Archive for the ‘GMO’s’ Category

The Corporation

This is part one, but you can watch it all, in chapters on YouTube and it’s worth seeing. Relates to the GMO issue as well.



Seeds of Death Documentary

This is a few years old but really worth watching and you can watch the complete movie for free here or on YouTube. Mom

The Legacy of Monsanto’s PCBs: Oozing Pus, Birth Defects and Immune Problems

The Legacy of Monsanto’s PCBs: Oozing Pus, Birth Defects and Immune Problems

New Bedford Harbor, MA, pictured on November 25, 2006. In 1983, New Bedford Harbor was declared a Superfund site, heavily contaminated with PCBs.New Bedford Harbor, Massachusetts, pictured on November 25, 2006. In 1983, New Bedford Harbor was declared a Superfund site, heavily contaminated with PCBs. (Photo: Jack Letourneau / Flickr)

The people of New Bedford, Massachusetts, have always been tough. When New Bedford was the whaling capital of the world, seven men would hop into a 25-foot rowboat to chase — and harpoon up close — furious 50-foot whales weighing 85 tons. After petroleum replaced whale oil around 1900, New Bedford workers then kept 70 textile mills humming day and night. After textiles moved away, from the 1940s onward New Bedford supplied the world with electric gear. But when those factories began to close in the 1960s, they left behind some awful secrets — 572 chemically poisoned plots of land within the city’s 24 square miles, including land where unsuspecting townspeople built two public schools. In the early 1980s, local people learned that their prized harbor — all 18,000 acres of it, including its bounty of fish and lobsters — had been rendered dangerously toxic by factory wastes. In 1983, New Bedford Harbor, the mouth of the Acushnet River, was declared a Superfund site, heavily contaminated with PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls). This small city reeled. To many, the combination of unemployment and toxic waste seemed insurmountable.

PCBs are a family of 209 industrial poisons known to harm humans at extremely low levels of exposure. PCBs cause cancer, diabetes, birth defects, liver disease and high blood pressure — and they disrupt the nervous, hormonal and immune systems, giving rise to a broad array of other problems. A few of the 209 PCBs are thought to pose a toxic threat even more potent than dioxin.

About 60,000 of New Bedford’s 95,000 residents live in “environmental justice neighborhoods as defined in Massachusetts law, based on percent of people who have low income or identify as minority or lack proficiency in English. But, like residents of decades past, they have proven themselves tough. To face down the menace of PCBs, grassroots groups sprang up, determined to force a complete cleanup of their poisoned city, 55 miles below Boston on the South Coast. The Hands Across the River Coalition (HARC) got on the case first, assisted by the Roxbury-based Toxics Action Center. They were joined by CLEAN (Citizens Leading Environmental Action Network) and the Buzzards Bay Coalition. To this day, HARC’s leader, Karen Vilandry, is a relentless watchdog, calling out corruption, mismanagement and bad decisions, naming names fearlessly.

Now President Trump has once again shown local people the government can’t be trusted to keep its word. Less than a month into his presidency, Trump proposed severely cutting the national budget for toxic cleanups — doing so at the very moment when a new study has revealed that PCBs wafting off New Bedford Harbor have penetrated homes and offices in nearby towns.

Harbor PCBs Are Contaminating Local Air

PCBs rising off the 28-square-mile surface of New Bedford Harbor have been measured in neighboring towns by a team of researchers from the University of Iowa and Boston University. This is the first study to find PCBs from a body of water measurable at high concentrations in nearby air. Until now, health authorities had assumed that PCBs in lake and river sediments could only harm people who ate contaminated fish. As recently as 2014, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) told residents of New Bedford, Dartmouth, Fairhaven, North Fairhaven and Acushnet that “inhalation of air” near New Bedford Harbor was not a significant risk. Now that conclusion must be reconsidered.

The Harbor cleanup has been going on for 35 years. Since 2004, continuous dredging has removed 25,000 to 30,000 cubic yards of contaminated sediments each year. All told, 1.7 million cubic yards of toxic sediment are scheduled to be dredged up and dumped somewhere. At the present rate, full cleanup will take many more decades. The EPA has earmarked funds to accelerate the Harbor cleanup, but Trump’s budget cuts could wreck that plan.

