India declares war on Monsanto tells them "free to leave anytime"


India has cut royalties that local seed companies pay to US agrochemical giant Monsanto for the second time in two years. The producer of genetically modified seeds has previously threatened to pull out of the country.

According to a government order released on Tuesday, the country’s farm ministry has decided to reduce royalties paid by Indian seed companies to Monsanto for its genetically modified (GM) cotton by 20.4 percent.

Two years ago, the company’s royalties were cut by more than 70 percent. The move triggered a long-running dispute between the Indian and US governments.

“It is unfortunate that today’s order further erodes trait fees (royalties), which are now less than 0.5 percent of the cost of cultivation, while the technology continues to provide value to farmers across India,” a spokesman for Monsanto’s Indian joint venture, Mahyco Monsanto Biotech (MMB), was quoted as saying by the Economic Times.

The official added that cotton has been a success story for Indian agriculture, with a sharp jump in both output and exports, but the sector needs a predictable business environment to attract investment.

The Indian government has also lowered the prices of GM cotton seeds by 7.5 percent to 740 rupees ($11.39) for a packet of 450 grams. It explained the move as providing support for farmers who are struggling with pest infestations.

Last week, the National Seed Association of India (NSAI) threatened to halt supplies to eight million cotton farmers to protest the planned move to reduce seed prices.

“The new, low price would definitely impact seed supply and seed availability this year. And also next year’s seed production. NSAI may even file a writ petition against the government decision,” Director General of NSAI Kalyan Goswami told Reuters.

According to Goswami, seed prices have fallen since 2011 while fuel, labor and other supply chain costs have risen. “NSAI advocated for an increase in cotton seed prices to at least 150 rupees a packet. But the idea was ignored,” he said.

Last year, the Indian government issued an order to control cotton seed prices effective from the 2016-17 crop year. In a ruling, the antitrust regulator, Competition Commission of India, accused the GMO giant of potentially abusing its dominant position on the market. New Delhi said that Monsanto was free to leave the Indian market if it does not want to accept the government-imposed price and royalty cuts for its genetically modified cotton seeds. The American corporation controls some 90 percent of the market, serving over seven million cotton farmers in India.



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The Corporate Takeover of Cannabis: How Monsanto & Bayer Are Getting in on Marijauna

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Responsible for genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and the pesticides that are sprayed on them, Monsanto is on the tips of everyone’s tongues lately. Health conscious individuals are doing everything they can to boycott this company and support others instead, even if that means opting for much pricier organic produce.

There are a number of reasons for their concern, including the fact that no long-term studies have been done to show the potential health effects of consuming genetically modified foods or the high levels of pesticides that came with them. The mere fact that this company is responsible for some of the worst chemicals ever created, including Agent Orange, DDT, asbestos, and aspartame, also contributes to this widespread mistrust.

Last September, Bayer, the largest pharmaceutical company in the world, made a deal to buy out Monsanto for $66 billion, even though Monsanto was voted “the most evil company in the world” back in 2013. Unfortunately, this buyout only strengthened Monsanto’s lobbying power.

This corporate giant has now set its sights on another product, one that has garnered increasing attention lately as laws relax and medicinal uses become better understood: cannabis. Despite claiming otherwise, evidence suggests Monsanto may already have ties to cannabis production, a worrisome connection for anyone who uses cannabis medically or even enjoys an occasional puff.

How Is This Connection Made?

Monsanto and Miracle-Gro already have a business partnership. Hawthorne is a front for Miracle-Gro and has already purchased three of the largest cannabis producers in the business, Botanicare, Gavita, and General Hydroponics. A number of other companies have already received buy-out offers, but have refused.

According to a Hydroponics Lighting Representative, “They want to bypass hydroponics retail stores. . . . When we said we won’t get in bed with them they said, ‘Well, we could just buy your whole company like we did with Gavita and do whatever we want.’ ”

Miracle-Gro CEO Jim Hagedorn has gone so far as to announce his plans for reefer referendums. “Invest, like, half a billion in [taking over] the pot business,” he recommends. “It is the biggest thing I’ve ever seen in lawn and garden.”

