Category Archives: Ethics

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The solution in the US/abroad? Increasingly worse chemicals being dumped on our soil and ending up in our rain/waterways/drinking sources. If you only care about your wallet, it’ll mean that water treatment plants will have to upgrade their facilities to treat these chemicals (Blanchester OH just had to spend $6mil) and that cost will come out of your wallet as a rate payer. In the meantime, it’s slowly affecting your health because you’re drinking these chemicals on a daily basis….

 

Brazil farmers say GMO corn no longer resistant to pests

SAO PAULO Mon Jul 28, 2014 6:59pm EDT

(Reuters) – Genetically modified corn seeds are no longer protecting Brazilian farmers from voracious tropical bugs, increasing costs as producers turn to pesticides, a farm group said on Monday.

Producers want four major manufacturers of so-called BT corn seeds to reimburse them for the cost of spraying up to three coats of pesticides this year, said Ricardo Tomczyk, president of Aprosoja farm lobby in Mato Grosso state.

“The caterpillars should die if they eat the corn, but since they didn’t die this year producers had to spend on average 120 reais ($54) per hectare … at a time that corn prices are terrible,” he said.

Large-scale farming in the bug-ridden tropics has always been a challenge, and now Brazil’s government is concerned that planting the same crops repeatedly with the same seed technologies has left the agricultural superpower vulnerable to pest outbreaks and dependent on toxic chemicals.

Experts in the United States have also warned about corn production prospects because of a growing bug resistance to genetically modified corn. Researchers in Iowa found significant damage from rootworms in corn fields last year.

In Brazil, the main corn culprit is Spodoptera frugiperda, also known as the corn leafworm or southern grassworm.

Seed companies say they warned Brazilian farmers to plant part of their corn fields with conventional seeds to prevent bugs from mutating and developing resistance to GMO seeds.

Dow Agrosciences, a division of Dow Chemical Co, has programs in Brazil to help corn farmers develop “an integrated pest management system that includes, among other things, the cultivation of refuge areas,” it said in an email.

Another company, DuPont, said it had not received any formal notification from Aprosoja. The company’s Pioneer brand has been working with producers to extend the durability of its seed technology and improve efficiency since Spodoptera worms were found to have developed resistance to the Cry1F protein, it said in a statement.

Monsanto Co also said in a statement that it has not been formally notified by the group. The other company, Syngenta AG, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Tomczyk, who also spoke for Brazilian farmers during a dispute over seed royalty payments to Monsanto that ended last year, said Aprosoja encouraged the planting of refuge areas. But he said the seed companies have not given clear instructions.

“There are barely any non-GMO seeds available … it is very uncomfortable that the companies are blaming the farmers,” he said. Aprosoja hopes to reach a negotiated agreement with the seed companies, but if all else fails farmers may sue to get reparations for pesticide costs, he added.

Brazil is harvesting its second of two annual corn crops and expects to produce 78 million tonnes this crop year, slightly less than last season’s record. Domestic prices recently fell to their lowest in four years because of abundant supplies.

($1 = 2.223 reais)

(Reporting by Caroline Stauffer; Editing by Lisa Shumaker and Steve Orlofsky)

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‘Sustainability’ Gone Awry: China Turns Sewer Waste Into Cooking Oil

Video

“Gutter oil” industry takes street slop and animal scraps and renders it into black-market cooking oil.

Considering the rampant amount of food waste that occurs in America, the move toward thriftiness in regards to utilizing scraps and leftovers is a promising development.

For restaurants (and home cooks) who work with whole animals, from chickens to 300 pound hogs, rendering the fat from scraps of meat is one delicious way to make sure as much of the animal can be utilized as possible.

In China, however, that mentality has been taken to disgusting, dangerous ends in what’s known at the Gutter Oil Industry.

In a video posted on AlterNet, produced by Radio Free Asia, a woman is shown pulling slop out of the sewer, scooping up globs of crud into a bucket. “Her slop eventually winds up in a processing plant like this one,” says the narrator, the screen showing a bubbling vat, “where its combined with other animal fat refuse to create recycled cooking oil.”

