GE Free Comox Valley

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Monthly Archives: May 2015

COMOX VALLEY BOASTS MARCH AGAINST MONSANTO SUCCESS

by Susan Holvenstot

MAM 2015 CV the march begins

MAM 2015 CV the march begins

Photo submitted by Gaylene Rehwald

Over 100 people rallied on Sat, May 23, 2015 at Simms Park at noon to March Against Monsanto (MAM) and to support a GE Free world. It was a colourful and family friendly event on a beautiful afternoon.

Monsanto is the producer of Roundup, a herbicide made from glyphosate that is designed to kill everything except genetically modified “Roundup Ready” plants. Roundup Ready corn is planted in the Ducks Unlimited Comox estuary lands the marchers passed.

Arzeena Hamir, of Amara Farm, gave a clear strong keynote presentation, a personal “Letter to Monsanto.”

“Dear Monsanto. We’re sick of you. You’ve had 20 years to fill our food system with your genetically engineered canola oil, your high fructose corn syrup and your GMO soy. You’ve made us all sick with Round-up sprayed all over our grains and our potatoes. What did we get in return? Sky-high rates of gluten intolerance and gastric issues.”

Another highlight was Kevin Flesher, CV poet laureate, giving a strong rendition of his poem “Blue Dot” about our collective problems on planet earth.

“Blue dot
Hovering in space
The only earth we’ve got…
Blue dot
The only refuge for those who are thirsty,
or like to breathe
With forests, lakes and seas…
Blue dot
The only home
I’ve ever known…”

Many beautiful unique signs were made; the Denman Raging Grannies sang; Tom and Rick provided live music from the 50’s; and drummers drummed before the march left Simms Park just after 1 pm. They walked along Comox Road, over the 17th Street bridge, with brief stop at Courtenay City Hall, where letters were delivered, and back to Simms Park.

Susan Holvenstot, a member of the hosting organization, GE Free Comox Valley explained that Courtenay Council is considering a GE Free Purchasing Policy, “modelled after one passed last year in Duncan. It would complement a buy-local policy and show support for many Comox Valley farmers.”

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See photos, poem, and speeches under the MAM tab on this website.

MAM 2015 at Courtenay City Hall

MAM 2015 at Courtenay City Hall

Dropping off letters of support for a GE Free Purchasing Policy at Courtenay City Hall

Visit the MAM tab for more photos of the March Against Monsanto event in the Comox Valley.

Speeches at Courtenay MAM. May 23 , 2015 Inara Turner & Arzeena Hamir’ letter to Monsanto

SPEECHES  AT  MARCH AGAINST MONSANTO  IN COURTENAY, MAY 23 , 2015

Inara Turner   & Arzeena  Hamir’s letter

MAM poster 2015 b

March Against Monsanto 2014 Comox Valley

March Against Monsanto 2014 Comox Valley

Inara Turner’s Speech on Glyphosate

Hi everyone, my name is Inara Turner and I’m a grade 7 student at Huband Elementary School.

. At the last march against monsanto I made a speech talking about the whole

subject of GMOs. This year I’m talking about Glyphosate (Roundup). Glyphosate is a

herbicide discovered in 1970 by a Monsanto chemist. It quickly became popular with

farmers, even more so that Monsanto invented glyphosate-resistant crops so it would kill

weeds without killing crops. This herbicide takes out vital minerals from plants that also give

it flavour, so you’re pretty much eating a piece of cardboard. After attacking plants it seeps

into the soil where in just one teaspoon it can kill over 1 million micro-organisms. My

generation will have soil with no minerals and it will be lifeless. Microorganisms are essential

in soil. They give soil life and feed plants. In your body you have over 10x more bacterial

cells than human cells and without them you would die. We need to support food and

farming systems that promote life not kill it.

At my school we have a garden where we encourage students to get their hands dirty and

see what growing real, healthy food looks like. The food grown in the garden is put into the

school salad bar where over 100 students and teachers get a meal filled with food from right

outside the door. It’s that close! So the next time you’re buying food think about how it was

grown and how it got to your plate. Thank you

_______________________________________________________________________________

Arzeena Hamir’s open letter to Monsanto.:

Dear Monsanto,

Nice Try

You had the world believing that we could feed ourselves without your GMOS, your

Round-up, and your associated neonics. We poisoned our soil, our water, our bees, and

our very own bodies believing your lies. But no more.