One only has to connect the dots to see where this is heading, and it’s not surprising. The cannabis industry is on the brink of a major boom, and it makes sense that a huge corporation like Monsanto would like to get in on the action.

Now What?

Nothing has been decided at this moment, but we can see clearly that it is a possibility, and even if Monsanto/Bayer does take over the cannabis industry, it is not certain that they will create genetically modified strains. Even if they don’t, however, it is up to you to decide if this is a company you would like to support or not. If you actively choose non-GMO products, then you’ll certainly need to do your research to ensure the strains you are getting are not coming from a Monsanto-owned grow business.

Unfortunately, Bayer and Monsanto could create a monopoly on marijuana seeds in the same way we have seen them do with corn and soy. They have an incredible amount of corporate power and through enforcing international patent law, could end up with total control over the cannabis industry, including medicinal cannabis use and research.

Don’t Forget, As the Consumer, You Hold the Power

There will undoubtedly be some backlash against Monsanto — as if they haven’t gotten enough already — but it is absolutely necessary to call out this company for their ruthless business practices. DO NOT SUPPORT Monsanto or Bayer by buying any cannabis products coming from companies that they own. More information about Monsanto’s involvement in the cannabis industry, whether direct or indirect, will surely surface soon, and it is up to you to stay informed and make the appropriate decisions. A safe bet would be to grow your own and keep the seeds, if you are living in an area where this is legal. Spread this information far and wide; we cannot let Monsanto take over the cannabis industry.

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EU to approve ‘marriage made in hell’ between Bayer & Monsanto


German drug and crop chemicals maker Bayer is set to win conditional European Union antitrust approval for its $62.5 billion bid for the world’s major seed company, Monsanto, Reuters reports citing its sources.

The European Commission is expected to issue a decision on the deal by April 5.

Bayer has already pledged to sell certain seed and herbicide assets for €5.9 billion ($7.2 billion) to chemical company BASF to address EU regulatory concerns. It will also give BASF a license to its digital farming data, people familiar with the matter said. BASF will thus have exclusive access as Bayer has not offered a legal obligation to license to other rivals.

Bayer said on Wednesday that additional antitrust concessions would include the sale of its vegetable seeds business.

The Bayer-Monsanto deal, which would create a company with a share of more than a quarter of the world’s seed and pesticides market, has been criticized by environmentalists and farming groups. Some of them met with the European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, who has received more than 50,000 petition emails and more than 5,000 letters opposing the deal.

“Approving this merger would create the world’s biggest agribusiness company, potentially crushing competitors and establishing an unprecedented monopoly on lucrative farming data,” said Adrian Bebb from environmental lobbying group Friends of the Earth Europe.

“Public opinion is against the merger, and farmers and consumers would have every right to be outraged by the commission giving it the green light,” he added.

Pharmaceuticals giant Bayer agreed to acquire GMO maker Monsanto two years ago. It vowed not to take advantage of its own reputation to forcefully introduce genetically modified crops to Europe against consumers’ will. Monsanto has a longstanding notorious reputation dating back to its production of Agent Orange used by the US military during the Vietnam War.

The companies say that the takeover will contribute to chemical and agricultural research and eventually will help farmers to produce more food. However, environmentalists, green politicians and some farmers express concerns that the merger will only tighten a monopolist grip on the markets, and will lead to price increases, GM crops and pesticides spreading. They have already called the takeover a “marriage made in hell.”



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EPA, Monsanto face lawsuit over pesticide drift that damaged millions of acres and threatened endangered species

Image: EPA, Monsanto face lawsuit over pesticide drift that damaged millions of acres and threatened endangered species

(Natural News)
If a farmer wants to grow organic crops, he or she can simply elect not to use pesticides and everything should be fine, right? Unfortunately, the situation is not as straightforward as it seems as pesticide drift is thwarting well-meaning farmers’ efforts and rendering their crops entirely unusable. It’s also destroying traditional crops that were not grown with seeds engineered to resist the pesticides in question. Now, farmers and conservationists have filed a federal lawsuit against Monsanto and the EPA over the approval of the highly drift-prone XtendiMax weed killer.