Remember London’s “fatberg”? Gutter oil is basically a rendered, refined cooking oil based on similar such waste. Unsurprisingly, the cheap cooking oil has been found to contain carcinogens and other toxins. But in China, oil, a requisite for wok-cooking, is in high demand, and the cheap price of gutter oil draws customers despite the grease’s source. The video says that an estimated 1/10 of oil sold in China is gutter oil.

And that sizable market means this form of recycling is big (albeit illegal) business. As AlterNet’s Rod Bastanmehr notes, the government recently moved to shutdown black market production in 13 cities.

“The shutdown occurred after a five-month investigation yielded a reported 3,200 tons of gutter oil,” Bastanmehr writes, “which authorities estimated had been sold to a staggering $1.6 million profit.”

Hybridized Grass Begins Releasing Cyanide, Kills Texas Cattle

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Hybridized Grass Begins Releasing Cyanide, Kills Texas Cattle

This entry was posted on August 14, 2013 at 11:59 am

Hybridized Grass Begins Releasing Cyanide, Kills Texas Cattle

When a herd of cattle suddenly died in Central Texas investigators were dispatched to the scene to investigate and now preliminary test results are blaming the animals deaths on the genetically modified grass the cows were consuming.

The cows which were grazing on an 80-acre patch owned by Jerry Abel in Elgin, Texas died several weeks ago.

Abel tells CBS Station KEYE that the grass should have been perfect since it had “a lot of leaf, it’s good grass, tested high for protein – it should have been perfect.”

The grass was a form of Bermuda known as Tifton 85 and it has been around for 15 years on the Abel farm. Unfortunately something went horribly wrong several weeks ago and according to Abel:

“When our trainer first heard the bellowing, he thought our pregnant heifer may be having a calf or something. But when he got down here, virtually all of the steers and heifers were on the ground. Some were already dead, and the others were already in convulsions.”

It turns out that the grass for some unknown reason began producing cyanide gas which is poisonous to cattle.

Other farms quickly began testing their fields and while no other cattle deaths have been reported at least several farmers found toxic cyanide in their Tifton 85 grass.

According to the Examiner the grass which has suffered from drought conditions for the last several years is now being dissected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to see if some type of strange mutation may have occurred.

Update: The original report we received stated that the grass was a GMO version of Tifton 85. In fact it was a hybridized version of the product.

Original source of the article: http://beforeitsnews.com/mass-animal-death/2013/06/genetically-modified-grass-begins-releasing-cyanide-kills-texas-cattle-2432208.html

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McDonald's Chicken McNuggets Found To Contain Mysterious Fibers, Hair-like Structuresby Mike Adams, the Health Ranger

naturalnews.com

(NaturalNews) Today we announce the first investigation conducted at the Natural News Forensic Food Laboratory, the new science-based research branch of Natural News where we put foods under the microscope and find out what’s really there.

Earlier today I purchased a 10-piece Chicken McNuggets from a McDonald’s restaurant in Austin, Texas. Under carefully controlled conditions, I then examined the Chicken McNuggets under a high-powered digital microscope, expecting to see only processed chicken bits and a fried outer coating.

But what I found instead shocked even me. I’ve seen a lot of weird stuff in my decade of investigating foods and nutrition, but I never expected to find this…

Strange fibers found embedded inside Chicken McNuggets

As the following photos show, the Chicken McNuggets were found to contain strange fibers that some people might say even resemble so-called “Morgellon’s.”

We found dark black hair-like structures sticking out of the nugget mass, as well as light blue egg-shaped structures with attached tail-like hairs or fibers.

These are shown in extreme detail in the photos below, taken on August 15, 2013 at the Natural News Forensic Food Lab. The actual Chicken McNugget samples used in these photos have been frozen for storage of forensic evidence.

We also found odd red coloring splotches in several locations, as well as a spherical green object that resembles algae.

We are not claiming or implying that these objects in any way make McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets unsafe to consume. We do, however, believe that this visual evidence may warrant an FDA investigation into the ingredient composition of Chicken McNuggets.

In particular, where are the hair-like structures coming from? This is especially important to answer, given that chickens do not have hair. Is there cross-species contamination in the processing of Chicken McNuggets? This question needs to be answered.

Share this story with everyone you know.

