Tag Archive | agricultural industry

12 American Foods that are Banned in Other Countries*

12 American Foods that are Banned in Other Countries*

By Amy Goodrich

Americans are slowly waking up to the sad fact that their food supply is packed with hazardous and toxic compounds. 

Many of the American foods you may be eating on a daily basis are banned in other countries because they contain compounds that are known to cause inflammation, growth defects and cancer.

For some reason the U.S. government and FDA allows these toxic foods to end up in our supermarkets while other countries have taken them off the shelves.

  1. Pink Slime

Pink slime is a name used for processed low-grade beef trimmings and meat by-products. They use ammonium hydroxide in their processing, which is banned in many other countries outside the US.

This pink slime is often added to processed foods. Products can contain up to 15% without additional labelling.

Banned in: Canada, U.K., and E.U.

  1. Farm-Raised Salmon

    Farm raised salmons are fed with an unnatural diet of GMO grains and dangerous chemicals such as synthetic astaxanthin (derived from petrochemical) and antibiotics.

    It causes their flesh to become grey-ish instead of the pink-red of wild salmon. Avoid all Atlantic salmon as these are mostly coming from fish farms.

    Look for the “Alaskan salmon” and “sockeye salmon, both not allowed to be farmed.

    Banned in: Australia and New Zealand

  2. Hormone-infused Beef and Dairy

Many of the American cows are fed synthetic hormones to increase meat or milk production. These hormones (rBGH and rBST) end up in the meat and dairy products we consume.

Non-organic meat or dairy has been linked to breast, colon, and prostate cancers.

Banned in: Australia, New Zealand, Israel, E.U., and Canada.

  1. Genetically Modified Papaya

    Many of the papayas Americans eat are genetically engineered to be resistant to the ringspot virus.

    Studies show that animals fed GMO food, such as corn and soy, have an increased risk of organ damage, tumours, birth defects, premature death, and sterility.

    Banned in: E.U.

  2. Bread With Potassium Bromate

    Commercial baking companies enrich their flour with potassium bromate to reduce the baking time and make the dough more elastic.

    Too much potassium bromate can cause kidney and nerve damage, thyroid issues, digestive disorders, and cancer.

    Banned in: Canada, China and the E.U.

  3. Ractopamine-Tained Meat

    Ractopamine is a growth stimulator widely used in the U.S. to increase the weight of pigs, cattle, and turkey. It has been linked to cardiovascular issues, birth defects, and hyperactivity.

    Banned in: 160 countries across Europe, Russia, China, and Taiwan

  4. Arsenic-Laced Chicken

    Arsenic-based drugs are used to make the chickens grow faster and it makes their meat pinker which gives it a fresher look. Inorganic arsenic is a known carcinogen.

    Banned in: E.U.

  5. Drinks With Brominated Vegetable Oil (BVO)

    Mountain dew and a few other citrus-flavoured sports drinks are emulsified with brominated vegetable oil (BVO).

    Its main compound is bromine, which is used as a flame retardant. Too much bromine can lead to iodine deficiency, skin rashes, acne, fatigue, and cardiovascular problems.

    Banned: E.U. and Japan

  6. Preservative BHA and BHT

    Butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) are often used as a preservative in cereals, nut mixes, meat, beer, butter, and gum. It has been linked to certain allergies and may cause cancer.

    Banned in: infant food in the U.K., parts of the E.U., and Japan.

  7. Bleached Flour

    Azodicarbonamide is often used by U.S. food companies to bleach flour quicker. This chemical, also found in shoe soles, has been linked to asthma and some types of cancer.

    Banned in: Singapore.

  8. Processed Foods With Artificial Food Colors

    Some of the food flavourings, additives, colours, and preservatives used in the U.S. are banned in other counties because they are made from coal tar and petroleum.

    These include red 40 and yellow 5 which can cause hyperactivity, brain and nerve damage, birth defects, allergies, and cancer.

    Banned: Norway in, Austria and most of the E.U.

  9.  Olestra/Olean

    Olestra, aka Olean, is a substitute for fat in fat free products. It depletes essential vitamins and can cause anal leakages.

    Banned in: U.K., Canada and many other countries around the world.

    Always make sure to read food labels and eliminate all processed food out of your diet to avoid all these harmful chemicals. Opt for a healthy fresh, whole food diet instead.

Source*

Related Topics:

Here’s Why Most of the Meat Americans Eat is Banned in Other Industrialized Countries*

Brazil Has Now Refused All Imports of U.S. Grown GMO Crops*

How the U.S. Blocked the E.U. Ban on Animal Testing in Cosmetics*

Nestlé Removes GMOs from South African Baby Foods not U.S. Baby Foods*

Russia Sanctions Food from the West*

The GM Ban List is Getting Longer!