Last year was the first crop season in which the dicamba-based XtendiMax was used, and it wreaked havoc on farms across the country. When the product is sprayed by farmers on Monsanto’s genetically engineered cotton and soybeans, it forms clouds of vapor that drift effortlessly to nearby crops and wild plants. More than three million acres of soybeans, along with countless fruit and vegetable crops, shrubs, and trees have been harmed by dicamba drift.

Flowering plants growing near crops are not spared its wrath, compromising pollinators as well as hundreds of endangered plant and animal species. Some of the endangered species at risk of extinction due to dicamba drift include grey wolves, whooping cranes, and Indiana bats.

The problem is so bad that agronomists said herbicide drift damage reached unprecedented levels last year, and 2018 is expected to be just as bad. This year, Monsanto expects farmers to plant as many as 40 million acres of its dicamba-resistant soybeans and 6 million acres of dicamba-tolerant cotton.

By allowing the product to be sold, the very agency that is supposed to protect the public interest – the EPA – is instead sitting back and allowing this to occur. In fact, the lawsuit outlines how the EPA likely knew this would occur but caved to pressure from Monsanto to rush its approval without including measures that could help prevent vapor drift. The EPA’s collusion with Monsanto was recently exposed in documents released as part of a high-profile class-action lawsuit over cancer-causing glyphosate in its Roundup weedkiller.

The Center for Biological Diversity’s Senior Scientist, Nathan Donley, said: “The EPA’s foolish approval of dicamba left a deep scar across millions of acres of farms and forests. The ill-advised rush to approve this dangerous drift-prone pesticide reflects just how far the EPA has strayed from its duty to protect Americans and wildlife from harmful toxins.”

The new lawsuit has been filed on behalf of the National Family Farm Coalition, the Center for Food Safety, the Center for Biological Diversify, and the Pesticide Action Network.

Some states already restricting dicamba use

The state of Arkansas has already banned the sale and use of the herbicide between April 16 and October 31 after receiving almost 1,000 complaints of dicamba damage last year. Temporary bans and restrictions have also been put in place in states like Missouri and Tennessee. Monsanto unsuccessfully challenged the Arkansas ruling in court.

Dicamba has been on the market for a few decades, but in the past, it was only used as a pre-emergent applied to soil prior to planting crops. Now, however, farmers are increasingly spraying this product on crops after they are planted, and their neighbors are paying the price in many cases.

Unfortunately, farms affected by dicamba drift are not covered by federal crop insurance, which only covers natural disasters like floods and droughts. Therefore, farmers who have seen their entire yields destroyed have few options besides lawsuits. In some cases, the chemical is landing in fields multiple times, adding up to huge financial losses and even bankruptcy in some instances. On one occasion, a farm worker allegedly shot and killed a soybean farmer on an Arkansas country road after an argument about dicamba drift.

See for more coverage of pesticide drift.

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Follow the money: Monsanto-influenced lawmakers side with chemical industry, question IARCs findings on glyphosate, threaten to cut funding to the WHO

Image: Follow the money: Monsanto-influenced lawmakers side with chemical industry, question IARCs findings on glyphosate, threaten to cut funding to the WHO

(Natural News)
The strong political influence of the chemical industry was illustrated perfectly in a recent House Science Committee hearing in which Republican lawmakers questioned the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC)’s classification of glyphosate as a probable carcinogen. Taking it one step further, they even threatened to cut off funding for the IARC, which is part of the World Health Organization.

When the IARC gave glyphosate this classification in 2015, they immediately found themselves in the crosshairs of industry groups and the lawmakers whose pockets are padded by them. Glyphosate is the key ingredient in the most widely used weed killer on the planet, Monsanto’s Roundup, which has been regularly sprayed on crops like corn, cotton, and soybeans since the 1970s as well as golf courses and lawns. Monsanto also sells seeds that have been genetically modified to withstand glyphosate spraying as the weeds around them die.

