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.




Gilroy Dispatch: Sewing the seeds of Syngenta Flowers protest

Posted: September 25th, 2012 | Filed under: Press | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |
gilroy dispatch syngenta protest lora schraft Gilroy Dispatch: Sewing the seeds of Syngenta Flowers protest Womens International League for Peace and Freedom Syngenta Flowers Inc Syngenta Corporate Affairs Syngenta Saul Navejas Santa Clara San Jose San Francisco Robert W. Groff Protest Proposition 37 Prop 37. Morgan Hill Loya Jackson Lori Schwind KateAnn Riser Joe Cernac Joan Bazar Hecker Pass GMO Labeling gmo Gilroy Eduardo Abarca Demonstration Campbell biotech Bay Area Atrazine asthma allergies ADHD

Sewing the seeds of Syngenta Flowers protest

by by Blair Tellers, Staff Writer, September 24, 2012 7:03 pm

A group of demonstrators who flocked to Syngenta Flowers in Gilroy last week was a modest-sized crew that lobbied against genetically engineered seeds, voicing their stance through colorful signs, chants, stickers, biohazard suits and even a chocolate Labrador named Lady, who wore a sign that declared, “No to GMOs! Dogs don’t like it either.”

Around 15 or so participants carpooled from various parts of the Bay Area to participate in Friday’s all-day peaceful demonstration. Syngenta and city staff anticipated the visitors, who hailed from Morgan Hill, Campbell, Santa Clara, San Jose and San Francisco. Parts of Hecker Pass were previously lined with Caltrans “no parking signs,” while a chain link fence barricaded Syngenta’s parking lot entrance. Four Gilroy police officers kept a watchful eye over the scene from the morning until 2 p.m. Two officers stayed on until 5 p.m.

“This is Goliath, and we are David,” said event spokesman Eduardo Abarca, 24, projecting his voice through a bullhorn toward the Syngenta facility at 2280 Hecker Pass Highway. “You don’t have a right to mess with nature and you can’t control how nature works.”

Formally known as “Occupy Monsanto” in protest of the American agricultural biotech company and leading producer of genetically engineered seeds, the gathering marked the final day of a nationwide “global week of action” against “evil biotech” facilities linked to the Genetically Modified Organism food system.

Protesters decided to demonstrate in Gilroy since “there wasn’t a Monsanto facility that we could find near San Francisco.” Staging a demonstration at Syngenta is just as legitimate, the group maintained, as the company also breeds, manufactures and sells genetically modified vegetable seeds that ultimately make their way into the food system.

While the local Syngenta facility in Gilroy doesn’t actually sell or manufacture vegetable seeds or vegetable plants – it’s a flowers-only operation – the Swiss biotech giant that employs more than 26,000 people in more than 90 countries is currently the world’s No. 2 vegetable seed proprietor, according to its website.

Abarca and company protested against Genetically Modified Organisms known as GMOs, as well as the absence of FDA regulations that require GMO food labeling. Biotechnology labeling is not required by the Food and Drug Administration, although it has been adopted by more than 40 countries, including New Zealand, parts of Asia and Australia and most of Europe.

Genetically engineered seeds, such as those manufactured by Syngenta, “are tailored for individual geographical regions to be high-yielding and reliable,” as well as “genetically enhanced with built-in insect resistance or herbicide tolerance,” according to Syngenta. Farmers may opt to use these types of seeds, which can be more efficient and yield a higher output. Some common examples of GMO crops include corn, soy beans, sugar cane, rice, cotton, vegetable/canola oil, as well as vegetables that have been genetically modified to remain fresher longer, and thus have a longer shelf life in grocery stores.

Arguments against genetically engineered seeds include: Risks to human health and the environment, GMO seeds being too expensive, resistant to weed killer, and genetically contaminating traditional crops – which are important to organic farmers, as well as conventional farmers who export crops to other countries that reject genetic engineering.
Syngenta, on the other hand, contends that “genetically modified food and feed products are the most extensively tested and regulated in the entire food sector,” according to Senior Communications Manager Lori Schwind with Syngenta Corporate Affairs, North America.

“Testing by independent public authorities and scientists throughout the world, including national and international food standards bodies, continues to demonstrate that approved genetically modified plants are just as safe as conventional varieties,” according to a company statement issued Monday by Schwind.

