add your own
7:06AM PDT on Apr 30, 2013

Thanks for sharing.

9:30AM PDT on Apr 19, 2013

signed

2:01PM PST on Dec 24, 2012

Thank you Delia, for Sharing this!

4:13PM PDT on May 29, 2012

I am very pro the environment and good biodiversity, but this article, as many on this subject are, is misleading. Virtually all foods we eat have been genetically modified - we have been doing this for thousands of years. What is being referred to here is the introduction of novel genes through some technological approach. However, to simply say something is bad because it has been genetically modified is ignorance and potentially more damaging as some benefits may be slow to being used.

This does not mean there can be no problems with GMOs - there can, such as being tied in to a particular supplier (though this can also be the case with some non-GMO (though still genetically modified, of course) crops). There may also be issues with novel genes finding their way into the environment, which is one reason trials may be carried out, so destroying these is foolish, to say the least.

If something is shown to be harmful, avoid it if you can, but always be guided by the real evidence.

1:26PM PDT on May 22, 2012

I was prescribed an Iron, Folic Acid & Serine Capsule that on purchasing I see as ingredients Oil from soy beans, Soy Lecithin and I have no idea how to find out if there is use of Natural soy or GMO soy. It is called Foliferrin and made by Hasco-Lek Poland. Anybody with some real knowledge about this, I appreciate your response!
(I also emailed the manufacturer awaiting their response as well.)

11:44PM PDT on May 16, 2012

Thank you for spreading the word.

6:59PM PDT on May 6, 2012

We as consumers have more power than we think, if everyone makes every effort to buy organic or at least non GMO food, it will speak volumes. Continue to educate yourselves and others!

7:26PM PDT on Apr 13, 2012

Thanks for sharing this, something really needs to be done about GMOs before they cause even more problems.

12:57PM PDT on Apr 12, 2012

"A Decade of EU-funded GMO research" can be found at this link: http://ec.europa.eu/research/biosociety/pdf/a_decade_of_eu-funded_gmo_research.pdf

+++ "The main conclusion to be drawn from the efforts of more than
130 research projects, covering a period of more than 25 years of research,
and involving more than 500 independent research groups, is
that biotechnology, and in particular GMOs, are not per se
more risky than e.g. conventional plant breeding technologies."

+++While intuitively, GMOs seem risky, this seems to be a genuine report from the EU.
I did not find any page Summary Page; the statement quoted above about their
main conclusion was on their page 16 (my PDF window said it was on page 18 of 268.)
They talk about more than 10 years of research because a previous EU report like this
covered the previous 15 years.

In their "Introduction" on their page 7:

"Preservation of natural resources and the need to support the livelihoods
of farmers and rural populations around the world are major concerns. In
order to achieve the best solutions, we must consider all the alternatives
for addressing these challenges using independent and scientifically
sound methods. These alternatives include genetically
modified organisms (GMO) and their potential use."

On their page 8:

"The introduction of such advanced processes and
materials based on biotechnology and GMOs, has enormous
potential not only to enhance quality of life while reducing

4:50PM PDT on Apr 11, 2012

Here's a couple more reasons to keep fighting against GMO's...in an article from Mercola.com the researchers claimed that eating these foods can lead to kidney failure, and the third generation of mice that were fed GMO food were sterile. If that holds true for humans then a lot of of us will never know great grandchildren.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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