Worried About Your Cucumbers!

You Don’t Wanna Eat This Chicken!

China Bans American Shellfish over High Levels of Arsenic*

Fifth US Corn Cargo Rejected by China*

Accusations, Trade, Politics and E. Coli

 

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EPA’s Silent Approval of Monsanto/Dow’s RNAi Corn*

EPA’s Silent Approval of Monsanto/Dow’s RNAi Corn*

By Sayer Ji

Without much more than a whisper from the mainstream media, Monsanto’s newest Frankenfood has received full EPA approval and will be arriving on dinner plates by the end of the decade. The implications of this are harrowing, to say the least. 

While you may not have made up your mind on the dangers of GMOs, you likely feel entitled to know when you’re consuming a food that is the product of laboratory research. For this reason, I am reporting on Monsanto’s latest food technology, unfortunately, already in the pipeline. And quite silently so. I write this with a certain degree of solemnity, if not also a tinge of regret, because, for three years, I have heard rumblings of Monsanto’s next project – RNA interference technology.

It was actually the late Heidi Stevenson, my friend, colleague, and founder of the platform Gaia Health, who first alerted me to the dangers of RNA interference-based tinkering with our food supply when she reported on the near disastrous approval of GMO wheat using RNA interference technology in Australia. Thankfully a few brave scientists and informed public stood up and, together, averted the disaster. But since then, both the dangers and the breakneck speed of development of this technology have gone largely ignored, even among activists deep in the non-GMO movement. In order to truly appreciate the gravity of the situation, and why the EPA’s approval of RNAi corn intended for human consumption, is so concerning, it will first require a little background information on the fascinating topic of non-coding small RNAs, and their formidable relevance to our health.

How Non-Coding, Small RNAs Link Together the Entire Biosphere

One of the most important discoveries of our time is that all plants, including those we use for food and animal feed, contain a wide range of RNA molecules capable of inhibiting gene expression or translation. These non-coding RNA molecules neutralize targeted messenger RNA molecules (mRNAs), which prevents their translation into a protein, i.e. they “silence genes.”

Compelling research has surfaced suggesting that not only do these genome-regulating small RNA molecules exist in our foods, but that they are capable of surviving digestion, and being absorbed into our bodies fully intact where they alter, suppress or silence genes, post-transcriptionally. Moreover, some of these small RNAs — primarily microRNAs (miRNAs) and small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) — are believed to be cross-kingdom mediators of genetic information, making it possible for RNAs in one species impacting many others through both their active and passive exposure to them.

Food therefore is essentially an epigenetic modifier of gene expression, making it a form of information, and not only a source of bodily building blocks and caloric energy, as conventionally understood. As such, any significant changes to food or feed staples within our food chain could have powerful impacts on the physiological fate of those consuming them, essentially rewriting the functionality of our genomic hardware via software like changes in RNA profiles. The entire biosphere, therefore, is held together in a web-like fashion through these molecular RNA messengers, lending a plausible mechanism to the biotic aspect of Lovelock and Margulis’ Gaia theory of Earth as a self-regulating, meta-organism. You can learn more by reading my article Genetic Dark Matter, Return of the Goddess, and the Post-Science Era.

Monsanto and Co Capitalizing on RNA interference Technology

While this discovery will have profound implications for the field of nutrition and medicine, it has also created enormous interest among biotech and agricultural firms, namely, Monsanto and Dow, looking to capitalize on the design of proprietary products using interference (RNAi) technology.

In mid June, last month Monsanto received EPA approval for a type of corn genetically altered to produce an RNA-based pesticidal agent (aka, a plant-incorporated protectant (PIP)) which lethally targets a metabolic pathway within the corn rootworm, known within the industry as the “billion dollar bug.” Branded as Smartstax PRO, the newly minted GMO plant produces a small, double-stranded RNA known as DvSnf7 dsRNA which disrupts a critical gene within the rootworm, causing its death. This was added on top of four other “stacked” GMO traits, such as the ability to produce two other pesticidal proteins (Cry1A.105 and Cry2Ab2), as well as survive exposure to both glyphosate (aka Monsanto’s Roundup 2) and Glufosinate (aka Dow’s Libertylink), highly toxic herbicides.

Roundup, for instance, has demonstrated carcinogenicity in the parts per trillion range. Yet, the EPA considers it perfectly safe for consumers to ingest many orders of magnitude higher concentrations than that, proving its function as a cheerleader and not a regulator of the industry that controls our food supply.