Monsanto reported net sales amounting to $2.7 billion in the fourth quarter of the 2017 fiscal year alone, so coming up with the funds to convince those in power to favor their stance has never been a problem. According to records from the Center for Responsive Politics, Monsanto’s federal lobbying spending exceeded $4.3 million last year. In the 2016 election cycle, Monsanto’s political action committee and executives made federal political donations to the tune of $600,000, most of which went to Republicans in farm states.

In the hearing, Representative Lamar Smith (R-Texas) said the IARC’s classification was “not backed by reliable data” and was “unsubstantiated,” apparently disregarding the countless studies that led the respected agency to reach its conclusion in the first place. Then came the threat: “The selective use of data and the lack of public disclosure raise questions about why IARC should receive any government funding in the future.”

National Resources Defense Council scientists Jennifer Sass said during her testimony: “Fundamentally, this hearing is about the ability of a public health agency to call a carcinogen a carcinogen, even if it makes a huge amount of money for a powerful corporation. Are we willing to sell out the public’s right to know about harmful chemicals in the places we work, live and play, just so that Monsanto can sell more glyphosate?”

A report was released prior to the hearing in which House Science Committee Democrats sided with Sass, outlining the attempts made by the industry to control public discourse about glyphosate and silence the studies describing its harm.

Monsanto’s long history of deception

This is far from a conspiracy theory; Monsanto’s deceitful behavior has been exposed in internal documents obtained via court-ordered discovery as part of class action lawsuits on behalf of people who developed a type of blood cancer known as non-Hodgkin lymphoma after being exposed to Roundup. In the more than 700 pages of internal memos, emails, and other documents that were posted, it is clear that Monsanto has been colluding with U.S. regulators and misleading regulators in Europe.

Discovery documents unsealed by the judge also showed Monsanto’s questionable research practices, very friendly ties with top EPA officials, and evidence that they paid scientists to sign their names on studies ghostwritten by Monsanto to paint its products in a positive light.

Monsanto has long known that glyphosate can cause cancer, and it is well-documented that glyphosate exposure is also linked to liver cancer, thyroid cancer, pancreatic cancer, kidney cancer, and colon cancer. The company is now facing a string of class action lawsuits from plaintiffs including farmers, agricultural workers, and those who live near farms. Despite all this, they still expect us to swallow the narrative that the science is wrong and it’s just a big coincidence that all these people are dying from exposure to their products.

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Glyphosate from Monsanto’s Roundup decimates microbes in soils and the human gut – new science

Image: Glyphosate from Monsanto’s Roundup decimates microbes in soils and the human gut – new science

(Natural News)
Gut bacteria is gaining increasing attention for the role it plays in our overall health. Given its influence on everything from immune function to digestion to brain function, research has been consistently showing the power of healthy gut bacteria – and the dangers of getting it wrong. Unfortunately, one very common chemical that has made its way to our food supply has now been shown to decimate gut microbes: glyphosate.

This chemical is already at the center of class action lawsuits filed by cancer patients, and the news keeps getting worse. As the main ingredient in the world’s most widely used herbicide, Monsanto’s Roundup, the ramifications for human health are huge.

Some of the medical problems linked to an imbalance of gut bacteria include colorectal cancer, diabetes, liver disease, cardiovascular disease, asthma, inflammatory bowel disease, autism and obesity.

The latest study was carried out by a team led by Professor Gilles-Eric Seralini of the University of Caen. The study looked at fecal samples taken from rats and assessed their gut microbiomes. They found that female rats experienced significant changes in the presence of Roundup regardless of the dose to which they were exposed. It also damages the microbial activity of soil.

The researchers suggest that glyphosate use could be behind the recent spike in gut disease noted in industrialized nations that genetic reasons alone have failed to explain.

Of course, Roundup is not 100 percent glyphosate, so experts believe it could be worthwhile to repeat the study using a bigger group of animals to compare the effects of exposure to glyphosate alone as well as Roundup. It’s possible that other ingredients in Roundup like adjuvants could be making this effect even more pronounced.

