ESSAY OF THE WEEK
Dr. Oz Flip Flops as Mass Media Attacks Intensify
Less than two months after telling millions of TV viewers that organic food is “worth the investment,” America’s most popular TV doctor is singing a different tune. In the December issue of Time, Dr. Oz described organic foodies as “elitist” – part of the 1% – and claimed that conventional foods are nutritionally equivalent to organic foods.
In the cover story, Dr. Oz directly contradicted his October 19 attack on the controversial Stanford study, published in September, which concluded that organic fruits and vegetables are no better than their conventionally grown counterparts. The famous TV doc devoted an entire program to lambasting the Stanford study because it didn’t address the toxic health consequences of foods loaded with pesticides.
Why the flip-flop? And what’s up with all the highly publicized mass media attacks on organics? Are Big Food, Big Ag and Big Biotech getting nervous?
Read the essay here
Stop the ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ and Other Dangerous Riders!
Monsanto could get everything it wants for Christmas, unless we convince legislators this week to strip both the 2013 Agriculture Appropriations Bill (H.R. 5973) and the Farm Bill of dangerous riders that would give the biotech industry unprecedented power and immunity from not only an already-weakened review process, but also from federal law.
Here’s what’s at stake. Attached to the Agricultural Appropriations Bill is the “Farmers Assurance Provision” (Section 733) which is nothing more than a sneak attack on American farmers, consumers and the environment. If passed, this rider, aptly renamed the “Monsanto Protection Act,” would give Monsanto immunity from federal law by allowing the biotech industry to plant genetically modified crops, even if a federal court has ordered the planting be halted until an Environmental Impact Statement is completed.
On the Farm Bill side, Monsanto lobbyists have bought themselves several anti-regulatory riders that would effectively gut the USDA’s ability to regulate the use of genetically engineered organisms (GMOs). The riders would speed up the review and approval process for new GE crops, and authorize the USDA to consider exempting certain GE crops from any review at all.
Now that Congress has returned, both bills are on the agenda. The Agriculture Appropriations could become part of an Omnibus Appropriations Bill and the Farm Bill could be included in a deficit-reduction agreement to avoid the “fiscal cliff.
Thankfully, we have at least one friend in Congress. Representative Peter DeFazio (D-OR) is circulating a letter to all of his colleagues in Congress opposing the “Monsanto Protection Act.” By signing our action alert below, you can ask your legislators to sign on to Rep. DeFazio’s “Dear Colleague” letter. You’ll also be asking your legislators to oppose the Farm Bill riders.
Don’t let Monsanto get away with this latest attack on farmers, consumers and the environment!
SUPPORT THE OCA AND OCF
Help Stop the Attacks on Organics
Organics are under attack. From every which way.
The USDA, headed by Tom Vilsack, Monsanto’s Man in Washington, is greasing the tracks for approvals of new GMO crops and Biotech-friendly laws that will devastate farmers, consumers and the health of our planet.
The FDA, an organization that’s supposed to protect the people but whose real loyalty lies with corporate lobbyists, is being guarded by Michael Taylor, another former Monsanto gun.
And lately, Big Media is looking more and more as if it’s on the payroll of Big Ag and Big Pharma, too. In September, the New York Times, Associated Press and CBS News all picked up and ran with a dubiously funded study from Stanford University. The study told consumers that there’s no nutritional difference between organic fruits and vegetables and their conventional counterparts. The study failed to mention that conventional food is loaded with pesticides and pumped full of hormones and antibiotics. But that didn’t stop mainstream media from giving it plenty of play.
Even Dr. Oz, once a big promoter of organics, has gone over to the dark side. His latest cover story in Time shockingly contradicts what he’s been telling loyal viewers for years: Eat organic, stay healthy.
As more people wake up to the reality of our broken, unhealthy food system, we can expect the attacks on organics to grow louder. And more frequent. We can’t let Big Money destroy the progress we’ve made in the past few years. We have to work harder than ever, in Washington, in the media and on the ground. We’re committed to doing all this and more, but we need your help. Please contribute today.
Thank you! Donate to the Organic Consumers Association (tax-deductible, helps support our work on behalf of organic standards, fair trade and public education) Donate to the Organic Consumers Fund(non-tax-deductible, but necessary for our legislative efforts in California and other states)
Stop Agent Orange Corn! USDA Planning Pre-Christmas Approval for Spring 2013 Planting
Remember Agent Orange? The 2,4-D chemical concoction commissioned by the U.S. Army to defoliate jungles and destroy food crops during the Vietnam War? It could soon be coming to a grocery store near you. Within a week, the USDA could approve Dow’s new “Enlist” brand corn, genetically engineered to resist massive doses of the herbicide 2,4-D. Unless we stop it.
The list of reasons to tell USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack to reject Dow’s Agent Orange Corn is long. A large body of evidence indicates major health problems result from exposure to 2,4-D, including cancer, reproductive problems, neurotoxicity, and auto-immune disorders. And 2,4-D is devastating to the environment. It’s currently the seventh largest source of dioxin pollution in the US. The use of this toxic herbicide is projected to increase 50-fold if the USDA approves this crop.
The USDA has already received more than 450,000 comments opposing Dow’s new GE corn. But it has a long history of avoiding protests and bad press by issuing unpopular decisions right before the holidays.
We have one more week to show Sec. Vilsack that the American people are united in opposing dangerous new GMOs that put farmers’ crops and livelihoods, local economies, and the health of farmers, farm workers and rural communities at risk.
Sign this petition to USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack urging him to reject Agent Orange corn!