Private Chef Raphael Gamon writes to the Obama administration…
A copy of this letter will be sent to President Obama and Agriculture Secretary Vilsack along with your comments:
Dear President Obama and Secretary Vilsack,
I urge that you halt the sale and planting of Monsanto’s recently approved Roundup Ready® GMO alfalfa and sugar beets until independent, peer-reviewed studies can be conducted to determine whether or not these products pose a threat to plant, animal and human health.
On January 17 of this year, Dr. Don Huber, an internationally recognized plant pathologist, wrote Secretary Vilsack an urgent letter warning of a credible threat to animal and human health and our food supply. The letter warned of a link between Roundup Ready GMO crops, the use of the herbicide Glyphosate (the active ingredient in Roundup) and serious plant diseases and animal infertility and abortions.
Dr. Huber’s letter detailed the discovery of an organism previously unknown to science by a team of U.S. scientists that had been linked to alarming levels of infertility and spontaneous abortions in livestock. The organism has been found in high concentrations in Roundup Ready corn and soybean meal and distillers grain fed to these animals, resulting in infertility rates as high as 20% and spontaneous abortion rates as high as 45% in cattle herds.
Unfortunately, the administration and USDA have failed to heed this warning and properly respond, despite serious and credible concerns laid out in his letter. Rather than proceed with caution after receiving such alarming information, the Obama administration chose to bow to pressure from vested interests in the agriculture industry and fully deregulate Monsanto’s Roundup Ready® alfalfa and sugar beets less than 3 weeks after receiving Dr. Huber’s letter.
As a result of this failure to conduct due diligence, the decision to deregulate these crops should be reversed, and the White House and the USDA should impose a moratorium on the sale and planting of Monsanto’s Roundup Ready alfalfa and sugar beet seeds until independent studies have been conducted documenting their safety.
Furthermore, the practice of allowing Monsanto and other companies to provide internal, corporate-funded studies, while interfering with and intimidating independent scientists and researchers, must end.
It is vital to the future of our democracy and the safety of American citizens that scientists and governmental agencies conduct and review independent scientific studies on the environmental, animal and human health implications of genetically modified crops and foods.