A Mixed Decision From the U.S. Supreme Court on GE Alfalfa

A Mixed Decision From the U.S. Supreme Court on GE Alfalfa

The United States Supreme Court handed down its first ever decision concerning genetically modified crops and it is a mixed result for farmers, consumers and environmental groups.


Next Generation GM Soybeans From DuPont

Next Generation GM Soybeans From DuPont

From the company that brought you plastics and rubber (DuPont) comes a genetically modified soybean that is altered to exhibit alleged health benefits.


USDA Begins National Survey of Honey Bee Pests and Diseases

USDA Begins National Survey of Honey Bee Pests and Diseases

A 13-state survey of honey bee pests and diseases that will help USDA scientists to determine the factors that may be contributing to the decline of honey bee colonies nationwide.


Solar power brings World Cup to Ghanaian village

A Ghanaian village will get the chance to see its national heroes play in the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa, despite being outside the national grid, through a scheme promoting the use of solar energy.

The 6,900 people living in and around Oboadaka, an hour from capital city Accra, will be able to watch matches live in an attempt to persuade them of the benefits of solar power.


Greening the 2010 Soccer World Cup – Reducing the Carbon Footprint

Greening the 2010 Soccer World Cup - Reducing the Carbon Footprint

With the 2010 Soccer World Cup just days away and with the world’s eye focused on South Africa, we decided to take an exciting departure for our publication to examine the environmental impact of the tournament. We look closely at World Cup’s carbon footprint and the innovative programs undertaken to reduce it.


British Academic Resigns From FSA Group Over GM

Professor Brian Wynne was vice chairman of a steering group set up by the Food Standards Agency to gauge the public mood on genetically modified (GM) food. Prof Wynne said that he resigned when it became clear that the consultation was biased in favour of GM. Earlier in the week another member of the group, Dr Helen Wallace, Director of the non-governmental organisation Genewatch, resigned in protest at the Food Standard Agency’s allegedly close links with the agri-chemical industry.


Latest USDA Research On Colony Collapse Disorder

Latest USDA Research On Colony Collapse Disorder

Recent research from USDA points to a correlation between a fungus and a family of viruses that may be working together to cause the Colony Collapse Disorder in honeybees. Many still believe, however, that other causes such as pesticide use in agriculture and GMOs that produce pesticides, also play a role in the collapse.


Why Big Chicken May Be Obama's Next Antitrust Target

Last week, current and former chicken growers, mostly from the South, gave attorney general Eric Holder and USDA secretary Tom Vilsack accounts of a lack of competition, poverty-level earnings and bait-and-switch tactics among the big chicken producers. “This system takes hard working farmers and makes them indentured servants on their own land,” Kay Doby, a former chicken farmer from North Carolina, told a crowded room at Alabama A&M University.


Hunt’s Ketchup Replaces High Fructose Corn Syrup With Sugar

Hunt's Ketchup Replaces High Fructose Corn Syrup With Sugar

In a somewhat positive news for consumers, Hunt’s ketchup product line will no longer contain contain high fructose corn syrup, ConAgra Foods announced on Monday. The high fructose corn syrup will be replaced with sugar from sugar cane.


GMOs: Higher Production Doesn't Mean Wider Acceptance

The planting of GMOs in Brazil and Argentina — both among the world’s top producers of GM crops — indicates that growth in GM crop production has guaranteed neither wide-scale social acceptance of the technology nor benefits for small-scale farmers.


EPA Imposes Pesticide Limits to Protect Salmon in Spite of Industry Refusal to Comply

EPA has announced plans to place additional limitations on the use of three N-methyl carbamate pesticides – carbaryl, carbofuran and methomyl – to protect endangered and threatened salmon and steelhead in California, Idaho, Oregon and Washington, in compliance with the Endangered Species Act. The decision comes after manufacturers of the chemicals diazinon, malathion and chlorpyrifos refused to adopt the limits voluntarily.


GE Alfalfa At the Supreme Court: Analyzing Oral Arguments

GE Alfalfa At the Supreme Court: Analyzing Oral Arguments

We review and provide legal analysis of the oral argument in the Monsanto v Geertson matter heard recently by the Supreme Court.


USDA Approves Genetically Modified Trees For Trial Planting

USDA Approves Genetically Modified Trees For Trial Planting

Ignoring criticis and finding their concerns to be “unlikely,” on May 12, 2010 APHIS approved for continued field tests the planting of experimental genetically modified eucalyptus trees across seven states.