The Atlantic, one of the only mainstream news outlets to report on the topic, pointed out how surprisingly low key the approval process was:

“The EPA’s decision attracted little attention from the press or even from environmental groups that reliably come out against new genetically modified crops.”

Bill Freese, The Center for Food Safety’s science policy analyst, told the Atlantic he was caught off guard by EPA’s decision to only allow 15 days of public comment, and the fact that it did not post its decision to the Federal Register, as it customary, especially considering how unprecedented the use of a RNAi insecticide in a plant intended for human consumption is. Monsanto anticipates the new corn will be on the market by the end of the decade.

One would imagine that such revolutionary technology would require short and long-term (decades) of safety testing before licensure. Instead, as is often the case with big-ticket market agendas, the product is being rushed to market. There are already significant biases in place within the EPA and USDA in regard to nucleic acids – assumptions that exempt them from cautionary considerations. RNA is considered Generally Accepted As Safe (GRAS), but this is because it is defined and perceived only as a physical substance rather than as the powerful signaling/informational molecule it is. The EPA’s approval of RNAi food crops ignores the fact that it takes a multi-generational timescale to understand the influence of epigenetic modifiers on the genome of a species, much less the human species, whose timescale is orders of magnitude beyond animal models used to establish much of the risk/benefit data used in pre-approval evaluations. RNAi interference technology promises specificity — one RNAi molecule change equals one gene suppressed — but ignores the virtually infinite possibility of unintended, adverse effects in what are incomprehensibly complex biological systems. Indeed, researchers have warned that RNAi can not only profoundly affect gene expression, but that the changes it induces can permanently alter a species through inherited traits:

“Once a silencing effect is initiated, the effect may be inherited. The biochemistry of this process varies depending on the organism and remains an area of active research with many unknown aspects. Nevertheless, it is known for example that human cells can maintain the modifications necessary for TGS, creating actual or potential epigenetic inheritance within tissues and organisms (Hawkins et al., 2009). In some cases the dsRNA pathways induce RNA-dependent DNA methylation and chromatin changes (TGS) that persist through reproduction or cell division, and in other cases the cytoplasmic pathways remain active in descendants (Cogoni and Macino, 2000).”

GM Technology and Unintended Consequences

Indeed, critics of RNA interference technology make the point that RNAi technology aims to target the production of a specific protein by identifying the sequence in question. But two or more genes can have sequence homologies. This means, as applies to the use of RNA interference in medicine, a gene that is targeted to turn off a “disease-causing gene” could have a number of off-target effects, one of which would be turning off a gene that is essential to health and vitality.

This is, in fact, what happened October of last year, when Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, a leading developer of RNAi drugs, announced it had decided to discontinue revusiran, its lead drug candidate, after an excess of deaths occurred in the experimental drug group versus placebo. This sent shockwaves throughout the overly exuberant RNAi drug industry, reducing their stock 6% on average.

Criticisms of RNAi in the agricultural sector are long-standing among the highly informed. For instance, Jonathan Latham, Ph.D. and Allison Wilson, Ph.D., wrote a seminal paper on the topic over a decade ago titled “Off-target effects of plant transgenic RNAi: three mechanisms lead to distinct toxicological and environmental hazards,” wherein 3 of the primary safety concerns are addressed: 1) Off target effects leading to non-specific down-regulation of plant RNAs 2) Off target effects affecting non-target invertebrates feeding on plant material 3) potential effects on mammals. In mammals, long (>30 bp) perfectly duplexed RNAs (such as are typically produced by plant RNAi transgenes) are Pathogen Associated Molecular Patterns (PAMPS) and are consequently highly potent triggers of innate anti-viral defences. The effects of long dsRNAs on mammalian cellular functions are typically profound and extend to complete inhibition of protein translation and cell death. Nevertheless, the implications of such molecules in  the mammalian diet have hardly been tested.

That’s quite a serious list of concerns. As you can see, concern #3 includes the possibility that these dsRNAs may lead to protein translation and cell death. Clearly if the EPA has declared Monsanto and Dow’s new RNAi corn safe for human consumption, they would need to prove this a non-issue.

Monsanto Falling On Their Own ‘Peer-Reviewed’ Sword

Surprisingly, Monsanto itself has produced one of the most damning papers on the topic yet. Several years ago I stumbled upon a study funded by Monsanto that raised a number of red flags for me. Titled, “Endogenous small RNAs in grain: Semi-quantification and sequence homology to human and animal genes,” researchers employed by Monsanto in their St. Louis, MO, laboratory analyzed the presence of endogenous small RNAs in common food and feed staples — soybeans, corn, rice — discovering that hundreds of these plant RNAs had a perfect 100% complementary match to human genes as well as other mammals.