In fact, in regulatory evaluations of pesticides, it is only glyphosate in its isolated form that is tested for long-term safety, which means that calculations of safe levels are inherently inaccurate.

Professor Seralini said: “The acceptable levels of glyphosate residues in food and drinks should be divided immediately by a factor of at least 1,000 because of these hidden poisons.”

Dangerous levels of heavy metals found in pesticides

On top of that, glyphosate-based herbicides like Roundup have been found to contain toxic levels of arsenic and other heavy metals. In the study, 22 pesticides – including 11 that were glyphosate-based – were found to have levels of toxic heavy metals that exceeded those allowed in drinking water.

In Sri Lanka, for example, where glyphosate herbicides have now been banned in the wake of an outbreak of chronic kidney disease among the rural population, large amounts of arsenic were found in glyphosate-based herbicides.

Some of the other toxic heavy metals found in the study include lead, nickel, and chromium. These findings were published in the Toxicology Reports journal.

In addition, glyphosate is known to form chemical bonds that can transport these toxic metals into people’s bloodstreams more easily so they can circulate throughout the body, a problem that agricultural workers are particularly susceptible to.

It’s no wonder, then, that this dangerous chemical has been banned in some countries. Documents that recently went public as part of lawsuits against Monsanto show that the firm knew for decades that its products threatened people’s health but opted to sell it anyway.

Moreover, they have done their best over the years to influence researchers and journalists to support their products, whether it’s through threats or payoffs. They’ve also embarked on a campaign to smear those who speak out against their products and discredit social media commenters who dare to criticize them.

Therefore, it will not be surprising when Monsanto tries to discredit this study as well. As the researcher who has uncovered some of the most damning evidence of glyphosate dangers, Seralini has famously been a target of Monsanto in the past. An undeterred Seralini is calling for an outright ban on glyphosate-based herbicides.

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Newsweek pushes Monsanto propagandist lies authored by scandal-ridden organic hater Henry I. Miller

Image: Newsweek pushes Monsanto propagandist lies authored by scandal-ridden organic hater Henry I. Miller

(Natural News)
Yet another mainstream news outlet, Newsweek, has decided to shamelessly spread fake news that bashes organics and promotes GMOs (genetically-modified organisms). And wouldn’t you guess it, but the stated author of this ridiculous hit piece is none other than Hoover Institution hack Henry I. Miller, who’s been caught on numerous occasions attaching his name to ghostwritten Monsanto propaganda and pretending it’s his own.

As reported by, Miller’s latest article in Newsweek is filled with a litany of the usual lies, including claims that organic food is somehow “bad for the environment,” and that GMOs and Roundup (glyphosate) are God’s gifts to mankind. And just like with many other Miller pieces, the content of his Newsweek article is curiously identical to Monsanto’s official corporate talking points, many of which have been exposed as part of the famous Monsanto Papers release and other similar revelations.

EcoWatch‘s Stacy Malkan explains how Miller has a really cozy relationship with Monsanto, which appears to be paying this sellout cash to slap his name on their disinformation. Similar findings are covered at, revealing how Miller has been whoring himself to Monsanto and other biotechnology interests for many decades.

“Miller’s Newsweek hit on organic food has Monsanto’s fingerprints in plain sight all over it,” writes Malkan. “For starters, Miller uses pesticide industry sources to make unsubstantiated (and ludicrous) claims about organic agriculture – for example, that organic farming is ‘actually more harmful to the environment’ than conventional agriculture, or that organic allies spent $2.5 billion in a year campaigning against genetically engineered foods in North America.”

Miller’s Newsweek article tied to Monsanto corporate front group ‘Academics Review’

Just to be clear, Miller has an extensive history of pretending to be an “independent” voice on biotechnology. He’s been caught publishing Monsanto-authored propaganda in Forbes, The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), and various other publications that, at one time, were considered to be reputable.

And once again, there are clear signs that Miller is performing his usual act in Newsweek, regurgitating the anti-organic talking points of the corporate front group “Academics Review.” As pointed out by Malkan, a report published by Academics Review that attacks the organic industry and accuses it of being a “marketing scam” is suspiciously interchangeable with Miller’s Newsweek article.