Dear Monsanto,

You Lied.

You said your technology would be good for the environment and would cut down on

pesticide use. But herbicide sales have increased 130% since we believed your lies. We

even have superweeds that are resistant to round-up and our farmers are having to use

stronger chemicals like 2,4-D and Dicamba. Your so-called safe Round-up is now

classified as a carcinogen.

Dear Monsanto

You tricked us.

You said that if we hung out with you everyone would like us. But when our flax was

contaminated with GMOs, Europe shut their door to us. Japan no longer wants our

canola, and 60 countries around the world have either banned or controlled the input of

GMOs.

Dear Monsanto,

We’re awake now.

We know how to grow, to forage, to fish, to hunt and to cook. We’ve begun turning our

front and backyards into gardens and food forests, we’ve begun supporting local farmers

markets and Community Supported Agriculture (CSAs) and we know the taste of REAL

FOOD!

Dear Monsanto,

We’re sick of you.

You’ve had 20 years to fill our food system with your genetically engineered canola oil,

your high fructose corn syrup and your GMO soy. You’ve made us all sick with Round-

up sprayed all over our grains and our potatoes. What did we get in return? Sky-high

rates of gluten intolerance and gastric issues.

Dear Monsanto,

The party’s over.

We can take it from here. Our community supports organic farmers and our farmers

know how to feed us. We are growing! Every year we see new farmers wanting to grow

our kale and carrots, baby bok choi and broccoli. We don’t need you.

Dear Monsanto,

Even fast food doesn’t want you  Monsanto’s Worst Fear May Be Coming True: The End-Game for GMOs? | Global Research - Centre for Research on Globalization

Chipotle has kicked out your GMOs, and the rest are falling over themselves to stop the

hormones and antibiotics. It’ll only be a matter of time before we see the clown man

himself proclaim his burgers are going GMO-free.

Dear Monsanto,

It was definitely you, not us.

It’s time to take the hint. Stop feeding us lies. Stop feeding us poison, and stop trying to

feed us PERIOD!

We’ve got it from here.

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Every Kids Got A Right To Know May2115001Master 1080p – YouTube

March Against Monsanto – TOMORROW, May 23, 2015 – Simms Park, 12 noon in Courtenay

Bring your friends and enjoy the sunshine.

via Every Kids Got A Right To Know May2115001Master 1080p – YouTube.

Every Kids Got A Right To Know May2115001Master 1080p – YouTube

March Against Monsanto – TOMORROW, May 23, 2015 – Simms Park in Courtenay at 12 noon

Bring your friends, Enjoy the Sunshine.

via Every Kids Got A Right To Know May2115001Master 1080p – YouTube.

CNN Interview Zen Honeycutt on GMO Wheat and GMO Health Issues: Behind the Scenes – YouTube

March Against Monsanto | March Against Monsanto 2015 Official Press Release

WORLDWIDE – On May 23, 2015, hundreds of thousands of concerned individuals will gather across 38 countries and 428 cities to join in peaceful protest against the Monsanto Company as a part of the March Against Monsanto grassroots campaign. This movement seeks to raise awareness to the dangers surrounding Monsanto’s genetically modified seeds and cancer-linked herbicide Roundup.

The campaign comes as the demand for GMO labeling and non-GMO food alternatives continues its exponential climb, with states like Vermont enacting mandatory GM labeling legislation that will require food corporations to let consumers know if their products contain GM ingredients.

via March Against Monsanto | March Against Monsanto 2015 Official Press Release.