Why is this significant? Endogenous small RNAs, such as small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) and microRNAs (miRNAs), are effector molecules of RNA interference (RNAi), which is a gene suppression mechanism found in plants, mammals, and other eukaryotes. The implication, therefore, of Monsanto’s finding is that plant RNAs — were they capable of surviving digestion and accumulating in target tissues to physiologically relevant concentrations — are capable of epigenetically silencing hundreds of genes within the human body. Below you will find a list of the RNA/gene matches between rice and the human genome:

Despite the abundance of perfect 100% complementarity matches listed above, Monsanto’s conclusion was a conveniently pollyannish dismissal of the safety implications of these findings, stating that:

“The abundance of endogenous small RNA molecules in grain from safely consumed food and feed crops such as soybean, corn, and rice and the homology of a number of these dietary small RNAs to human and animal genomes and transcriptomes establishes a history of safe consumption for dietary small RNAs.”

While this may be true for traditionally used plants, it does not follow that genetically modified organisms would necessarily be safe because non-GMO versions are. [The pseudo-scientific conceptual ploy of “substantial equivalency behind traditional and GMO cultivars has been the basis for the approval of GMOs since their inception.] Monsanto’s conclusion relates to the fact that it has invested a great amount of resources into developing proprietary RNAi-based organisms which help it to maintain and further expand its monopolizing control on the global food supply.

Additionally, one of their primary justifications for concluding the safety of endogenous plant RNAs on human health was that: “…there does not appear to be any evidence in the scientific literature suggesting that intact RNA is absorbed following ingestion.” This bold claim has been disproven. The Monsanto paper was written in 2008, 3 years before the groundbreaking discovery of Zhang et al published in the Cell Research, entitled,” Exogenous plant MIR168a specifically targets mammalian LDLRAP1: evidence of cross-kingdom regulation by microRNA,” wherein it was demonstrated that human subjects fed rice containing the microRNA MIR168a have measurable amounts of it present in their blood and tissue, and that it binds to the lipoprotein receptor adapter protein in the liver. More succinctly:

“These findings demonstrate that exogenous plant miRNAs in food can regulate the expression of target genes in mammals.”

Since then, a hotly contested debate has ensued, which is understandable, given the increasingly politicized and financially-motivated nature of scientific debate and findings.

Here’s Monsanto’s conclusion about the safety of RNAi-based food technology:

“Based on this evidence it can be concluded that RNAi-mediated regulation of gene expression in biotechnology-derived crops is as safe for food and feed use as conventional crops that harness RNAi-based gene regulation as one of several ways to achieve new plant traits. The safety of future crops generated through applications of RNAi should thus be evaluated for safety using the existing comparative safety assessment paradigm, which has been developed for biotechnology-derived Crops.”

First of all, the “evidence” they are referring to is based on an axiomatic absurdity: equating the absence of evidence with evidence of absence. In other words, you can’t prove this negative: “that a hazard does not exist” because positivistic proof of anything requires that you demonstrating something, not nothing.

Let’s also not overlook the conflict of interest statement at the end of their paper: “All authors are employees of the Monsanto Company. The  Monsanto Company is an agricultural company that produces,” which speaks to Monsanto’s long history of funding science that denies safety risks of their products, such as the Roundup-Cancer link, which now even the California EPA accepts as fact.

The Heart of the Problem

In a seminal paper published in 2016 in Trends in Microbiology, entitled, “How Our Other Genome Controls Our Epi-Genome,” it is proposed that the very RNAs biotech/agrochemical companies like Monsanto and Dow are tinkering with in our food should be reconsidered as part of the definition of our species versus the conventional view that it is just something informationally inert that we eat and exists “out there.” Using a revised version of Da Vinci’s Vitruvian man, as pictured below, they propose that there are 4 inseparable parts of our species: 1) human cells 2) human microbiota and other bacteria 3) Fungi and Viruses 4) Food.

As you can see, because of the interconnectivity and “social networking” functionalities of RNAs packaged in microvesicles called exosomes, all four parts of this new definition of man become united in an indivisible whole. Because these RNAs packed in edible exosomesepigenetically active, the food we eat “literally talks to our mRNA and DNA,” as I have explained in greater detail here:  “Amazing Food Science Discovery: Edible Plants ‘Talk’ To Animal Cells, Promote Healing.”

