Submitted by PRWatch Editors on
After 12 years of battling to stop Monsanto's genetically-engineered (GE) crops from contaminating the nation's organic farmland, the biggest retailers of "natural" and "organic" foods in the U.S., including Whole Foods Market (WFM), Organic Valley and Stonyfield Farm, have agreed to stop opposing mass commercialization of GE crops, like Monsanto's controversial Roundup Ready alfalfa.
In exchange for dropping their opposition, WFM has asked for "compensation" to be paid to organic farmers for "any losses related to the contamination of his crop." Under current laws, Genetically-Modified Organisms (GMOs) are not subject to any pre-market safety testing or labeling. WFM is abandoning its fight with biotech companies in part because two thirds of the products they sell are not certified organic anyway, but are really conventional, chemical-intensive and foods that may contain GMOs and that they market as "natural" despite this. Most consumers don't know the difference between "natural" and "certified organic" products. "Natural" products can come from crops and animals fed nutrients containing GMOs. "Certified Organic" products are GMO-free. WFM and their main distributor, United Natural Foods, maximize profits by selling products labeled "natural" at premium organic prices. (A typographical error in the second sentence of this story was subsequently corrected. We regret this minor error.)
LizzyD replied on Permalink
I DEMAND LABELING
The only value in Monsanto's genetically engineered seeds is that they are Roundup "Ready." The whole idea is to patent the seeds for one-use, and every year sell MORE ROUNDUP! Get it? They do not care that more Roundup is BAD FOP PEOPLE! We are mere collateral damage, folks. You ARE on your own. Good old social Darwinism, survival of the fittest.
Given that premise, what I want is labeling of all foods that contain GMO grains or soy, and a sticker on every piece of fruit or veggie or can or freezer bag. We deserve to KNOW! We deserve a CHOICE! They say it will cost too much? Balderdash! They are afraid that if we know it, we won't buy it! So, due to this secret ingredient in your food (Roundup), you (and your babies) very well might die before your time. Think about it!
White House and congressional servers should get so much email on this that it is tantamount to a denial of services attack!
Springfield, Mi... replied on Permalink
Thank you for educating on
Thank you for educating on all of the family farms that supply companies like Organic Valley. Monsanto is huge, we must band together, people act like this just started, it has been going on for a very long time.
Support small farms, local natural foods markets, buy organic seeds...remember everytime you buy a product that is not "clean" you are voting and giving YOUR power away! The real problem, our government caving to monsanto!
Teporah replied on Permalink
the fight should continue
I dont' find it misleading at all. What needs to happen is to continue to fight for a ban on GMO alfalfa for all of the obvious reasons. Saying that the government took it off of the table is meaningless. Of COURSE they did! Monsanto has the funds to infuence our Congress with heavy lobbying (corruption), and our FDA IS A JOKE! The whole world knows our FDA stands for nothing.
Agreeing to co-existence is suspect and ridiculous. What exactly, will a financial settlement to for us if a farmer's crops are contaminated? Really?
Does Monsanto have any sway in Europe? Australia? Japan? New Zealand? Our money-hungry corporations are what is destroying our environment, yet the rest of the 'first world' already has in place, protections for its citizens. So, the organic corporations are stepping down a notch, instead of ramping up the fight.
There's no way for organic consumers like us to respect Whole Foods. That store is chock full of pesticide-laden foods. They admit it openly. They stock organic products to attract green consumers, and then stock conventional to get regular folks business as well. Getting it from both ends does not desmonstrate a dedication to the environment, but instead , paints a picture of another money-hungry, PR savvy corporation. Now they'll try to negotiate with the wind and ask it not to blow GMO seeds onto organic farmer's land? The ONLY way to protect our organic farms is for GMO crops to be contained with walls. Figure that one out.
banichi replied on Permalink
You seem to think that Whole Foods, which DID cave to the pressure, from their internal profit-makers, should not be focused on. I disagree, their caving was central to allowing the approval of GMOs to be offically given by the USDA. Whole Foods did not, and does not, want to be known far and wide as selling foods tainted with GMOs, which independent tests have shown to be the case. They call them "natural" when in fact they are nothing but the same GMO-tainted foods you could buy - for a whole lot less, at that - in a Safeway store. They are doing two things:
1) covering their butts, so they now won't be so liable to false advertising claims, and
2) can go on selling GMOs in their stores at inflated prices. And you want to excuse them? I don't think so.
