Organic Bytes
SUBSCRIBE | DONATE Share on Facebook Follow OCA on Twitter OCA on Pinterest Follow OCA on YouTube Instagram LinkedIn RSS Feed

girl with fruit

Court Orders EPA to Ban Toxic Chlorpyrifos

“Today the court has affirmed what scientists have known for decades: chlorpyrifos is much too dangerous to be using.”

The Environmental Protection Agency has been ordered to ban all food uses of Chlorpyrifos, a toxic pesticide linked to memory loss and developmental harms.

“This ruling is a huge victory for children and communities across the country who will finally be spared by needless poisonings and lifelong learning disabilities,” said Earthjustice, an environmental law firm who sued the agency.

Earthjustice noted that chlorpyrifos is just one of dozens of organophosphates used on produce at farms across the country: “While we celebrate this win today, EPA must also ban all organophosphates to fully protect public health.”

Learn more: ‘Huge Victory’: Federal Appeals Court Orders EPA to Ban All Food Uses of Toxic Pesticide Chlorpyrifos

guinea pig with impossible burger

FDA Has Let Consumers Become Guinea Pigs

The Impossible Burger contains a GMO ingredient called soy leghemoglobin (heme). It is the color additive Impossible Foods uses to make its plant-based burger appear to “bleed” as if it were beef.

The novel “heme” colorant is a product of genetic engineering and synthetic biology. Its DNA is extracted from the roots of soy plants which contain a small amount of heme. That DNA is inserted into genetically engineered yeast that mass-produces the genetically engineered heme. The final product contains more than a dozen yeast proteins.

Impossible Food’s genetically engineered synthetic heme is new to the human diet and substantial quantities of it are added to the Impossible Burger.

The FDA could have regulated heme as a Food Additivebut didn’t. Instead it allowed the ingredient to go through the Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) process, which is voluntary.

Impossible Foods’ products containing genetically engineered heme are now widely available in supermarkets across the country because of the FDA’s unlawful approval.

Whether you’re excited about new meat alternatives, or you’d rather eat regenerative and organic grass-fed beef, we can all agree on one thing: 

Fake meat, like all foods made with genetic engineering and synthetic biology, should be safety-tested before we start eating it. 

The best way to safety-test new GMOs is to conduct long-term studies on human volunteers, before the GMOs are released into the market. 

Take Action: Tell Congress to press the U.S. Food & Drug Administration to safety test the GMO Impossible Burger!

support oca and crl

Support the Organic and Regenerative Revolution (and Truth-Telling)

With increasing censorship of OCA and our allies’ social media and ongoing “shadow ranking” (suppressing Google searches for OCA’s articles and videos) we need you and your friends to subscribe directly to Organic Bytes.

Please get your friends and everyone you know to become subscribers of Organic Bytes, since we may be “deplatformed” any day now on Facebook and social media.  

Please ask everyone on your email list and your social media contacts to subscribe to Organic Bytes here

And we need your financial support as well, more than ever.

Much of OCA’s work is focused on educating consumers and engaging them in the battle to boycott Big Meat, GMOs, and junk foods and help regenerate our food, farming, and land-use practices. But of course this ongoing campaign for organic and regenerative foods is also a battle to protect our health.

Never has that mission been more urgent than now. COVID-19 has taught us how valuable a healthy immune system is—and how a polluted environment and a highly processed, pesticide-contaminated industrial diet compromises our health and leaves us vulnerable to chronic disease.

Our job would be easier if we could focus exclusively on food and agriculture. But unfortunately, the corporations that benefit from corrupting the food system, polluting our waterways and degrading our soil, also corrupt our political system.

As long as food and agriculture policy is written by Big Food and Big Ag, our food, our environment—and our health—will suffer. As long as gene engineers, bioweapons scientists, unelected medical czars, Silicon Valley billionaires, and Big Pharma bureaucrats feel free to lie and terrify the public into submission, participatory democracy faces a mortal threat.