See my video at:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fuL-E2hPlc

Or if YouTube censors the video, watch it at our free-speech video site, TV.naturalnews.com:
http://tv.naturalnews.com/v.asp?v=151BC31144DF47CE1D85FB664CCC2A65

Microscopic photos reveal an alien-like landscape with weird shapes and fibers

Here are the some of the photos from the Natural News Forensic Food Lab:

Chicken-McNugget-01
Chicken-McNugget-03
Chicken-McNugget-07
Chicken-McNugget-10
Natural News Forensic Food Lab has now released a second round of “mysterious fiber” photos of Chicken McNuggets, in addition to the photos you see above.
Image Credits: naturalnews.com

Read More At http://www.getholistichealth.com/36107/mcdonalds-chicken-mcnuggets-found-to-contain-mysterious-fibers-hair-like-structures/

McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets Found To Contain Mysterious Fibers, Hair-like Structures

How Color Can Confuse Consumers Into Buying Junk Food

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How Color Can Confuse Consumers Into Buying Junk Food

The food industry doesn’t want you to have simplified food labels—so they’re using every trick in the book to keep you uninformed.
March 21, 2013
How Color Can Confuse Consumers Into Buying Junk Food

Is that a food label or hieroglyphics? (Photo: Getty Images). 

There’s a kind of turf war going on over the real estate that is the front of the box of your breakfast cereal. And your snack crackers. And your candy bars. Really, over what you see when you first look at pretty much any packaged food head on.
 
If (like me) you’re a get-in-and-get-out sort of supermarket shopper, you may not have even noticed the neat little labels that have started appearing on the front of lots of foods. They seem utterly benign, taking nutrition info that’s typically relegated to the back or side of the package and bringing it up front: how many calories per serving, say, how much saturated fat, sodium and sugar—maybe how much calcium, iron or fiber, too.
 
But, as they say, the devil is in the details.
 
Despite calls by public health advocates and nutrition experts for more consumer-friendly labels (in the face of an American obesity epidemic where lots of people seem to think Froot Loops constitute a serving of fruit), the Food and Drug Administration has been moving at a snail’s pace toward regulation of “front-of-package” (FOP) labels.

Both Mark Bittman and Marion Nestle (a.k.a. perpetual thorns in the side of big food makers) have called for radical new labeling, with Bittman proposing a super easy-to-read label last fall in The New York Times that would, in a glance, communicate to consumers how nutritious a product is, as well as how natural and its social/environmental impact. The label is color coded like a traffic light: red, yellow, green. (No real guessing about the meaning of those colors.)
 
And, you know, the likelihood of food makers going for Bittman’s scheme is about the same as Cap’n Crunch being named to the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
 
A couple years ago, the Institutes of Medicine recommended that the FDA allow just four items on FOP labels: calories, saturated and trans fats, sodium and sugars. Then the food industry jumped in with its own “Facts Up Front” labeling plan.
 
You still get the four, but food makers then can add whatever they think you might like to hear, too. You pause because you see a product has, say, 500 mg of sodium per serving—but then you look to the right and see it has 10 percent of the daily value of calcium, so you toss it in your cart.
 
Critics of these relatively new labels say they confuse consumers—and now, it seems, it’s not just what the labels say that might be arguably deceptive. It’s what color they are.
 
Remember Bittman’s red, yellow and green proposal. Easy to understand, right? But what if there were no red or yellow. What if everything was just good, “all-natural,” “green-means-go” green?
 
As The Atlantic reports, Cornell researcher Jonathon Schuldt put FOP labels to the test. He asked a group of almost a hundred students to imagine themselves hungry and standing in line in the grocery store, then showed them one of two pictures of a candy bar. The images were the same, except the FOP calorie label (which said the candy bar was 250 calories) was colored either red or green.
 
We like to think we’re smart enough to outwit those wily marketers, but the joke may be on us, as Schuldt’s simple test reveals. Participants in the study were more likely to think the candy bar—the same darn candy bar—with the green label was healthier than the one with the red label.
 
Schuldt devised a similar experiment online, asking participants to rate how much they took the idea of healthiness into account when deciding what food to buy, then showing them candy bars with either green or white nutrition labels. Participants who had said healthiness was important to them ranked the candy bars with white labels as less healthy—but not the green-labeled candy bars.
 
Kermit was wrong: It may be too easy being green.