Most of the world’s PCBs were manufactured by Monsanto, the St. Louis chemical giant, starting in 1935. PCBs conduct heat but not electricity, and they do not readily break down — so they made an ideal insulator for electric gear. They were also used in lubricants, paints, carbonless carbon paper, hydraulic fluid, window caulking, lamp ballasts, plastics and wire coatings, among many other products.

The first sign of toxicity from PCBs was a painful, disfiguring acne afflicting PCB workers — inflamed pimples and blackheads oozing pus. At a meeting in 1937, F.R. Kaimer, assistant manager of General Electric’s Wireworks at York, Pennsylvania, described GE’s experience coating wire with PCBs:

We had in the neighborhood of 50 to 60 men afflicted with various degrees of this acne about which you all know. Eight or ten of them were very severely afflicted — horrible specimens as far as their skin condition was concerned. We had 50 other men in very bad condition as far as the acne was concerned.

He went on:

The first reaction that several of our executives had was to throw it out — get it out of our plant. They didn’t want anything like that for treating wire. But that was easily said but not so easily done. We might just as well have thrown our business to the four winds and said, “We’ll close up,” because there was no substitute and there is none today in spite of all the efforts we have made through our own research laboratories to find one.

So in 1937, GE and Monsanto made a business decision to continue manufacturing PCBs they knew were highly toxic.

General Electric went on to dump many tons of waste PCBs into both the Hudson and Housatonic Rivers. Today, both rivers remain contaminated along their entire lengths — the Housatonic from Pittsfield, Massachusetts, 150 miles down to Stratford, Connecticut; and the Hudson from Fort Edward, New York, to Manhattan, 200 miles downstream. Like Monsanto, GE has aggressively evaded responsibility. In 1970, Monsanto issued a famously false statement saying, “It has been implied that polychlorinated biphenyls are ‘highly toxic’ chemicals. This is not true…. PCBs are not hazardous when properly handled and used.”

Between 1929 and 1989, world production of PCBs totaled 3.3 billion pounds, most of which is still “out there” somewhere. In 1966, Swedish researchers were alarmed to discover PCBs accumulating in wild fish, and slowly the scientific community realized that PCBs had escaped and were spreading everywhere, harming fish, birds and mammals, including humans.

By the early 1990s in the US, women’s breast milk contained about one part per million of PCBs, so a suckling infant was receiving a dose of PCBs about five times the “allowable daily intake” set for adults by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

PCBs Disrupt Hormones and the Immune System

In addition to many other biological effects, PCBs suppress the immune and hormone systems, which then may allow the development of many unrelated diseases. Studies show that mothers who have eaten PCB-contaminated fish have given birth to babies with small heads, poor memories and slow reaction times to stimuli.

Hormones are chemical messengers that travel through the bloodstream in extremely low levels (parts per trillion), turning on and off bodily processes. Hormones control human development and behavior, starting in the womb. Industrial chemicals that mimic hormones can turn on or off biological processes unexpectedly. In fish, PCBs are known to turn males into females.

After 13 years of alarming scientific discoveries about PCBs poisoning wildlife and humans, the US finally banned PCBs in 1979. But by then, PCBs had become what the EPA now calls “the most widespread pollutant on the planet,” measurable in nearly everyone, including newborn babies.

PCBs can be chemically detoxified, and the EPA itself has described these alternatives. Chemical detox offers a permanent solution to the PCB problem, but it’s more expensive than burying PCBs in the ground, so the EPA has chosen to bury New Bedford’s PCBs.

EPA plans to dump 300,000 cubic yards of toxic sediments into a “CAD cell” — a “confined aquatic disposal” cell, which is nothing more than a large underwater hole dug into the bottom of the Harbor (the Acushnet River) — to be filled with toxic sediment, then “capped” with clean sediment. The Army Corp of Engineers has announced a separate plan to widen the ship channel into New Bedford, dumping an additional 751,000 cubic yards of contaminated sediment into a separate CAD cell in the Harbor bottom. Fans of CAD cells say it will “permanently” hold its toxic load. But anyone familiar with geologic history knows this may not be true. Sooner or later, weather and geologic processes can scour the river bottom, releasing the CAD cell’s PCBs to the ocean downstream.

