WEB VIDEO OF THE WEEK:
THE WORLD ACCORDING TO MONSANTO
The infamous company that has forced PCBs, Agent Orange, biotech crops and rBGH on the world has more control over global politics, laws and the future of food and water than most people realize. Watch this investigative video that analyzes the inner workings, history and scandalous secrets of one of the world’s most powerful corporations–Monsanto.
TOOLKIT OF THE WEEK:
Earth Week is just around the corner (April 19-26), and the OCA wants to make sure you have your eco-toolbelts equipped with all of the necessary materials to help educate people and move the country toward positive change. Whether you are attending an Earth Day event, throwing an environmentally focused house party, or just bringing some helpful reading materials to leave on the office break-room table during Earth Week, the OCA has a full menu of green goodies for you to print, copy and circulate:
- Find local Earth Week events. Go to http://organicconsumers.org and choose your state in the dropdown menu on the left. When you arrive at your OCA state page, click on the "Events" link on the top right.
- Print, copy and hand out OCA’s fact sheet (PDF) on how children are affected by pesticides in foods. The statistics come from U.S. government agencies, and are quite shocking: /old_articles/organic/wic-faq.pdf
- Facts and Myths About Biofuels: Can Ethanol and Biodiesel Save the World?
The OCA and hundreds of organizations around the world are sounding the alarm on this dangerous fraud. Download and print this handout: /old_articles/BiofuelsFacts5.pdf
- Give Peace and Peas a Chance: Organic foods, the war in Iraq and global climate change are all intimately related. Download and print this handout: /old_articles/GlobalWarming5.pdf
- Consumer tips for avoiding misleadingly labeled "organic" and "natural" personal care products laden with synthetic ingredients: /old_articles/bodycare/CCad05.pdf
- Spread the word about your Earth Week events. Add to OCA’s events
CALL CONGRESS TODAY!
THE DEATH OF PESTICIDE LAWS
Support Organic and Safer, Less-Toxic & More-Environmentally Friendly Pest Management!
A provision in the Farm Bill would prevent Conservation Programs from regulating or banning the use of harmful pesticides. This could mean that Organic Programs, Integrated Pest Management programs, and other programs that ban certain pesticides would not be able to receive federal conservation dollars.
PLEASE CALL CONGRESS ASAP! http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o/642/campaign.jsp?campaign_KEY=23882
From the International Labor Rights Forum
The House Committee on Agriculture is currently debating a provision in the Farm Bill which would provide U.S. Corporations with a voluntary process to demonstrate to consumers that their products are harvested without forced labor or the worst forms of child labor. Huge agricultural corporations like Cargill and Archer Daniels Midland are aggressively lobbying to cut this provision from the Farm Bill. This provision is a major step forward in ending forced and child labor around the world and we cannot let business lobbyists stop it! Take action to stop agriculture imports produced with child labor here: http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o/642/campaign.jsp?campaign_KEY=24177
DINNER TABLE FACTS OF THE WEEK:
Last week, the United Nations sounded the alarm on the global climate change as it relates to the out of control rise of food prices around the world. Here are some of the new statistics reported by Sir John Holmes, the UN’s emergency relief coordinator:
- Food and fuel prices have risen 40% on average globally since last summer.
- Staple foods have seen price increases of 80% in three years.
- Climate Change has doubled the number of global disasters from an average of 200 a year to 400 a year, which is exacerbating food shortages.
- In the last three months, rising food prices have spawned riots and protests in Egypt, Haiti, the Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Mauritania, Mozambique, Senegal, Uzbekistan, Yemen, Bolivia and Indonesia.
- According to the World Bank, 33 countries face unrest due to increasing food prices.
GOOD NEWS AND QUOTE OF THE WEEK:
THE SILVER LINING AROUND THE CLOUD OF HIGHER FOOD PRICES
"Higher food prices level the playing field for sustainable food that doesn’t rely on fossil fuels."
Source: Michael Pollan, author of "In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto", speaking to the New York Times about how rising fuel costs will likely stimulate increased demand for less processed and locally grown foods, because they will be more affordable.
BREAKING THE CHAINS:
SHARE YOUR STORIES WITH US!
The Organic Consumers Association wants to hear from consumers about working for or being a customer of any of the world’s largest food service companies, SYSCO, Sodexho, Compass, and ARAMARK. These companies serve millions of people daily, and have a major impact on our planet’s environment. SYSCO alone made $35 Billion in sales last year, making it the country’s largest food distributor. We’re encouraging these companies to begin buying and selling organic foods. We want to know just how green they really are, and we need your help! If you have had personal experiences with any of these companies or know people who have, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
FOODS OFFERS OCA CUSTOMERS 15% DISCOUNT
Foods is one of the few national organic food producers
who goes beyond the USDA Organic Standards. Although Eden
Foods is USDA certified, their products do not bear the
USDA seal, because they say the USDA standard really represents
a "minimum standard" that Eden Foods goes far
beyond. As a subscriber to Organic Bytes, you can enjoy
a discount rate on any Eden Foods products by clicking
forward this publication to family and friends, place it on web sites,
print it, duplicate it and post it freely. Knowledge is power!
TO CO-OP AND NATURAL FOOD STORE SUBSCRIBERS:
Organic Bytes is a great tool for keeping your staff and customers
up to date on the latest issues. Feel free to forward this email
to your staff and print for posting on bulletin boards and staff
break tables. You are also welcome to use this material for your
newsletters. There’s an attractive print-friendly PDF version of
this available for free download at /old_articles/organicbytes.cfm
studies indicate grass-fed beef (cattle raised in pasture) is much
healthier to eat than grain-fed beef (cattle raised in confinement).
Grass-fed beef is up to three times leaner than grain-fed beef,
and can have up to 15 fewer calories per ounce than meat from a
grain-fed cow. Grass-fed meat also provides more balanced omega-3s,
omega-6 fatty acids beta carotene, vitamin E and folic acid. Mad
cow disease has never been found in a 100% grass-fed cow . /old_articles/madcow/grassfed111505.cfm
second confirmed U.S. case of the human form of mad cow disease
has been discovered in Texas. Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease is caused
by eating beef tainted with the fatal disease. In this case, it
is assumed the man caught the disease during the UK outbreak, rather
than from U.S. beef, as he is originally from England. /old_articles/madcow/variant112305.cfm
of the week: Produce with the lowest pesticide levels:
asparagus, avocados, bananas, broccoli, cauliflower, sweet corn,
kiwi, mangoes, onions, papaya, pineapples and sweet peas. Produce
with the highest pesticide levels: apples, bell peppers, celery,
cherries, imported grapes, nectarines, peaches, pears, potatoes,
red raspberries, spinach and strawberries.
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