Calling All Americans

@p1kef1sh (45638)
September 4, 2009 4:46pm CST
I have just read that a Bill is to be presented to the US House and Senate shortly that will, if passed, effectively outlaw the growing of organic foods both my farmers and private individuals. The Bill is HR 875. If agreed, it will permit a Federal Agency to dictate what fertilisers may be used on food that you grow at home for your own consumption. The Bill is sponsored chiefly by Monsanto, the chemical company. I am flabbergasted if this is true. Are you bothered by this? This is corporate America manipulating the Government in literally a most unsavoury manner!
9 people like this
18 responses
@dawnald (84069)
• Shingle Springs, California
4 Sep 09
I'm going to have to come back to this later when I have more time, but here is the text of the bill for anybody who cares to read it: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext.xpd?bill=h111-875 I will say that I did a search on the word "organic" and it didn't even come up. I wonder if this isn't just more fear mongering...
4 people like this
@dawnald (84069)
• Shingle Springs, California
4 Sep 09
Actually you're probably better off trying to read some of the analyses of the bill that are out there. :-)
3 people like this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
5 Sep 09
I think that it is scaremongering. But there's no smoke without fire or something!
1 person likes this
• United States
4 Sep 09
I don't know if the House and the Senate have lost their minds on their own or if this sparkly new, heavily idealistic President is influencing some of their insanity but some where along the way this government has gone berserk. First, they try to make people pay for the right to use the Internet and now they are going to make me use fertilizer on my home grown vegetables (which, by the way, are doing FABULOUSLY, on their own...I just picked a nearly two pound yellow squash yesterday that was barely visible on Sunday). As if there aren't more important issues for them to be worrying about?!?!?!
3 people like this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
5 Sep 09
I think that this is actually a bit of scaremongery. Things may not be so bad as it first appears.
1 person likes this
@max1950 (2313)
• United States
4 Sep 09
what i do is keep all green leafy veggie parts and other veggie leftovers in a steel bowl on the counter when full i turn it over in my soil, i have never in 50 years of growing veggies used any type of fertilisers. i do however turn pearlite into some soil depending on where i was living at the time , per say georgia clay. this however might be a good thing if their going to get rid of all the nasty sprays and such ,but i doubt it. when talking to a farmer on vacation 3 weeks ago he told me that he cropdusts i week before picking to keep the color in his produce, he himself does not eat any skin of any fruit, so take it from the horses mouth. if let all these bills get to me id go nut's it's just 1 pocket filling the other and forget the people and that sux.
3 people like this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
5 Sep 09
I don't see how anyone can force folk to use fertilisers. It's big business manipulating the economy.
1 person likes this
@Hatley (164226)
• Garden Grove, California
5 Sep 09
HI PIKEY no this is news to me and its just awful .I hought we'were starting to go the other way more towards growing organic foods'withouall the pesticides. of course Monsanto would want this so they could sell all their pesticides and other chemicals.I hope to goodness it doesnt pass.I am really ticked off by this. since when does a chemical company dictate to thehouse and senate, what the heck is going on here?
2 people like this
@Hatley (164226)
• Garden Grove, California
5 Sep 09
error alert should be I thought not hought wow what an error.
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
I think that it has been blown out of proportion but it's still scary Hatley.
1 person likes this
5 Sep 09
Hi p1key, That is disgusting, I mean if people want to buy organic food they can't as its will still have chemicals in them, so whats the point of being organic then? now people can't eat what they want, I just hpe this goverment won't foolow suit as they always do with other things, this is jus awful. Hugs. Tamara xxxx
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
Our Government is far more restrictive than the US one Tamara. You and I can't even walk down our High Streets without being watched by CCTV!
