Tag Archives: USA

A patent application proving that science knows all about the deadly effects of organophosphates . . .

12 Jun

Richard Bruce draws attention to a patent application proving that science knows all about the deadly effects of organophosphates . . .

Richard writes:

I discovered the attached patent application made in the USA some time ago. If anyone ever had any doubts about just how much science knows about the deadly effects of organophosphates then this paper should show them that the claims made about there being no long-term effects are complete nonsense.

There is big money to be made in patenting treatments for illness but to do so they must explain the patent in detail. I once did all the legal work for a patent and it is a fascinating process. Ill health forced me to abandon it after a successful application! In this case that process means they had to describe the adverse health effects which they intend to treat. To this end the application lists the following effects of the poisons.

Have campaigners active in other fields thought of accessing the relevant patent applications?

Postscript 

Whilst searching for a link to enable the reader to access a clearer text, I came across a piece of research published in 2016 – Method of treating organophosphate intoxication, WO 2016036724 A1, which, as Richard says, shows “just how much science knows about the deadly effects of organophosphates”. Go to https://www.google.com/patents/WO2016036724A1?cl=en

 

 

 

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A surge in America’s GM-free imports

10 May

 “Although corn and soybean go primarily into cattle and poultry feed, consumers increasingly want milk and food products to be free of GM ingredients”.

A Bloomberg report continues: “A growing demand for organics, and the near-total reliance by U.S. farmers on genetically modified corn and soybeans, is driving a surge in imports from other nations where crops largely are free of bioengineering. Imports such as corn from Romania and soybeans from India are booming, according to an analysis of U.S. trade data released Wednesday by the Organic Trade Association and Pennsylvania State University.

Organic imports US 2014“Sales of foods certified by the U.S. as free of synthetic chemicals or genetic engineering reached $35.9 billion in 2014, an 11% increase over 2013 and about 5.1% of U.S. grocery spending. The organic sector’s average annual growth of about 10% is triple that of overall food sales, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture and trade association data.

“According to trade data compiled by the US Organic Trade Association and the Pennsylvania State University, the rising demand for organic foods has pushed up the import bill for corn and soybean, the two most important GM crops being cultivated in America. Although corn and soybean go primarily into cattle and poultry feed, consumers are increasingly wanting milk and food products to be free of GM ingredients”.

Straws in the wind?

The New York Times also reported in January that Monsanto’s earnings fell 34% in the first fiscal quarter as South American farmers cut back on planting corn, reducing demand for the company’s biotech-enhanced seeds. The company said its business was also affected by reduced cotton planting in Australia and a shift in timing for its chemical business.

devinder utube 6Analyst Devinder Sharma notes that: “US imports of organic soybean from India has more than doubled to $73.8 million in 2014. He called on the two pro-GM scientists to debate independent scientific findings as opposed to focussing only on industry funded research. His views were supported by two other spokesmen, one from Maharashtra, where open field crop trials of brinjal, maize, rice, chickpea and cotton are taking place and another from India’s Greenpeace: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=klW7fD1wb7s

As US imports more organic foods on consumer preference, Indian biotech companies are ‘pushing for GM crops’

Sharma reports that public opinion as seen in grocery sales data indicates a gradual shifting to foods grown without the use of chemicals and GM. However, in India, four State Governments – Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Punjab – have allowed field trials of GM crops. He sees pressure mounting on other State Governments to fall in line. The biotech industry led by the Association of Biotec Led Enterprises (ABLE) has reportedly written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to expedite the regulatory process for clearing the field trials.

Competing lobbies: the biotech industry v Soybean Processor Association

ajit-singh2Resistance from the Soybean Processor Association of India (SOPA) led former Agriculture Minister Ajit Singh to oppose research trials of GM soybean. The industry claimed that importers preference for Indian soymeal would be lost once contamination from GM crops becomes obvious. India is at present the biggest exporter of rice; Sharma comments that allowing GM rice field trials, even if excluded from areas such as Orissa where it is believed to have originated, would risk contamination. He emphasises that utmost caution should be exercised before the country is opened up for field trials of GM crops which:

  • have, in most cases, led to the doubling in the application of chemical herbicides like glyphosate; use has increased to over 283.5 million pounds in 2012;
  • have led to the emergence of superweeds in some 60 million acres of crop land
  • and, to date, have shown no increase in crop productivity.