By all appearances, Miller was once again handed a “high-quality draft” of what Monsanto wanted to see published by a major media outlet, to which he likely made a few changes before publishing it under his name. Monsanto isn’t mentioned anywhere, of course, and anyone unfamiliar with Miller’s biotech ties will likely read it as his own “educated” opinions on the matter – a win-win for both Monsanto and Miller.

Except for this one major elephant in the room: Miller’s reputation as a corporate scam artist is quickly reaching a tipping point. There’s no hiding his financial ties to Big Biotech anymore, especially when email exchanges between Monsanto executives openly reveal that the key to the company’s success is to keep the company “in the background so as not to harm the credibility of the information” – information that people like Miller are all too willing to spread in exchange for cash.

“Monsanto relies heavily on people with scientific credentials or neutral-sounding groups to make those arguments – people who are willing to communicate the company script, while claiming to be independent actors,” adds Malkan.

“As more documents tumble into the public realm – via the Monsanto Papers and public records investigations – the ‘independent academic’ ruse will become harder to maintain for industry PR writers such as Henry I. Miller, and for editors, journalists and policy makers to ignore.”

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Globalist propaganda rag NEWSWEEK runs Monsanto-style hit piece on organic food, authored by discredited propagandist Henry Miller

Image: Globalist propaganda rag NEWSWEEK runs Monsanto-style hit piece on organic food, authored by discredited propagandist Henry Miller

(Natural News)
An anti-organic food, pro-GMO opinion piece in Newsweek allegedly has the Monsanto’s fingerprints on it.

In the Op-Ed that accuses the organic food “campaign” of being a “deceitful, expensive scam,” the author, Dr. Henry I. Miller, claims that organic farming uses pesticides and that this form of agriculture is wasteful to farmland and water resources. Among other things, he also asserts that the organic/natural food industry spends billions “to disparage modern farming methods” to increase sales of expensive and inferior products.

According to EcoWatch, Miller allegedly has or had a business relationship with Monsanto and other corporations “that need help convincing the public their products aren’t dangerous and don’t need to be regulated.” Eco Watch claims that Miller, who is a fellow at the Hoover Institution think tank at Stanford University, relied on pesticide industry sources for his assertions that organic farming harms the environment more than conventional farming and that the organic industry spent $2.5 billion in its campaign against GMO foods. His article originally appeared on the Hoover Institution website with the title “The Organic Food Hoax,” and as of this writing, has prompted 100-plus, mostly negative, responses.

“[A]ll fingers point back to the agrichemical corporations that will lose the most if consumer demand continues to rise for foods free of GMOs and pesticides,” EcoWatch added.

As Natural News has previously explained, a 2015 pro-glyphosate article under Miller’s byline published on the website was apparently ghostwritten by Monsanto. The article came after a report from International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), an arm of the World Health Organization (WHO), indicated that glyphosate, the primary active ingredient in the Roundup weedkiller, is a probable human carcinogen. The behind-the-scenes origin of the Miller/Monsanto-crafted rebuttal surfaced in the so-called Monsanto Papers made up of documents unsealed during litigation in the summer of 2017.

The New York Times reported in August 2017 that Forbes scrubbed the article from its website and ended its relationship with Miller because its contributor agreement requires writers to disclose potential conflicts of interest and to submit original content only.

Natural News founding editor Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, wrote last year that Miller, who worked as a medical researcher for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for 15 years, is a longtime propagandist for the GMO industry and a shill for Monsanto. notes that Miller previously helped found a tobacco industry front group and also tried to discredit Dr. Oz after the TV host discussed the harmful effects of Roundup and glyphosate on a 2015 broadcast.