1 person likes this
@owlwings (42011)
• Cambridge, England
5 Sep 09
As several people have pointed out already, there is a lot of mis-information going around about this bill. Tdmex's link is a good one (I mean, good at dispelling the MIS-information!) It appears that it has NOTHING to do with Monsanto. Rosa DeLauro's husband once worked for a company that had Monsanto as a client ... a very different thing! Actually, I once worked for Monsanto (they bought the company I worked for from Unilever) and am in the process of retrieving my (very minimal) pension from them as a lump sum. Does that mean that anything I say should be suspect? Rest easy, P1kef1sh. The deep waters in which you sail will actually be more likely to be protected from nitrogenous effluent than otherwise; gardeners may tend their organic gardens and local small farmers selling their produce at Farmer's Markets will not be required to compile mountains of paperwork or be banned from practising their livelihood. I find the language in which American legislation is written is dense in the extreme. The concept of Plain English has not yet reached into the dark recesses of the White House or Senate, it appears. Dawnald gives the link to the full text of the bill if you really wish to exercise your brain in such things. As she says, it is probably sufficient to read the Summary (or other peoples' take on it, though with a pinch of sodium chloride - a food additive recognised and approved by USDA and the FDA) ... Try this: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h111-875&tab=summary
@owlwings (42011)
• Cambridge, England
5 Sep 09
No, I certainly don't like Pfizer/Monsanto! They appeared in England and took over several agricultural companies (the one I worked for being one) in the early 90's. It wasn't very long before they foisted their GM policies on us and, of course, Roundup (which, I believe, is a very good and non-invasive herbicide ... except that they tried to engineer crops to be resistant to it. I was employed by them while they tried to foist their experiments on the British countryside and I was, at the time, very much in sympathy with the people who saw the dangers but, as a mere IT support person, I kept my mouth shut and my nose clean, as it were. At the same time, I was looking round for other employment when 'rationalisation' and 'restructuring' made that more of a necessity than a choice. I believe that it took them less than two years to make their name undesirable in the mouths of the general public of Europe. Well, until they (or their pension plan holders) have paid me the £2000 'trivial lump sum' I earned from my unwonted employment, I had better not say too much!
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
5 Sep 09
Hornswaggled please stop getting so agitated. Owlwings worked for Monsanto because his company was bought out by them. He's due a small pension sum from them that's all. He isn't an advocate for the company or their products. I think that he probably agrees with you in that chemical fertilisers are less preferable to natural alternatives.
1 person likes this
@owlwings (42011)
• Cambridge, England
6 Sep 09
It's a shame, hornswaggled, that you didn't post the full link. I should have been interested to read it (and it would have saved you the need to copy the bulk of the article). I have to say that the style in which the article is written is of the kind that makes me feel distinctly uncomfortable (regardless of the veracity of the information). I can't quite put my finger on why such style comes across as 'bad' but it is one that I associate with (to be frank) 'cranks' and people who are wont to pick and choose their information in order to build up a 'strong' case against something they violently oppose (or support, depending on the subject) for other reasons than the ones stated. It is the kind of style used very often, for example, by the peddlers of 'alternative' health cures - the quick-fire succession of 'facts' and 'scientific results' which gives one no chance to verify that what they are saying is true. Note that, here, I am commenting on the style of the article and not on the relative merits or otherwise of the product discussed. It may, indeed, be true that glyphosphate is as toxic after all as the article points out but the tone of it is such as to raise warning flags in my mind and to tell me that the sources mentioned (they are not directly quoted) need to be verified. If this information was available five years ago, I wonder why glyphosphate products (including but not limited to Monsanto's Roundup) are still on the shelves in British and American gardening stores. Monsanto's control over the product has long expired, so it would be unrealistic to claim corporate manipulation of government controls. I agree that the use of glyphosphate in a farming context is a very different matter to its use in little spray bottles by home gardeners and I can also confirm that farm workers must by law observe stringent safety procedures, including the use of protective clothing, when using it. That, in itself, seems odd when put against the official (Monsanto) line that it is 'no more harmful to humans than salt' (a point I remember being made at one of the presentations to which we were subjected - another example of slick, quick fire argument which made me feel distinctly uneasy.) One necessarily has to make a judgement based on the information available to one at the time. I did not altogether believe, at the time that I was employed by them nearly 20 years ago, Monsanto's claims for the safety of their product but there appeared to be, at the time, no conflicting evidence. In fact at that time I was very much more concerned about the ethical questions around the genetic manipulation of crops to make them immune to glyphosphate (and those questions still concern me). Your quotation has certainly inspired me to do some more research but I must reserve my judgement on the claims made in it till I have done that. Until then, I still regard glyphosphate as one of the safest weed control products on the market - though with the caveat that any chemical designed to kill anything cannot be organically sound or ethical.
1 person likes this
• Regina, Saskatchewan
5 Sep 09
And this is just the tip of the iceberg of the 'bad taste' being left in the mouths of many Americans. At this rate, the U.S. will be a police state in no time!
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
I am afraid that the average American wouldn't recognise a police state if it hit them on the nose Sparky. They are terrified of anything that strikes at their "Liberty". Over here in the Socialist Republic of Great Britain of course we are truly free and able to prosper and grow under the benevolent dictatorship of the "Peoples" Labour Party. All Hail Prime Minister Gordon Brown and St Tony Blair.
2 people like this
• Regina, Saskatchewan
6 Sep 09
Then they'd better wake up and look around.......... And the Brits.....well if they get their tongues out of their cheeks.............LOL
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
Over here we have the liberty to pay homage to our socialist masters and to the little spy camera that we have in our homes that watch us 24/7 in case we have an original thought.
