Update: 2/1/11: On January 27, 2011, the USDA announced that it would fully deregulate genetically engineered (GE) alfalfa. This decision means that without intervention from President Obama, farmers will begin planting GE alfalfa this spring, a scenario that could cripple the organic alfalfa, meat, and dairy industries. It's not too late to take action, though! By signing our petition, you can tell President Obama that he has an obligation to protect the organic food industry.
The USDA is about to approve Monsanto's genetically engineered alfalfa. One of the biggest impacts of allowing the use of GE alfalfa is contamination of other crops, including organic alfalfa, which is used by most organic dairies. The USDA actually acknowledges the problem of contamination, but is moving forward anyway.
We need to let the USDA and President Obama know that consumers don't want genetically engineered foods, and don't want organic foods to be contaminated.
Take action to stop the approval for Monsanto's GE alfalfa.
The USDA seems ready to make this decision before it has done the proper research to fully understand the risk GE alfalfa poses to organic and other non-GE crops. Just because some companies have inventories of GE alfalfa seeds doesn’t mean that USDA should rush this decision and set a terrible precedent that exposes organic farms to widespread GE contamination.
The USDA’s proposed plan for how to divide up the country into zones where GE alfalfa would be allowed under different conditions is unworkable and unacceptable. This is not a “management” plan; it is a decision to sacrifice organic farmers to contamination that could ruin their markets.
Consumers have a right to choose to eat non-genetically engineered foods, and farmers have a right to sow the crops of their choice, without threat of contamination.
Therefore, I urge you to reject the approval of genetically engineered alfalfa.