Friday’s protesters argued otherwise.

Activists touted signs with messages such as, “We risk becoming the best informed society that has died of ignorance” and, “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature! No GMO! Yes 37!” in reference to Proposition 37, the “California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act.” The measure to make GMO food labeling mandatory in California is one of 11 statewide initiatives that is on the Nov. 6 ballot.

Monsanto and Syngenta are listed as donors to the “No on 37” campaign.

Genetic tinkering and the subsequent denial of the public’s “right to choose what we put into our bodies” prompted Campbell resident Robert W. Groff, 58, to participate in the Syngenta protest.

“I don’t think multinational corporations should be dictating our food chain,” said Groff, who has a master’s degree in engineering. “It’s not the right way to do things.”

Participant’s ages were as mixed as their origins. One of the younger protesters included 14-year-old Saul Navejas, who donned a white biohazard jumpsuit.

“Yeah,” he admitted, peeling off the top layer. “It’s really hot.”

Abarca also wanted to bring awareness to the fact that Syngenta manufactures an herbicide called Atrazine, “one of the most commonly detected pesticides that we find in our water,” he claims.

“If it’s so good for you, what do you got to be afraid of?” queried San Jose protester Joe Cernac, 64, who sat on the highway curb and played his harmonica while holding a sign that read, “power to the people.”

Cernac trekked to Gilroy Friday because he believes the fine print of food labeling is an “issue.”

“People need to know what’s in the food that they’re buying,” he rationed.

Adam Eidinger, Washington D.C.-based spokesman for Occupy Monsanto, claims studies have linked GMOs in food to autism, obesity, food-based allergies, dropping fertility rates, birth defects and “weird” neurological disorders, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

It’s a source of deep concern for Morgan Hill resident Loya Jackson, 58, a retired GUSD teacher of more than 18 years.

“I am passionate about what GMOs are doing to kids,” says Jackson, who claims asthma, allergies and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder have proliferated in the classroom.
“Talk to any teacher and we are beside ourselves with allergies,” she said, taking a break from chanting anti-GMO slogans through a bullhorn. “We have tons of EpiPens hanging in our classrooms.”

The EpiPen is an auto-injector for the emergency treatment of life-threatening allergic reactions.

Protesters argued that a lack of GMO food labeling is a direct impediment to “food sovereignty,” something 78-year-old Santa Clara resident Joan Bazar defines as “the right for people to have control over the source and type of their food.”

A former copy editor for the San Jose Mercury News, Bazar belongs to the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. She gathered video footage of Friday’s gathering for a documentary project on the global food crisis.

Giant corporations such as Monsanto and Syngenta “crowd out the local food production,” she argues.

“Monsanto and companies like them are dominating our food supply and contaminating our bodies,” echoed KateAnn Riser, 62, of Campbell. “If we don’t stand up and be counted, then we have no right to complain.”

Syngenta contends the company is helping to “protect the environment and improve health and quality of life,” the company states. “This includes agricultural biotechnology, which can improve crop productivity and yields and produce higher quality crops. If food production is to increase to meet projected population levels over the next few decades, GM and other biotechnologies must be available to growers as an option.”


Source: Gilroy Dispatch
Source: Morgan Hill Times

Gilroy Dispatch: Protest planned- seeds in dispute

Posted: September 20th, 2012 | Filed under: Press | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |
OccupyMonsantoFlier Gilroy Gilroy Dispatch: Protest planned  seeds in dispute  Weed Killer Toby Nixon the California Farm Bureau Syngenta Flowers Inc Syngenta Corporate Affairs Syngenta Steve Costa Smucker Randy Armstrong Proposition 37 Prop 37. Pepsico obesity North America Nestle Monsanto Lori Schwind Kraft Kellogg Jennifer Scheer Hershey GMO Flowers gmo Gilroy Dispatch Gilroy food based allergies FDA Evil Biotech ConAgra Foods Coca Cola California Retailers Association California Chamber of Commerce California CA Bayer Bar Area autism Agent Orange

Protest planned: seeds in dispute

Activists plan Friday protest at Gilroy’s Syngenta Flowers

by Blair Tellers, Staff Writer, September 20, 2012

Bay Area activists are planning a peaceful protest at Syngenta Flowers in Gilroy today, marking the final day of a nationwide “global week of action” against “evil biotech” facilities linked to the Genetically Modified Organism food system.

