GE Free Comox Valley

Say No to GMO

GE Free CV Sept e-news ; Action for National Organic Week Sept 19-27,2015

Friends of GE Free CV,

Welcome to September!

  1) Update of our GE Free Purchase Policy in Courtenay

  2) Estuary corn fields: expanded Letter to the Record Editor( unpublished)

  3)  ACTION for  National Organic  Week Sept 19-27 ,2015

  4) Tannadice farm to use Non GMO corn next season.

  5) Insight on GMO  research process not often discussed, by plant biologist J. Latham


1) A brief update of our GE Free  Purchase policy  for Courtenay .

Courtenay’s new Chief Financial Officer  is now studying the report his staff wrote on the financial cost of implementing  a GE Free purchase policy. We do not know the content of the report nor when  it will be officially  discussed and voted. We are keeping an eye on the Council’s agenda  each week . We will notify you via this list serve and on our website Please come to show support at that crucial meeting.

Since our presentation on May 4th , we received a few more endorsement from businesses and organisations.The 5th Street Florists ,Comox Valley Beekeepers Association and soon the Seed Savers of Comox Valley. These 2 organisations’ support will give us more weight and solidarity.

 We hope to bring these letters to Ciity Hall in the near future with the postcards from our July 1st event.

If you know of businesses who will support us we would love to get their endorsement


2) Letter to the Editor of Record: (Expanded version not published )

Courtenay’s estuary farmland has fields of corn ready for harvest. The fields are an image of abundance and plenty. Beautiful rows of corn with no weeds in between.

Weeds and unwanted plants are only found on the edge of the fields. Do you know what kind of corn grows there?

Can I give you a clue?

This rich and fertile land, close to the sea and an integral part of the sensitive estuary ecosystem, is planted with genetically engineered (GE) corn for animal feed.

GE corn is designed to tolerate the pesticide glyphosate (a.k.a. Round-Up Ready). By spraying this pesticide the fields are guaranteed weed free, but at what price!! This field is so close to our estuary and is a  feeding ground for migrating birds and other wildlife. Tests have found glyphosate to be damaging to aquatic and soil micro organisms, frogs, bees and other wildlife (see “5 Environmental Impacts of Glyphosate” pdf ).

The increasing rate of water contamination by glyphosate and the potential impact on humans is also raising alarms in North American and Europe. For example, a 2013 peer-reviewed study in the international journal Interdisciplinry Toxicology by Samsel and Seneff linked glyphosate exposure to gut bacteria disruption and the rapidly growing incidence of gluten intolerance and celiac’s disease (Samsel, A. & Seneff, S., Interdisciplinary Toxicology. 2013 Dec; 6(4): 159–184).

My own concern is intensified by the recent assessment of Glyphosate by the World Health Organisation’s Cancer agency (IARC) in March 2015, stating that the world’s most widely used weedkiller is a ‘probable human carcinogen.’ That should definitely be a wake-up call for the dangers posed by hazardous pesticides. Based on this new information, should we not review and redesign policies and practices to advance a healthy ecosystem for our estuary?

Keep an eye on this beautiful field the next time you drive by the estuary and write to Ducks Unlimited Canada about what you think of this ( I hope you will join me in asking them to require agricultural practices that are appropriate for this sensitive habitat.

Linda Cheu

3)  ACTION  during National Organic Week Sept 19-27, 2015

   GE Free CV is calling all to support the National Organic Week by purchasing

2 extra Organic products in your weekly grocery shopping.

A simple story to illustrate : if I give one dollar to GE Free BC, it is nothing. But if each person in the SKY Dome at a hockey game were to give one dollar. That would be a huge donation which even 20 buckets would not be  enough  to collect.

If all of BC consumers got 2 extra organic  items there will be a big jump on the stats of the grocery stores. IN their world, If there is a 2% of change in any section, the manager will report that as significant. We need to support the organic movement and what better way to show our appreciation and allegiance  than during this special   week.   ______________________________________________________________ 

4)  Tannadice Farm

In an interview with the episode 76, Tannadice farm said they will be using NON GMO feed next year.

This is in response to their clients preferences. A very positive move by our  favourite local pork producer. 

5.   This article is an excellent summary of GMO concerns.
A seasoned scientist speaks out on how real research is circumvented to suit corporate and financial goals.

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