1 person likes this
@hotsummer (10523)
• Philippines
5 Sep 09
what does this law mean. that grown vegetables can't be grown without any fertilizers and it is against the law not to use any. isn't that a very strict law to implement. but if they are going to enforce with the health of the people in mind then it will just be okay. but if this is just a way for them to earn something for themselves, then i will say that it is just purely ridiculous.
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
I think that it is intended to force "fertilizer" to be sourced only from chemical manufacturers and not organic ones as they "threaten" the food chain.
1 person likes this
@hotsummer (10523)
• Philippines
6 Sep 09
i just wonder how can the implement this law as it is hard to monitor what fertilizer people use in their own garden with so many people having their own garden in US. i know that many americans are big on growing their vegetables which i would want to happen here in my country also.
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
LOL. The USA is a long long way off Marxism. Obama is so much like Blair. Loved, then loathed and finally discredited. Curiously the only people that love Blair now are Americans!
@dragon54u (31638)
• United States
5 Sep 09
I haven't heard of this bill but it doesn't surprise me in the least. America is run by corporations--the people haven't run the country for decades. We've given control over to the corporations through laziness and complacency. But we're taking the country back, slowly but surely. The new president has really focused people on what's wrong with the country and shown it through his blatant disregard for our Constitution. Monsanto, beware! We are getting fed up!
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
I'm a bit confused now. You're supporting the President because he is opposing elements of the Constitution that favour the conglomerates and big companies? That sounds good to me. Viva Obama then.
2 people like this
@dragon54u (31638)
• United States
6 Sep 09
No, no, no! I am not supporting the president. I did during the first few months because I was willing to cut him some slack and see where he was going. Now that I see he is going down the path of dictatorship/Marxism I do NOT support him! I'm just grateful to him that he woke up the American people from their blind complacency and made them realize that they have let the country slide downhill.
1 person likes this
@bdugas (3581)
• United States
5 Sep 09
Nothing surprises me anymore and yes I heard of this a while back, they say we grow and they farmers market grow items that make people sick cause there is no control over what and how they grow it. I have been buying from the farmers market since I got here to Ohio and have yet found any thing that has made me sick. In fact I believe their produce is a lot more clean than what i get at the grocery store. It is a way for this company to control what is grown, and another way for the government and the president to stick their noses into our business. I will grow in my back yard the tomatoes and peppers and other vegetables that I choose, I am the one eating them and taking care of them. I sure not going to do anything to make my self sick. They better take care of the companies that grow this in bulk as many recalls I see happening.
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
Farmers market food is grown in "old fashioned" ways that are not dependent on chemicals to fertilize the soil. Like any other fruit and veg, if you wash it first then nothing untoward should happen to you. I'd rather run the risk of your back yard tomato than a Monsanto fertilised one any day!
1 person likes this
• Canada
5 Sep 09
Not long after this idea was proposed, my American hsband agreed that the best place for us to live would be in my hometown of Guelph Ontario Canada. We live right next door to a beautiful farmers market, where we can get all the organic stuff we want. It's great, and he goes upstairs every Saturday, walks about 30 feet, and buys all the fresh food we need for the next week.
1 person likes this
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
That's an ideal situation. Regrettably in the land where competition and choice is everything it seems that that option is being quietly removed!
1 person likes this
@catdla1 (6005)
• United States
5 Sep 09
Relax and breathe easy. The bill is not about organic or non-organic food at all. It's about establishing better food handling and safety guidelines within the U.S. It also would require that any imported foods would conform to these standards. Here is a summary that I found that better explains it: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h111-875&tab=summary I would imagine that all of the illness (both human and animal) from foods, as well as the expenses related recalls, have proven that better inspection, and food handling proceedures need to be adopted.
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
I know that there is no direct mention of organic in the Bill, but depending on who you read this is wonderful or the end of the world. We do seem to be somewhat obsessed with hygiene etc in the west. Makes me wonder how mankind ever evolved without the FDA etc! LOL.
1 person likes this
@catdla1 (6005)
• United States
6 Sep 09
Before people had ever heard about germs and bacteria, I'm sure there were plenty of sickness from food. People just didn't realize what caused it...or maybe they thought witches did it. Who knows? With the advent of sanitation laws, you can just bet that some die-hards thought such practices were 'just a waste of time'. Part of the purpose of the FDA was to make sure that food processing plants complied with these sanitation codes. With recalls in the past year or so on everything from peanuts, lettuce and hamburger to cookie dough, pet foods and God knows what...it's pretty obvious that there are loopholes in the laws, and not enough oversight to check what's going on. It's compounded by imported foods that come in that don't meet our standards, but end up in grocery stores anyway. Look at the melamine ordeal last year. It ended up in baby foods, pet foods and even in bulk foods used by schools. I think that bill is trying to address at least some of those areas. The farther we move away from using almost all locally produced food (how many family farms are there in Baltimore?), the more these laws become necessary. They're needed because in the global food chain, there are those who value money over quality and safety. When your daughter heads out with some new friends on Friday night for dinner, Has a handful of peanuts while laughing. Then enjoys a salad and a burger, while discussing classes, classmates and professors. Would you want her to end up in the hospital because everything she ate was contaminated with e-coli? It happens, and it happens too much here. That's why Bill HR 875has been proposed.