Along these lines, Mike Adams has separately insisted that glyphosate and GMOs are a package deal promoted by the fake stream media, compromised science shills, and Monsanto-funded trolls, derisively known as the Monsanto mafia, that seek to discredit clean food activists. Over the next five years, the projection for glyphosate’s global market is said to total $10 billion. (Related: Read more about glyphosate and Roundup at

Parenthetically, outside of dentists’ waiting rooms (and even that might be a stretch), many Americans are probably unaware that Newsweek magazine — either the print or digital version — still exists. A quick scan of its Twitter feed looks like the news outlet has made a CNN-like business decision to go all-in on anti-Donald Trump clickbait. Last November, for example, Newsweek published an article online suggesting that President Trump and murderer Charles Manson used similar language to attract followers. After Donald Trump Jr. took exception to that form of “journalism” via social media, Newsweek deleted all references to the president, while adding a note that it made the revisions because the story fell short of its “editorial standards.” The explanation didn’t address how the article made it through the editorial process in the first place, however.

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Monsanto’s latest marketing ploy: Labeling GMOs as “biofortified”

Image: Monsanto’s latest marketing ploy: Labeling GMOs as “biofortified”

(Natural News)
GMOs have been getting a bad name for quite some time now, and it’s hardly surprising given the near-constant stream of evidence showing the harms caused by genetically engineered crops and the pesticides used on them. As people increasingly make an effort to avoid buying these products, Monsanto has come up with a new idea to trick people into forking over their hard-earned money for its health-destroying products.

The Waking Times reports that Monsanto is trying to manipulate the definitions used on food labels in such a way that GMOs could be labeled as “biofortified foods.”

Codex Alimentarius is a collection of codes and guidelines created by the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization to standardize world food trade and its production and safety. Codex was mulling a proposal to allow a company to use the term “biofortified” on vegetables that use conventional cross-breeding to increase the content of certain nutrients to help give malnourished populations a nutrition boost.

Monsanto sensed an opportunity here and set out to exploit it. They used their influence to try to convince delegates to have the definition of “biofortified” broadened to include foods that have been genetically modified. The National Health Federation (NHF), which is the only natural health advocate with a seat at Codex, reports that many of the delegates saw right through Monsanto’s attempt to pull the wool over consumers’ eyes, and the move was even denounced during the meeting. Nevertheless, the topic will be debated when the group convenes in Berlin this November under a new chairperson.

NHF President Scott Tips said: “It is a very sad state of affairs where we have come to the point where we must manipulate our natural foods to provide better nutrition all because we have engaged in very poor agricultural practices that have seen a 50% decline in the vitamins and minerals in our foods over the last 50 years. We will not remedy poor nutrition by engaging in deceptive marketing practices and sleight of hand with this definition.”

Monsanto wants to trick people into buying GMO foods

It’s easy to see why Monsanto would be so eager to use this term. The term “bio” is used to denote organic foods in many European countries, and consumers who look out for the “bio” label at the grocery store could easily confuse “biofortified” foods as being the complete opposite of what they truly are and end up buying the very thing they were trying to avoid in the first place. Indeed, the EU has raised an objection on the grounds that the term would confuse Europeans, and several EU counties have been vocal in supporting a more restrictive use of the term.

Even in the U.S., where the term “organic” is used instead, many people would construe this label as something positive, especially given its implication that a food has additional nutrients.

Creative labeling nothing new when it comes to unhealthy food

If Monsanto is successful, it will hardly be the first time that something undesirable masqueraded as something far more appealing. For example, consider the term “biosolids,” which are used to grow non-organic crops. On the surface, it sounds like something relatively innocuous, but it’s actually a euphemism for “human sewage sludge” – a nicer way of saying that the food is grown with feces and other disgusting things we flush down the toilet.

Then there are the sneaky ways of hiding sugar on food labels by calling it names like evaporated cane juice, organic brown rice syrup, barley malt, or dried oat syrup.

Decoding food labels already requires a sharp eye and extensive knowledge of the deceptive marketing tactics used by food companies, and a move like this will only muddy the waters even further. We can only hope the objections from the EU and others will be successful in preventing this from going any further. Even if their attempt fails, however, it’s clear that Monsanto has no intention to stop trying to trick consumers using every means possible.

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Oregon Just Sued Monsanto For $100 Million Due To Toxic & Unsafe Products

Monsanto is being sued by the state of Oregon in an unprecedented case that could help bring justice to the company’s innumerable victims.

