Dr. Stephen Taylor cuts through the confusion and lays out the facts about GMO foods and the spike in allergies in children. Also, below the article, check out the 5-part series developed by The Center for Food Integrity in which experts talk with consumers about their GMO questions.
View the full article here.
Kaua‘i seed farmers want to set the record straight about how they farm. In today’s edition of The Garden Island, they rolled out a new ad campaign breaking common myths about their farming practices and the seed industry. The ad says they want to in inform, educate and maintain a dialogue with friends and neighbors on Kaua‘i.
One of the myths addressed is the claim that seed farmers are experimenting with chemicals. Kaua‘i seed farmers say they “DO NOT develop or test chemicals. Our job is to improve crops for farmers around the world through plant breeding and growing seed. We check our fields daily to determine if there are pests. Only if the number of pests would likely hurt the yield and quality of seed, and if there are no other appropriate control options, do we use a pesticide. We only use federally and state approved pesticide on specific crops, and we only use them when necessary and in amounts specified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to control weeds, insects and diseases.”
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Members of the Agricultural Journalists Association recently met with representatives of Monsanto’s operation in Pakistan to discuss how the industry has evolved in the region. The journalists learned about meeting food security challenges, multiple economic benefits of genetically modified/biotech crops, crop management, productivity, and environmental benefits.
Read the entire article here.
Image taken from The Second Green Revolution
A new review of studies by the University of Lleida’s Agrotecnio Center concluded that the European Union needs to embrace GMO foods to have a competitive economy and regulatory harmony across the nations. The study noted that European economic policy has hindered a knowledge-based bioeconomy, and that imports are increasing due to conventional farming’s inability to keep up with demand.
Read more about the review here.
Photo taken from Wikipedia
Katie Pratt, a farmer from Dixon, Illinois, reflects on her recent trip to Hawaii, as part of the “Views From the Farm” essay contest hosted by the Hawaii Farm Bureau and Hawaii Crop Improvement Association. Pratt talks about how biotechnology research in the islands has helped her farming business, and her support for seeds that are “Made In America.”
Read the entire story here.
Picture of Katie Pratt from Illinois Farm Bureau
A recent study by the UK’s Food and Environment Research Agency casts doubt on the effects of neonicotinoid pesticides on bumblebee colonies, after recent accusations by activist. The study focused on bumblebee colonies placed near fields of canola crops that had been grown from seeds treated with the insecticides in question, and compared them with colonies near untreated crops. The result: “bumblebee colonies remained viable & productive in presence of neonicotinoid pesticides under field conditions.”
Read the study here.
Photo taken from The Council for Biotechnology Information
In an editorial published in The Maui News, Carol Reimann, Maui Community & Government Affairs manager for Monsanto Hawaii, discusses the beneficial work done by seed farmers on the island. Carol details why she works for Monsanto, and how their products have helped farmers grow more food, reduce fuel consumption and adopt more eco-friendly farming practices.Furthermore, she addresses many misconceptions about Monsanto, and the people who work for them.
Read the full story here.
Photo courtesy of Carol Reimann
Several state legislatures have considered labeling foods produced using genetic modification this session, including Connecticut’s. The view of Connecticut’s “Norwich Bulletin” is that labeling is best handled at a federal level. The Bulletin goes on to explain that the FDA has found these foods to be safe and substantially equivalent to non-GM foods, and therefore will not label them so as not to confuse consumers. The Bulletin concludes that if these foods were to be labeled, voluntary labeling would be best.
Read the article here.
As the study Hawaii’s Seed Crop Industry: Current and Potential Economic and Fiscal Contributions explains, Hawaii’s seed crop industry continues to make significant economic contributions to Hawaii’s economy. Commissioned by the Hawaii Farm Bureau Federation, with funding from HCIA, the report’s conclusions are based on analysis of data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agriculture Statistics Service.
March 16, 2013
About 120 guests attended this year’s A Tour and Taste of Ag held in Kunia. The event began with a tour of Hawaii’s seed farms, where guests were able to get an up-close look and learn about the seed company farming operations in Hawaii. Guests then enjoyed a brunch featuring locally grown and raised produce from farms on Oahu, Maui, Kauai, Molokai, and the Big Island.
Following brunch and opening remarks by Hawaii Farm Bureau President Dean Okimoto and HCIA President Mark Phillipson, visiting farmers from across the United States, whose farms span thousands of acres and provide food to just as many people, shared their experiences about farming and how utilizing agricultural biotechnology improved the way they farm. In addition, Dr. Dennis Gonsalves explained the importance of biotechnology as a tool to meet challenges, such as his development of the Rainbow papaya, which saved Hawaii’s papaya industry from collapse when papayas were being destroyed by the ringspot virus. Iowa State Farm Bureau President Craig Hill also spoke about farming challenges and the use of agricultural biotechnology.