A provocative Facebook flier promoting the event depicts mutant zombie children gnawing on GMO-poisoned corn. Some participants will tout visual props such as signs and biohazard suits, while others will protest through music or street theater.

While the local Syngenta facility at 2280 Hecker Pass Highway doesn’t actually sell or manufacture vegetable seeds or vegetable plants – it’s a flowers-only operation – the Swiss biotech giant that employs more than 26,000 people in more than 90 countries is currently the world’s No. 2 vegetable seed proprietor, according to its website.

Syngenta breeds, produces and markets “top-quality genetics to meet the needs of your retail-ready vegetable programs.” The company’s major field crops including corn and soybeans “are tailored for individual geographical regions to be high-yielding and reliable,” as well as “genetically enhanced with built-in insect resistance or herbicide tolerance.”

Gilroy Syngenta Manager Randy Armstrong says the company is aware of Friday’s protest, but “unfortunately, I’m not allowed to speak about it,” he explained. “I can’t comment on anything.”

Senior communications manager Lori Schwind with Syngenta Corporate Affairs, North America, issued a statement Thursday morning, saying the company is “aware of activity planned for Syngenta and respects people’s rights to voice their opinions, even when they differ from Syngenta’s.”

Formally known as “Occupy Monsanto” in protest of the American agricultural biotech company and leading producer of genetically engineered seeds, the global movement that kicked off Monday and involves 65 events staged around the world aims to “confront the industrial agriculture system head-on,” with participants who are “unified in pushing back GMO food into the lab from which it came.”

“The main point is that we’re getting the word out about industrial agriculture and the food we eat,” explained Adam Eidinger, Washington D.C.-based spokesman for Occupy Monsanto.

Staging a demonstration at Syngenta is “just as legitimate as Monsanto,” he maintains. “It’s part of the same industrial food complex. It’s a fair target.”

Protesters decided to demonstrate in Gilroy since “there wasn’t a Monsanto facility that we could find near San Francisco” – although a branch of Seminis, Inc., a leading vegetable and fruit seed company acquired by Monsanto in 2005, is located at 500 Lucy Brown Lane in San Juan Bautista.

Organizers of Friday’s gathering explain on their Facebook page that, “Syngenta Flowers Inc, another evil biotech company, was the closest one. Honestly, this is more than just about Monsanto. It’s about GMOs in general. Occupy Monsanto is a rallying call to let all biotech firms making GMOs know that they are on notice.”

Opposition against genetically engineered seeds – which are used by farmers for greater efficiency and higher output – run the gamut. Reported arguments include: Risks to human health and the environment, GMO seeds being too expensive, resistant to weed killer, and genetically contaminating traditional crops – which are important to organic farmers, as well as conventional farmers who export crops to countries that reject genetic engineering.

Monsanto itself has come under fire during the decades for “pollution, corruption,” and attempting to “take control of the world’s food supply,” as accused by one of many books against GMO seeds.

Eidinger says the protest in Gilroy is gaining steam through social media and organized carpool groups.

“It’s looking like this is a good one,” he noted. “They made their own flier and have done quite a bit of outreach.”

Approximately 31 people have RSVP’d to the 9 a.m. protest so far on the event’s Facebook page. The gathering is also being advertised on Craigslist and IndyBay, a non-commercial, democratic collective of independent Bay Area media makers and media outlets.

Owner Steve Costa with Headstart Nursery on Monterey Road in Gilroy believes the controversy projected onto the local Syngenta Flowers is misplaced.

“It’s kind of ridiculous to beat up a nice business” that’s an “asset to our area,” he rations.

“I don’t see the connection,” he added. “It’s huge company. That division (in Gilroy) doesn’t even know what the large seed division is doing.”

Executive Director Jennifer Scheer with the Santa Clara County Farm Bureau agrees the protest is “unfortunate,” but for additional reasons.

As the world population continues to increase exponentially, “we’re going to need to feed a third more people shortly with the same number of resources, or fewer,” she noted.

Genetic technologies employed by companies such as Syngenta have a lot of potential to address that reality, she reasoned.