March Against Monsanto Comox Valley, Saturday, May 23, 2015 at Simms Park, 12 noon

March Against Monsanto | March Against Monsanto 2015 Official Press Release

 

Monsanto’s Worst Fear May Be Coming True: The End-Game for GMOs? | Global Research – Centre for Research on Globalization

Monsanto’s Worst Fear May Be Coming True: The End-Game for GMOs? | Global Research - Centre for Research on Globalization

March Against Monsanto – May 23, 2015 – EVERYWHERE

The decision of the Chipotle restaurant chain to make its product lines GMO-free is not most people’s idea of a world-historic event. Especially since Chipotle, by US standards, is not a huge operation. A clear sign that the move is significant, however, is that Chipotle’s decision was met with a tidal-wave of establishment media abuse. Chipotle has been called irresponsible, anti-science, irrational, and much more by the Washington Post, Time Magazine, the Chicago Tribune, the LA Times, and many others. A business deciding to give consumers what they want was surely never so contentious.

via Monsanto’s Worst Fear May Be Coming True: The End-Game for GMOs? | Global Research – Centre for Research on Globalization.

Anti-GMO lobby pitches GE-free purchasing idea in Courtenay

Show your support by attending the March Against Monsanto on May 23, 2015 at Simms Park at 12:00 noon.

Anti-GMO lobby pitches GE-free purchasing idea in Courtenay

When Arzeena Hamir appeared before Courtenay council April 20 to promote an anti-genetically modified organism (GMO or GE) perspective, it was clear the particular tact had been carefully selected by the Amara Farm owner. She was appearing on behalf of a GE Watch Comox Valley delegation in an effort to convince the City to adopt an anti-GMO purchasing policy. [Comox Valley Echo, April 24, 2015]

via Anti-GMO lobby pitches GE-free purchasing idea in Courtenay.

Anti-GMO policy request growing into hot debate

The call for Courtenay to adopt an anti-genetically modified organism procurement policy is beginning to germinate into an issue that could grow out of hand.

A motion that directs staff to look at the economic implications and impact of creating the policy narrowly passed in Monday’s regular council meeting.

Some members of council did not want to proceed with it because they’ve only heard one side of the issue. That was on April 20, when a representative from GE Watch Comox Valley, Arzeena Hamir, appeared before council to request the city adopt an anti-GMO purchasing policy. The news that the city might consider the request, resulted in a high number of emails to council from residents with contrasting views.

“It is a very divisive issue,” said Mayor Larry Jangula. “We’ve had emails and conversations from both sides of this, and each accused the other of not knowing the science, and each side accusing the other of not having the training nor the background. I am not going to get into that.”

Jangula showed a letter to council from the Farmers’ Institute talking about a hundred farms expressing concerns that if the city chooses to adopt a G.E. free policy, “it would cause a problem to farmers that actually provide products in this community.”

As I’ve told you before, any of these issues, as a former policeman, I think it’s really hazardous to make a decision based on one side of an argument. We heard one side. If we are going to move forward with this, we need to hear the other side.”

Councillor Erik Eriksson also had difficulty endorsing the request as he feels it is beyond the scope of their mandate.

“They want the city of Courtenay to take sides in this issue,” said Eriksson, who then suggested that they drop the matter.

“To me, to have an anti-GMO procurement policy is saying the City of Courtenay has taken a position on this issue and I think that’s problematic.”

Hamir stated on April 20, GE Watch wanted Courtenay to adhere to the 2013 Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities/Union of BC Municipalities resolution that recommended the province prohibit the importing, exporting and growing of plants and seeds containing genetically engineered DNA and to make the raising of GE animals illegal.

Councillor Bob Wells suggested they direct staff to prepare the report and while they’re doing that, perhaps allow “the folks that would have an opposing view some time to come in as a delegation so we can actually get informed as much as possible to make the best decision.”

However, CAO David Allen warned a “back-and-forth thing with delegations on an issue we really can’t have a final say over, is not probably good use of resources.”

Allen went on to say they will follow the will of council but it’s a controversial issue and staff is “not qualified to weigh in on the science.”

“No matter what you hear in front over the course of whatever number of delegations you have, you’re honestly, from staff’s standpoint, spinning your wheels,” said Allen. You’re getting involved in areas well-important that are not influenced by council’s decisions in a great way.”

Councillor David Frisch, who made the motion, said the most important thing he wants staff to focus on is the economic impact.

Councillor Rebecca Lennox said, “being in a position where we have some control over what happens to our agriculture, to me is very important.”

Councillors Frisch, Wells, Lennox and Doug Hillian voted in favour of directing staff to look at the economic impact of a GE Free Procurement Policy. Jangula, Eriksson and Theos opposed it.

via Anti-GMO policy request growing into hot debate.