As we have seen in Monsanto’s own paper on the topic, foods contain hundreds of small RNAs whose 100% complementarity match with human genes imply they can directly impact, and even silence those genes. This silencing is not necessarily “bad,” but it is clear that we are tinkering with a design that we are only just beginning to understand, much less know how to ascertain the risks of and properly regulate. But, considering that Monsanto’s research reveals how intricately connected the human and the food genomes are are — and furthermore, that post-2008 research has surfaced showing Monsanto was wrong and plant RNAs from food do have direct impacts on human genome/epigenome expression — it is highly irresponsible for them to continue to claim that food manipulation technologies will not have unintended, adverse effects in principle. Sadly, with the EPAs approval of four new RNAi forms of corn already completed, and likely many more on the way, we may be stuck with secondary and much slower forms of recourse: post-marketing, epidemiological surveillance of exposed populations, where patterns of disease can take decades if not generations to surface — and then with so many confounding factors at play, not with any certainty.

That said, I believe education and the awareness it generates is our best bet at countermanding the widespread acceptance of this highly experimental and obviously dangerous form of genetic engineering. As has been the case recently with glyphosate being classified as a carcinogen by the California EPA, and a growing mainstream movement to fight the forced feeding of non-labeled GMO laden products (March Against Monsanto), the tides are turning. Please help us spread this information far and wide.

Source*

Related Topics:

Two Thousand People March against Monsanto and Syngenta in Switzerland*

Mexican Supreme Court Refuses to Review Monsanto Appeal on GMO Maize Permits*

Burkina Faso Settles Dispute with Monsanto over GM Cotton*

Monsanto Has Lost $11 Million As Indian Cotton Farmers Begin To Use Indigenous Seed*

Monsanto + Syngenta Lobby Tanzanian Government to Pass Law Jailing Farmers who Exchange their Traditional Seeds*

U.K. Gov’t Has Colluded with Monsanto by Treating Wales as a Monsanto Toxic Dump*

85% of Tampons, Pads and Other Feminine Care Products Contaminated with Monsanto’s Cancer-Causing, Endocrine-Disrupting Glyphosate*

Monsanto Was Put on Trial for Ecocide at the Hague*

Monsanto Weed Killer Poison Found in U.S. Baby Food*

Bayer Confirms Monsanto Takeover with $66bn Bid*

Monsanto Forced to Pay $46mn to Victims*

Monsanto Profits Drop Twenty-Five Percent Again as Farmers, Individuals Go Organic*

5 Million Nigerians Urge Government to Reject Monsanto Crops*

For Reducing Male Fertility New Protection Bill for Monsanto*

Brazilian Government Ends the Use of Monsanto Pesticide Linked To Microcephaly Cases*

Singapore Is Converting Vacant Space into Bountiful Urban Farms*

Singapore Is Converting Vacant Space into Bountiful Urban Farms*

By Amanda Froelich

Because Singapore imports 90% of its food supply from outside sources, the wealthy city is transforming vacant pockets of land into spaces for urban farming developments.

Credit: Culture Trip

Singapore is on a mission to become more self-sufficient. Because it presently imports 90% of its food supply from outside sources, the wealthy city is investing in initiatives to convert vacant pockets of land into spaces for urban farming developments. Not only will this reduce Singapore’s reliance on imported food, it will benefit the environment and possibly the local economy by creating more jobs.

Reuters reports that Edible Garden City, a company which promotes a “grow your own food” lifestyle, has designed and constructed 50+ food gardens in the island city for a plethora of clients. Some of the food gardens are for restaurants and hotels, while others are for schools and residences.

One of Edible Garden City’s projects is an 8,000-square-meter plot that used to be a prison. Now,  it’s a luscious urban farm “where the local community can learn and grow together,” states the project website. Reportedly, City Farm can produce up to 100kg of vegetables per day, 10-15 kg of mushrooms and 20 kg of herbs. All in all, that’s enough to feed up to 500 people — per day.

Credit: GOURMET ADVENTURES

Of course, that’s a tiny amount considering the entire country is home to 5.5 million people. However, as Darren Ho, the head of Citizen Farm initiative said, it’s a proper start.

“No system will replace imports, we are here to make us more food resilient,” Ho commented.

He also added that it is “up to the community” to decide how self-sufficient and eco-friendly Singapore becomes.

In the future, Edible Garden City may work with the government to convert other pockets of vacant land into food forests which can supply the growing population.

