Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Jurors Award $$$ Millions for Damages Associated with Glyphosate

Here are just a few of the recent stories in the news about large jury awards to individuals alleging injury by the weedkiller Roundup made by Bayer (formerly Monsanto).

The principal active ingredient in Roundup is glyphosate.  And the most frequent use of genetic engineering in the U.S. today is to render plants "Roundup Ready" --- therefore able to withstand applications of glyphosate used to kill weeds while allowing the food crops to survive.

This has greatly increased exposure to glyphosate by farm workers and others as well as glyphosate pervades the environment.

You can find much more about this online and keep up to date on these cases by searching on terms related to Roundup jury verdicts.  

Below are just a few samples!
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1.
 "March 27, 2019         A jury in San Francisco has awarded a California man $80 million in damages after he claimed that the weedkiller Roundup caused his cancer.
The same six-person panel earlier this month sided with 70-year-old Edwin Hardeman, whose lawyers argued that the glyphosate-based herbicide was a "substantial factor" in causing non-Hodgkins lymphoma in Hardeman.
The Sonoma County man was diagnosed in February 2015. Hardeman had used Roundup on his 56-acre property for more than two decades, according to his lawsuit."
See the rest of this story at:
https://www.npr.org/2019/03/27/707439575/jury-awards-80-million-in-damages-in-roundup-weed-killer-cancer-trial



2.
"Sat August 11, 2018 (CNN) San Francisco jurors just ruled that Roundup, the most popular weedkiller in the world, gave a former school groundskeeper terminal cancer. 
So they awarded him $289 million in damages -- mostly to punish the agricultural company Monsanto.
Dewayne Johnson's victory Friday could set a massive precedent for thousands of other cases claiming Monsanto's famous herbicide causes non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. 
Johnson's case was the first to go to trial because doctors said he was near death. And in California, dying plaintiffs can be granted expedited trials."
See the rest of this story at:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/08/10/health/monsanto-johnson-trial-verdict/index.html

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Sunday, April 14, 2019

Stop Glyphosate Now! Support the Keep Food Safe From Glyphosate Act of 2019!

A recent post discussed lawsuits brought by people harmed by glyphosate and the herbicide (weed killer) containing this chemical.  
http://www.illinoisrighttoknowgmo.org/2019/04/a-new-headache-for-bayer.html

These glyphosate-loaded weed killers are still widely used in the United States today!  In fact, the most frequent agricultural use of genetic engineering in the United States today is to develop plants able to withstand applications of glyphosate, which has been found to be a probable carcinogen by the World Health Organization.    

Glyphosate is the principal active ingredient in Monsanto’s (now Bayer’s) best-selling herbicide, Roundup.  Crops genetically engineered to survive it allow whole fields to be treated with glyphosate-containing herbicides without killing the food crops.  
Glyphosate is also used as a "crop drying" agent for certain crops. 

Beside the resulting environmental contamination, human health and beneficial wildlife are also at risk from this use of glyphosate.  Read about lawsuits and awards to cancer victims and others at: 
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-bayer-ceo/ceo-sees-bayer-massively-affected-by-herbicide-litigation-idUSKCN1RN0WS

Representative Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn) has introduced a bill in Congress to require the government to test our food for glyphosate residues and take other measures to reduce glyphosate contamination.

This will not completely stop the use of glyphosate, but it is an important step in the right direction.

Our friends at Just Label It (www.justlabelit.org) and Only Organic (www.onlyorganic.org) are getting the word out about this and have provided a "salsa" form to make it easy for you to share you views with your Representatives in Congress.  Just use the "salsa" link below to ask your Representative in Congress to support the Keep Food Safe From Glyphosate Act of 2019. 

TAKE A MINUTE TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
You can use their words (or your own) and it will go automatically to your Representative in Congress. 
http://salsa3.salsalabs.com/o/50202/p/dia/action4/common/public/?action_KEY=22412&tag=201904GlyphTestingBillOO&track=ACTION_GlyphTestingBill_OO

OR, If you prefer to write or call your Representative in Congress yourself, this website helps you find your Representative’s contact information: 
https://www.house.gov/representatives/find-your-representative

Ask your Representative to SUPPORT "H.R. 1783, the Keep Food Safe from Glyphosate Act of 2019." 

You can read this bill and track its progress at: 
https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/1783?s=1&r=26

Here is more information about this dangerous agricultural chemical enabled by genetic engineering.
http://www.justlabelit.org/top-news-stories-on-monsantos-glyphosate-take-away-facts/

Please act NOW to support this legislation to help keep glyphosate residues out of our food!  

A New Headache for Bayer?

Reuters recently reported (April 11, 2019) that Bayer's CEO sees this company "massively" affected by litigation involving the herbicide (weedkiller) Roundup, produced by Monsanto, a company now owned by Bayer. 

Glyphosate, the principal active ingredient in Roundup, has already been designated as  "probably carcinogenic to humans"  by the World Health Organization.  (However, some other regulators have disagreed with these findings.) 

Several kinds of crops are genetically engineered to withstand exposure to Roundup so that entire fields can be sprayed, killing the weeds while sparing the crops.   But this use of glyphosate can massively increase human exposure.  

According to Reuters, Bayer acquired Monsanto last year for $63 billion, and has since lost $34 billion from its market value following U.S. jury awards finding Bayer liable for failure to warn of "alleged cancer risks."  More than 10,000 cases are still pending according to Reuters. 

You can read this article here:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-bayer-ceo/ceo-sees-bayer-massively-affected-by-herbicide-litigation-idUSKCN1RN0WS

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Whitewash Author to Speak in Chicago!!

CAREY GILLAM, the author of WHITEWASH: The Story of a Weedkiller, Cancer, and the Corruption of Science,  will speak in CHICAGO on MONDAY, FEBRUARY 4 at 5:30 p.m.

She will speak in downtown Chicago at the Gleacher Center of the University of Chicago, just off North Michigan Avenue.

This event is FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, but to attend you MUST respond using this "Eventbrite" invitation. 
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/farm-to-table-weed-killer-cancer-and-corporate-power-registration-54166114306?ref=eios&aff=eios

You can learn more about Investigative Journalist Carey Gillam here: http://careygillam.com

And you can find her book WHITEWASH at Amazon at: 
https://www.amazon.com/Whitewash-Killer-Cancer-Corruption-Science/dp/1610918320/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1547149523&sr=8-1&keywords=whitewASH+CAREY+GILLAM).

Whitewash by
Carey Gillam
As you already know, one of the chief applications for genetic engineering is to render crops immune to the effects glyphosate, a dangerous weedkiller, so that weeds in surrounding areas can be killed without harming crops.   This has exposed farmworkers, consumers, and anyone who comes in contact with the air and water polluted by glyphosate to be exposed to this harmful and reportedly carcinogenic chemical. 

We are delighted that Ms. Gillam will be speaking at one of the foremost schools of business administration in the U.S., under the auspices of the Stigler Center for the Study of the Economy and the State (https://research.chicagobooth.edu/stigler) which states as it's goal: "... to promote and disseminate research on regulatory capture, crony capitalism, and the various distortions that special interest groups impose on capitalism."

Do not miss this opportunity to learn about this important threat to our health and our environment!   

Here again is the invitation; registration here is REQUIRED for this free event.  We strongly  suggest you register soon!t
i  https://www.eventbrite.com/e/farm-to-table-weed-killer-cancer-and-corporate-power-registration-54166114306?ref=eios&aff=eios

Whitewash author Carey Gillam
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NOTE:  While one of the principal uses of genetic engineering is to facilitate the application of the herbicide (weedkiller) Glyphosate on certain crops, Glyphosate is widely used in other contexts as well.  So Carey Gillam's book Whitewash will be of interest to food consumers generally, and not only to those principally interested in genetically engineered (or bioengineered) crops.  

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Look Out! "GMO 2.0" is Here!

New genetic techniques affecting food crops are now on the scene.  You may have heard about CRISPR, Gene Drive, Synthetic Biology, and others.  What are they and why should we be concerned?
  
Here are some a few articles about these new technologies: 
From the New York Times  https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/09/science/genetically-edited-foods-crispr.html

And, with more detail, from the European Network of Scientists for Social and Environmental Responsibility (ENSSER) on "New Genetic Modification Techniques" (NGMT):
https://ensser.org/publications/ngmt-statement/

Since these new products are neither regulated for safety nor labeled, and since we still do not have a clear picture of the health, environmental or food security risks they entail, many people may wish to avoid them.  But how?

The Non-GMO Project, nongmoproject.org has addressed this. (Their verification mark is intended to give shoppers the assurance that a product has completed a comprehensive third-party verification for compliance with "Non-GMO Project Standard." the most rigorous Standard in the industry.) 


In case you are not familiar with the Non-GMO Project, here is a picture of the mark you may see on products at the market. 


 Here is their statement concerning "GMO 2.0": 

Biotechnology companies are making a concerted effort to distance themselves from the consumer and manufacturer rejection of GMOs by claiming that new genetic engineering techniques are not actually GMOs. These new genetic engineering techniques such as synthetic biology, gene drives, and gene editing, like CRISPR and TALEN, are often not “transgenic,” meaning the products of GMO 2.0 do not contain genes from multiple species the way “traditional” GMOs do. However, they are still products of biotechnology as defined by the Codex Alimentarius, a collection of international food standards; the Codex definition is the same one used by the Non-GMO Project.

Some of the new types of genetic engineering can’t yet be identified using current testing methodologies. In order to keep these technologies out of Non-GMO Project Verified products, our Standard outlines affidavit-based requirements for Non-Testable High-Risk Inputs. It is important to note that these requirements are within the context of the Project’s rigorous verification program, which includes segregation and traceability measures and testing for Major (Testable) GMO risk ingredients. This will support manufacturers in meeting consumer expectations, ensuring that the ingredients they are using are truly non-GMO. 
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We hope to learn more about health and safety concerns, environmental effects and food security issues associated with these products in the near future.  But without this knowledge, many consumers, following generally accepted precautionary principles, may choose to avoid these products. 


Friday, August 18, 2017

IMPORTANT DEADLINE EXTENDED TO AUGUST 25!!!

ACT NOW TO CLOSE THE LOOPHOLES IN THE "DARK ACT" and to 
INSIST on CLEAR, ON PACKAGE LABELING FOR GENETICALLY ENGINEERED FOODS!


E-Mail your views to GMOlabeling@ams.usda.gov before FRIDAY, AUGUST 25.

The main messages to convey are:

1. Labeling must be CLEAR and ON THE PACKAGE.
(That is, QR codes, 800 numbers, and references to websites are NOT acceptable as the sole means of informing consumers.)     

2. All genetically engineered foods must be clearly labeled as such, including processed foods (such as oils, sweeteners, etc.) and present in any amounts.   

3. Foods must be labeled SOON.  Industry has had plenty of notice and consumers have already had to wait far too long. 

It's good to put your name and address -- or at least your city and state -- on these e-mails.  It underscores that these decisions affect real people, real families!

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OR:   Center for Food Safety has made this EASY for you to do, so please do it NOW!
Go to the Center for Food Safety website at the link below and click on TAKE ACTION!
The rest is easy!



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Take advantage of this opportunity to be heard, or to add to your previous message!   

For more information please see our earlier post of July 10 at:


TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS DEADLINE EXTENSION!  PLEASE WRITE TODAY!

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Glyphosate in the News!

Glyphosate, the leading active ingredient in Roundup® weedkiller, is back in the news.   Most foods that are genetically engineered today are engineered to withstand applications of glyphosate, which the U. N. has called a "probable carcinogen, " and which California is  adding to it's list of chemicals known to cause cancer.

Recently we have learned of foods being marketed with traces of this toxic product.   Arguments persist as to whether these levels are safe.  We urge readers to examine some of these websites and make up their own minds about the level of risk they find acceptable for themselves and their families.

We are also including some links about similar situations involving another toxic weed killer, diacamba. (see item 4 below).

1. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/25/dining/ben-and-jerrys-ice-cream-herbicide-glyphosate.html This article, published in the New York Times on July 25, 2017, discusses findings of glyphosate in Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream.

Embedded in this article is a short video (less than 7 minutes long) about the history of Roundup and glyphosate.  You can also see the video here: https://vimeo.com/225617345

2.  https://www.organicconsumers.org/essays/dirty-dairy-why-consumers-need-force-ben-and-jerrys-go-organic

This article from Organic Consumers Association throws more light on the Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream situation and suggests specific corrective action steps for consumers.

3.  http://fortune.com/2017/06/26/california-monsanto-roundup-cancer/
This was recently published in Fortune Magazine about California's latest actions regarding glyphosate.

4.  http://cen.acs.org/articles/95/i29/Arkansas-Missouri-ban-dicamba-herbicide.html?type=paidArticleContent
and
https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/press_releases/2017/pesticides-07-07-2017b.php
and
http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2016/08/01/487809643/crime-in-the-fields-how-monsanto-and-scofflaw-farmers-hurt-soybeans-in-arkansas

Arkansas and Missouri have taken similar actions with respect to another agricultural chemical, dicamba.

We will continue to update this post and add others from time to time, but the links above will give you basic information.