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Madge Digest #151 July 2018

Submitted by Development on Sat, 07/14/2018 - 20:24
  1. Carey Gillam, author of Whitewash, in Australia in August. #RoundupExposed 

  2. Monsanto on trial in US for Roundup's link to cancer #NonHodgkinsLymphoma.

  3. Mark Lynas is still getting his facts wrong.

  4. Help a farm stay in business.

1) Carey Gillam, author of Whitewash, in Australian in August. #RoundupExposed

Carey Gillam worked as an agricultural journalist for Reuters for over 20 years and reported on the GM revolution in the US. What she saw led her to write "Whitewash: the story of a weedkiller, cancer and the corruption of science."  Roundup, the weedkiller, is sprayed on most GM crops and its use has skyrocketed. It has been found in food, water, air, rain, alcoholic drinks, human urine and breastmilk. It is linked to cancer, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and birth defects. It is likely most of us have it in our bodies.

Hear her talk at the Byron Bay and Bendigo Writers festivals in August. The book is in its third reprint. Gillam also testified before the European Parliament in October 2011 during their investigation into Monsanto and glyphosate.

2) Monsanto on trial in US for Roundup's link to cancer. 

Many people think Roundup (glyphosate) is safe enough to drink. In the US DeWayne Johnson, 42, is taking Monsanto to court over his cancer. He has lesions over 80% his body. He is likely to die within a few months leaving behind his wife and children. 

"Johnson began to experience a skin rash not long after being accidentally doused in a Monsanto glyphosate-based herbicide called Ranger Pro. He saw the rash—which turned to lesions and then invaded lymph nodes—worsen after he would use the chemical, which was frequently as he treated school grounds. Johnson's attorneys plan to tell jurors that Johnson was so worried that the herbicide was to blame that he called Monsanto's offices as well as a poison hotline number listed on the herbicide label. Monsanto employees recorded his outreach and his concerns, internal Monsanto documents show. But even after the IARC classification of glyphosate as a probable carcinogen, Monsanto did not inform him of any risk, according to evidence to be presented at the trial."

Mr Johnson is one of 4000 people suing Monsanto in State Courts. Monsanto is also being sued in Multi District Litigation (Federal Court system) for causing non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Secret documents showing Monsanto tried to distort science and silence critics are now public.

Australia's pesticide regulatory body has dismissed the World Health Authority's International Agency for Research into Cancer's (IARC's) conclusion that glyphosate (Roundup) is an animal carcinogen and a possible human carcinogen. French newspaper, Le Monde, has reported on Monsanto's efforts to abolish IARC as it has a history of scientifically rigourous research into the causes of cancer. 

If you would like to remove Roundup (glyphosate) from your life you can:

  • Stop buying and using it
  • Ask your Council to stop using it, to protect workers, children and pets. Here is a Clean Weed Control powerpoint you can show to Councillors and others. 
  • Buy organic and non-GM food. The MADGE site has lots of resources including a "GM Free Food" app for apple and androids, and other shopping guides and details on where and what GM is in our food. 

3) Mark Lynas is still getting his facts wrong.

Mark Lynas and his book "Seeds of Science" are getting huge exposure in the media at present. His used to be a GM-Free activist. After being challenged about the accuracy of an article he wrote he decided he was wrong and became a GM promoter instead. Until 2017 he was employed by Cornell University's Alliance for Science which is funded by the Gates Foundation. It promotes GM. Organic farmers have protested against its bias. Its actions are described as philanthrocapitalism that benefits industrial agriculture and itself more that the small farmers it claims to help.  

Despite Lynas's claim to base his views on science, he mentions no scientific papers, scientists or specifics of any kind. He concentrates on sweeping statements about the benefits of GM despite not appearing to know the reality. GM eggplant has been a failure, requiring huge pesticide applications and frequently they died anyway.

Here is Farida Aghter from Bangladesh who explained at the Monsanto Tribunal how disastrous it is:

GM cassava has failed despite millions of dollars being spent. GM golden rice has no nutritional value, which means it is useless. Africa has used plants and natural predators to stop insect damage without GM. This is both ecologically friendly and affordable. In contrast, in the US in 2017, 3.6 million acres of crops were destroyed by drift from Dicamba, a pesticide sprayed on GM crops. Scientists have refuted his claims about the safety of GM crops. Lynas also appears oblivious of Monsanto being sued over Roundup. 

MADGE wrote a press release to present evidence, scientific and agronomic here. 

If you have seen, heard or read one of his many media appearances, feel free to share your opinion on his views. MADGE would be most interested in your comments You may like to suggest media organisations also interview Carey Gillam when she is here in August. 

4) Help a farm stay in business.

Angelica Organic farm has been hit by a perfect storm of set-backs: crop planting was unavoidably delayed, irrigation equipment broke down, a neighbour’s complaint threatened to shut them down, half the garlic crop failed, they had staffing difficulties and heavy frosts damaged crops.

“We have pulled out all stops to manage and mitigate the impacts of this disastrous confluence of events but having exhausted all our options, we are now facing the reality that we may have to close Angelica Organic Farm by the end of August.”

We eaters need to remember the hard work put in by those growing our food. If you can help or share their crowdfunding page we would be very grateful.

“Peace is not something you wish for, it is something you make, something you are, something you do, and something you give away. ” 
― Robert Fulghum

Happy Eating