The remainder of New Bedford’s toxic sediments are being shipped 800 miles by rail to Belleville, Michigan, a town of 4,000 people 29 miles southwest of Detroit. There, the PCBs are being buried in a licensed hazardous waste landfill 2,000 feet from the edge of the Huron River, which flows into Lake Erie.

Eventually, the landfill in Belleville will very likely leak its contents into the local environment, as all landfills tend to do. As the EPA said in a Federal Register notice in 1981:

There is good theoretical and empirical evidence that the hazardous constituents which are placed in land disposal facilities very likely will migrate from the facility into the broader environment. This may occur several years, even many decades, after placement of the waste in the facility, but data and scientific prediction indicate that, in most cases, even with the application of best available land disposal technology, it will occur eventually.

Defenders of toxic burial say that authorities like the EPA will monitor dumps like Belleville and the New Bedford CAD cell for the duration of the hazard. But PCBs buried in dark, airless tombs will remain toxic, so they will have to be monitored “in perpetuity.” Humans have no experience doing anything “in perpetuity.”

Short-Term Remedies May Not Work in the Long Term

The EPA’s chosen remedy for New Bedford’s PCBs may not even serve its main purpose of protecting local people from exposure to potent poisons. “They keep calling it a cleanup,” said Karen Vilandry of Hands Across the River. “It’s not a cleanup because the EPA, even after their 300,000 cubic yards and after their dredging, is still going to leave 50 parts per million of PCB sediments behind. Other places in the country it’s one part per million. So why is it they’re leaving 50 parts per million here? Oh, because it’s New Bedford — an environmental justice community, so we’re a dumping ground. It’s still going to affect the fish; humans are still going to be eating the fish — where’s the cleanup?”

Vilandry makes a valid point: At other PCB sites — the Fox River in Wisconsin, the St. Lawrence in New York and the Housatonic — the EPA’s cleanup goal has been one part per million of residual PCBs, not 50 ppm.

As for CAD cells and licensed landfills, in the long run, humans will tend to forget where they buried their toxic wastes as more pressing problems demand attention. Unless PCBs are chemically destroyed, eventually most of them will very likely escape into the environment and slowly move into the ocean, either carried on air, or attached to soil particles moved by water. There, they will decimate marine mammal populations.

Marine mammals are freakishly sensitive to PCBs for two reasons. First, whales, dolphins, porpoises, sea lions, seals, sea otters and polar bears lack the genes needed to detoxify and eliminate PCBs. As a result, PCBs accumulate in their bodies, producing a toxic concentration that is up to 10 million times higher than the PCBs found at the bottom of the ocean food chain. Second, the reproductive system of marine mammals is a prime target for PCB toxicity.  For example, a 1970 study of seals in the Baltic Sea revealed that 80 percent of females were sterile, poisoned by eating PCB-laden fish, and in Norway, polar bears have experienced unprecedented changes to their genitalia.

In the late 1980s, scientists calculated that about 20 percent of all the world’s PCBs had already reached the ocean. In 1988, Canadian geneticist Joseph Cummins calculated that if another 15 percent of the world’s PCBs made it into the ocean, widespread reproductive failure would spell extinction for all marine mammals. Dr. Cummins suggested in 1988 — and again in 1998 — that Monsanto should be required to buy back and chemically detoxify all the PCBs that are now stored (temporarily) in leaky machines and burial sites around the world. It’s still a good idea.


Peter Montague

Peter Montague is a historian and journalist whose work has appeared in Counterpunch, Huffington Post, the Nation and many other publications. He has co-authored two books on toxic heavy metals.


Dr. Thierry Vrain, Former Pro-GMO Scientist, Speaks Up Against Glyphosate

Why It’s Imperative to Avoid GMOs And Roundup

Wonderful, informative lecture by Jeffrey Smith.



Modified: GMOs and the Threat to Our Food, Our Land, Our Future

If You Eat Food, Read This Book!

