On August 1, 2016, then-President Obama signed a meaningless so-called mandatory GMO labeling law that, for all practical purposes, ended an intense four-year grassroots-led campaign for consumers' right to know if their food is genetically engineered, or contains genetically engineered ingredients.
Now, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has unveiled its proposed version of GMO labels. Wait until you see them. All bright and cheery, with sunburst and smiley-faced images—but without "GMO" appearing anywhere on the labels. (You can see all of the proposed images here.)
According to Politico, the USDA's long-awaited 106-page proposal for how companies must disclose the presence of genetically modified ingredients in their products includes eliminating the words "genetically modified" or "genetically engineered” and replacing them with "bioengineered."
That means no more "GMO"—instead, consumers will see “BE” on the environmentally friendly looking green and yellow images.
The images are just as insulting to consumers as the law, which the chemical and junk food industry lobbyists spent $400 million to pass—under the specious name of the "Safe and Affordable Food Labeling Act."
Opponents renamed the loophole-ridden bill the "Dark (Deny Americans the Right to Know) Act" because its intent is clear: Keep consumers in the dark, by creating a long list of exemptions and/or by allowing companies to opt for electronic "smart labels" instead of clear, plain language that anyone can easily read.
The Dark Act preempted states from requiring labels on GMO foods, including Vermont, which had previously passed a GMO labeling law that took effect one month before Obama signed the Dark Act. Vermont's law required far more foods and ingredients to be identified than the federal law that preempted it, and also required on-package labels stating "produced with genetic engineering."
The USDA has until the July 29, 2018, deadline for completing the rulemaking process for the law that industry lobbyists and their friends in Congress claim will establish a "mandatory national standard" for GMO labeling—but will, in reality, do little or nothing to help consumers identify GMO foods.
A peer-reviewed article released Tuesday in the International Journal of Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine and conducted by the Institute for Responsible Technology revealed that the health of all of the participants improved after switching to a non-GMO diet or simply reducing the amount of GMO foods they ate.
Resistance to crops that have been genetically modified to kill pests is surging, according to a study that examines 20 years of data.
If a scientist has a relationship with a large company, how can the public fully trust the statements they are making about that company’s products? When these relationships aren’t made public, things get even murkier.
The following excerpt is from Just Cool It! A Post-Paris Agreement Game Plan, by David Suzuki and Ian Hanington (Greystone Books, 2017)
Only One Out of 11 Popular Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream Flavors Tested Negative for Cancer-Causing Herbicide Glyphosate
"The Vermont brand has been built on a bucolic image of cows grazing on endless pasture...Ben & Jerry’s ice-cream and other Vermont companies have used this idyllic imagery to sell their products. Gone are the days, however, when most of Vermont’s cows were grazing in spectacularly scenic landscapes. Now a majority of Vermont’s cows are locked up in...‘confined animal feeding operations’ or CAFOs...grazing on concrete with a diet rich in GMO corn and pesticides." — Vermont’s GMO Addiction: Pesticides, Polluted Water and Climate Destruction, Regeneration Vermont
The trailer of the new documentary "Food Evolution," which negatively portrays both me and the organic food movement, fails to acknowledge the reality of American mothers. Our families are sick and struggling. And yet, when we remove GMOs and related toxins from our diet, we get better. The trailer implies that the movie will focus on the so-called noble promises of GMOs, yet fails to present reality in a noble manner.
Neil deGrasse Tyson has inspired millions of people to care about science and imagine themselves as participants in the scientific process. What a hopeful sign it is to see young girls wearing T-shirts emblazoned with the words, “Forget princess, I want to be an astrophysicist.”
Neil deGrasse Tyson Narrates New Doc 'Food Evolution': A Blatant Case of Monsanto Corporate Propaganda
Some industry messaging efforts are so heavy-handed they end up highlighting their own PR tactics more than the message they are trying to convey. That's the problem with "Food Evolution," a new documentary by Academy Award-nominated director Scott Hamilton Kennedy and narrated by Neil deGrasse Tyson.
British writer George Monbiot has a warning for those of us trying to grasp the new political realities in the U.S. and the U.K.: “We have no hope of understanding what is coming until we understand how the dark money network operates,” he wrote in the Guardian.