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Friday, May 4, 2012

Organic Bytes


What is going on? In the past few months GMO labeling legislation has been introduced in Washington State, Minnesota, Connecticut, Hawaii, and Vermont. In each state, the same frustrating story repeats itself. Legislators are optimistic, the bills seem to move quickly at first, they receive a record breaking amount of public support, and then they stall in committee and never move again, despite unprecedented numbers of calls and emails from citizens to legislators. A representative in Minnesota told us they expected "fallout" for supporting the bill, even though it didn't pass. In Washington state an unprecedented coalition of anti-GMO wheat farmers and organic consumers were stymied by agriculture committee legislators, who, it turns out, had received money from Monsanto. In Vermont, legislators and Governor backed off from a California-style labeling bill, despite polls showing 90% of Vermonters supported the bill, openly admitting that they were fearful of a lawsuit from Monsanto and the biotech industry. It's clear that Monsanto and the biotech bullies will go to great lengths to keep their stranglehold on our food supply, and unfortunately most state legislators are either intimidated by or complicit with Monsanto.
It is also clear that we are at a major turning point in this fight. More people than ever care about what is happening to our food supply. More people than ever want to see GMOs labeled. The energy is building!
Here's what OCA wants to do about it:
Our Millions Against Monsanto Campaign plans to join forces with the Occupy Monsanto protests across the country the week of September 17th, 2012 to create the largest Days of Action for GMO Labeling ever! We want to raise the clamor for labeling to a fever pitch and you can help!
Here's what we need:
More activists and more awareness in each state!
There are now 692,413 in our Millions Against Monsanto campaign! Let's get one million by September 17th! In the months leading up to the Days of Action, we need you to gather petition signatures (PDF) and pass out leaflets at your local farmer's market or natural food store. Summer is the perfect time to raise awareness about food.
Petitions (PDF)
Leaflets, Posters and other Educational Materials
Please contact us if you want any of these materials in quantity!

Support Labeling in California! Let's Drop the Money Bomb on Monsanto!

Organizers have gathered 971,176 signatures to qualify us for the California State Ballot in November. Teams of volunteers across California submitted them Wednesday to County officials across the state, in some cases  wheeling them into the elections offices via baby strollers. If voters pass the initiative, food sellers would be required to use a label identifying foods grown from genetically engineered seeds or containing genetically engineered ingredients. The initiative would also outlaw the routine industry practice of marketing GMO-tainted foods as “natural.”
Now that nearly a million have been delivered, it's only a matter of time before Monsanto brings out the Big Guns (and Big Wallets) to try to defeat California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act, a citizen's ballot initiative to label GMOs.
We're going to win in California. Here's how. Between May 1 and May 26, a broad coalition of food, farm, health, public interest, and environmental groups all over the country, joined by leading organic food companies, will attempt to raise one million dollars to support the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act, a citizens' ballot initiative, and other state GMO-labeling campaigns.
One million dollars. By reaching out to millions of people through multiple websites and e-newsletters.
Please help these groups raise one million dollars by May 26
Let's show Big Biotech and Food, Inc. what we, the 99%, can do when we work together for a common cause.

Video of the Week

Growing Cities: A Film About Urban Farming in America

Growing Cities is a feature-length documentary that examines the role of urban farming in America and asks how much power it has to revitalize our cities and change the way we eat. The film follows two friends on their journey across the country as they meet the men and women who are challenging the way this country grows and distributes its food, one vacant city lot, rooftop garden, and backyard chicken coop at a time.

Along the way they learn that this grassroots movement takes many forms – from those growing food in their backyards to activists seeking a meaningful alternative to the industrial food system, and more. At its core, the film asks people to re-imagine what’s possible in urban settings and consider creating growing cities of their own - places that are healthier, more sustainable, and socially just.
The filmmakers need to raise at least $35,000 by May 12th to prepare for an early 2013 release. They have gathered over 140 hours of incredible footage from 80+ urban farms across America, but they need help to tell these farmers' stories - including editing, licensing fees, graphics, music and other post-production elements.

Click here to view the trailer and fundraising campaign

Little Bytes: Top Stories of the Week

Something Historical is About to Happen - But Your Participation is Critical
Genetically Modified Crops' Results Raise Concern
Kashi Cereal's 'Natural' Claims Stir Anger on Social Media Sites
E. O. Wilson Wants to Know Why You're Not Protesting in the Streets
America's Moral and Climate Crisis
FDA Breaks Promise on Proposed New Supplement Rules

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