This is a very informative and well written book about Genetically Modified Organism, also known as GMO’s. GMO’s were pretty much sneaked into our food supply in the almost thirty years ago. These plants either make their own pesticides (they are pesticides and we eat them) or they are resistant to pesticides, like Round-up – which can be poured all over them and they won’t die.

GMO’s take away our seed sovereignty and our farmers, who for generations saved their seed, have to buy new ones every year when they use this technology. There have been no human safety studies for any of these foods and there is growing evidence that they are causing a host of new illnesses like severe allergies and immune issues.

The author, starts out by telling her personal story of how she had a debilitating illness and how her very young son had terrible eczema.  After seeing many doctors, having all the tests and still not finding any relief she went to a very prestigious allergist who diagnosed a chronic allergic response to GMO corn. She took herself and her family off all GMO corn (corn, corn syrup, citric acid, baking soda, vitamins – corn is in SO much of our food) and over time of eating real food, cooked from scratch and avoiding GMOs, both the author and her son healed.

This book has a lot of great information but it’s written as a story of the author health and her travels to visit farmers, scientist, activists and more to learn about GMOs.

This is a brilliant book with information that’s so important. A must read and highly recommended.

You can buy the book at Amazon:


Sign the Petition for Pres Obama to VETO THE DARK ACT (S.764)


On July 7, the Senate passed a bill to label genetically modified foods allowing companies to use QR codes instead of words on the package. It discriminates against low income families, minorities, mothers, seniors, the disabled & those without smartphones.

In 2007 President Obama said, “We’ll let folks know whether their food has been genetically modified because Americans should know what they’re buying.”

ALL Americans should know what they’re buying, not just the privileged.

Only 21% of Americans surveyed have scanned QR codes; QR code software must be downloaded. Just 27% of seniors & 50% of low income Americans own smartphones. 42% of Blacks & 36% of Latinos have had to let their smartphone service lapse. President Obama: Stand up for ALL Americans. Veto this discriminatory bill.

Sign Here:

GMOs in the News

GMO’s in the news

Here’s some recent GMO news. Lots going on and we are making progress!



GMO Inside Blog

Big News from Dannon on Sustainability, GMOs and Transparency

By Michael • April 27, 2016 • BlogLeave a comment

Dannon made waves in the food industry by announcing several big steps forward on sustainability, including a broad non-GMO commitment that encompasses non-GMO feed for the dairy cows that supply its milk, and voluntary labeling of GMOs no matter what legislation Congress passes on labeling this year. The yogurt giant also stated it will move away from synthetic additives.

Green America congratulates Dannon on its food industry leadership towards greater social and environmental sustainability. By transitioning towards sustainable agricultural practices, and moving away from synthetic additives, Dannon is setting a high bar for the conventional dairy products industry.

Dannon’s adoption of sustainable agricultural practices will help encourage soil health, carbon sequestration and water quality, while ensuring good environmental livestock production practices. Working with family farms, these practices will help increase animal welfare and reduce the environmental impact of dairy production.

Additionally, Dannon is making a commitment to clean and natural products. By transitioning away from the use of synthetic hormones and routine non-therapeutic antibiotics, Dannon is making great strides toward healthy products sourced from ethically treated animals.

In line with committing to clean and natural products Dannon has committed to transitioning away from all genetically modified ingredients (GMOs) including animal feed. This is an unprecedented step that will reduce the negative impacts of GMOs, and encourage more farmers and producers to transition away from GMOs. Since the majority of all crops in the U.S. are grown for animal feed, improving the sustainability of feed crops is essential for a healthier food system.

Prior to transitioning away from all GMOs, Dannon will disclose any GMO ingredients on package by December 2017, breaking from the Grocery Manufacturers Association that has been fighting against clear GMO labeling. This agreement will provide consumers with the transparency they demand from the food system.

Overwhelmingly, Americans want to know what they are eating.  In fact, 90% of Americans want foods made with GMOs to be labeled. Thanks to the actions of hundreds of thousands of individuals across the country over the past few years, companies like Dannon are now listening to consumers, labeling and transitioning away from GMOs.

This is what leadership looks like. We encourage consumers to give a shout out to Dannon on the Dannon Facebook page and share this big news on social media.