Credit: Going Places

 

Source*

Related Topics:

One Palestinian Man’s Mission to Make Urban Agriculture More Sustainable*

In a Broke and Crumbling City, this Woman is Building her Urban Paradise*

Restaurant Turns Stalled Site Into Urban Farm

Food Revolution: Urban Green Farming on the Rise

Russia’s GMO Import Ban Boosts Local Organic Farmers*

40% Of Russia’s Food Is Grown from Dacha Gardens*

Frosts Increase with Solar Minimum: Thus it begins*

Frosts Increase with Solar Minimum: Thus it begins*

By David Archibald

Back in late April, European wine growers were hit by the most damaging frost since 1991. That frost affected vines as far south as Tuscany. More recently it is the western Corn Belt that has been affected by late Spring frost. The following two figures show damage to crops from frosts a few days ago:

Figure 1: Chickpea crop in Saskatchewan just north of the Montana border, 27th June 2017 (image source Mike Foley, yellow is frost-killed dead plant material)

 

Figure 2: Frozen corn just east of McLaughlin, South Dakota, 27th June, 2017 (image source Joel Bierman)

 

 

Figure 3: South Dakota Spring frost incidence 1974 – 2003

As Figure 3 shows, the majority of frosts for McLaughlin are usually over by mid-May.

 

Figure 4: U.S. Drought Monitor

 

Warmer is wetter and colder is drier. In a cooling climate there will be a concommitant reduction in moisture available.

Figure 5: Spring Wheat Futures

 

The reaction of the wheat market has been a 50% increase in price over two weeks. That has geopolitical implications, as shown by the following graphs.

Figure 6: Percentage of personal budget spent on food

 

This is a graphic made in 2010 using data from 2009. At 6.9%, the United States has the lowest percentage of disposable income spent on food of any major country and will be hardly affected. But most countries spend between a quarter and half their income on food. A rise in the budget allocation to food, driven by the prices of wheat and other grains, will result in a reduction in economic activity.

Figure 7: Imported grain and domestic grain production in the Middle East

 

The Middle East lost the ability to feed itself from its own production decades ago. Even countries as large as Egypt live a hand-to-mouth existence. Egypt recently sold off a couple of islands in the Red Sea to Saudi Arabia in return for Saudi funding of the Egyptian budget, and thus grain imports. On average, humans get about 48% of their calories from grains. Wheat, with the best amino acid profile of the major grain crops, is a near-complete foodstuff for those not allergic to it. Tunisia has wheat consumption of 80% of their calorific intake… The wheat price rise has geopolitical implications.

Figure 8: F10.7 flux 2014 – 2017

 

Where to from here?

Relative to the climate of the last century, an F10.7 flux above 100 causes warming and below that level causes cooling. As of today, the F10.7 flux is 71, not far above the activity floor of 64. Solar minimum is three years away and then we are likely to have at least two years of activity below 100 as activity rises into Solar Cycle 25. Thus some of the heat that built up in the second half of the 20th century due to the highest solar activity in 8,000 years will have a chance to radiate into space. Late spring frosts will become more frequent.

Source*

Related Topics:

Pakistan Gv’t Warns the Country to Prepare for Global Cooling*

Hacking The Planet: The Climate Engineering Reality*

Climate Alarmists Have Been Wrong About Virtually Everything*

Global Plant Growth Surging Alongside Carbon Dioxide*

How World Leaders Were Duped Over Manipulated Global Warming Data*

NASA Satellite Imagery Reveals Shocking Proof of Climate Engineering*

Global Warming! The Coldest June in Antarctica, and Australia*

Freaky Weather, Climate Change, Pole Shift, or Signs of a New Era!?

 

Indian State Will Pay Farmers to go 100% Organic and GMO-Free*

Indian State Will Pay Farmers to go 100% Organic and GMO-Free*

Just over two years ago, in September 2014, the Indian Government launched their revolutionary  Rastriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (National Agriculture Development Program) as a way to encourage organic farming, and decrease dependence on chemical agents.

In January 2015, the state of Sikkim was declared as the country’s first 100 percent organic state.

Sikkim produces 800,000 tons of organic produce that’s free of harmful pesticides, chemical fertilizers and toxic GMOs — accounting for roughly 65% of India’s total organic produce yields.

The western Indian state of Rajasthan launched plans for dedicating thousands of hectares of land for the farming of organic pulses just a few months later.

Their effort seeks to combat the rampant protein malnutrition, and the unsustainable practice of chemical fertilizer-based farming.

Another western Indian state now also seeks to join in. Goa has also recently announced that they will be looking to reduce the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, and is also seeking to go 100 percent organic.

The State Department of Agriculture has launched a state sector plan titled, “Assistance for use of organic inputs by the farmer.”

Ulhas Pai Kakode, Director of Agriculture, commented:

“This is the first step we have taken in the direction of organic farming in the state.

“Hopefully, more and more farmers should adopt the practice of organic farming after availing this scheme.”

Under this new plan, farmers can receive significant assistance from the government when it comes to obtaining organic agricultural inputs, such as organic fertilizers and bio-pesticides.

