Browsing the "USDA" Tag

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USDA approves fecal-burger (Part 3)

And we’re back to the definition of insanity again. Even though a USDA pilot program has resulted in stomach-turning health and safety violations, our government is marching forward with the plan to let meat companies inspect themselves. Because really, if it takes a little feces and salmonella (or a lot) to jump-start healthy corporate profits […]

September 10th

Pink slime fights back!

Last year, we told you about the grossest concoction ever developed by the US food industry: pink slime. This nasty amalgam of beef spare parts was uberproccessed to make it edible, then treated with ammonium hydroxide to kill the ugly bacteria that infested it. Then the glop was added back into ground beef and sold […]

September 15th

Jamie Oliver wants to know why pink slime is part of your child’s healthy school lunch

Why on earth does the USDA allow “pink slime” – a homogenized mix of the nastiest dregs and runoff of the meat processing industry – to be added into school lunches for America’s children?

That’s the question celebrity chef Jamie Oliver is asking on his show Food Revolution (Tuesday nights from 8:00-9:00 p.m. ET), and hopefully his voice will actually inspire somebody to listen.

April 13th

Yet Another Organic Fertilizer Fraud: Should You Care?

The short answer is “no.”  Here is the longer answer: Last Thursday the president of Port Organic Products Ltd was indicted on 28 counts of mail fraud for marketing an “Organic” fertilizer that was spiked with aqueous ammonia – a “synthetic” source of nitrogen which is not allowed under the Organic rules.  Nelson had represented […]

March 12th

GMOs: Devaluing the definition of “Organic”

You must have seen this one coming. When the USDA approved Monsanto’s gene-modified (GMO) alfalfa back in January, the Big Ag party line was that Organic producers had nothing to worry about. There was just not that much risk of contamination. Now, barely two months later, stories like this one are being seeded in the […]

March 2nd

Monsanto’s risky Roundup – Reuters runs with the report

We reported last week that a top scientist had expressed serious doubts about the safety of Monsanto’s gene-modified (GMO) plants and its Roundup weedkiller: Dr. Don M. Huber, who coordinates the Emergent Diseases and Pathogens committee of the American Phytopathological Society, as part of the USDA National Plant Disease Recovery System, warned Agriculture Secretary Tom […]

February 25th

Monsanto blocks research on GMO safety

Monsanto has been systematically blocking researchers from using its patented gene modified (GMO) seeds to learn if there are problems with them, according to an explosive op-ed in yesterday’s LA Times by Doug Gurian-Sherman of the Union of Concerned Scientists. This doesn’t come as a huge surprise, but it’s encouraging that it’s hitting the mainstream media. Soybeans, […]

February 14th

An alfalfa farmer explains why he sued Monsanto

By Cassandra Anderson (from Morph City) Phil Geertson is a conventional alfalfa seed grower who has been involved in efforts to stop GE (genetically engineered) alfalfa since 2003 resulting in a Supreme Court decision in 2010 on Forage Genetics/Monsanto’s GE alfalfa. Mr. Geertson began his career as a Registered Civil Engineer but later changed his […]

February 12th

Monsanto employees in the halls of government

For years, there’s been an open revolving door in Washington – sending workers from the Federal government to Monsanto and Monsanto back to the Federal government. This has a tendency to make people question the fairness and objectivity of the folks who are supposed to be overseeing the giant agricultural corporation. Bovine growth hormone (rGBH) […]

February 9th

Reasons The Tiny Scale Of US Organic Could Be A Good Thing

In 2008, the National Agricultural Statistics Service of the USDA (USDA-NASS) conducted a very detailed and comprehensive survey of Organic agriculture in the US.  It was published last year but got little notice.  It is interesting to study the data and to compare it to the equivalent statistics that are available for the rest of […]

February 8th

Friday, the USDA quietly announced deregulation of Monsanto’s GMO sugarbeets

The US Department of Agriculture continues its unprecedented give-away to big agriculture monster Monsanto and its Genetically Modified (GMO) seeds. On Friday, while the media was preoccupied with the Superbowl and Egypt’s rioting, the USDA quietly announced it was deregulating Monsanto’s GMO sugar beets – despite a court order. This move comes just a week […]

February 6th

Rethinking Public Dollars To Promote Organic Adoption

There was a news story this week about how there are $1.5 million of Federal funds available to help farmers in Nebraska convert to Organic.  This is part of an Obama administration initiative to promote the expansion of Organic agriculture.  Frankly, this is a token effort that will have little effect, but there is an […]

January 31st

Monsanto back in court: Center for Food Safety challenges GMO alfalfa ruling

The Center for Food Safety has announced an immediate challenge to the USDA’s unregulated approval of Monsanto’s genetically-modified (GMO) alfalfa. “All farmers should be on notice that we will be suing again, so before they make their seed buying decisions, I would certainly caution them that we will be in court,” CFS’s Andrew Kimbrell told […]

January 31st

Some New Hope For The Future of Chocolate

Most of us take something like chocolate for granted.  In fact there are lots of issues with the current situation for the farmers who produce it, and with the future supply for the rest of us. Fortunately, talented people have already been working hard on this issue. Today Mars, the USDA and IBM announced the […]

September 15th