Read the rest here:



Understanding Glyphosate Toxicity: An Interview with Genetic Engineer Thierry Vrain

As genetically modified organisms (GMOs) continue to enter the food chain, it’s important for consumers to learn about Roundup Ready crops — and how the glyphosate sprayed on them may be toxic to our health.

Interview by Hannah Kincaid
June/July 2016

A high-clearance sprayer applies Roundup herbicide on glyphosate-resistant marestail in a Mississippi no-till cotton field. The application failed and the weeds survived.

Monsanto’s Roundup Ready crops are engineered to be herbicide tolerant, specifically when sprayed with Roundup. Now that the World Health Organization’s cancer research arm has designated Roundup’s active ingredient, glyphosate, as “probably carcinogenic to humans,” consumers need to fully understand how the chemical works on plants and, in turn, impacts human health. For in-depth answers about glyphosate’s toxicity and more, we turned to molecular biologist and retired genetic engineer Thierry Vrain.

MOTHER: When and why did you start researching glyphosate?

Thierry Vrain: I went to graduate school in North Carolina in the 1970s, where I was trained as a soil biologist — a nematologist, to be precise. Nematodes are microscopic worms in the soil that feed on the roots of plants and cause considerable yield loss for many types of crops. In school, I learned about agriculture and the damage caused by all sorts of pests and pathogens, such as nematodes, insects, and fungal diseases. I learned to deal with those pests by sterilizing soil or spraying pesticides. Halfway through my career, it became obvious that perhaps we could intervene at the molecular level to make crops naturally resistant to pests, so I learned molecular biology and became a genetic engineer. When I became head of a molecular biology department, I took it as my responsibility to educate people and try to assuage their fears about genetic engineering.

I retired 12 years ago and started gardening as a serious hobby. After gaining that hands-on experience, I realized how much damage pesticides cause to the living environment of the soil. I learned all sorts of things that I wasn’t taught in graduate school. For example, I learned that not only pesticides, but also regular fertilizers damage communities of microorganisms in soil. I became “organic,” so to speak.

At this point, I started reading scientific research showing a problem with genetic engineering. Rats and mice fed genetically engineered, Roundup Ready grain were getting sick. At first I couldn’t figure it out. My knowledge of the engineering technology made it clear to me that this should be safe. As I explain in my TEDx talk, “The Gene Revolution, the Future of Agriculture,” I couldn’t understand why adding a gene from one species to another could be toxic because this DNA technology is used every day in many research labs around the world to create a variety of transgenic animals and plants, to study their biology, and to advance various fields of knowledge. Only two years ago did I realize that the problem lies not with genetic engineering technology itself, but with the herbicide that’s sprayed on all Roundup Ready crops. Again, I took it as my responsibility to educate people.


Read more here:


How the National Academy of Sciences misled the public over GMO food safety

Published: 26 May 2016


The NAS report on GM crops and foods ‘disappears’ findings of harm and potential toxicity in animal feeding studies with GM crops and elevates flawed reviews claiming safety, writes Claire Robinson

“GM food safe to eat, say world’s leading scientists”, ran the headline in The Times in the wake of the publication of the US National Academy of Sciences report on GM crops. In almost all the mainstream media the story was the same, from Nature World News trumpeting, “Scientists declare GM food safe”, to The Guardian’s “GM food generally safe for humans”.

In reality, the part of the report that deals with animal feeding studies on GM crops is a subtly treacherous mix. Scattered among some sound statements and useful recommendations are a plethora of strategic omissions, gobsmackingly unscientific assertions, wishful thinking, pulled punches, and outright lies. Below I consider just a few.

The NAS ‘disappears’ ill effects on GM-fed animals

The report’s most outrageous deception is the obliteration of the many findings of harm or risk in animal feeding studies on GM crops.

The report says, “The research that has been conducted in studies with animals and on chemical composition of GE food reveals no differences that would implicate a higher risk to human health from eating GE foods than from eating their non-GE counterparts.” That message was translated by the NAS’s press release as “no substantiated evidence of a difference in risks to human health between current commercially available genetically engineered (GE) crops and conventionally bred crops”.

That’s where the media got the message that GM crops are safe. It wasn’t (just) dumb or lazy reporting. It came straight from the NAS itself.