Up to 50% of the tab will picked up by the state government, but there will be some limitations.

AnonHQ explains that these benefits will be limited to 10,000 Indian Rupees (INR) per hectare with a maximum of up to two hectares, or INR 20,000 per beneficiary for all categories of farmers on the use of organic inputs.

Farmers with plots as small as 0.1 hectare will be considered eligible for the program — which will also help to keep the tradition of small-scale ingidenous farming alive and well.

Organic farming is nothing new; it’s a tradition that has sadly been overtaken by overzealous corporations.

In India, organic farming has been practiced since ancient times and once ensured quality food for consumers.

The recent resurgence of organic farming in India, however, is largely due to the increasing demand for organic products in Western nations.

The organic food and fibre market is growing at an incredibly rapid pace, with some estimates suggesting that the market is expanding by up to 25 to 30 percent.

A study by ASSOCHAM, which stands for The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India, suggests that the organic food market in India will reach $1.36 billion by the year 2020.

The study also suggested that organic farming efforts short focus largely on pulses and grains.

The exponential growth of the organic market has even led food manufacturers in the United States to pay their farmers to make the switch to organic practices.

In the U.S. alone, sales in organic marketplace expanded by about 11%— reaching a whopping $43.3 billion last year — equalling about four times the growth in sales of food products, overall.

Organic farming in India is also expected to continue to grow, especially as the government continues to financially support organic farming endeavors.

Increased awareness and availability of organic foods has also greatly contributed to the success of organic food.

Additionally, the rise in health consciousness and healthier lifestyle changes have also played a significant role in the growth and demand of organic foods.

Source*

Related Topics:

India’s Organic Rice Revolution Proves GMOs Are Unnecessary*

Monsanto Has Lost $11 Million As Indian Cotton Farmers Begin To Use Indigenous Seed*

Virtually Indestructible Rogue GMO Grass Threatens Environment, Wildlife and Industry*

GMO Golden Rice Shows Stunted and Abnormal Growth with Reduced Grain Yield*

Iraq’s Agricultural Industry was Pillaged, Its Farmers Devastated, But It’s Still Free of GMO Seeds*

Largest-Ever GMO Crops Study Shows Massive Environmental Damage in U.S.*

One Palestinian Man’s Mission to Make Urban Agriculture More Sustainable*

One Palestinian Man’s Mission to Make Urban Agriculture More Sustainable*

By Todd Reubold

Around the world, urban agriculture is playing a role in feeding a growing global population from mid-America to the Middle East.

The video above introduces Said Salim Abu Naser, a proponent of sustainable agriculture living and working in Gaza City, Palestine, along the Mediterranean Coast.

Abu Nasser has created a 200-square-metre (2,000-square-foot) micro-farm using a hydroponic system and homemade organic pest-control solutions consisting of garlic, pepper, soap and more.

Each year, he produces approximately 3,500 kilograms (7,700 pounds) of food — enough to feed 30 people. Perhaps more important, though, his urban farm may be a model for others hoping to grow food sustainably at smaller scales.

This video was produced, filmed and edited by Yasser Abu Wazna, a freelance filmmaker based in the Palestinian Territory

Source*

Related Topics:

Gaza Man’s DIY Solar Desalination Machine can Produce 2.6 gallons of Fresh Water Daily*

First Urban ‘Agrihood’ in U.S. Feeds 2,000 Households For Free*

Restaurant Turns Stalled Site Into Urban Farm

In a Broke and Crumbling City, this Woman is Building her Urban Paradise*

A Columbian City Used Urban Planning to fight Violent Cartels and Won*

Food Revolution: Urban Green Farming on the Rise

Virtually Indestructible Rogue GMO Grass Threatens Environment, Wildlife and Industry*

Virtually Indestructible Rogue GMO Grass Threatens Environment, Wildlife and Industry*

The U.S. seems unable to run out of things that could go wrong…

By Carolanne Wright

The USDA has announced genetically-engineered Kentucky Bluegrass will not be subjected to federal regulation and oversight. Developed by Scotts Miracle-Gro, the largest U.S. retailer of grass seed, the herbicide-resistant grass was specifically engineered to withstand massive amounts of Roundup — a herbicide created by Monsanto, which has experienced significant public backlash in recent years due to a World Health Organization report that classified its main ingredient, glyphosate, as “probably carcinogenic to humans.”

While the USDA decision allows Scotts to sell the grass seed intended for lawns without government approval, the company previously ran into problems when they conducted field trials with another type of genetically modified grass — creeping bentgrass — for golf courses. Considering the earlier GM grass had escaped and spread into the wild on several occasions during these trials, the green light by the USDA for unregulated sale of Kentucky Bluegrass is disturbing — and has critics of genetically engineered crops up in arms.