Sharma notes that the annual increase in sales of foods free of synthetic chemicals and GM ingredients in the US indicate a rising preference for organically produced foods and that in the White House Michelle Obama grows only organic food in the sprawling gardens and is known to serve organic food to guests, ending:

The consumer preference for GM-free foods in the US is growing rapidly. We hope that this commercial imperative will eventually lead to the winding down of the industry’s drive to grow GM crops.

Radio 4 smoothing the way for GM crops? Skewed interviewing by Charlotte Smith

1 Mar

farming today header

A sad awakening to hear on Farming Today, by chance, the poorest exchange on GM technology it is possible to imagine – inaccurately billed as an ‘exploration’: 

farming today blurb

Fifteen years ago in the late ‘90s, Radio 4’s Farming Today ‘faced the chop’ because of its courageous, truthful coverage of BSE and FMD issues and is now bland and establishment-friendly, proud that its ‘the rural agenda’ – and that of Countryfile – has made countryside “relevant to people’s lives as both a playground and a source of affordable and safe food.”

Note the playground is given first priority, when food – the staff of life – is placed second – a long way behind tourism and the import-export merry-go-round promoted by government and probably all ‘mainstream’ political parties.

Charlotte’s leading questions and comments, emotional not rational, included:

  • Are we holding back progress?
  • Is regulatory process hampering the development of GM crops?
  • We need GM crops to feed the world (quoting Mark Walport) – a theory discredited by facts presented by many, including geneticist Dr Michael Antoniou.

This notion of progress was used  in the 60s to build defective concrete tower blocks and justify other dubious projects – and now the taxpayer levied HS2.

Charlotte asserted that the rest of the world is using the technology (mainly for animal feed) but look at the pro-biotech ISAAA’s table:

GMO using conutires

The Rothamsted advocate could not have been given an easier ride

One of Charlotte’s opening remarks was “We need progress”  –  but surely not progress towards resistant weeds, insect pests and damage to health. None of these problems were even mentioned by the opponent of GM crops from the Soil Association. Were guidelines been imposed beforehand as a condition of appearing?

Challenge

MH 2 & farmer from MissouriThe BBC is challenged to invite farmer Michael Hart to speak in such a debate.

No laboratory scientist, in his short documentary he investigated the reality of farming genetically modified crops in the USA ten years after their introduction. He travelled across the US interviewing farmers and other specialists about their experiences of growing GM.

During the making of the film he heard problems of the ever-increasing costs of seeds and chemicals to weeds becoming resistant to herbicides.

The BBC is also challenged to present the facts about the high levels of ill health in a generation of Americans ‘nourished’ on meat from cattle fed GM maize and soy.

revolving_doorOr would this present too many obstacles to acceptance of GM technology, end the hospitality to media and close the biotech industry’s revolving door to the public relations sector, scientists and politicians?

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Have you seen Michael Hart’s video ‘GM, farmer to farmer’, via Youtube or his website?

27 Aug

michael hart youtube

On the GM crops, farmer to farmer website we read that Michael Hart, a conventional livestock family farmer, was investigating the reality of farming genetically modified crops in the USA ten years after their introduction. He travelled across the US interviewing farmers and other specialists about their experiences of growing GM.

During the making of this level-headed film, available on YouTube, he heard problems of the ever increasing costs of seeds and chemicals to weeds becoming resistant to herbicides.

US farmers told him that a single pass (one herbicide application) is a fallacy and concurred that three or more passes are the norm for GM crops.

As weeds have become more resistant to glyphosate there has been a sharp increase in the use of herbicide tank mixes (most of them patented and owned by the biotech companies). Astonishingly some farmers were now having to resort to hand labour to remove weeds.

Farmers have seen the costs spiral, for example, the price of seed has gone from $40 to over $100 per acre over the last few years.

Farmers referred to co-existence (the ability to grow GM crops next to non-GM and organic crops) as “unsolvable” and say that it does not work.

In summary:

  • A huge “weed” problem.
  • The myth of co-existence.
  • Farmers trapped into the genetically modified biotech system.
  • Huge price increases for seeds and sprays- well beyond the price increases farmers have received for their crops.
  • In short, the film shows US farmers urging great caution to be exercised by UK and European farmers in adopting this technology.