But both statements are at best misleading and at worst lies, as anyone knows who has seen any of the long list of animal feeding studies showing risks and harms from GM crops. Ill effects in GM-fed animals include liver and kidney damage, changes in blood biochemistry, and immune responses.

Some might argue that animal studies are not necessarily applicable to humans and thus the NAS’s careful wording of risks to “human health” is defensible. But experiments on animals, especially rodents and pigs, are mandated by regulators worldwide to test and assess the potential human health impacts of pesticides and other chemicals, as well as (in some countries) GM crops. As a society, we’ve agreed on this system, and so we must take seriously the findings of animal studies.

The GMO industry and its allies are well aware of this and fight hard to try to persuade regulators not to require animal feeding studies with GM foods and their associated pesticides – and shoot down those that are carried out and that find problems.

And for whatever reason, the NAS also seems to have felt it necessary to ‘neutralize’ the animal feeding studies that have shown problems with GMOs.

How do the NAS do that? By avoiding directly addressing the findings of harm or signs of possible toxicity in the relevant studies. As far as the NAS is concerned, these studies may as well not exist. Instead they elevate to a position of authority two misleading reviews, written by conflicted-out authors, which claim to find no evidence of harm in GM-fed animals.

Read the rest here:







Why we are winning the GMO battle

Good video from Jeffrey Smith!



GMOs in the News

GMO’s in the News

Lots going on this month, including the news that Zika is caused by a Monsanto larvicide. Very sad, but not surprising… We are gaining ground though – Hershey’s is getting rid of GMO sugar beets and the more we boycott GM foods, the manufacturers will listen. Vote with your food dollars!




Argentine and Brazilian doctors name larvicide as potential cause of microcephaly


Are the Zika virus – and GM mosquitoes – being wrongly blamed? Report by Claire Robinson

report from the Argentine doctors’ organisation, Physicians in the Crop-Sprayed Towns,[1] challenges the theory that the Zika virus epidemic in Brazil is the cause of the increase in the birth defect microcephaly among newborns.

The increase in this birth defect, in which the baby is born with an abnormally small head and often has brain damage, was quickly linked to the Zika virus by the Brazilian Ministry of Health. However, according to the Physicians in the Crop-Sprayed Towns, the Ministry failed to recognise that in the area where most sick people live, a chemical larvicide that produces malformations in mosquitoes was introduced into the drinking water supply in 2014. This poison, Pyriproxyfen, is used in a State-controlled programme aimed at eradicating disease-carrying mosquitoes.

The Physicians added that the Pyriproxyfen is manufactured by Sumitomo Chemical, a Japanese “strategic partner” of Monsanto. Pyriproxyfen is a growth inhibitor of mosquito larvae, which alters the development process from larva to pupa to adult, thus generating malformations in developing mosquitoes and killing or disabling them. It acts as an insect juvenile hormone or juvenoid, and has the effect of inhibiting the development of adult insect characteristics (for example, wings and mature external genitalia) and reproductive development. It is an endocrine disruptor and is teratogenic (causes birth defects), according to the Physicians.

The Physicians commented: “Malformations detected in thousands of children from pregnant women living in areas where the Brazilian state added Pyriproxyfen to drinking water are not a coincidence, even though the Ministry of Health places a direct blame on the Zika virus for this damage.”

They also noted that Zika has traditionally been held to be a relatively benign disease that has never before been associated with birth defects, even in areas where it infects 75% of the population.

Read the rest here:


New Study Shows Organic Farming To Best Feed An Overpopulated Planet

It turns out that these crops hold up better during harsh growing conditions such as droughts, which are predicted to increase in the changing face of climate change.

By Diana Erney February 10, 2016

With the world’s population predicted to peak around 9.6 billion people by the year 2050, one of the big unknowns about our collective future is how we can possibly feed all of those people.  A new study from Washington State University predicts that organic farming will lead the way.

Looking at studies from the past 40 years, researchers compared conventional agriculture with organic systems relative to production, economics, the environment, and social wellbeing. Although organic farms were found to be less productive than conventional overall, with yields averaging 8 to 25 percent lower depending upon the crop, the study found that organic crops hold up better during harsh growing conditions such as droughts, which are predicted to increase in the changing face of climate change. (Not to mention The Effects Climate Change Can Have On Our Health.) Enhancements in management methods and improved plant varieties may also help to close the production gap.