Biotech Industry Side-Stepping Regulation

“It’s a blatant end-run around regulatory oversight.” ~ George Kimbrell, senior lawyer at the Center for Food Safety

Some, like Margaret Mellon, director of the food and environment program at the Union of Concerned Scientists, believe the USDA decision on Kentucky Bluegrass will open the door for other companies to follow suit, essentially rendering the Agriculture Department “out of the game of regulation.”

The crux of the issue involves the rules pertaining to pathogens and parasites in genetically modified crops. Normally, GMO plants are created by inserting a foreign gene using a bacterium that’s known to cause disease in plants. But Scotts intentionally avoided using any substance from plant pests in the creation of their GM bluegrass. The herbicide resistance gene and the genetic on-switch came from other plants and were fired into the grass’s DNA with a gene gun, rather than being carried in by a bacterium.

In September 2010, the company sent a letter to the USDA, arguing that, because of how the grass was created, it shouldn’t be subject to regulation. Not only did the USDA agree with Scotts, but they also refused to regulate the bluegrass as a noxious weed, as requested by the Center for Food Safety.

Apparently, Scotts learned its lesson from its creeping bentgrass (which does contain plant pest material) misadventure. The USDA had sat on the fence for 14 years, refusing to deregulate the grass, citing environmental concerns. However, the agency suddenly changed its stance and quickly dropped all regulations for bentgrass seed in January, 2017.

Scotts was also fined $500,000 in 2007 when bentgrass established itself in the wild after escaping field test sites in central Oregon. Now, the grass has been found growing in southern Oregon, presumably from a test growing site in Idaho. Since Oregon is one of the top grass seed producers in the world, contamination by GMO grass is poised to have devastating consequences for the industry, as well as organic grassfed dairy producers and ranchers.

GMO Grass Field Trials Gone Wrong

“After more than a decade of unsuccessful efforts to eradicate the genetically modified grass it created and allowed to escape, lawn and garden giant Scotts Miracle-Gro now wants to step back and shift the burden to Oregonians and Idahoans.” ~ Jeff Manning, Oregon Live

The altered grass — which is difficult to kill because it’s been modified to withstand heavy applications of Roundup — escaped from test fields in Parma, where it subsequently took root in nearby areas of Idaho and Oregon. Surprisingly, the genetically modified grass began growing in eastern Oregon’s Malheur County, after jumping the Snake River from the test fields in Parma. There are also fears of contamination in the Willamette Valley, the region known as the “grass seed capital of the world” — with a billion-dollar-a-year industry at stake.

“Imagine I had a big, sloppy, nasty Rottweiler, and you lived next door in your perfectly manicured house,” said Bill Buhrig, an Oregon State University extension agent in Malheur County. “Then I dump the dog in your backyard, I take off and now it’s your problem.”

In light of the uncontrollable nature of the grass, the USDA’s deregulation decision is alarming to say the least. Both the Oregon and Idaho’s Departments of Agriculture are against deregulation, as is the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which believes there’s a strong chance the commercialization of the grass could drive endangered species to extinction. One example is the Fender’s Blue Butterfly, unique to the Willamette Valley. Critical habitat of the insect would be severely threatened by the grass.

Moreover, scientists from Oregon State University and the Environmental Protection Agency discovered that the GM grass had crossed with wild grasses, passing along its Roundup resistance.

The more a chemical is used consistently, the more likely that somebody’s weeds will become resistant. That’s standard, agreed-upon science,” said Douglas Gurian-Sherman of the Union of Concerned Scientists.

“The way that Roundup is used because of transgenic crops exacerbates that problem.”

Currently, we’re seeing a major threat to agriculture because of these virtually indestructible “superweeds”, spawned by excessive use of the herbicide. Monsanto’s Roundup is already the most widely-used herbicide in the world — the commercialization of GM grass will inevitably push these numbers higher, which is exactly what we don’t need.

Numerous researchers have classified the herbicide as the most biologically disruptive chemical in our environment, where it has been linked to a range of health disorders — including cancer, Parkinson’s disease and autism.

Beyond the environmental and health implications, many are concerned about the impact GM grass will have on the organic dairy and grassfed beef industry.

“As these seeds spread and more and more grass takes up that genetic trait, we’ll find organic farmers who want to grass feed their beef, can’t do it because their grass is genetically modified, which is prohibited in organic standards,” said Bill Duesing of the Northeast Organic Farming Association. “GMOs are pollution with a life of its own.” [source]

Source*

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