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
Of course I would not want that for her. But the Bill plays into the hands of the major producers. I don't want to eat food in NYC that has to be shipped from LA because the local grower can no longer be "trusted" to provide an acceptable product. This is very anti-competitive. Maybe that's why Monsanto are a major supporter. Kill off the competition and they have a clear run.
1 person likes this
@camomom (7535)
• United States
9 Sep 09
That's just nuts. Can't the government just leave us alone.....................
@p1kef1sh (45638)
9 Sep 09
Now wouldn't that be a great campaign slogan - "Vote for us and we'll Leave you alone"!
@camomom (7535)
• United States
9 Sep 09
I'd vote for them
@mtdewgurl74 (18118)
• United States
7 Sep 09
Wow!..since I love growing stuff and gardening..I would be against this bill. I don't think they should be able to tell us what we can use on our own gardens at home..Next they will be telling us we can't have dogs or animals in the yard.
@p1kef1sh (45638)
7 Sep 09
My understanding is that this bill is not what it seems at first glance Becky. There's been some scaremongery. I think that your back yard is safe for now!
@mtdewgurl74 (18118)
• United States
7 Sep 09
Well, that is a load off..
• Netherlands
5 Sep 09
Unfortunately, being an American myself, this does not surprise me in the least. The American Government has pretty much always been manipulated by corporate $$$ America and the, what use to be, "All Mighty Buck" is the reason of course! If you look back on the history of the Government of America it has never really been run by One Head of State and His chosen cabinet etc., but always with the money of corporate America backing him. The only 2 times that I can think of that there was actually only One person ruling America without the corporations manipulating them was when the country was run by Eleanor Roosevelt and when it was run by Nancy Reagan. Now Those 2 women would Never have Allowed Anyone to manipulate them into doing anything!! I did go to a Website and read about this HR 875 bill that you have spoken about and fortunately it is only in the first step of the legislative process and the majority of those bills never make it out of the committee. That is Not to say that it won't be re-written many times to read better so that it will Eventually make it out of the committee, on to the next phases and Eventually make it into a law as I am pretty sure it will...and when you read it as a law it will say the same thing that the Original bill says now, they just had to keep hiring better and better writers to get it slid in past everyone that either can't read or just can't be bothered to read. Of course all of the money spent hiring better and better writers to re-write the bill over and over again so that it Will pass, could be spent on a lot better things, but Hey, who cares? This is America and we just Love to waste money!!
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
America isn't alone. There will always be significant lobby groups backed by vested interests that will manipulate the way that a country develops GEL. But when those interests strike directly in our own back yards and dictates how we do things there; then I think it is time to call "enough". Light bulbs in Europe come to mind.
1 person likes this
• Netherlands
6 Sep 09
So true P1key, America is not the only country whose Government works along these lines unfortunately! Don't Even get me started going on about light bulbs in Europe...I Might get noisy, and you Know how mild mannered I normally am!! LOL
@MsTickle (25050)
• Australia
8 Sep 09
To me this means that people who want to grow their own organic (or otherwise ) veggies and fruit or those farmers thinking of going organic will be stopped or controlled as to what fertilisers they can use...this will effectively grant the market to whomever Monsanto wishes to have it, a monopoly if you will. Is this what you see happening Pikey?
@p1kef1sh (45638)
8 Sep 09
I think that could be how this ends up if allowed to proceed unchecked. They'll have to wait and see. Sometimes living in Europe has its plus points. Not many - but a few.
@laglen (19779)
• United States
6 Sep 09
Thank you for posting this and thank you for recognizing how ridiculous our Government is becoming. We will start growing lettuce in our houses under heat lamps then have the ATF break down our door to take the contraband! This has gotten so out of hand...... I'm thinking I could get more freedom in Cuba. Our Democrat reps are saying how wonderful Castro's Cuba is!
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
Beware the lettuce police. One application of organic fertiliser and your aphid food! Funny how Obama is compared to JFK and he took a somewhat different line on Cuba.
@suzzy3 (8352)
6 Sep 09
I am not an American but food grown in your own back yard sounds a bit ridiculous how on earth will they police it,it sounds like this company want all the profit,I thought America was a democracy unlike England a Nanny state.God help you if you get like us.
@p1kef1sh (45638)
6 Sep 09
I think that it's all scaremongery. It's much more likely to happen here!