Blog: Plant Your Dream!
by YourEnchantedGardener

Whole Foods Market Did Not do Alfalfa wrong

Whole Foods Market Did Not do Alfalfa wrong.

"Whole Foods Market —
along with the National Cooperative Grocers Association,
the National Organic Coalition, the Organic Trade Association,
and other companies and groups —
endorsed the path of deregulation with restrictions, or coexistence,
not because it was a perfect path,
but because it was a path to create meaningful change right now
in the regulating of genetically engineered foods
and the protection of non-GE foods."
~ Walt Robb and Margaret Wittenberg
Whole Foods Market

Date:   2/8/2011 8:50:26 AM   ( 12 y ) ... viewed 22783 times





THIS IS NO TIME FOR DIVISIVENESS
I say that.
Gary Hirshberg comments
http://redgreenandblue.org/2011/01/30/stonyfield-farm-takes-a-swing-at-monsan...



FIRST DRAFT

This needs a lot of work.
I am up early writing this for
The Elephant Journal,
a new pub that Keep The Beet wants
says it out to Rock Your Soul.

6:54 am
February 8, 2011


____

6:24 pm
February 8, 2011


When it comes to reasoning with Monsanto,
or its president of sales, our esteemed man in the White
House Barack Obama, it is easy to get your sales pitch wrong.

Whole Foods Market has been accused of
selling out to Monsanto in a widespread internet
marketing campaign that would like to take the giant down.

Keep The Beet Media Star,
The World's First Talking Beet Plant
has another point of view;
She says, this is a good time stock up on
Whole Foods.

Personally, I will be doing that soon,
as soon as the prices go a bit down.

It is easy to take things out of context when
you read them on the internet.

Take these words for instant:

Walt Robb is quoted as speaking out in favor of
co-existence of GE alfalfa and Organic Alfalfa.

The idea of co-existence was never proved,
but for more than 18 months now it is an idea that
the USDA has been touting. The idealistic concept,
that has even been supported by Andrew Kimbrell
of the Center for Food Safety imagined that
Little David--the Organic Lovers--and the Giant
Monsanto possibly could get along from a
purely scientific point of view.

Kimbrell imagined that if you kept enough space
between organic and GE, like maybe 2 miles, you could
keep the queen bees from telling their charges
to do their cross pollination thing.

The idea of co-existence was touted by then
secretary of Ag A.G. Kawamura, the Terminator's Governor,
when I caught up with him and asked him to
support the newly forming Dialogue on Science, Ethics, and Food,
the first project of the yearly long
Campaign to Educate Washington on Real Food Safety.

Of course, as most people know, applied pure science
is a fairy tale. Co-existence is not possible in a world
where it is the nature of people to make mistakes,

Take the BP spill as a example
We got our selves in Deepwater because
big corps often have making a profit
as their bottomline. They are more interested,
as in the case of GE alfalfa, more prone to go for
profit per acre than nutrition per acre.

From a business perspective, Whole Foods Market
is here to make profits as well, but it is a bottomline
that does co-exist with a desire to do the right thing.

One good things about Whole Foods Market is that that
are prequently regulated from the bottom up, rather than the
top down.

I say this from personal experience.

It was Walt Robb, the Whole Foods CEO, now getting hit
with tomatoes, who tauted locally grown strawberries
from JR Organics when I Joe Rodriguez Jr, of the famed
fifth generation Rodriguez family brought them up to
Anaheim for the Natural Product Expo West.

It was our local Whole Food Market Hillcrest that gave
me the big yes when I wanted to get a Guinness record
for seeing if I could bring in picked that morning
fresh berries. That project last five weeks.

I proved my point, in concurrence with the marketing department
who at that time was 100 % backing trips to local farms.

During that same time, I wanted to participate in
World Environment Day activities in nearby Tecate.
Michael Besancon, then Southern Pacific regional director
was behind me. I asked for the money on a Tuesday.
I had it by Thursday of the same week.


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ORGANIC STAKEHOLDERS TO NETWORK



The Whole story is yet to be revealed.

