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Biotech Industry Going All Out to Stop Independent Review of Glyphosate

Recently we reported that the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a draft report on the carcinogenic potential of glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide. This was in advance of a meeting in which a panel of scientists would discuss the available data on glyphosate and its potential to cause cancer—but that meeting never happened. It was postponed, ostensibly because the agency was seeking additional experts so there could be a more “robust review of the data.” The biotech industry is going all out to stop this review. CropLife America, the trade group for the nation’s largest biotech and pesticide manufacturers, strenuously objected to the government reviewing the cancer data, telling the EPA that there is no need to discuss the issue at all! Outrageously, CropLife also called for the removal of any scientist from the panel who has “publicly expressed an opinion regarding the carcinogenicity of glyphosate.” The trade group kindly offered the names of scientists who should be removed from the reviewing panel to restore “impartiality.”

Commercial Dairy Industry Dumping Millions of Gallons of Surplus Milk

The U.S. food system is set up to protect industrialized, centralized food production and distribution, while efforts to decentralize food are kept strictly under wraps. There are many problems with this system, including the fact that food production is often out of sync with demand, leading to excessive amounts of waste. In 2016, for instance, the industrial dairy industry has dumped 43 million gallons of milk due to a massive milk glut. The glut is the result of a 2014 spike in milk prices, which encouraged many dairy farmers to add more milk cows to their farms. U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) data shows that dairy cows have increased by 40,000 in 2016, with a 1.4 percent increase in production per cow. With too much milk and nowhere to sell it, prices have tanked. Milk prices declined 22 percent in recent months to $16.39 per 100 pounds — a price so low some farmers can no longer afford to even transport it to the market.1 The milk glut isn’t only affecting the U.S., either. It’s been felt globally, which means milk producers can’t export their surplus milk. What’s a dairy farmer to do with a surplus of milk? Dump it — on fields, into animal feed or added to manure lagoons.

USDA Creates Dragnet to Collect Records of Private Food Club Members Around the U.S.

A USDA investigation of Pennsylvania farmer Amos Miller’s meat production practices has taken an ominous turn in recent days, apparently morphing into a national dragnet to collect the food purchase records of thousands of food club members around the country.

Is Your Water Being Polluted by Big Pharma Chemicals?

Glyphosate herbicide disrupts the development of the uterus of female rats when they are exposed for 7 days after birth, a new study by Argentine researchers shows. The glyphosate herbicide caused cell proliferation and structural changes in the rats’ uterus. This was in spite of the fact that no signs of chronic or acute toxicity or differences in weight gain were seen in treated pups. Glyphosate herbicide also disrupted the expression of proteins involved in uterine development. The authors conclude that exposure to glyphosate herbicide may affect female fertility and/or promote the development of uterine cancer. They also state that their study is the first to show endocrine-disrupting effects of a glyphosate-based herbicide on the uterus of newborn and prepubertal rats, supporting the possibility that glyphosate-based herbicides might be endocrine disruptors.

Glyphosate Herbicide Disrupts Uterine Development

Glyphosate herbicide disrupts the development of the uterus of female rats when they are exposed for 7 days after birth, a new study by Argentine researchers shows. The glyphosate herbicide caused cell proliferation and structural changes in the rats’ uterus. This was in spite of the fact that no signs of chronic or acute toxicity or differences in weight gain were seen in treated pups. Glyphosate herbicide also disrupted the expression of proteins involved in uterine development. The authors conclude that exposure to glyphosate herbicide may affect female fertility and/or promote the development of uterine cancer. They also state that their study is the first to show endocrine-disrupting effects of a glyphosate-based herbicide on the uterus of newborn and prepubertal rats, supporting the possibility that glyphosate-based herbicides might be endocrine disruptors.

Healthy Traditions Adds Traditionally Produced and Glyphosate-Tested Rolled Oats to Product Line

Healthy Traditions' new Traditionally Produced Rolled Oats are grown on a small family farm in Wisconsin using sustainable methods without any pesticides, herbicides or chemical fertilizers. As an added assurance they are also tested for the presence of glyphosate and no trace was found. We have tested many batches of oats nationwide, including those certified organic, and it has been extremely difficult to find sources with no trace of the herbicide glyphosate present. These oats are processed by a small family-run mill, also in Wisconsin, and are never subjected to any heat processing and are truly raw. This mill is dedicated to milling only grains grown on nearby farms that are free from pesticides and herbicides.