Scheer can’t speak to the myriad arguments touted by activists such as Eidinger, who points out that GMOs in food have been linked to autism, obesity, food-based allergies, dropping fertility rates, birth defects and “weird” neurological disorders, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“We don’t know what the ramifications could potentially be either way,” Scheer speculated. “But at the same time, we don’t want to write it off and 20 years down the road have a mass food shortage worldwide.”

Occupy Monsanto was strategically timed with the one-year anniversary of the Occupy Movement, which began Sept. 17 on Wall Street in Manhattan and targeted, among numerous issues, corporate greed and corruption.

Protests this week mark the first global mobilization against GMOs in more than a decade, according to Eidinger.

Many individuals partaking in Occupy Monsanto are seizing the movement as a platform to dually voice their support for Proposition 37, the “California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act,” one of 11 statewide initiatives that is on the Nov. 6 ballot.

A sample of groups who oppose the initiative include Monsanto, Syngenta, Kellogg, Kraft, Smucker, Bayer, Pepsico, Coca-Cola, Nestle, Hershey, the California Farm Bureau, ConAgra Foods, California Chamber of Commerce and California Retailers Association. Syngenta is listed as a donor to the “No on 37” campaign.

Biotechnology labeling is not required by the Food and Drug Administration, although it has been adopted by more than 40 countries, including New Zealand, parts of Asia and Australia and most of Europe.

Others activists, such as San Jose protester Toby Nixon, are using the event at Syngenta Friday as an outlet to protest against Monsanto for personal reasons.

Nixon is attending the protest in support of his father, a former member of the U.S. Army Special Forces for 27 years who was exposed to Agent Orange – an herbicide and defoliant used by the U.S. military during its herbicidal warfare program in Vietnam.

Monsanto, whom Nixon likens to “a thug on a street corner,” played a primary role in manufacturing Agent Orange.

Spokesman Eduardo Abarca with Occupy Monsanto-Syngenta, a 24-year-old San Francisco student and activist, wants to bring awareness to the fact that Syngenta manufactures an herbicide called Atrazine, “one of the most commonly detected pesticides that we find in our water,” Abarca claims.

Developed by Syngenta, Atrazine “has long been a mainstay of corn, sorghum and sugarcane farmers for its control of a broad range of yield-robbing weeds,” according to Syngenta’s website. The herbicide increases U.S. corn crop yields by more than 600 million bushels annually, and “helps protect the environment and critical wildlife habitats by reducing soil erosion by up to 85 million tons each year.”

Abarca also claims that Monsanto sells seeds to Syngenta, although Schwind was unable to verify this statement as of press time.

Sgt. Pedro Espinoza with the Gilroy Police Department confirmed law enforcement is aware of the planned protest and has a contingency plan in case things get out of hand. Espinoza said he doesn’t anticipate any issues, so long as everyone abides by the law.

“Our role is to make sure everyone is safe while allowing demonstrators to exercise their First Amendment right,” he said. “We’ll probably have a couple officers at the entry and exit points just to make sure no one tries to storm the place or destroy any property.”

Abarca maintains the protest is a peaceful demonstration.

GMOs “seep into our food supply,” he says, “and that’s what we’re here for – to really bring awareness to this issue.”


Source: Gilroy Dispatch

The Garden Island: Kaua‘i is Ground Zero for Occupy GMO

Posted: September 18th, 2012 | Filed under: Press | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |
occupy monsanto tom laventure the garden island The Garden Island: Kaua‘i is Ground Zero for Occupy GMO Wendy Raebeck Vietnam USDA Tiana Laranio Syngenta SPAM Sol Kahn self empowerment Russell Kokubun rice Research Pioneer Hi Bred pesticides Michael Schultz Lopaka Baptista Kekaha keiki Kauai Josephine Bonaparte International Food Information Council Hawaii Department of Agriculture Hawaii Board of Agriculture Hawaii Ground Zero GMO Free gmo Fern Holland Eastside Dupont ConAgra Foods BASF Atrizine Agent Orange

Kaua‘i is Ground Zero for Occupy GMO

September 18, 2012, 1:00 am, Tom LaVenture – The Garden Island

LIHU‘E — Genetically modified organisms were the focus of a worldwide Occupy movement on Monday, and demonstrators in Lihu‘e said Kaua‘i is Ground Zero with experimental seed testing.

