TAKE ACTION: Tell President Obama, USDA to Stop Undermining Organics

Written by Max Goldberg on August 3, 2014. Follow Max on Twitter: @livingmaxwell.

saveorganicpetitionDespite the fact that organic is more popular than ever and companies such as Walmart and Target are significantly boosting their offerings, one would think that support for organic in Washington, D.C. would be growing as well.

Sadly, that is not the case.

Not only is support for organic not growing, the Obama administration and his USDA are doing everything they can to weaken organic standards and dismantle the authority of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), an independent, 15-member advisory board which helps to oversee the industry and make important recommendations.

THE SUNSET RULE

One of the most important policies that we have in organic is something called The Sunset Rule.  What this means is the following. Read More »

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Another Reason to Eat Organic – It is Essential for Managing Climate Change

Written by Max Goldberg on March 1, 2014. Follow Max on Twitter: @livingmaxwell.

Ever since I started eating organic food in 2001, people have asked me – why do you eat organic?

The most common answer that I give is that I don’t want to consume toxic pesticides or GMOs. That seems to resonate with people and they can easily understand it.

Over the last few years, however, my answer has evolved.

Of course, I mention the pesticides, but I also talk about how the chemicals used in conventional agriculture ruin our water supply (94% of our water now contains Atrazine) and sicken farm workers (residents in the farming community of Central Valley, CA are forced to drink bottled water because the tap water has become so contaminated from pesticides). Read More »

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5 Essential Ways to Avoid Genetically-Modified Food (GMOs)

Written by Max Goldberg on February 18, 2014. Follow Max on Twitter: @livingmaxwell.

The other day on Facebook, I shared a post that I wrote a while ago called Consuming Genetically-Modified Soy is a Very, Very Risky Proposition. (If you are unfamiliar with the health risks of eating genetically-modified food, please read this article.)

As a follow-up from that post, I got an e-mail from a reader asking how she would know if she is eating genetically-modified soy or not.

Figuring that many other people may have that same question, I wanted to explain how to avoid eating genetically-modified food (GMOs) and the things that you need to look out for.

USDA-Organic-Seal

#1 – Buy USDA Certified Organic Products  GMOs are prohibited in organic food. Therefore, look for products that contain the USDA certified organic seal.

Even though GMOs are prohibited in organic, organic crops can be contaminated by GMOs through cross-pollination and drift. (That is why the proliferation of GMOs is a real threat to organic farming. The co-existence of GM-crops and organic crops is simply not possible, despite what our government would like us to believe.)

USDA rules require that organic certifiers test samples from at least 5% of the operations they certify on an annual basis. Read More »

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Top 5 Organic Food News Stories for 2014

Written by Max Goldberg on January 1, 2014. Follow Max on Twitter: @livingmaxwell.

As we head into 2014, there are several stories that I’ll be keeping a close eye on, all of which could have a monumental impact on the organic food industry.

While there easily could have been a lot more, here are My Top 5 Organic Food News Stories for 2014.

SINGLE INGREDIENT LABELING OF GMOs

Over the last few months, the rumors about single ingredient labeling of GMOs have really been heating up.

First off, what is “single ingredient labeling of GMOs”?

Single ingredient labeling of GMOs means that any food where there is only one ingredient – apples, corn, papayas, etc. It is just that one piece of food, nothing else. Read More »

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Recap of NY State’s GE-Labeling Hearings, Interview with Andrew Kimbrell from The Center for Food Safety

Written by Max Goldberg on August 4, 2013. Follow Max on Twitter: @livingmaxwell.

Last week was a first for me.

Even though I have attended a countless number of meetings, seminars and conference calls for the labeling of genetically-engineered (GE) food, and have been involved with many marches, rallies, and fundraisers across the country, I had yet to attend an official GE-labeling political hearing — until the one held a few days ago in New York City.

And let me tell you, it was an eye-opener.

Ever since the narrow loss of last year’s Proposition 37, California’s GE-labeling ballot initiative, the momentum in the U.S. for the labeling of GE-food has never been stronger.

GE-labeling legislation is in various stages in 25 different states. Connecticut and Maine have passed GE-labeling bills, albeit with major provisional clauses, and the state of Washington will be voting on its own bill later this year. Read More »

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Infected Salmon Eggs are Found in the Proposed GE-Salmon — Safety and Credibility are Now Major Issues

Written by Max Goldberg on December 20, 2011. Follow Max on Twitter: @livingmaxwell.

I have been writing about the genetically-engineered salmon issue for quite a while now, and last week I put up a story about how Congress held hearings for the first-time ever about this FrankenFish.

As I mentioned in the post, it was a great step in raising awareness of this abhorrent technology and hopefully it will never get approved.

AquaBounty, the company that is trying to receive FDA approval for genetically-engineered salmon, has been telling the public that this “fish” is safe – safe for humans and safe for the environment, both of which is completely absurd in my opinion.

Now we have documentation that calls into serious question the credibility of AquaBounty and its willingness to tell the truth.

According to recently released documents (PDF file), AquaBounty’s research site in Canada was contaminated with a new strain of Infectious Salmon Anaemia (ISA), the deadly fish flu that is devastating fish stocks around the globe. Read More »

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Congress Holds First Ever Hearing on Genetically-Engineered Salmon – An Extremely Positive Step

Written by Max Goldberg on December 15, 2011. Follow Max on Twitter: @livingmaxwell.

When you follow the organic industry closely and care deeply about health, it is very easy to get frustrated with how our leaders place such little importance on organic.

While we do have a small number of organic advocates in Washington D.C., the overall policy that emanates from our government is one that supports genetically-modified food, largely because the GM-industry uses its vast resources to influence politicians and regulatory bodies.

And if you think the GM-industry hasn’t gotten to Obama, think again.

Not only did he renege on his promise to label genetically-modified food while on the campaign trail in 2007 but he supported the deregulation of genetically-engineered alfalfa, a policy that has disastrous implications for the organic dairy and meat industries. Read More »

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