Their caving in, along with the others, now will result shortly in there being no non-GMO alfalfa left in the U.S., at least. You apparently don't know or care about a number of issues;
1) in one growing season, a field of GMO alfalfa next to an organic field of alfalfa will 'infect' that organic field so that it can not be considered organic any more, as it will show up as GMO to testing.
2) Estimates are that in one or two years at most, there will be no non-GMO alfalfa left from such 'infection'
3) Monsanto has very cleverly made their GMO seed so that it is only good for one growing season, and
4) Monsanto also has lobbied successfully to have laws passed that state that if a field of non-GMO crop is infected by having been grown next to a field of GMO crop, that seed from the non-GMO crop belongs to Monsanto, because they have patented their product.
Check the laws. Still think Whole Foods should get a pass on this? They had to know this was the case, and chose to cave in so that they could help their short-term bottom line.
It is time to boycott. I don't know of a better way to let Whole Foods and the others know they do NOT get a free pass for what they have done.
jeffw replied on Permalink
agreed - misleading...but why
I encourage all to read this letter from Stonyfield. It describes in detail the past and present of this issue and other GE crops and sheds light on a united future we must all take part in to protect our choices and our children's choices. It also touches on, and sheds new light on the OCA's odd attack of staunch OG supporters such as Stonyfield, Whole Foods and Organic Valley.
As noted by the other readers above, for some reason, perhaps an easy headline, many bloggers are jumping on the bandwagon of of confusion caused by the OCA and are accusing OG supporters like Whole Foods, Stonyfield and Organic Valley of just giving in to Monsanto and the USDA.
Anonymous replied on Permalink
The big OXYMORON - Whole Foods and Monsanto
Plastic food for plastic people
OR . . . maybe these big conglomerate companies think EVERYONE is truly is a MORON [as is obvious that Whole Foods and Monsanto ARE] and they are pumping "oxygen-like" counterfeits into their LIES about how MANIPULATING the WHAT IS of Nature is somehow "better" [??????] than as it has been intended for millennia.
Earth's atmosphere is polluted; the seeds planted are corrupted from their natural state; the grounds we then grow those seeds are further poisoned more with CHEMICAL (not natural) fertilizers; then those foods are sprayed further with a different chemical; then those foods are fed to the cows / chickens in unnatural conditions, and that are then maliciously slaughtered (while their bodies spew out fear-intoxicated-hormones); and people grab fast food, and processed items, or waxed fruits & veges, off the shelves because the big conglomerate companies run by satanic forces are making sure the majority of folks are too busy and fearful of not making money to feed their unnaturally formed / biologically poisoned children.
PEOPLE we are turning into PLASTICized duplicates of how / why / what Real Life was intended to be. But most people's brains are comprised of the aforementioned poisons [NOT TO MENTION THE PHARMACEUTICALS THEY'RE ALSO LIVING ON] which CLOG THEIR ABILITY TO FEEL, TO SEE, TO THINK, TO REASON, TO DISPUTE, AND REFUTE the "intellectual science gobbledegook" spit out by the demons that seem to have taken over our entire planet.
Anonymous replied on Permalink
This news makes me nauseous.
I want nothing to do with GMOs in any way.
sbtokyo replied on Permalink
The USDA is Killing Us
The USDA is a government organization established to promote government subsidized food industries. The USDA should not be confused as an organization with a fundamental interest in promoting health.
The USDA's coercive policies and actions are a cause of the obesity crisis in the US, the blind testing of GMOs on future human generations, and the forced acceptance of widespread compromises to our health.
Whole Foods is on our side. Our side is losing.
Anonymous replied on Permalink
Unfortunately our health is our personal responsibility
This just reminds us that we can't take anything for granted in what other companies say. We can never assume or think that other companies are always making decisions in our best interest. In order to eat as healthy, GMO-free as possible, and keep our families healthy requires us to stay constantly educated so we can make the right decisions. It takes time and effort, but at the end of the day it is worth it. Shame on WFM. Bummer.
Anonymous replied on Permalink
food is food... stop moaning
food is food... stop moaning and climb down off your high horses eco warriors