The lawsuit was filed last week and is seeking to receive a “minimum” of $100 million in damages—the money will go towards medical costs and clean-ups after the damaging effects the state claims it endured.

Oregon state claims that Monsanto “knew” many of its products were toxic and unsafe, but they continued to sell them to the public for decades.

The specific chemical at the center of this lawsuit is called polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). The substance is regularly used in mechanical oils, paints, electronic devises and is fire resistant.

Known to be unsafe for human consumption, the destructive chemical was already banned in 1979.

Oregon released a statement on the matter:

Today, Oregon bears the burden of Monsanto’s decision to place profit above all else.

The toxic legacy that Monsanto left Oregonians lives on, as PCBs persist in Oregon’s lands, rivers, and waterways, in its sediments, soils, and in the bodies of animals and humans.

“It has caused harm to aquatic, marine, and avian species, and poses ongoing risks to the health of the people of the State of Oregon.”

PCBs are so hazardous to humans that the EPA concluded it is likely to cause cancer, confirming is a study:

“There is clear evidence that PCBs cause cancer in animals. EPA reviewed all of the available literature on the carcinogenicity of PCBs in animals as an important first step in the cancer reassessment.

“An industry scientist commented that ‘all significant studies have been reviewed and are fairly represented in the document.’ The literature presents overwhelming evidence that PCBs cause cancer in animals. An industry-sponsored peer-reviewed rat study characterized as the ‘gold standard study’ by one peer reviewer, demonstrated that every commercial PCB mixture tested caused cancer.

“The new studies reviewed in the PCB reassessment allowed EPA to develop more accurate potency estimates than previously available for PCBs. The reassessment provided EPA with sufficient information to develop a range of potency estimates for different PCB mixtures, based on the incidence of liver cancer and in consideration of the mobility of PCBs in the environment…. In addition to the animal studies, a number of epidemiological studies of workers exposed to PCBs have been performed.

“Results of human studies raise concerns for the potential carcinogenicity of PCBs. Studies of PCB workers found increases in rare liver cancers and malignant melanoma.

“The presence of cancer in the same target organ (liver) following exposure to PCBs both in animals and in humans and the finding of liver cancers and malignant melanomas across multiple human studies adds weight to the conclusion that PCBs are probable human carcinogens… EPA’s peer reviewedcancer reassessment concluded that PCBs are probable human carcinogens.

“EPA is not alone in its conclusions regarding PCBs. The International Agency for Research on Cancer has declared PCBs to be probably carcinogenic to humans. The National Toxicology Program has stated that it is reasonable to conclude that PCBs are carcinogenic in humans.

“The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health has determined that PCBs are a potential occupational carcinogen.”

Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum in Multnomah is leading the lawsuit to the courts and she claims Monsanto was very aware of how dangerous PCBs were to the general public and the environment.

Rosenblum stated:

“Monsanto knew decades before PCBs were banned that they were toxic to the environment, but they failed to disclose highly pertinent information.

“Oregon is paying a big price as PCBs are being dredged up in river sediments and measured in the tissues of fish and wildlife throughout the state.

“PCBs are extremely hard to get rid of — and it will take significant time and resources to fully clean them up. It only makes sense that the manufacturer of these PCBs, Monsanto, help clean up this mess with dollars.”

Representatives for Monsanto have publicly responded to the, calling them “baseless“.

The biotech giant’s vice president for global strategy, Scott Partridge, explained their side of the events in a statement:

“[Monsanto] voluntarily stopped producing PCBs more than 40 years ago and didn’t use or dispose of any PCBs in the state of Oregon.

“Clean-up efforts are underway in Oregon with the full group of responsible parties under supervision of the EPA, and it’s most important that everyone stay focused on that work.

“This lawsuit is baseless and undermines the ongoing EPA cleanup efforts, and Monsanto will defend itself accordingly”.

If the suit succeeds, the cleanup is expected to cost around $1.05 billion and take 13 years to complete.

Sources: The Mind Unleashed Oregon Live The Beat News

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