Here’s our first new update for 2015.
Below is a new book coming out next week that I am buying. Link below.
Some other important news as well.
The Massive Fraud Behind GMOs Exposed
by COLIN TODHUNTER
This is not what the GMO industry wanted to see: banner headlines today in major newspapers and across the internet exposing the fraud behind GMOs. But this constitutes much more than a PR nightmare. The story behind the headlines shakes the very foundations upon which the industry is built.
‘Altered Genes, Twisted Truth’ is a new book by the US public interest lawyer Steve Druker. The book is the result of more than 15 years of intensive research and investigation by Druker, who initiated a lawsuit against the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that forced it to divulge its files on GM foods. Those files revealed that GM foods first achieved commercialisation in 1992 but only because the FDA covered up the extensive warnings of its own scientists about their dangers, lied about the facts and then violated federal food safety law by permitting these foods to be marketed without having been proven safe through standard testing.
If the FDA had heeded its own experts’ advice and publicly acknowledged their warnings that GM foods entailed higher risks than their conventional counterparts, Druker says that the GM food venture would have imploded and never gained traction anywhere.
He also argues that that many well-placed scientists have repeatedly issued misleading statements about GM foods, and so have leading scientific institutions such as the US National Academy of Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the UK’s Royal Society.
Druker states that contrary to the claims of biotech advocates, humans have indeed been harmed by consuming the output of genetic engineering. The technology’s first ingestible product (a food supplement of the essential amino acid, L-tryptophan) caused dozens of deaths and seriously sickened thousands of people (permanently disabling many of them). Moreover, the evidence points to the genetic alteration as the most likely cause of the unusual contamination that rendered the supplement toxic.
He explains that laboratory animals have also suffered from eating products of genetic engineering, and well-conducted tests with GM crops have yielded many troubling results, including intestinal abnormalities, liver disturbances, and impaired immune systems.
Read the rest here: http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/03/06/the-massive-fraud-behind-gmos-exposed/
New Study: Huge Increase in US Chronic Diseases Linked to Glyphosate Herbicides
A new correlation study published on Friday in the Journal of Organic Systems has linked the world’s number one herbicide, glyphosate, to a huge increase in the incidence of chronic diseases across the United States.
In the most detailed analysis yet performed on the correlation between the use of glyphosate-based pesticides and rates of chronic diseases, a team including Dr. Nancy Swanson and the President of the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM), Andre Leu, identified a serious link between the increase in the use of glyphosate in the U.S. and diseases such as diabetes, obesity, lipoprotein metabolism disorder, Alzheimer’s, senile dementia, Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis and autism.
What is Glyphosate?
PCBs, DDT and Agent Orange all had very harmful effects on women, men and children across the Globe in the 20th Century. Glyphosate-based herbicides have been identified as the next dangerous widely used chemical on this list. It is time for some real action to be taken to find out the full extent of the harm being caused to the environment and human health by glyphosate the world’s number one weed killer.
Glyphosate, or N-(phosphonomethyl)glycine, is a broad-spectrum herbicide, meaning it kills all plant life. Glyphosate was developed by John E. Franz of Monsanto Company. It was first introduced in 1974.
Glyphosate-containing herbicides are now the top-selling herbicides in the world and are sold under trademarks such as Monsanto’s ‘Roundup’.
Numerous glyphosate-based herbicide formulations (e.g. Roundup, Clearout 41) are now produced by at least 100 manufacturers worldwide.
Glyphosate herbicides are used by farmers to kill weeds in crop fields. But their use is not restricted to farming. Public authorities spray them along roads, on pavements, and in public parks to control weeds. Even home gardeners use them. They are sold in supermarkets and garden centres.
The new study states:
“Within the last 20 years there has been an alarming increase in serious illnesses in the US, along with a marked decrease in life expectancy (Bezruchka, 2012). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that the cost of diabetes and diabetes-related treatment was approximately $116 billion dollars in 2007. Estimated costs related to obesity were $147 billion in 2008 and cardiovascular diseases and stroke were $475.3 billion in 2009. Health care expenditures in the US totaled 2.2 trillion dollars in 2007 (CDC, 2013a). The onset of serious illness is appearing in increasingly younger cohorts. The US leads the world in the increase in deaths due to neurological diseases between 1979-81 and 2004-06 for the 55-65 age group (Pritchard et al., 2013).
“These mental disorder deaths are more typical of the over 65 age group. There have been similar findings for obesity, asthma, behavior and learning problems, and chronic disease in children and young adults (Van Cleave et al., 2010). Type II diabetes in youth is being called an epidemic (Rosenbloom et al., 1999). The rate of chronic disease in the entire US population has been dramatically increasing with an estimated 25% of the US population suffering from multiple chronic diseases (Autoimmunity Research Foundation, 2012). These findings suggest environmental triggers rather than genetic or age-related causes.