Most of the world was holding an Occupy Monsanto protest, a GMO company that has since departed Kaua‘i, but still has operations in Hawai‘i. The Lihu‘e demonstration focused on all major growers conducting testing, including Kaua‘i companies Syngenta and DuPont/Pioneer, along with ConAgra Foods, Inc. and BASF SE.

The issues were about expansion of testing fields from Kekaha to the Eastside, and the referendum to require labeling of GMO products in foods.

“I just want to know what I am eating,” said Sol Kahn, a demonstrator at the protest. “I don’t want to eat GMOs if I choose not to. It needs to be labeled with more information, and there needs to be more research.”

Kahn fears that poisons in the drinking water and soil is killing microorganisms and bacteria that are beneficial to life. The results of leaching pollution is killing the oceans, reefs and fish, he said.

“I am not necessarily against it (GMOs), but the science of it needs to be inspected,” he added.

Michael Schultz was demonstrating about the wealth of university research on pesticides and herbicides that damage the land and environment.

“I’ve been concerned about this for many years since the end of the cane industry,” Schultz said. “We are not just eating GMO food, but we are the guinea pigs for all these toxins.”

Fern Holland said she began researching the GMO issue five years ago as a student of environmental science, marine biology and wildlife management. She said studies from the Institute of Responsible Technology shows GMOs are not doing the right thing.

“They are chemical companies that are genetically modifying the world’s food supply to need chemicals,” she said.

The GMO issue should unify creationists and evolutionists, who agree that open testing of the world’s food supply is unacceptable. They also believe that breading across species is fundamentally wrong, she said.

“It might be an amazing technology to benefit pharmaceuticals and biotech,” she said, “but it needs to be treated unsafe until proven safe.”

Only numbers will make a difference, and Holland said that monthly community meeting for people on all sides of the issue will follow. She hopes to get 30,000 people to join the cause.

There are currently two lawsuits in state circuit and federal court against seed companies on Kaua‘i. The suits claim that violations of dust suppression orders are poisoning neighboring communities and are preventing organic farms from maintaining its status.

“The Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture supports all forms of legitimate agriculture, which includes conventional farming, biotech farming and organic farming,” said Janelle Saneishi, a public information officer for the department.

Hawai‘i Board of Agriculture Chairman Russell Kokubun was out of state and not available for comment.

Biotech farming is regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and once it approves a crop for planting, it is considered like any other plant, she said. Research crops must also follow USDA conditions, but once approved for release they are considered a deregulated crop and not experimental, she added.

As of now, there does not appear to be scientific evidence of harm, she said. Biotech is regulated by USDA permits including inspections quarantine branch facilities.

“We do have some input into how they grow and the inspectors look at how they are following permit conditions and USDA regulations,” she said.

Lopaka Baptista said he grows his own garden and wants his family to have good food on the table. The GMOs ruins everything, he said, referring to his brother who suffers from the effects of Agent Orange during the war in Vietnam.

He said that Atrizine in the water supply is also deadly for humans, pets, animals and birds of Kaua‘i.

“My concern is for my family, my friends and neighbors,” Baptista said. “We have a lot of keiki and we don’t want them growing up in an environment where you cant even drink the water anymore.”

“This issue is important to me and its pretty critical that people of Kaua‘i participate in a meaningful way,” Wendy Raebeck said. “I am really heartened because a demonstration just two years ago people were asking what GMO is, when it’s now a mainstream issue and it needed to happen.”

Corn, soy and canola are taboo items to Raebeck. She buys only organic tofu and soy milk.

“I’m against GMOs and I’m for labeling foods so that we know what is in it,” said Josephine Bonaparte, an organic farmer and grandmother. “I want a life free of pesticides and free from food that is pesticide resistant.”

Tiana Laranio said she was raised a “GMO youth” on microwavable groceries and canned SPAM, sausage and white rice. She suffered from reproductive and gastrointestinal problems at a young age and said she saw a connection with food allergies.

“I started becoming aware, and really once you wake up, there is not turning back,” she said. “I want to help other people to wake up for themselves.”

She said Occupy is about self-empowerment through community outreach and education. She said people can learn to read labels and demand that stores sell GMO-free products.