We hope that Michael will be able to make a similar film in India.

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Is GM corn “substantially equivalent” to non-GM corn ?

22 Apr

A comparison of US Midwest non-GM with GM corn shows shockingly high levels of glyphosate as well as formaldehyde, and severely depleted of mineral nutrients in the GM corn: Dr Mae-Wan Ho

Ends:

Obviously, the analysis should be repeated on more samples of GM and non-GM corn grown side by side to see if these remarkable differences could be replicated. If so, we can only conclude that previous data submitted by and for the companies that found GM corn “substantially equivalent” to non-GM corn must have been fraudulent, and the perpetrators need to be brought to justice.

This article can be found on the I-SIS website at
http://www.i-sis.org.uk/Stunning_differences_of_GM_from_non_GM_corn.php

 

USDA given temporary power to allow planting, harvest and sale of GM crops, even if not approved by court

26 Mar

Last week, the U.S. Senate approved HR 933, a short term funding measure designed to avoid a March 27 government shutdown. Hidden within HR 933 is section 735, the “Farmer Assurance Provision”, which gives the USDA the power to allow the planting, harvest and sale of genetically engineered crops, even if a court rules that they were not properly approved. Laura Sesana writes in the Washington Times:

“Short of a Presidential veto, the provision is a certain victory for genetically engineered foods.

“In the past, if a court ruled that a genetically engineered crop was not properly approved by USDA and could pose a risk to health or the environment, the court could halt its planting and sale, pending a review of the approval. This so-called “biotech rider” effectively strips courts of this power and allows the production and commercialization of the crop during the appeals process.

“The provision was slipped in anonymously while the resolution was in the Senate Appropriations Committee, chaired by Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD). The rider should have been brought in front of the Agricultural or Judiciary Committees, but was not. Senator John Tester (D-MT) proposed an amendment to strip section 735 from the bill, but the amendment never came up for a vote. According to the Center for Food Safety, there were no hearings on this provision and most Democrats did not know it was part of the larger bill.

“Many are critical of the way the provision made it into the budget resolution. Andrew Kimbrell, Executive Director of the Center for Food Safety said last week, “In this hidden backroom deal, Senator Mikulski turned her back on consumer, environmental and farmer protection in favor of corporate welfare for biotech companies such as Monsanto . . .”

Hundreds of national and local organizations have come out in opposition of the bill, including the National Farmers Union, Food Democracy Now, American Civil Liberties Union, Sierra Club, Environmental Working Group, Stonyfield Farm, Nature’s Path, Consumers Union, National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, and Public Citizen. Laura continues:

“Many view the passing of this provision as the result of effective lobbying by Monsanto and Political Action Groups (PACs) that support genetically engineered crops. According to MapLight, since January 1, 2009, PACs that support genetically engineered crops have donated $7.5 million to the campaigns of current members of Congress and $372,000 to members of the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Companies like Syngenta Corp, Cargill, Archer Daniels Midland, Scotts Miracle-Gro, Minn-Dak Farmers Coop, Southern Minnesota Beet Sugar Coop, National Cotton Council, and American Farm Bureau regularly contribute to Congressional campaigns. Monsanto alone, has given $540,000 and American Crystal Sugar, by far the largest donor, has contributed $3.3 million since the beginning of 2009.“

The full text of HR 933 is available here, the provision is on p.78, section 735. The petition asking President Obama to veto 735 is available here.

More on Monsanto, GM Watch, March 15th http://www.gmwatch.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=14702:how-monsanto-outfoxed-the-obama-administration

 

 

GM salmon: what are the minor health and environmental risks found by FDA?

24 Dec

 

A GM salmon could become the first genetically-modified animal in the world to be declared officially safe to eat, after America’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is reported to have ruled:

  • it posed no major health risks,
  • it posed no major environmental risks.
  • it is unlikely to pose major health or environmental risks,
  • it is highly unlikely to pose major health or environmental risks.

It is heartening to read the comments in the Denver Post:

http://neighbors.denverpost.com/viewtopic.php?p=2800570&sid=3ed038f0e5871b03c1cdde58bf1b4335

 

In the interests of balance: pro-GM salmon scientists: (little real risk) http://nanopatentsandinnovations.blogspot.co.uk/2011/08/scientist-urges-government-ruling-on.html