Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Monsanto to Dump rBGH

Chalk one up for us intrepid consumers: biotech giant Monsanto is selling off its Posilac (rBGH) division. In other words, though the battle against scary, unproven, and oftentimes carcinogenic food additives is hardly won, at least there's one less to worry about in America. Finally. It took more than a decade of consumer backlash, grassroots organizing, and raising awareness (and oh yeah, fighting lawsuits and lobbyists). But with time, the word got out--rBGH was banned in Europe in 1994; further, its producers were issued a formal notice of non-compliance and disapproval for all future sales in Canada in 1999, and it was ruled unsafe by the United Nations Food Safety Agency that same year.

Since then, of course, Monsanto continued to pump the stuff into the American food supply (and thus our bodies), all the while insisting it was completely safe. Screw those puny foreign countries and their quaint health concerns and cancer fears! To hell with what concerned American consumers want! Man the torpedoes and send the lawyers over to Ben & Jerry's, those hippies. How dare they state that their product doesn't contain our product--what right do consumers have to know what they're buying and not eating?

So anyway, success.
Monsanto's divestment of rBGH is a direct result of 14 years of determined opposition by organic consumer, public interest, and family farmer groups. Since its founding, the Organic Consumers Association has campaigned against this cruel and dangerous drug, pointing out to organic and health-minded consumers that rBGH-tainted dairy products pose unacceptable dangers to humans from increased antibiotic residues and elevated levels of a potent cancer tumor promoter called IGF-1. OCA's "Millions Against Monsanto" campaign has generated over a quarter million emails and petition signatures on the topic of rBGH, helping make rBGH one of the most controversial food products in the world.
And as the Organic Consumers' Association says, let's keep the ball rolling:
Now let's break Monsanto's stranglehold over seeds and take away their mandate to force-feed genetically engineered food to an unwilling public. Help us push through federal legislation to require mandatory labeling and safety-testing of GMOs (genetically modified organisms.)

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