Once people know and they choose the alternative, then the natural forces of the free market will make the adjustment. As for Hawai‘i, she would like to see remediation of the ceded lands used for sustainable programs that get more people working with community gardens.

As for protesting, this is Laranio’s first time and she was motivated by the sudden growth of GMO fields around the island.

“I don’t agree with what the GMOs do, but if they do it then they should do it in a lab and not in the open air of Kaua‘i,” she said. “We are all being poisoned whether we realize it or not, and I am not a science experiment. I did not agree to this.”

Calls to Syngenta were not returned by press time.

DuPont Pioneer responded with resources that explain the work of GMOs on Kaua‘i at www.hciaonline.org.

More Hawai‘i seed industry surveys and information on biotech food safety is available from the International Food Information Council at www.foodinsight.org.


Source: The Garden Island

Big Island Weekly: Honoka’a to host “Occupy Monsanto” protest rally and concert on September 17

Posted: September 12th, 2012 | Filed under: Press | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |
marty dread concert 9 17 Big Island Weekly: Honoka’a to host “Occupy Monsanto” protest rally and concert on September 17 University of Hawaii UH Taro Patch Gifts Syngenta Pioneer Hi Bred Pioneer Pesticide Occupy Monsanto Monsanto Mendocino County Marty Dread Kawaiholehole Farm Island Dairy Inc Industry India Honokaa. HI Hector Valenzuela Hawaii Harry Kim GMO Labeling GMO Corn gmo GM Crops Eden Peart Dupont Dow Concert Britt Bailey Bitter Seeds Biotechnology Industry Organization biofuel BIO Big Island Dairy Big Island Bayer BASF Alan McNarie

Honoka’a to host “Occupy Monsanto” protest rally and concert on Sept. 17

By Le’a Gleason, Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

On September 17, Honoka’a will play host to a movement aimed at taking back our island food source. The goal is to target Monsanto, a self-proclaimed “sustainable agriculture” company which aims to “protect” what some argue are intrinsic rights that deserve to be left alone.

Eden Peart, owner and operator of Kawaiholehole Farm is among the many local farmers who are fighting back to resist the genetically modified foods (GMO) movement that is increasingly present on the island. “…[in] 1999, as a school librarian I signed up for a teacher workshop sponsored by the USDA and Monsanto called ‘Field of Genes.’ I was shocked to learn that Hawaii is the world center of unregulated GMO field testing,” Peart said.

Peart later attended a briefing to a select group of mainly government officials by Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), the major lobbying force at local and national levels whose members include Monsanto, Bayer, BASF, Dow/Pioneer and Syngenta. “The BIO spokesman said, ‘We can exploit Hawai’i’s biodiversity for biotechnology’ and ‘Hawaii is a good place to do business, because the people here are passive’,” Peart said.

Companies like Monsanto work to create GMO strains of corn and other produce that are resistant to pesticides and disease and are now doing so on-island. “Monsanto has been given some of the best agricultural lands in the state. Journalist Alan McNarie has documented Monsanto’s influence in the political sphere — donating to candidates and legislators who will do their bidding. They also have benefited from huge state tax breaks,” Peart said.

Peart decided to take action, and has organized “Occupy Monsanto,” a multi-faceted protest to speak out against Monsanto. In collaboration, a panel discussion will take place with speakers including UH Manoa’s Dr. Hector Valenzuela, an Extension Crop Specialist.

Like Peart, Valenzuela has a personally vested interest in the cause. “Because the GM industry, which owns the major vegetable seed companies, has had plans to modify most vegetable species, and because UH had a similar vision, I decided to look into the issues back in the 1990s,” he explained.

But Valenzuela’s search for answers was not always a successful or welcome one. “Some administrators within the UH College of Ag don’t feel that UH Ag professors should be asking questions about the safety of GM crops, nor that faculty should interact with consumers, organic farmers, or members of the public that have questions about the safety of GM crops,” Valenzuela added.

Valenzuela feels that it’s important for the community to get educated, and explained that in Hawaii the number one focus should be to grow food, and not to divert the land for subsidized agricultural uses, such as GMOs or biofuel.

