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How Can You Miss This?

Touch the Soil News #1006 (Feature photo – March against Monsanto which produces seeds that are glyphosate tolerant – CCA SA 2.0 Generic) Rather concerning is that a foreign news agency – The Guardian from the U.K. – has to be a watchdog over U.S. food safety. The Guardian reported that the world’s most used pesticide – glyphosate from RoundUp – has been tested by the FDA for two years with no public results. More obvious, since glyphosate has been around for 40 years, why has it not been tested earlier. Leaked e-mails from an FDA researcher suggests that the FDA is having trouble finding any foods that don’t have…

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The Pinnacle of Self Importance

Touch the Soil News #984 (Feature photo – GMO Crops – public domain) Two of the world’s largest developers and marketers of GMO seeds – seeds that produce plants immune weed killing chemicals – have just received the go-ahead to merge by the U.S. Department of Justice. German GMO seeds and chemical giant Bayer entered into an agreement in 2016 to buy Monsanto for $66 billion. It seems regulators at home and abroad are stepping in line to make it happen. At the tip of their tongues, both Bayer and Monsanto have expressed that GMO seeds – and chemicals such as glyphosate – are key to solving world hunger and…

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The Biggest Ag News in a Decade

Touch the Soil News #840 (Feature photo – chemical configuration of glyphosate – photo public domain) The war over Monsanto’s GMO crops – crops that can withstand the weed chemical glyphosate – just took a big turn against Monsanto. Unprecedented in global politics is the political will for one of the wealthiest continents – Europe – to phase out the use of glyphosate – the main ingredient in RoundUp. The European Parliament, representing 28 countries and more than 500 million people, voted on October 24, 2015 to phase out the use of glyphosate over the next five years while immediately banning glyphosate from household use. German agro-chemical and pharmaceutical giant…

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Monsanto is Sweating This One

Touch the Soil News #619 California officials have been wrestling with the health risks of Roundup (a Monsanto product) whose primary active ingredient is glyphosate. Glyphosate has been determined to be a probable carcinogen by a study group sponsored by the World Health Organization. Before California could take action on requiring labeling on RoundUp products, Monsanto brought a lawsuit against California. Monsanto insists that its product poses no risk to people. Less than a week ago, Fresno County Superior Judge Krisit Kapetan ruled in favor of the state of California. California can now move forward to forcing Monsanto into putting cancer warnings on its glyphosate products – RoundUp. Farmers in…

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Is This For Real?

Touch the Soil News #615 (feature photo courtesy of Food Democracy Now) Food Democracy Now http://www.fooddemocracynow.org/ recently published a report on the levels of the chemical glyphosate (Roundup) in popular American foods including Cheerios, Doritos, Oreos, Goldfish and Ritz cracker and Stacey’s Pita Chips. Following are some of the highlights of that report: Glyphosate – the active ingredient in Roundup – is the most heavily used chemical weedkiller in food and agriculture production in human history. 29 foods were tested for residues of glyphosate at the FDA registered laboratory – Anresco Laboratories of San Francisco. Scientific evidence shows that probable harm to human health could begin at ultra-low levels of…

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GMO Bans in the News

Touch the Soil News #597 (feature photo – Chris English – CC SA 3.0) The controversy over GMOs is alive and well. Following are recent bans on GMOs and Monsanto’s Roundup (glyphosate):   Bermuda’s Environment Minister is not lifting a ban on weed killers containing glyphosate. The ban came into effect almost two years ago – May of 2015. Weed killers containing the controversial chemical glyphosate will be banned from being sold in the nation of Malta come April 2017. The ban comes days after the release of a study showing that the herbicide Roundup caused liver disease in rats. A European Union Citizens Initiative is being accepted by the…

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How Different Is GMO Corn?

Touch the Soil News #580 The reason for GMO corn is to make corn tolerant to Glyphosate – a chemical used in the herbicide Roundup. Thus, when controlling weeds in corn fields, you can spray a chemical lethal to living plants and not kill the corn. The USDA has classified GMO corn as “Generally Recognized as Safe.” This makes us consumers believe that the GMO corn is generally the same as regular real corn. A recent technical study (1) on NK603 – Roundup Ready GMO corn, revealed that the GMO corn was materially different than normal Non-GMO corn. The study was led by Dr. Michael Antiniou of King’s College London.…

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Is Monsanto in Financial Trouble? And What About the Pee Test?

Touch the Soil News #419 Monsanto’s problems in India and Argentina (they both materially cut back royalties paid to Monsanto on GMO cotton seeds) seem to be just a few of the increasing number of problems facing the company. Earlier in the year, Monsanto was fined $80 million by the Securities and Exchange Commission for account irregularities in its financial reports. The following Info Graphic #1 shows Monsanto sales and net income for the first half of 2014, 2015, and 2016. Shocking is that sales are down 25 percent over the two year period and net income down 60 percent. Monsanto’s licensing of glyphosate (active ingredient in RoundUp) in the…

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Is Monsanto – The Publically Proclaimed GMO Villain – About to Collapse?

Touch the Soil News #384 With a long history of buying other companies and thwarting efforts by states to label foods containing GMOs, Monsanto may be consumed by another beast – Bayer Ag from Germany. Bayer Ag (twice the size of Monsanto) has announced it has visited with Monsanto officials for an unsolicited takeover. Monsanto is consumed with a host of problems that are impacting the value of the company. The problems are of such magnitude, that Monsanto has turned from feeding on smaller prey, to becoming fodder for a bigger fish. In its weak condition, Monsanto stockholders may want to bail ship and sell the company. Here is a…

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Striving for Power Via Farm Chemicals, GMOs and Seed Patents (part 1 of 2)

Touch the Soil News #379 Historically we have followed the Monsanto company whose operations have ignited domestic and global protest. Operating at a lower public profile are two other companies (Syngenta and ChemChina) whose business lines are similar to Monsanto’s – genetic modification of plants, agrochemicals and patenting seeds for private corporate ownership. In an unsuccessful attempt last year (2015), Monsanto tried to acquire Syngenta – to create the world’s largest biotech and agrochemical company. Syngenta management spurred the deal, essentially saying Monsanto was not a suitable partner. Earlier this year, ChemChina (China National Chemical Corporation) – a state-owned enterprise by the Chinese government – made a bid to acquire…

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