“During this same time period, there has been an exponential increase in the amount of glyphosate applied to food crops and in the percentage of GE food crops planted (Benbrook, 2012). We undertook a study to see if correlations existed between the rise of GE crops, the associated glyphosate use and the rise in chronic disease in the US.”
Read the rest and find the link to the paper here:
Kellogg’s Froot Loops Tests Positive For GMOs and Weedkiller
In 2013, GMO Free USA sent a sample of Froot Loops to a certified lab to test for the presence of GMO material. The quantitative PCR test verified, by DNA analysis, that 100% of the corn in the Froot Loops was GMO, containing DNA sequences known to be present in insecticide producing Bt and Roundup Ready corn. The soy contained DNA sequences known to be present in Roundup Ready GMO soy. This year we plan to continue testing for the presence of GMOs in various food products and now we have expanded our testing to include glyphosate. GMO Free USA plans to further expand testing to include 2,4-D, dicamba, atrazine, and neonicotinoid insecticides.
Read more here:
End double standards in evaluating GMO safety studies – say scientists
Europe’s food safety agency only criticises studies that find risk, new analysis shows
ENSSER Press release
The controversy about the Séralini et al. study, which reported negative health effects of Monsanto’s NK603 GM maize and Roundup herbicide fed to rats over the long term, is still going on. According to a new review published in Environmental Sciences Europe, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) used unscientific double standards to dismiss the Séralini study on genetically modified (GM) maize.
The publication of this latest review comes just days after the retraction of the Séralini paper by Elsevier, the publisher of Food and Chemical Toxicology (FCT), on the unprecedented grounds of the “inconclusive” nature of some of the findings. ENSSER condemned the retraction .
The Séralini study triggered an immediate storm of criticism by scientists and organisations, most of whom are known for their support of GMOs and their pleas for sweeping deregulation of GM plants in the EU and relaxation or even abandonment of risk assessment standards.
Retrospective and selective application of new standards by EFSA
In September 2012, the European Commission asked EFSA to review the Séralini study. EFSA did so by retrospectively applying new standards released in 2011 to scientific work that Séralini planned and started in 2008. EFSA concluded that the Séralini study was “inadequate”.
But EFSA did not apply these same standards retrospectively to the original rat feeding study by Monsanto, even though the underlying design for the Monsanto study was later repeated by Seralini. The Monsanto study concluded that this same GM maize was safe to eat, resulting in the approval for consumption of this GM crop by millions of animals and EU citizens in 2005.
EFSA review undermined the basic principles of science
Hartmut Meyer, one of the authors of the new review, said, “Use of such double standards is a common response from scientists calling for GMO deregulation and, somewhat surprisingly, also from some government authorities, to studies that show negative environmental and health effects of GMOs. Only those studies that find problems are subjected to excessive scrutiny and rejected as defective. This approach appears to be a tactic to avoid dealing with ‘inconvenient’ results, whilst selecting for ‘convenient’ results.”
The new review then applied the same criteria used by EFSA to reject the Séralini study to 21 other 1-2-year feeding studies published in peer-reviewed scientific journals during the last 20 years. Those studies did not test feed derived from GM plants but mostly chemicals, used the same strain of rat, similar low numbers of tested animals and likewise modified protocols that extended or diverged to some degree from the strict OECD protocols and EFSA criteria as both Seralini and Monsanto did.
Restore scientific principles of objectivity
Angelika Hilbeck, the second author of the new review and chair of the European Network of Scientists for Social and Environmental Responsibility (ENSSER), said, “ENSSER wants to see scientific objectivity restored. We are calling for an end to the use of double standards, particularly by EFSA, in the evaluation of scientific research on substances that may pose risks to public health. We need a reasoned, respectful debate with the aim of reaching a consensus on the evaluation standards that must be consistently applied to all toxicity and carcinogenicity trials, regardless of whether they have findings that are ‘inconvenient’ for certain parties. EFSA should take the lead here.”
“It’s time to stop selectively attacking methods and begin to deal with the results.”
Double standards used to claim GMO safety
Another example of selective scrutiny of study methods in order to avoid dealing with the results is a review of GMO safety studies conducted by Snell et al. (2012). In their review of 24 animal feeding trials with GM plant-derived feed, the authors noticed severe methodological shortcomings in a majority of the analysed publications, e.g. isogenic lines as controls were only used in 10 studies. However, Snell et al. used these shortcomings as arguments to dismiss those studies stating negative effects – but not those stating safety. Based on this asymmetrical, result-triggered approach, the review incorrectly concludes that no health hazards were found in 24 analysed publications.