Please help us keep the battle going.

Make a tax-deductible donation to Organic Consumers Association, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit 

Support Citizens Regeneration Lobby, OCA’s 501(c)(4) lobbying arm (not tax-deductible)

Donate $100 or more and we’ll send you a copy of Ronnie’s new book

Click here for more ways to support our work

maize and people

OCA and Allies Pressure Biden to Allow Mexico’s Ban on GMOs and Phase-Out of Glyphosate to Continue

In his move to ban Monsanto/Bayer’s glyphosate, “Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador quietly rocked the agribusiness world with his New Year’s Eve decree,” Timothy A. Wise of the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP) noted earlier this year. “His administration sent an even stronger aftershock two weeks later, clarifying that the government would also phase out GM corn imports in three years and the ban would include not just corn for human consumption but yellow corn destined primarily for livestock.” 

Since then, U.S. corporate agribusiness and proponents of so-called Free Trade have been lobbying the Biden administration to lean on Mexican President López Obrador to backtrack on his popular decision to kick GMOs and the toxic chemicals that go along with them out of Mexico.

OCA’s Mexico sister organization, Via Organica, has worked hard for over a decade, along with its 300 other partner organizations in the coalition Sin Maiz, No Hay Pais (“Without Corn there is no country”) to ban GMOs and glyphosate south of the border.

“Mexico imports about 30% of its corn each year, overwhelmingly from the United States,” Wise added. “Almost all of that is yellow corn for animal feed and industrial uses. López Obrador’s commitment to reducing and, by 2024, eliminating such imports reflects his administration’s plan to ramp up Mexican production as part of the campaign to increase self-sufficiency in corn and other key food crops.” 

Read more: 80 Groups Blast US Interference in Mexico’s Phaseout of Glyphosate and GM Corn 


Big Meat and Big Pharma Are Killing Us with Antibiotics

There’s a reason you should boycott Big Meat and all non-organic, non-grass-fed or factory-farmed foods. As Civil Eats tells us: 

“The danger is obvious: If antibiotic-resistant bacteria infect humans more often, once-minor health issues could become life-threatening. The World Health Organization (WHO) identifies antibiotic resistance as “one of the biggest threats to global health” today, and a 2019 Centers for Disease Control (CDC) report found antibiotic-resistant bacteria cause 2.8 million infections and 35,000 deaths annually in the U.S. The CDC’s numbers did show an 18 percent decrease in deaths over the six years since its initial 2013 report, as a result of actions that have been taken to curb overuse in both healthcare and agriculture. But other estimates of deaths attributable to antibiotic-resistant bacteria are much higher.” 

Read more: Is the U.S. Doing Enough to Address the Meat Industry’s Role in Antibiotic Resistance?

where did we go wrong with food

The True Costs of American Junk Food

Mark Bittman’s new book, Animal, Vegetable, Junk, sheds light on why so many Americans, including young people, are falling victim to chronic diseases such as obesity, heart disease, and cancer. 

In relation to COVID-19, it is the increasingly routine consumption of junk food—highly-processed, filled with bad fats, sugar-laden, and laced with synthetic ingredients—that make so many of the elderly and those in poor health vulnerable to a viral trigger such as COVID-19 that magnifies and exacerbates underlying diet-related chronic diseases or co-morbidities. 

As Bittman explains:

“One of the most damning statistics is that close to 50% of the food that’s available is in the form of ultra-processed food. So ultra-processed food is what I call junk food… And it means food that contains non-food ingredients; food that your grandmother, great grandmother, maybe at this point wouldn’t have recognized as food. Food that you can’t cook yourself. Food that you don’t find in your own kitchen in the normal course of cooking and eating. A food that didn’t exist before the 20th century. It’s important to recognize that because ultra-processed food is cheap and it’s fast and it’s widely available; people without time and without money, are more likely to buy that kind of food. But everybody eats junk food. And it also poisons the environment for everybody.” 

Read the interview with Bittman in The Guardian