Beekeepers turn away from chemical cash deals after safety fears

The British Beekeepers’ Association is moving away from cash sponsorship deals with pesticide manufacturers after concerns that the chemicals may be harmful to bees. The Association is looking for other sources of funding. According to TimesOnline, bee numbers in Britain are down 54 per cent in 20 years.


How to Buy Ethically Raised, Organic Meats, Even at a Chain Supermarket

It’s well documented that the conventional factory-farm method of raising animals for food – especially cattle – is an energy-intensive, inhumane (for animals and workers), water-guzzling, poisonous-emissions-releasing, earth-polluting endeavor… Omnivores who have no interest in giving up their bacon or steaks should switch to sustainable, humane versions of their favorite proteins. Immediately.


Promises of Higher Yields With GM Seeds Refuted

The claims by biotechnology corporations that genetic engineering increases crop yields, and is therefore necessary to feed a growing world population, have also recently been refuted. Failure to Yield, a report by the Union of Concerned Scientists published in April 2009, is the first to evaluate in detail the overall yield effect of genetic engineering. Specifically, the report concludes “no currently available transgenic varieties enhance the intrinsic yield of any crops. The intrinsic yields of corn and soybeans did rise during the twentieth century, but not as a result of GE traits. Rather, they were due to successes in traditional breeding.”


Your Veggi Burger May Be Toxic

Until recently, not many consumers were aware of the widespread use of a toxic and environmentally damaging chemical, hexane, in the manufacturing of “natural” soyfoods such as vegetarian burgers, nutrition bars, and protein shakes. The use of chemical solvents such as hexane is strictly prohibited in organic food processing, yet its use is widespread in the “natural” soy industry, including in some products labeled as “made with organic soybeans,” such as Clif® Bars. Hexane, a neurotoxin, is listed as a “hazardous air pollutant” by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and grain processors, including soy processors, are responsible for more than two-thirds of all hexane emissions in the United States.


Farmers Cope With Roundup-Resistant Weeds

Monsanto has crops resistant to glyphosate. Bayer is selling cotton and soybeans resistant to glufosinate, another weedkiller. Monsanto’s newest corn is tolerant of both glyphosate and glufosinate, and the company is developing crops resistant to dicamba, an older pesticide. Syngenta is developing soybeans tolerant of its Callisto product. And Dow Chemical is developing corn and soybeans resistant to 2,4-D, a component of Agent Orange, the defoliant used in the Vietnam War.


Obama’s Controversial Trade Appointment Slipped Through Unchallenged

Obama's Controversial Trade Appointment Slipped Through Unchallenged

President Obama’s appointment of Dr. Siddiqui to the post of the Chief Agricultural Negotiator at the U.S. Trade Representative’s Office, guarantees that the corporate agenda of biotech and pesticides industry will be promoted around the world, ensuring the continued global spread of GMOs and pesticides.


Deconstructing Monsanto’s PR Message on GE Alfalfa

Deconstructing Monsanto's PR Message on GE Alfalfa

Monsanto claims that it is pursuing a legal battle over the right to grow genetically modified alfalfa because it is concerned with farmers, fairness and choice. Yet Monsanto’s appeals in the case have a lot more to do with protecting its right to continue selling GM seeds and pesticides.


U.S. Supreme Court Hears Arguments in Monsanto v. Geertson Seed Farms

U.S. Supreme Court Hears Arguments in Monsanto v. Geertson Seed Farms

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments in the case of Monsanto v. Geertson Seed Farms. At stake is a decision issued by California District Court which issued a permanent injunction against any further planting of genetically engineered alfalfa crop in 2007.


Marketplace Radio is Accepting Public Comments on Monsanto Endorsements

Marketplace Radio is Accepting Public Comments on Monsanto Endorsements

After airing another arguably favorable report on genetically modified crops without acknowledging Monsanto as Marketplace’s sponsor, the program is soliciting listeners’ comments as to whether the program should announce Monsanto’s sponsorship when airing reports discussing Monsanto and their products.


New Study Finds Widespread Pesticide Contamination of Beehives

New Study Finds Widespread Pesticide Contamination of Beehives

A new study by Penn State University found widespread and remarkably high level pesticide and other toxicant contamination of bee hives. The study sheds light on how modern day agriculture contributes to Colony Collapse Disorder.


Genetically Modified Bananas Harvested In Australia

Genetically Modified Bananas Harvested In Australia

The first genetically modified bananas were recently harvested in Australia. But there is little reason to celebrate as, like other GMOs, genetically modified bananas bring to the table the same unanswered questions and concerns about their impact on health and the environment.