With the approval of GMO Alfalfa, GMO Sugar Beets and now GMO Corn, organic farmers are fighting harder than ever to protect their land and crops. Meanwhile, the agro-chemical companies are pleased that their profits are soaring thanks to the widespread belief that the USA is now the largest producer of GMO crops in the world. It is assumed that organic is in peril.
Why is this devastating to organic farmers? One main reason is cross-fertilization. This is especially disastrous for organic farmers because once an organic field is contaminated, the organic farmer’s certification is at risk. The organic label prohibits the use of GMO crops. Losing organic certification would mean the farmer’s goods can no longer be sold for the premium price that helps cover the costs of growing organically.
According to Farmaid.org, most GE crops hitting the market are developed by multinational companies such as Monsanto, Syngenta, Dupont and Dow Chemical to increase their sales and push their related pesticides. For example, Roundup Ready crops are all engineered to withstand Monsanto’s toxic herbicide Roundup. With Roundup Ready alfalfa and sugar beets on the market, Monsanto can expect increased profits from its new seeds, as well as increased sales of Roundup herbicide to douse all those new seeds. This has also been a core issue for the beekeeping community who has expressed concern that the combination of GMO crops with the companion technology of systemic pesticides has further devastated the rapidly declining bee population. It appears that the fate of organic farmers in the USA seems doomed but is it?
Tune in to organic farming advocate, Dr. Bob Quinn, President of Kamut® International. Bob works closely with Montana State University personnel on testing of new farming systems and new crops to provide farmers a substitute for the use of conventional fertilizer and pesticides.