Barbara H. Peterson
And so it begins…
GMO alfalfa is contaminating conventional crops in the state of Washington, and who knows elsewhere. We can safely assume that anywhere this crop is planted, contamination will occur. We can also safely assume that our seed supply is being irreversibly contaminated also, and the longer this is allowed to go on, the worse the contamination will be. Thank you USDA and Monsanto for bringing this scourge on the planet.
Alfalfa is a crop that when planted, lasts for around 6 years without having to replant. In fact, you cannot reseed bare spots because the roots are so deep and pervasive that they choke out new seeds of anything, including weeds. No one here that I know of sprays alfalfa with herbicides because it doesn’t need it. So, Land O’ Lakes’ Forage Genetics and Monsanto genetically engineer a perfectly good seed that requires no herbicides into a crop that now requires herbicides, and for what? Profit and control. Anyone who farms alfalfa knows this. Why on earth would they switch?
According to Charlotte VanGenechten of Millbrook, Ont. Canada, the farmers around her are eagerly awaiting GMO alfalfa seeds. Why? Because they say that they cannot grow anything else on their soil. Canada is the third largest producer of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in the world. If they cannot plant any new fields with normal seed because they have been regularly using Roundup Ready seeds, then that means that they are poisoning the soil and making it unusable through constant application of Glyphosate, the herbicide designed to kill everything but genetically engineered Roundup Ready crops such as the GM alfalfa currently contaminating the state of Washington.
To understand why these farmers cannot grow conventional seed adequately in soil that has been polluted with Glyphosate, one has to understand that it is not the conventional seed that is the problem but the poisons used on the soil that is making it inhospitable to anything but crops that are genetically engineered to withstand it. So, instead of cleaning up their soil, they are going to continue the poisoning by planting GMO alfalfa. A quick fix built on a false premise.
Charlotte VanGenechten: A farmer told me that you can’t plant any new fields without it [Glyphosate] and have a decent crop and went on to tell me about his fight against a rare form of cancer in his cheek and his brother is still having problems with throat cancer and my vet who was a great guy but bought the myths died of throat cancer and another farmer died of an aggressive form of skin cancer. THESE GUYS ARE ALL DYING OF CANCER.
Soil depleted of nutrients due to heavy spraying of Glyphosate will not support normal seed growth because Glyphosate acts as a metal-chelator, binding minerals in whatever is not genetically engineered to withstand it allowing pathogens to kill it. It also binds minerals in the soil and in the crop that is sprayed with it, but the crop is genetically engineered to survive the onslaught.
Recognising glyphosate’s mechanism of action is the key to understanding how it may exert detrimental effects on the health of crops, animals, and the environment alike. Glyphosate is a broad-spectrum herbicide that interacts with a range of physiological processes in the plant and its environment. Although it is most commonly recognised to work through inhibition of the plant enzyme 5-enolpyruvylshikimate-3-phosphate synthase (EPSPS) involved in the production of aromatic amino acids in the shikimate pathway, it was actually first patented as a strong metal-chelator that binds to metals including manganese, magnesium, iron, nickel, zinc and calcium, many of which are important micronutrients acting as co-factors for plant enzymes in different physiological processes including the plants’ defence system. Indeed, it is actually through chelation of manganese that the EPSPS enzyme is inhibited.
Rendering plants more susceptible to disease through glyphosate’s pathogenic activity is actually the way it exerts its herbicidal activity. This is done not just through immobilising nutrients in the plant but also impacting the agricultural system as a whole. Consistently, if glyphosate does not reach the root of a plant or the plant is grown in a sterile soil, the plant is not killed.
Once in the soil, glyphosate is later immobilised through the chelation of cations, and is therefore very stable and not easily degraded. However, phosphorus (including phosphorus fertilisers) can desorb the herbicide, making it active once again in the soil.
So, if we simply keep on spraying and spraying, what does that say about the ability of the soil to support normal crops and the nutritional value of the food grown in it?
GMO-free? Not so much…
The following excerpt from an Ohio State University Extension Fact Sheet written in 2001 makes it clear that GMO-free will no longer be an option as GM crops continue to expand:
As market restrictions for various transgenic (genetically modified organism or GMO) crops (e.g., Bt-corn, Roundup Ready soybeans and corn) continue, there is increasing interest among growers in determining the presence of GMOs in crops. Growers producing non-GMO grains for specialty markets need to verify that there is no GMO contamination, or that contamination levels meet tolerance levels established by an end user. The default standard for certification as GMO free has been taken to be zero in many cases, although experience shows that meeting such a standard will be difficult. There have been proposals for setting maximum allowable levels in the range of 1 to 3%, and it is likely that some tolerance level above zero will be accepted in the future.
It is now 12 years later, and genetically engineered crops have increased greatly. So, even GMO-free is not necessarily or will not necessarily be 100% GMO-free when contamination rises to the level that every living thing is affected.
The Age of Attrition
We are entering an Age of Attrition in which everything we eat or drink is or very soon will be contaminated. We are being ground down with each and every GMO that enters our biosphere through the air, water and soil, contaminating everything we touch and put in our mouths. We are being poisoned slowly, deliberately, and with forethought and malice. This is genocide – a polite term for mass murder, and the murderers get Nobel Peace prizes and stand at the head of state bowing to adoring masses. This is the world we live in. Get used to it, because it is going to be a long hard road to survive what is coming. And ultimately, the ones who choose to make a difference and stand for good, clean food will thrive because we are doing what is right and not compromising with that which we know is destroying the planet and our very existence. As for the ones perpetrating this madness? Not so much…
If you are not for a complete ban on GMOs, face it, you are supporting coexistence. And there can be no coexistence with GMOs. They act as predators, devouring normal crops in their wake. So tell me again, please, how labeling GMOs and accepting them in our food supply through inadequate and misleading labeling will help us combat the GMO scourge before the genetic contamination level reaches every living thing on the planet, because I really want to know…
©2013 Barbara H. Peterson