News

17.01.2017

Burkina Faso abandons GM cotton

Burkina Faso is one of the world’s top cotton producers, but its sales have taken a hit on the world markets. Some blame GM cotton, which the government now wants to phase out by 2018.

14.01.2017

We are fed up with agro industry! - Berlin Demonstration

Agri businesses: Take your hands off our food! Together for healthy food, more rural and ecological farming and fair trade

Farming and regional food are at risk. Agri business and the Federal Government of Germany are pushing ahead with the industrialisation of agriculture and food. As a consequence the number of farms is collapsing globally, artisan food products are disappearing, as hundreds of millions of people are suffering from hunger or malnutrition. Meanwhile, pollution, biodiversity loss and the climate crisis becomes more and more crucial.

We want farms instead of agri business!

(.....)

We are farmers, food producers, beekeepers, bakers, gardeners, animal, environmental and nature activists, development workers, critical consumers and committed young people.

We are calling on you to join us as we fight for a more rural and ecological agriculture on the 7th international “We are fed up!” demonstration.

We need healthy food for everyone! We will make the transformation in food and farming a core political issue in this year. Policies and practices need to change so people and not corporations determine our food. We are fed up!

Saturday 21 January, 2017, in Berlin.

14.01.2017

GM 2.0? 'Gene-editing' produces GMOs that must be regulated as GMOs

The EU is considering the exclusion of gene-edited plants and animals from GM regulations, write Janet Cotter & Ricarda Steinbrecher. However gene-edited organisms clearly fall within the definition of GMOs in both European and international law. They also present real risks to the environment and human health - and must be regulated like any other GMOs.

There has been a lot in the news recently about the ethics of gene editing in humans.

But, as yet largely unnoticed is that the European Commission is considering whether the gene-editing of plants and animals, for example in agriculture, be exempted from regulation or even falls outside the scope of EU law governing genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

In other words, whether the products of gene-editing should be labelled and regulated as GMOs, or allowed to enter the food chain untested and unlabelled.

If you believe the proponents' claims, gene-editing is nothing more than the 'tweaking' of DNA in plants and animals - nothing to be concerned about.

But the reality is that gene editing is simply GM 2.0, with many of the same concerns and problems as the GM crops that Europeans have already rejected.

13.01.2017

Hands OFF Our Food Systems! Small Farmers NOT Corporates Feed Africa

This lobby paper Who will feed Africans: Small-scale farmers not corporations! produced by the partnership between FoEA and ACB, makes the compelling case for African agriculture to transition towards agroecology and food sovereignty, recognising and strengthening the role of small scale farmers, rather than benefitting few large scale corporations with detrimental ecological, socio-economic, and nutritional outcomes. It argues strongly for a shift in the approach to agricultural development, from a chemical approach to a biological approach; from a Green Revolution, to an Agroecological Revolution; putting smallholder producers at the centre.

The paper points to extensive evidence that shows that agroecological farming systems can provide the foundation to feed a growing and urbanised African population, protect livelihoods and preserve and regenerate ecological resources to sustain future generations.

13.01.2017

Forecast On Non GMO Yogurt Market Global Industry Analysis and Trends till 2026

Non-GMO and organic foods, apart from natural food stores, Non-GMO products now came in mainstream and sold in major supermarkets nationwide. It has been noticed, consumer is demanding more organic & Non GMO products. Non-GMO yogurt is where the presence of toxic persistent pesticides, artificial hormones and antibiotics, for production of the milk is zero. The use of Non-GMO reached nearly 11% on food and beverages since 2013, the demand has been increased of Non-GMO products. In the US, a survey was conducted for GMO and Non-GMO food products, Maximum Americans agreed on the fact that GMO food product are not safe to eat and also not good for health.

12.01.2017

Croatia to Introduce “GMO Free” Food Labels?

Agriculture Minister supports the idea.

There are growing demands in Croatia that food which has absolutely no genetically modified organisms should be officially labelled as “GMO free” since, at the moment, by purchasing food in Croatia and in other parts of the EU consumers cannot be absolutely sure that they are not buying small doses of GMOs as well, reports Večernji List on January 11, 2017.

Currently, the fact that there is no GMO label on the food implies that there are no GMOs in it at all, which is not necessarily true. Although there is no reason to think that the EU could soon change its legislative framework related to the presence or absence of GMOs in food, it is not unrealistic to hope that individual EU member states, including Croatia, could adopt regulations labelling as GMO-free those products which contain absolutely no GMOs.

11.01.2017

Citizens’ initiative aimed at banning glyphosate gets the go-ahead

Brussels has agreed to the launch of a European Citizens’ Initiative on banning glyphosate in the EU. EurActiv France reports.

The controversy over the authorisation of the chemical glyphosate could find its way back to the European Commission’s table through a European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) supported by environmental NGOs, including Greenpeace.

The European executive yesterday (10 January) announced the reception of an ECI inviting the Commission to “propose to member states a ban on glyphosate, to reform the pesticide approval procedure, and to set EU-wide mandatory reduction targets for pesticide use”.

Simply titled ‘Ban Glyphosate’, the initiative will be officially registered on 25 January. From this date, EU citizens will have 12 months in which to add their signature to the document.

One million signatures

11.01.2017

GM crops and herbicides: Time to reassess risk assessment methods

New studies published by Nature’s journal Scientific Reports are questioning the basis of how to determine the safety of products used in agriculture and at home

Below is an important commentary on the two recent studies published in Scientific Reports.

The first study showed that GMO maize NK603 is not substantially equivalent to its non-GMO counterpart.

As Prof Jack Heinemann comments in the article below, “NK603 was engineered to live after being treated with herbicide (e.g. Roundup). Regulatory approvals for cultivation of NK603 date back 17 years and it is approved for cultivation in 13 countries. It is one of the oldest and most widely adopted GM products in history. There should be no surprises from this maize if substantial equivalence is being used effectively to evaluate safety.”

11.01.2017

MEPs want to see more glyphosate data

EFSA continues "to withhold sections of the studies that, in our view, are crucial for an independent assessment”, say MEPs

The four Green MEPs who requested access to unpublished industry studies on glyphosate have put in a second request to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) asking for more information.

In their letter to Dirk Detken, the head of legal and regulatory affairs at EFSA, MEPs Heidi Hautala, Benedek Jávor, Michèle Rivasi and Bart Staes say that they welcome the fact that EFSA sent them the unpublished raw data on the genotoxicity and carcinogenicity of glyphosate, and EFSA’s recognition that their motivation was to allow independent scrutiny of the data.

10.01.2017

NWI farmers satisfy overseas taste for non-GMO foods

Tim Stoner has farmed in the Valparaiso area since 1989 and always grew the genetically modified, or GMO corn, that's prevalent throughout the United States.

But about a dozen years ago, he and other area farmers discovered they could reap an extra reward by growing non-GMO corn for foreign markets. (.....) “If there is a market for non-GMO, whether GMO is perceived as a problem or not, and they are willing to pay more, there will be guys to provide it," Stoner said.

The market for non-GMO products has increased enough that the U.S. Agriculture Department began issuing weekly market reports on them in the fall of 2015 as well as on other specialty markets such as pasture-raised pork, free-range chicken, tribal-grown commodities, and farm-raised catfish.

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Farmer Dan Sutton's family has grown crops around Lowell for five generations. He has concentrated on non-GMO products since the early 2000s. He harvests about 100,000 bushels of non-GMO corn a year for Cargill and, for a couple of years, also grew non-GMO soy beans, which he said was mostly for the Asian market.

“It all comes down to seeking more value for what we produce,” Sutton said.