The Sonoma County Gazette: Community News Magazine
Sonoma County Gazette
| more

Photo Gallery

Global Mission on a Local Scale - Sonoma County March Against Monsanto


Global Mission on a Local Scale
Sonoma County March Against Monsanto

On Saturday, May 23rd millions of people in 400 cities and 50 countries will be protesting together against GMOs and Monsanto. Join us at Old Court House Square, Santa Rosa starting at 2 PM for a permitted march and rally.

Sonoma County March Against Monsanto - May 23, 2015

The Truth About GMOs

A genetically modified organism (GMO) is an organism that arises from the genetic material (DNA) of a host animal, plant or bacteria that has been altered by the insertion of a gene from another species. This process is referred to as "genetic engineering" (GE) or "genetic modification" (GM).

GE is radically different from hybridization, crossbreeding, selective breeding or cross-fertilization, which occur in nature.

Non GMO Project VerifiedThe two major GE technologies are 1) insect resistance (Bt) and 2) herbicide tolerance to Roundup (glyphosate).

Five GM crops are widely grown: soybeans (94%), canola (90%), cotton (90%), corn (88%) and sugar beets. About 50% of papaya is GM and some of summer squash and alfalfa. About 70% of all processed foods contain GE ingredients.

International Opposition

In 1999, 671 scientists from 76 countries signed an open letter to all governments, which declared: "We call for the immediate suspension of all environmental releases of genetically modified crops and products, both commercially and in open field trials for at least five years; for patents on living processes, organisms, seeds, cell lines and genes to be revoked and banned; and for a comprehensive public inquiry into the future of agriculture and food security for all."

Internal documents of the FDA revealed that their scientists warned that GM foods might produce toxins, allergies, nutritional problems and new diseases.

In 1999 the first recorded case of a serious reaction to GM corn occurred. Hundreds of people got sick, and over 50 people contacted the FDA. Twenty-eight people's reactions fit the profile of anaphylactic shock. The EPA did not approve that corn for human consumption, but the FDA did.

In 2003 villagers in southern Philippines became ill when the GE corn came to flower.

In 2001/2002 twelve dairy cows died after eating Bt-corn. About 10 years later in India, a dozen cattle died three days after eating GE cotton plants.

A 1997 study revealed that rBGH (recombinant bovine growth hormone), a genetically engineered hormone injected into cows, greatly increases IGF-1 (insulin growth-like factor) levels by as much as 360% in their milk. In 1991 it was established that IGF-1 was critically involved in the growth of human breast cancer cells. In 1998 a study proved that men are four times more likely to contract prostate cancer and pre-menopausal women are seven times more likely to contract breast cancer with high levels of IGF-1.

A 2002 report by the Royal Society of the UK said that genetic modification could lead to unpredicted, harmful changes in the nutrition of food and recommended that potential health effects of GM foods be rigorously researched.

The world's leading researcher of GMOs, scientist Arpad Pusztai, (fifty years research) concluded that the GM foods already in the marketplace could not be considered safe. To this day, GM foods have never been proven safe! No studies or labeling are required by the FDA.

Impacts on Biodiversity

A major environmental problem with GMOs is their potential to have a serious negative impact on biodiversity, the greatest strength of ecosystems. This may be the most dangerous threat posed by GMOs.

A three-year study by the UK government revealed a 2/3 reduction in butterflies and a 50% reduction in bees in GE canola fields.

Monsanto claims they want to feed a starving world by growing more nutritious crops with a higher yield. So far no GE crops have been shown to be nutritionally or productively superior to natural varieties. They also claim that their processes result in less pesticide use, but because their Roundup Ready varieties are sprayed several times a season, the use of pesticides went up by 138 million pounds between 1996 and 2005.

Monsanto also claims they want to protect the environment but their Bt insecticide is effective in killing butterflies, honeybees, moths and beetles. Monsanto is the greatest known corporate threat to biodiversity. They are also the company that brought us Aspartame, DDT, PCB's, Agent Orange, Roundup and recombinant bovine growth hormone.

Monsanto provides the seed technology for 90% of the worlds GE crops. The brilliant Indian scientist, Vandana Shiva claims about 250,000 Indian farmers have committed suicide, mostly as a result of being ruined by Monsanto.

Who Will Stop This?

With Monsanto executives in key roles in the US government it is up to us to stop this. We can learn about GMOs and stop eating them. But individual action is not enough. We must take a stand and have our voices heard. No to Monsanto! No to GMOs! 

The link to the global March Against Monsanto group is here:

Together We Can Stop GMOs!

Occupy Sonoma County and GMO Free Sonoma County are organizing the March Against Monsanto on May 23rd. For more information contact and or call 707-877-6650. Look for our GMO shopper’s guide at

Juice labeled as Non GMO Project Verified

This article was written by Occupy Sonoma County to support the global effort of March Against Monsanto

Occupy Sonoma County embraces the egalitarian, deep democracy principles of the Occupy Movement with a regional strategy for effectively organizing county-wide social justice campaigns that are globally relevant.



Sonoma County NEWS you can USE