“We are dealing with very powerful companies that control a bulk of the pesticide industry; because these companies have considerable connections with the powers that be in Hawaii and because these companies may exert considerable influence in terms of agricultural policy in the state, I feel that it is important that the community become aware of who they are,” Valenzuela said.

Adding to the lineup of events, reggae musician Marty Dread will perform, with one special song in particular dedicated to the cause, “Say No to Monsanto.” Dread commented that “[the song] came about because I saw a film called “Bitter seeds,” which is a true story of the thousands of farmers in India who have committed suicide because they lost their land and way of life due to corporate farming.

In India alone, a farmer kills himself every 30 minutes because they can no longer make a living. Monsanto is the chief culprit in this scenario because they sell genetically modified seeds that resist roundup (Monsanto’s top selling chemical) so the farmer must spray the field with these awful chemicals and everything else dies except the GMO crop.”

Facts like these are what alarm Peart. “Hawaii [needs] to rise to our responsibility, to using our unique resources to grow identity-preserved (GMO-free) seed for the world. We cannot do that until we eradicate and ban all GMO production. During Harry Kim’s first tenure as mayor, he confirmed that the only GMO crop we had on the Big Island was papaya,” noted Peart.

Peart went on to explain that, “Island Dairy, bought by a huge Utah dairy corporation, is growing and feeding their cows Monsanto’s ‘Round Up Ready’ GMO Corn. This is in clear violation of the Hamakua Agriculture Plan. Now anyone growing natural corn is at risk of contamination. What’s worse is that throughout Hawaii, without the public’s permission, GMO seed companies are now field testing many Genetically Modified crops including sunflowers.”

The “Occupy Monsanto” movement will also protest at Island Dairy, as well as stage a ceremonial planting of “identity-preserved” corn following the upcoming event.

Presale tickets for the September 17 benefit concert are available at Taro Patch Gifts in downtown Honokaa through Sept 16 for $10, or for $12 at the door.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m., with a panel discussion at 6:15 p.m.. featuring Valenzuela, Britt Bailey, attorney and Big Island resident who helped draft the successful Mendocino County, California GMO-Free ordinance, and Ku Ching Hawaiian Scholar and activist. Music is from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.

For questions, find the movement on facebook or call (808)775-7159 or gmofreehawaii@gmail for more info.


Source: Big Island Weekly
Source: South Kona Youth

Occupy Syngenta! Gilroy, CA, 9:00AM, 9/21

Posted: September 11th, 2012 | Filed under: Events | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |
OccupyMonsantoFlier Gilroy Occupy Syngenta! Gilroy, CA, 9:00AM, 9/21 Syngenta Protest Occupy Monsanto Gilroy GCU Demonstration Decontamination Event California CA Activism

Does your Genetic Crimes Unit have a flier that you would like to share here?
Please send it with a short description to Incident@Occupy-Monsanto.com

Stop Monsanto From Poisoning Hawai’i: Genetic Engineering Chemical Warfare

Posted: June 14th, 2012 | Filed under: Video | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

For over 20 years, Hawai’i has been the global center for the open-field testing of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO’s), including pharmaceutical crops. Over 5,000 experimental tests have been conducted by Monsanto, Dow, Dupont/Pioneer, Syngenta and BASF that spray chemicals on an almost daily basis on our most valuable lands. They are supported by tax-breaks, and beneficial relationships with landowners, regulators and politicians. We estimate GMO companies own or lease 40,000 — 60,000 acres that are sprayed with over 70 different chemicals.

A new vision for Hawai’i would promote small farms that grow chemical-free produce, employ our youth and restore the indigenous ahupua’a system. Hawai’i has less than 3,000 acres of certified organic farmland, which is 0.27% of Hawaiian farmland.

Kamehameha Schools is Hawaii’s largest private landowner. Despite Kamehameha’s public statements about sustainability and conservation, they lease substantial amounts of land to multi-national biotech firms, including Monsanto, Dow, Dupont/Pioneer and Syngenta for GMO open field tests and seed corn production.

Kamehameha is the only institution with the land, capital and resources to reduce our food imports, that are now over 90%, and ensure that Hawai’i does not run out of food in case of natural disasters or rising oil prices.


Presented by Hawai’i GMO Justice Coalition with support from the Organic Consumers Association & Millions Against Monsanto


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