Victory of the Week
Court Rules GMO-Free Milk
and Dairy Products Can Be Labeled as Such
In IDFA et
al v. Boggs, decided September 30, 2010, a Federal Appeals Court overturned
an Ohio state ban on label statements such as "rbGH free," "rbST free," and
"artificial hormone free" on milk from cows that have not been treated with
recombinant (GMO) bovine growth hormone (rBGH), a.k.a. bovine somatotropin (rbST).
The court found that GMO milk is different from normal milk. The decision
difference does exist between milk from untreated cows and conventional
use of rBGH (rbST) in milk production has been shown to elevate the levels
of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), a naturally-occurring hormone that
in high levels is linked to several types of cancers, among other things.
(rbST) use induces an unnatural period of milk production during a cow's
"negative energy phase." Milk produced during this stage is considered to be
low quality due to its increased fat content and its decreased level of
from rBGH-injected cows contains higher somatic cell counts, which makes the
milk turn sour more quickly and is another indicator of poor milk quality.
Alerts of the
Organic Standards Alert
When is organic beer not really organic? Nearly always - and
the situation may quickly get worse. The issue is hops, one of the central
ingredients in beer. It's a little-known fact that "certified organic" beer
can be brewed with non-organic hops, owing to a USDA ruling made in 2007,
despite the objections of thousands of OCA members.
is currently up for review by the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB),
but one of their committees has voted unanimously to continue it, and their
recommendation is likely to stand unless consumers and organic advocates
make their voices heard during the public comment period that runs through
October 12, or in person at the USDA hearings in Madison, Wisconsin October
25-27. The Organic Consumers Association will be testifying in support of
requiring organic hops. We need as many of our members to join us as
The Cornucopia Institute, OCA's close ally, has put together
a comprehensive report called Scrambled Eggs, exposing the deplorable
practices that constitute "business as usual" in industrial-scale organic
egg production. The report is the culmination of two years of research which
saw the group visit over 15% of the certified egg farms in the United
States, and survey all name-brand and private-label industry marketers.
Cornucopia's findings demonstrate the huge gap between best-practice animal
husbandry exhibited by many small and medium-sized organic egg producers,
and the bare-minimum standards followed by many industrial-scale operations.
Recently, long-established USDA organic wine standards have
come under attack. A group made up of foreign and domestic wine producers
and distributors seeks to change current established US organic wine
standards to allow a synthetic preservative called sulfite, a known
allergen, to be added to organic wine.
Keeping Nano Out
reason why consumers shop for products that are certified organic is to
avoid hazardous and unlabeled Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), toxic
chemicals, and now the most recent, and likely most dangerous hi-tech poison
of them all: nanotechnology. Nanotechnology is now a mega-billion dollar
Frankenstein monster industry churning out a vast menu of untested and
unlabeled products containing tiny nanoparticles including non-organic
vitamin supplements, food packaging, processed food, cosmetics and
sunscreens. Unfortunately the USDA National Organic Program has not yet
banned nanotechnology. The National Organic Standards Board feels it can't
"adequately define" nanotechnology, and ban it, even though it's been banned
under the organic standards of Canada, the UK, and the US-based Organic Crop