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.
Haleiwa is usually crowded on weekends with folks stopping by to get shave ice, eat lunch or go shopping.
And on Saturday, it was especially packed, but not because of the typical reasons.
People came out and held a protest.
They came from different parts of the state, different walks of life, all with the same message.
“No GMO’s, we want Hawaii to be a free zone for GMO foods.”
They’re against GMOs which stands for genetically modified organisms.
A guy even wrote a rap about it.
“We all have a right to know whats in our food and what we are eating. And the truth is that we don’t,” said Evan Shafram with Good Vibe Los Angeles.
An estimated 300 people marched through part of Haleiwa even taking up a lane of traffic.
They say in Haleiwa and Waialua there are thousands of acres of GMO corn and canola being grown.
“The main concerns about GMO’s is that it is untested and an unknown technology,” sated Hector Valenzuela, UH Manoa professor and crop specialist.
The Hawaii Crop Improvement Association responded to the protest and allegations.
“We support genetically engineered crops. They’ve been around for 20 years, we’ve had 3 trillion servings consumed without any health or safety incident,” stated Alicia Maluafiti, Executive Director Hawaii Crop Improvement Association.
“There is concerns about GMO’s and also about the use of chemicals needed to grow those crops,” said Valenzuela.
“Farmers are able to use fewer pesticides by growing biotech crops. So it is completely misleading,” said Maluafiti.
Folks will be taking their anti-GMO protest to the neighbor islands this month.
Next week Saturday they’ll march on Kauai. The following Saturday in Hilo on the Big Island.
March 23rd on Maui and the final Saturday of the month on Molokai.
“Basically the march today is about the future of agriculture here in Hawaii.”
The protest was organized by a number of groups and people including the Hawaii GMO Justice Coalition, Da Hui, Dustin Barca, Walter Ritte and Makua Rothman.
The Occupy movement is holding coordinated events targeting the world’s largest producer of genetically modified crops. Around the world groups are organizing “Occupy Monsanto” week, including Maui, Moloka`i, Kaua`i, O`ahu and Hawai`i Island.
Puunene resident Mary Whispering Wind protests genetically modified organisms in food Monday in Kihei. The protest was hosted by Occupy Wall Street Maui and GMO Free Maui and drew about 100 people to the rally. BRUCE DOUGLAS photo
A sign-waving rally was held Monday afternoon at the intersection of Piilani and Mokulele highways to mark the one-year anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street movement and to show solidarity with the “Occupy Monsanto Global Protests” worldwide, according to an announcement.
The event was hosted by Occupy Wall Street Maui and GMO Free Maui. (GMO refers to genetically modified organisms.)
Occupy Monsanto rallies also were held on Molokai, Kauai, Oahu and the Big Island, said organizers, who put the number of people taking part in the Maui rally at more than 100.
The group said its aim was to “bring awareness to the growing concern of unlabeled GMOs in our food supply.”
“Hawaii is the world’s capital for open air genetic crop experimentation, and GMO seed corn is our largest agricultural seed crop,” the group said. “There is growing concern about agricultural chemicals, such as Roundup, affecting our reefs and water supply.”
In response, Monsanto Co. Hawaii Community Affairs Manager Alan Takemoto said: “Monsanto has been recognized here in Hawaii and elsewhere for our high standards of quality, robust safety programs and strong commitment to environmental stewardship. We’re dedicated to improving modern agriculture through advanced technologies and committed to offering the best products that farmers depend on to increase their production and yields.”
Takemoto said the company’s goal is to use “cutting-edge research to help find solutions to some of the planet’s most pressing problems, such as global food security.”
In Hawaii, Monsanto employs about 1,000 people, he said.
“Our soil and water conservation efforts are governed by an approved natural resources conservation plan that was developed in consultation with the (U.S. Department of Agriculture’s) Natural Resources Conservation Service, and we use an integrated pest management program as part of our commitment to environmental stewardship,” he said.
Takemoto added that Monsanto is committed to “transparency and dialogue.”
“We understand that people have questions, and we welcome open, respectful dialogue with anyone genuinely interested in learning more about who we are and what we do,” he said.
On this week’s Maui County Council meeting agenda, Council Member Elle Cochran has proposed a resolution to include in Maui County’s legislative package a bill for the state Legislature that would require the labeling of genetically engineered food products. There’s also a proposed bill to label GMO products as part of the Hawaii State Association of Counties’ legislative package of bills.
The council meeting begins at 9 a.m. Friday in the eighth-floor Council Chambers of the Kalana O Maui building.