Letter: Vote No on Proposition 105

Editor:

Our family has farmed for 70 years here in Larimer County. We are totally committed to sustainability in all of our farming. We grow organic crops, conventional non-GMO crops and GMO crop varieties on our farms.

Our family is opposed to Proposition 105, on the Nov. 4 statewide ballot.

As farmers, we believe that all consumers have a right to accurate and reliable information about the foods we buy and feed our families. Proposition 105 won’t provide that. It is so poorly written that it won’t tell consumers which foods contain GMO ingredients and which don’t.

Additionally, Proposition 105 conflicts with existing national standards that already provide consumers with a reliable way to choose foods made without GMOs, if that’s what they prefer. I know this because as an organic farmer, we follow a careful process and already pat added fees to have our farm inspected and certified. Foods that are certified organic cannot use GMO ingredients. There are also thousands of foods available that are certified “non-GMO” for consumers who are seeking that type of product.

Proposition 105 would result in many foods being labeled “genetically engineered” even if they’re not. At the same time, it would exempt many other foods that are made with genetic engineering or contain GMOs — so those foods wouldn’t be labeled. In fact, 105 arbitrarily exempts over half of the foods we eat. Proposition 105 even exempts school lunches that feed the ones we care about most.

Proposition 105 is not only a bad labeling proposal, it would also create a huge new bureaucracy to implement and enforce a food labeling system that would only exist in Colorado. It would also place severe and costly new burdens on our family farm and thousands of others throughout the state.

Proposition 105 would limit options and increase costs for all Colorado farmers, whether we grow GMO crops or not. Those costs would extend through the food system and ultimately raise food prices for Colorado families, especially hurting those that can least afford it. It would also put Colorado farmers and food producers at a competitive disadvantage with those in other states, hurting our agricultural economy.

This costly, uninformative and unreliable labeling proposal makes no sense. As a farmer who has worked for the past 50 years to put affordable and healthy food on tables of Colorado families, I urge you to join our family in voting NO on Proposition 105.

Richard Seaworth
Wellington

2 Comments

  1. GMO is a dangerous poison. Eating genetically modified corn (GM corn) and consuming trace levels of Monsanto’s Roundup chemical fertilizer caused rats to develop horrifying tumors, widespread organ damage, and premature death. rats exposed to even the smallest amounts, “developed mammary tumors and severe liver and kidney damage as early as four months in males, and seven months for females.” The animals on the GM diet suffered mammary tumors, as well as severe liver and kidney damage. Everywhere GMO is being grown, food allergies, disorders such as autism, reproductive disorders, digestive problems, and others have been skyrocketing in the human populations.

    There has been a drastic decline of crop-pollinating insects all over the world, and what this means for the future of the world’s food supply. Wild pollinators like bumblebees, butterflies, and beetles are basically disappearing. GMO industrial agricultural practices are causing this insect genocide. Pollinating insects in general, which include a wide range of insects and other animals, are simply vanishing from their normal habitats and foraging areas. That lower diversity and lower abundance of wild insects means less fruits and destruction of the diversity of plants and their fruits worldwide.

    GMOs cross pollinate and their seeds can travel. It is impossible to fully clean up our contaminated gene pool. Self-propagating GMO pollution will outlast the effects of global warming and nuclear waste. The potential impact is huge, threatening the health of future generations. GMO contamination has also caused economic losses for organic and non-GMO farmers who often struggle to keep their crops pure.

    GMOs increase herbicide use. Most GM crops are engineered to be “herbicide tolerant”―surviving deadly weed killers. Monsanto, for example, sells Roundup Ready crops, designed to survive applications of their Roundup herbicide. Between 1996 and 2008, US farmers sprayed an extra 383 million pounds of herbicide on GMOs. Overuse of Roundup results in “superweeds,” resistant to the herbicide. This is causing farmers to use even more toxic herbicides every year. Not only does this create environmental harm, GM foods contain higher residues of toxic herbicides. Roundup, for example, is linked with sterility, hormone disruption, birth defects, and cancer.

    GM crops and their associated herbicides can harm birds, insects, amphibians, marine ecosystems, and soil organisms. They reduce bio-diversity, pollute water resources, and are unsustainable. For example, GM crops are eliminating habitat for monarch butterflies, whose populations are down 50% in the US. Roundup herbicide has been shown to cause birth defects in amphibians, embryonic deaths and endocrine disruptions, and organ damage in animals even at very low doses. GM canola has been found growing wild in North Dakota and California, threatening to pass on its herbicide tolerant genes on to weeds.

    By mixing genes from totally unrelated species, genetic engineering unleashes a host of unpredictable side effects. Moreover, irrespective of the type of genes that are inserted, the very process of creating a GM plant can result in massive collateral damage that produces new toxins, allergens, carcinogens, and nutritional deficiencies.

    GMOs do not increase yields, and work against feeding a hungry world.

    Whereas sustainable non-GMO agricultural methods used in developing countries have conclusively resulted in yield increases of 79% and higher, GMOs do not, on average, increase yields at all. This was evident in the Union of Concerned Scientists’ 2009 report Failure to Yield―the definitive study to date on GM crops and yield.

    The toxins associated with GMO should never be tolerated. NEONICOTINOID PESTICIDE neurotoxins are absolutely the main factor causing the collapse of bee and pollinator populations along with other lethal chemicals, glysophate, etc. When these poisons are banned as they were in Europe the bee populations start to recover. GMO neonicotinoids, roundup etc. MUST BE BANNED OUTRIGHT and all the farmers along with USDA, Biotech and chemical companies told to cease and desist from what they are doing.

    An even scarier prospect: the “BT” version of GMO soybeans and corn, (basically pesticides engineered directly into the plant )

    The “BT toxin” gene is put into the DNA of the corn in order for it to manufacture its own toxins that kill pests. The BT gene originated from a soil bacteria that also infiltrates the microflora (friendly digestive bacteria) in your gut. The Bt gene converts the microflora in your intestine into toxin-manufacturing machines.

    So, to be clear, eating GMO corn products can cause your gut (which is primarily responsible for keeping you healthy) to turn into a breeding ground for tiny little pesticide factories inside your body, actively creating toxins which are designed to kill living things. These toxins are found in the blood and are readily transferred across the placenta to developing babies in the womb.

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