GMOs and Glyphosate Safe? National Research Council Has Conflict of Interest

Two recent studies would have us think GMOs and Glyphosate are safe! But who, exactly, is behind the research? Major studies just released claim that genetically modified (GM) foods—and the chemical used on them, glyphosate—are safe to eat. Following publication, there has been a steady drumbeat in the media essentially claiming that the case is now closed: GMOs are safe. We say, “Not so fast.” The National Research Council (NRC)—the research arm of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS)—“examined epidemiological data on incidence of cancers and other human health problems over time,” and says there is no reason to be wary of genetically modified foods. However, more than half of the authors of the NRC report are involved in GMO development or promotion or have other ties to the biotech industry. It is shameful that the National Academy of Sciences cannot police this. Indeed, it seems too intimidated even to try.

How Little Vermont Got Big Food Companies To Label GMOs

You'll soon know whether many of the packaged foods you buy contain ingredients derived from genetically modified plants, such as soybeans and corn. Over the past week or so, big companies including General Mills, Mars and Kellogg have announced plans to label such products – even though they still don't think it's a good idea. The reason, in a word, is Vermont. The tiny state has boxed big food companies into a corner. Two years ago, the state passed legislation requiring mandatory labeling. The Grocery Manufacturers Association has fought back against the law, both in court and in Congress, but so far it's been unsuccessful. And since food companies can't create different packaging just for Vermont, it appears that the tiniest of states has created a labeling standard that will go into effect nationwide.

Tropical Traditions Increases Healthy Traditions Product Line: Emphasizing GMO and Glyphosate-tested Products

2016 looks to be a very promising year for our new Healthy Traditions product line. In late 2015, Tropical Traditions stopped carrying the USDA certified organic seal on all of their own products. Replacing the USDA organic standards is a new, more rigorous standard of classifying the types of products Tropical Traditions sells to the public. It is not a new standard for Tropical Traditions, as the new logos and product standards implemented reflect our values and quality of food that we have offered to the public since we started selling products in the United States in 2002. We made the decision to not continue certifying our products as USDA Organic late in 2014, when we discovered that most of the USDA Organic grains we were selling to our customers had residue amounts of glyphosate, the active ingredient in popular herbicides, the most well-known being Round-up, the #1 herbicide in the world. Tropical Traditions has a ZERO tolerance level for GMOs, herbicides, and pesticides, and since the USDA National Organic Program (NOP) allows small residue amounts of pesticides and herbicides approved by the EPA for conventional crops to be present in USDA Organic certified products, we knew that we had to develop our own standards to both use in purchasing products directly from producers, as well as to educate our consumers on our own values and standards.

Glyphosate: Pathways to Modern Diseases

Glyphosate is the active ingredient in the pervasive herbicide, Roundup. Its usage on crops to control weeds in the United States and elsewhere has increased dramatically in the past two decades. The increase is driven by the increase over the same time period in the use of genetically modified (GM) crops, the widespread emergence of glyphosate-resistant weeds among the GM crops (necessitating ever-higher doses to achieve the same herbicidal effect), as well as the increased adoption of glyphosate as a desiccating agent just before harvest. GM crops include corn, soy, canola (rapeseed), and sugar beet. Crop desiccation by glyphosate includes application to non-GM crops such as dried peas, beans, and lentils. It should be noted that the use of glyphosate for pre-harvest staging for perennial weed control is now a major crop management strategy. The increase in glyphosate usage in the United States is extremely well correlated with the concurrent increase in the incidence and/or death rate of multiple diseases, including several cancers. These include thyroid cancer, liver cancer, bladder cancer, pancreatic cancer, kidney cancer, and myeloid leukemia. The World Health Organization (WHO) revised its assessment of glyphosate's carcinogenic potential in March 2015, relabeling it as a "probable carcinogen."