9:47 pm
February 3, 2011


FROM THE WHOLE FOODS WEBSITE

http://blog.wholefoodsmarket.com/2011/01/no-regulations-ge-alfalfa/




Many people have asked us why we endorsed the coexistence option rather than an outright ban on GE alfalfa. That was never an option in Washington! The USDA presented the industry with only two options that they were considering– deregulation and deregulation with restrictions. Given the pervasive planting of GE crops in the U.S. – 93% of soy, 86% of corn, 93% of cotton and 93% of canola seed planted were genetically engineered in the U.S. in 2010 – the option of an outright ban was not on the table. Whole Foods Market — along with the National Cooperative Grocers Association, the National Organic Coalition, the Organic Trade Association, and other companies and groups — endorsed the path of deregulation with restrictions, or coexistence, not because it was a perfect path, but because it was a path to create meaningful change right now in the regulating of genetically engineered foods and the protection of non-GE foods. Because we supported the USDA’s approach of coexistence, certain consumer groups misunderstood our efforts and accused us of supporting big biotech, endorsing the proliferation of GE crops, and turning our backs on our shoppers’ and their desire to avoid GE food. Nothing could be further from the truth!

Whole Foods Market has been a staunch supporter of non-GE foods in the marketplace. We have taken a strong and visible stance on biotechnology in agriculture, and will continue to do so.

We believe that GE food should be clearly labeled, and that the USDA and FDA’s policies on GE foods are not consistent with our consumers’ expectations.
Since 1992, before GE crops were even commercialized, we have been educating and advocating on this issue, and we will continue to pursue our right to sell non-GE food.
We are proud to be a founding leader of The Non-GMO Project, which works to ensure the sustained availability of non-GMO choices through an industry-wide product standard. (Genetically engineered and Genetically Modified Organism — GMOs — are used interchangeably.)
We are committed to sourcing our store brand products to avoid GE ingredients, and we will continue to fight for strong organic standards that do not allow the use of GE crops.
We support the National Organic Standards, which prohibit GMOs in organics, and we champion informed consumer choice with regard to GMOs.
Our 365 Everyday Value® and Whole Foods Market™ brand products are sourced to avoid ingredients grown from genetically engineered seed, and our partnership with the Non-GMO Project will enable us to verify and label these products.
We will continue to work aggressively on this issue because we believe that GE food ingredients should be clearly labeled, and that consumers who want to avoid them should have an actionable way to do so. While yesterday’s decision will make our work more difficult, we are as committed as ever to ensuring that non-GE food remains available and we will continue to advocate for our farmers and for our shoppers on this issue.

AT NATURAL PRODUCT EXPO WEST


WHAT THE HECK HAPPENED?
http://www.stonyfield.com/blog/2011/01/29/we-can’t-let-ge-alfalfa-destroy-org...


COMMENT ON THE HUFFINGTON POST
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/jeanruss/organic-farmers-grant-a-wish_n_...


“GMO alfalfa was just approved because of the efforts of Stoneyfirl d Farm and Whole Foods. What's wrong with this picture? I think Stonyfield is a phony organic company with another agenda. They are NOT the friend of organic farmers. Their products are poor quality and have been shown to be non-organi c. After this terrible ruling by the USDA at their behest, I will continue NOT to buy their products and make others aware of their hypocrisy.”
Favorite (1) Flag as Abusive
Next Comment

Maverickpower 04:32 PM on 1/29/2011
110 Fans
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It is such a green wash it's makes me ill. Horizon too. THe very fact that Whole foods has their own farms should worry everyone, Walmart is not far behind. Our ag infrastruc ture is crippled to the point we could NEVER respond to any "hiccup' in the line of diesel trucks ,
THis is like patting someone on the back for being "less bad" than the worst in the class. THis whole market is so underdevel oped it's almost an insult to "reward it" Obviously we have devolved from just 40 years ago .
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goldfarmer 12:32 PM on 1/30/2011
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Respectful ly, you are wrong.
This crud is being spread by an op ed from the Organic Consumers Associatio n, and they are wrong.

Organic Valley, Stoneyfiel d, & Whole Foods DID NOT work to approve GM alfalfa. The USDA gave the Organic Industry a take it or leave it choice,
GM alfalfa release without restrictio ns, or negotiate controlled restrictio ns.
The companies behind GMO run this country. It's too bad, but that's the reality Organic & non GM farmers have to deal with.

I grow Organic alfalfa. I support whatever restrictions we can get out of GMO. All the well meaning rhetoric in the world couldn't keep a GMO alfalfa grower from setting up shop next to me, and potentiall y contaminating my crop. And if they can get some regs to stick to GMO on this issue, it opens up the possibilit y of legal action against them, of which, we have no hope for now.

GMO is hoping to sweep these negotiations under the rug by moving as quickly as possible. And believe me, they relish the chance to watch Organic & non GMO consumers attacking their own, instead of facing reality: we lost, we don't have the political power they do, so we should be banning together, and contacting the USDA, NOW! These negotiatio ns are a small window of opportunity that we shouldn't let slip through our fingers.

http://www.organicvalley.coop/community/organicsense/article/article/gm-alfal...


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