Read the rest here:


And I don’t usually post political posts, but we have ONE candidate for President who supports GMO labeling. He’s a long time Independent, although he is running on the Democratic side. Time to vote out the corporate hacks and bring back politicians that will represent us!

Bernie Sanders: The Only US Presidential Candidate Supporting GMO Labeling

Bernie Sanders is the only U.S. Presidential candidate who has come out strongly in support of GMO labeling. For this reason Sustainable Pulse has collected a few of his quotes:

Bernie Sanders Quotes on GMO Labeling

“Unlike people in the U.K., France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Australia, South Korea, Japan, Brazil, China, Russia, New Zealand and other countries where labels are required, Americans don’t know if the food they eat has been genetically modified. People have a right to know what they are eating…”

“I think all over this country, people want to know the quality of the food they’re eating and what they’re giving to their kids is good quality. We just don’t know all that much about genetically modified food. . .”

“Monsanto and other companies are saying states can’t do it [label GMOs]. It is a federal prerogative. My amendment said if California, Vermont, Connecticut, other states want to go forward, they should have that right.”

“An overwhelming majority of Americans favor GMO labeling but virtually all of the major biotech and food corporations in the country oppose it…The people of Vermont and the people of America have a right to know what’s in the food that they eat.”

Bernie Sanders on Agriculture:


As someone who has represented a rural state for more than 24 years, improving the lives of rural Americans is a top priority for Senator Sanders.

Family farms and ranches are the backbone of rural America and the U.S. economy.  Farmers are also among our nation’s foremost stewards of our lands and water.

Throughout his career, Senator Sanders has successfully fought for innovative rural economic development initiatives, including investments in farm-to-school and farm-to-table initiatives; agri-tourism programs; school gardens; large scale bio-mass fired electric plants; shared agricultural processing and storage facilities; and anaerobic digesters to process cow manure into methane gas.

Senator Sanders understands that agriculture programs need to be counter-cyclical to assure market-derived commodity income at levels that advance and sustain family-scale farming.

Senator Sanders will fight for farm policies that will foster the entry of a new generation of owner-operators.  He will not back away from land stewardship standards that include the commonwealth of clean water for all.

As president, Senator Sanders will adopt policies that will:

  • Make sure that family farmers and rural economies thrive;
  • Expand support for young and beginning farmers;
  • Produce an abundant and nutritious food supply;
  • Establish an on-going regeneration of our soils; and
  • Enlist farmers as partners in promoting conservation and stewardship to keep our air and water clean and to combat climate change.


Senator Sanders believes that we need more family farms, not more factory farms.

It is unacceptable that just four corporations control 82% of the nation’s beef cattle market, 85% of soybean processing, and 63% of pork processing.  It is unacceptable that there are over 300,000 fewer farmers than there were 20 years ago.

It is unacceptable that the top 10% of farms collect 75% of farm subsidies, while the bottom 62% do not receive any subsidies.  We have to adopt policies that will turn this around.


In 1966, farmers received 40 cents for every dollar Americans spent on food. Today, they only receive 16 cents on the dollar.

As President, Senator Sanders will reverse this trend by:

  1. Fighting for America’s small and mid-sized farms. Abraham Lincoln called the United States Department of Agriculture the “People’s Department” and Senator Sanders will ensure that the agency lives up to this name by expanding its services for new and underserved farmers.
  2. Encouraging the growth of regional food systems. Farmers throughout the country are boosting their bottom line and reinvigorating their communities by selling directly to local consumers, institutions, and restaurants. Senator Sanders will invest in this movement, helping Americans support local farms.
  3. Reversing trade policies like NAFTA that have flooded the American market with agricultural goods produced in countries with less stringent environmental, labor, and safety regulations.
  4. Enforcing our country’s antitrust laws against large agribusiness and food corporations. A few large companies dominate many agricultural industries, allowing them to force unfair prices on farmers. Senator Sanders will stand up to these corporations and fight to ensure that farmers receive fair prices.


Read more here: