This is a Call to Action for a
Non-Hierarchical Occupation of Monsanto Everywhere
Whether you like it or not, chances are Monsanto contaminated the food you ate today with chemicals and unlabeled GMOs. Monsanto controls much of the world's food supply at the expense of food democracy worldwide. This site is dedicated to empowering citizens of the world to take action against Monsanto & it's enablers like the FDA, USDA, EPA, GMA, BIO, and the processed food companies that use Monsanto's products.
Posted: May 9th, 2013 | Filed under: Research | Tags: Commissioner, FDA, gmo, GMO Labeling, letter, Margaret Hamburg, Meeting, Response |
Approximately a week and a half after we sent our follow-up letter to the FDA Commissioner, we received this reply indicating our meeting request is being reviewed.
We anticipate another letter within the next few weeks. If we don’t receive one, we plan on contacting the FDA again…. to be continued…
Posted: April 30th, 2013 | Filed under: Incident Reports | Tags: asthma, autism, cancer, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, Commissioner, diabetes, FDA, gmo, GMO Labeling, just label it, letter, Margaret Hamburg, Meeting, Response, Safety Studies, stone soup |
Margaret A. Hamburg, M.D.
10903 New Hampshire Avenue
Silver Spring, MD 20993
April 29, 2013
Dear Commissioner Hamburg,
We sincerely appreciated the response from your secretary on April 4, concerning your inability to attend our demonstration outside the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition that took place on Monday, April 8. The demonstration was successful and generated numerous newspaper articles across the country.
We write today to request a meeting with you concerning the labeling of genetically engineered foods in America. We are aware that representatives from the FDA have attended similar meetings with representatives from the chemical and processed food industries, and we deserve the opportunity to meet and discuss our concerns. We are willing to accommodate your busy schedule and can meet on the date and time of your choosing in May, June, or July. Upon confirmation from your office, we intend to invite business leaders in the organic food industry who share our concerns related to labeling of genetically engineered foods.
As you know, last year there were over one million signatures submitted to your agency asking you to require mandatory labels for foods produced using modern genetic engineering techniques. However, we still have not received a thorough reply from the FDA regarding this petition. We have reviewed the statements on the FDA website, and have concluded that instituting mandatory labels for genetically engineered foods is currently within your power and that such implementing such a policy does not require Congressional action.
Your failure to allay the concerns of American consumers and respond to the petition has resulted in growing distrust of your agency. We interpret the FDA’s resolve to ignore the people’s overwhelming support of mandatory GMO labeling as demonstrative of your true priority: protecting corporate interests, rather than protecting consumers’ safety and our fundamental right to transparency in food labeling. If the FDA is to regain the trust of American consumers you must demonstrate real action and commitment to introducing GMO labeling policy. Our proposed meeting is the crucial first step in beginning that process.
Consumers want the FDA to reject the purported authority of arbitrary biotechnology corporations as providers of safety studies. We demand independent tests conducted by the FDA or respected researchers at universities. Moreover, consumers are concerned that the existing body of safety studies are woefully incomplete and do not reflect the data recorded over the entire lifespan of animals fed genetically engineered foods.
The biotechnology industry says that there have been over 3 trillion meals served using genetically engineered ingredients without any health issues. We believe this statement is misleading; it is impossible to trace any health effects due to the consumption of genetically engineered foods when there are no mandatory labels on genetically engineered foods. Conversely, since genetically engineered foods entered the American food supply in the late 1990s, there has been a noticeable increase in diabetes, asthma, autism, cancer, and stomach maladies in America. Some concerned consumers believe this unfortunate increase is the direct result of consuming genetically engineered foods. This anecdotal evidence is not based on science. However, unless consumers are given the opportunity to choose between foods that contain genetically engineered ingredients and those that don’t, the anecdotal evidence will continue to yield further speculation on the dangers of consuming genetically engineered foods.
We look forward to hearing from you.
GMO Policy Analyst
Posted: April 4th, 2013 | Filed under: Incident Reports | Tags: Demonstration, FDA, letter, Mame Diallo, Margaret Hamburg, Protest, Response, stone soup |
Today we received a response from the FDA Commissioner’s secretary:
We’ll be responding shortly…
Posted: April 3rd, 2013 | Filed under: Press Releases | Tags: Be-In, Birke Baehr, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, College Park, Demonstration, Emilianne Slaydon, Emma Hutchens, Farmers, FDA, food, Food & Water Watch, Food and Drug Administration, Food Democracy Now, Free Speech, GE Salmon, gmo, GMO Free CT, GMO Free DC, GMO Free MD, GMO Free NY, GMO Free PA, GMO Free VA, GMO Inside, GMO Labeling, GMO Salmon, hugh grant, Iowa, just label it, Lisa Stokke, Margaret Hamburg, Maryland, MD, Organic Consumers Association, Patty Lovera, petition, Protest, REAL Cooperative, Right to Know GMO, Sit-In, stone soup, Taan DC, Tom Llewellyn, We the People |
UPDATED NEWS ADVISORY
April 3, 2013
CONTACT: Adam Eidinger 202-744-2671
Gene Etic 202-805-1603
“Eat-In” at FDA April 8 Demands Action on GMOs
Activists to Prepare & Share “Stone Soup” to Protest
FDA’s Antiquated Policies on Genetically Engineered (GMO) Foods
COLLEGE PARK, MD – Alarmed by the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) outdated and pro-biotechnology industry policies concerning the labeling & safety of GMO foods sold in America, safe food activists will hold the largest protest to date at the FDA to demand immediate policy changes. On Monday, April 8, concerned citizens traveling as far away as the Midwest will descend on the FDA for a day-long “Eat-In” outside the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition located at 5100 Paint Branch Parkway, College Park, MD 20740. Organic farmers and backyard gardeners will bring organically-grown vegetables from their region that will be combined in a huge cooking pot to make a special, GMO-free “Stone Soup” that will be eaten in protest as a picnic-style event outside of the FDA.
WHO: Safe food activists, students, farmers, and concerned citizens, including Dave Murphy & Lisa Stokke, founders of Food Democracy Now!, Patty Lovera, Assistant Director of Food & Water Watch, Birke Baehr, 14-year-old Organic Farmer, members of the Organic Consumers Association, GMO Inside, and representatives from Right to Know GMO, a grassroots Coalition of States for GMO Labeling, including GMO Free DC, GMO Free VA, GMO Free MD, GMO Free PA, GMO Free CT, GMO Free NY, and GMO Free MA. Jonny Motto, chef at Taan DC will cook the soup.
WHAT: “Eat-In” at the FDA for GMO Food Labeling and Food Democracy.
WHERE: Sidewalk outside of the Food And Drug Administration’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, 5100 Paint Branch Parkway College Park, MD 20740 – Directly across the street from the College Park Metro Station (Green Line).
WHEN: All day, Monday, April 8 from 8am until 6pm – From 8am until Noon Safe Food Activists will prepare the Stone Soup and at 1pm the Stone Soup will be served to everyone with a bowl. After lunch, there will be a seed exchange and workshops on various topics.
Last week Safe Food Activists formally invited FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg and the staff at the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition to speak at 1pm while the Stone Soup is being served. In the letter, they requested the FDA explain why they’ve refused to change the official policy toward labeling of GMO foods and to explain why the transgenic Aquabounty Salmon does not merit a GMO label.
“The FDA has a terrible track record when it comes to genetically engineered food,” said Patty Lovera, assistant director at the consumer advocacy group Food & Water Watch. “They have allowed GE ingredients to spread through our food supply without labels and they may soon make it worse by approving GE salmon, the first genetically engineered food animal. If FDA wants to actually fulfill it’s mission to protect the public, it needs to reject GE salmon.”
“The awareness is growing in the US, from the grassroots up, of people from all walks of life and from moms to students to CEOs, that are demanding their right to transparency in the labeling of genetically engineered foods. It is time that the FDA fulfill its role of protecting citizens by granting us our right to know what we’re eating,” said Lisa Stokke, co-founder of Food Democracy Now!, a grassroots advocacy organization based in Iowa. “The folks gathering near the FDA building, and in over 20 states where legislation for labeling is being considered, are a testament to the strength and resolve of the food movement.”
While Occupy Monsanto originally called for the demonstration, there have been numerous groups that have pledged their support for the picnic protest, including Food Democracy Now!, Food & Water Watch, Organic Consumers Association, GMO Inside, and the Right to Know GMO, a grassroots Coalition of States for GMO Labeling. There will be buses and vans from across the United States making their way to the FDA with the common goal of getting GMO foods labeled like they are in most industrialized nations.
“There have been ‘Be-Ins’ and ‘Sit-Ins’ but there has never been an ‘Eat-In’ in the history of the FDA,” says Adam Eidinger, spokesman for Occupy-Monsanto.com. “Its shameful the White House has nothing to say about the multiple ‘We The People’ petitions on GMO labeling that have gone unanswered for over a year,” adds Eidinger.
“The fable of ‘Stone Soup’ has been rewritten many times throughout history and will be rewritten once again on April 8,” says Tom Llewellyn, a lead organizer with the REAL Cooperative in Asheville, NC. “One version of the ‘Stone Soup’ tale is about a hungry soldier who, when passing through an impoverished village, announced that he would make ‘Stone Soup’ for everyone in town. The promise of this mysterious ‘Stone Soup’ persuaded people in the small village to pool their resources and offer up their hidden onions, carrots, lettuce, and spices to feed everyone. With all food activists and citizens working together, a greater good can be achieved by forcing changes in the way huge food corporations source ingredients and the way our government regulates food safety,” says Llewellyn.
Nearly 93% of all soybeans grown in America contain man-made, patented genes owned by a very small number of agrochemical companies that the FDA passively oversees. Instead of conducting rigorous independent analyses of patented GMO crops that make up Americas food supply, the FDA has relied on short-term industry studies that were written for profit, not food safety. In a January 2013 article in the Wall Street Journal, Monsanto’s CEO Hugh Grant stated the corporation was open to the FDA allowing GMO labeling, but only if it was done scientifically. “What is more scientific than a patent listing,” asks Emma Hutchens of the REAL Cooperative. “The FDA says that GMOs are not materially different than their non-GMO counterpart, but if the plants are patented there must be a material difference, otherwise there would be no need for a patent. They can’t have it both ways.”
In 2011 and 2012 over a million Americans signed the “Just Label It” FDA petition for GMO labeling, but the FDA has responded with silence. “The Food and Drug Administration is not listening to the overwhelming majority of Americans who want honest food labels,” says Emilianne Slaydon, founder of GMO Free DC. “We have signed numerous petitions but we’ve received no response. We only want the same food labels citizens of over 40 countries enjoy, so we are going to enjoy some ‘Stone Soup’ to demand this simple democratic right.”
More information at https://Occupy-Monsanto.com
Posted: March 29th, 2013 | Filed under: Incident Reports | Tags: Aquabounty Salmon, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, College Park, FDA, FFDCA, gmo, GMO Food, GMO Labeling, GMO Salmon, Kathleen Sebelius, letter, Margaret Hamburg, Maryland, MD, Michael Taylor, organic, Picnic, Protest, Research, stone soup, Transparency |
March 29, 2013
The Honorable Margaret Hamburg
Food and Drug Administration
5100 Paint Branch Parkway
College Park, MD 20740-3835
cc: Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services
Michael Taylor, Deputy Commissioner for Food
Dear Commissioner Hamburg:
We write to you with the invitation to come join us for some delicious Stone Soup that we will prepare on Monday, April 8, outside the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition in College Park, Maryland. At 1pm we would like you to address our concerns about the labeling of genetically engineered foods sold in the United States of America. We will bring a small public address system and will provide you with an opportunity to speak to those gathered about why the FDA refuses to change its outdated policies concerning the labeling of genetically modified (“GMO”) foods. We promise to be respectful. We are genuinely hungry for answers to our concerns.
As you very well know, your administration purports man-made, patented genetic technology in our food does not constitute a “material difference” to require a byline on a food label. This is a grossly benighted position that has evoked an eruption of public protest and media investigation for over a decade. This position leads us to ask: whom does the FDA aspire to protect? You owe the American people an explanation for why U.S. policy on GMO labeling keeps us ignorant of whether our food has been genetically modified, while citizens in other countries around the world are granted the right to make informed decisions based on accurate food labels.
Americans from all over the country will bring ingredients to make the Stone Soup on the public sidewalk outside the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition between 8:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m.. Before they add their ingredient(s) to the pot, they will have the opportunity to address you and your staff members in order to express why they want genetically engineered foods to be properly labeled in America. The soup will be 100% vegan and we will compile a thorough ingredient list to show how easy it is to make an honest food label.
We expect some may come to speak about the pending disapproval of the genetically engineered Aquabounty Salmon and we hope staff members will consider listening to these oral comments, as well as accept hand-deliveries for docket FDA-2011-N-0899. As a novel drug that is bypassing the normal clinical research phases that drugs overseen by your administration normally require, there needs to be much more dialog with the American public in order to provide absolute proof that the food adulterants used to produce synthetic meat for human consumption are safe enough to not require mandatory GMO labels.
While we have asked everyone to bring their own bowls and spoons so that our picnic will not generate unnecessary waste, we will bring you and Michael Taylor your own bowls & spoons because we genuinely desire your presence. Our upcoming picnic has a purpose that we hope you and your staff members will fully acknowledge and embrace, which is Americans want the FDA to require GMO labeling. Moreover, we hope your staff members feel empowered to engage in a friendly dialog with us over a bowl of delicious Stone Soup.
By offering you organic food, we are not trying to bribe you or your administration in any way. Rather, we wish to speak with you through the act of sharing of a communal meal. Our sharing of food is symbolic of our peaceful demonstration of free speech, and thus an expression of one of the myriad fundamental freedoms we cherish as citizens. We hope you feel welcomed by our invitation, and that this letter inspires you and your staff to join us in the spirit of camaraderie between fellow eaters.
Last year, 55 members of Congress wrote you a similar letter that said:
“The FDA has the opportunity and authority to do right by the American public. When issuing its rule requiring radiated foods to be labeled, FDA stated in broad terms that a decision to require labeling is not just based on the physical changes to the food but also on whether consumers view such information as important, and whether the omission of label information may mislead a consumer. The fact that the FDA has already adopted this broad interpretation of “material” facts demonstrates that [GMO labeling] is a reasonable – and therefore permissible – interpretation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA).”
We are unaware of any official reply that was generated from your administration. Before we arrive on Monday, April 8, to prepare the Stone Soup, we would love a response posted on the FDA website because, frankly, we are really hungry for some answers.
See you on the sidewalk.
GMO Policy Analyst,
Posted: November 21st, 2012 | Filed under: Resources | Tags: biotechnology, Cincinnati, Cincinnati City Council, crops, Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, Farmers, FDA, Food & Water Watch, Food and Drug Administration, Genetically Engineered Products, GMO Labeling, Herbicide, Jean Schmidt, Lisa Jackson, Margaret Hamburg, OH, Ohio, pesiticide, public health, Resolution, risk, Robert Portman, RoundUp, Roundup Ready, Secretary of Agriculture, seeds, Sherrod Brown, Steve Chabot, Tom Vilsack, United States Department of Agriculture, USDA, Wendell Young |
City of Cincinnati
Date: October 12, 2012
To: Councilmember Wendell Young
From: John P. Curp, City Solicitor
Subject: Resolution — Supporting Labeling of Genetically Engineered Products
EXPRESSING the support of Council for the mandatory labeling of genetically engineered products so consumers are informed that the potential long-term risks of genetically engineered products to public health and the environment are largely unknown.
WHEREAS, the City of Cincinnati recognizes that consumers have the right to receive accurate and thorough information about the products they feed to their families; and
WHEREAS, the potential long-term risks to public health and the environment from genetically engineered products are largely unknown; and
WHEREAS, safety studies on genetically engineered products are limited because biotechnology companies generally prohibit their cultivation for research purposes in seed licensing agreements; and
WHEREAS, some independent peer-reviewed research that has been done on genetically engineered crops has reveled problems with liver and kidney functions in rats; deformities and neurological problems in vertebrates; and lower nutrition content in pesticide-resistant Roundup Ready crops; and
WHEREAS, it is the responsibility of the United States Department of Agriculture to ensure that genetically engineered crops are safe to grow, the Environmental Protection Agency to ensure that genetically engineered products will not harm the environment and the Food and Drug Administration to ensure that genetically engineered food is safe to eat; and
WHEREAS, the United States federal agencies that regulate genetically engineered products, including crops and animals, have not yet enacted a comprehensive plan to adequately oversee and monitor genetically engineered products; and
WHEREAS, farmers who produce organic or non-genetically engineered crops run the risk of crop contamination from nearby genetically engineered crops; and
WHEREAS, farmers who unintentionally grow patented, genetically engineered seeds or who harvest crops that are contaminated with genetically engineered traits could lose marketing options and face costly lawsuits; and
WHEREAS, a 2008 CBS/New York Times poll found that 87 precent of the U.S. consumers wanted all genetically engineered ingredients to be labeled; now, therefore,
BE IT RESOLVED, that the Council of the City of Cincinnati, State of Ohio,
Section 1. That the City of Cincinnati supports mandatory labeling of all genetically engineered products.
Section 2. That this resolution be spread upon the minutes of Council and a copy sent to the following:
1. Lisa Jackson, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, Ariel Rios Building, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.,Washington, DC 20460
2. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, United States Department of Agriculture, 1400 Independence Ave., S.W., Washington, DC 20250
3. Margaret Hamberg M.D., Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20993
4. Senators Sherrod Brown and Robert Portman, United States Senate, Washington, DC 20510
5. Representatives Steve Chabot and Jean Schmidt, United States House of Representatives, Washington, DC 20515
6. Food & Water Watch, 103 William H. Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45219
Submitted by Vice Mayor Roxanne Qualls and Councilmember Wendell Young
Source: Cincinnati City Council Scan[PDF] / Cincinnati City Council Documents
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