Under Obama, Vilsack brought us cloned farm animals, lab-grown meat and more GMOs than any Agriculture Secretary before or after him
“No More Malarkey” Joe Biden just nominated one of Monsanto’s best friends to head the US Department of Agriculture.
During his eight years under Obama, Tom Vilsack earned the nickname “Mr. Monsanto” for approving more new genetically modified organisms than any Agriculture Secretary in history, and for making gobs of money for every approval.
The Organic Consumer’s Association has compiled a list of GMOs we have to thank him for:
• Roundup Ready sugar beets. A judge ruled Monsanto’s sugar beets would inevitably contaminate other crops, eventually “eliminating a consumer’s choice to eat non-genetically engineered food.”
• Roundup Ready alfalfa. Monsanto’s first genetically modified perennial went wild, costing alfalfa growers millions.
• Monsanto’s DroughtGard corn. The GMO seeds actually ended up yielding 11% LESS corn than conventional corn during the 2012 drought.
• Dicamba-tolerant Xtend soy and cotton. Several states have banned Monsanto’s dicamba herbicide since its approval in 2015, after it drifted and destroyed millions of acres of conventional soy, as well as nurseries, vineyards, vegetables, trees and native plants.
• Roundup Ready lawn grass. Vilsack told the Scotts Miracle-Gro it didn’t need permits to sell genetically engineered grass commercially.
• Agrisure corn. Vilsack allowed Syngenta to sell corn seed with genetically engineered traits that were illegal in China to U.S. farmers. The corn crop was rejected by the markets, costing farmers $1.5 billion.
• Ethanol-only corn. Unsuitable for human or animal consumption, Syngenta’s ethanol corn has the potential to destroy the genome of edible corn where cross contamination occurs.
• 2,4-D-tolerant corn, cotton and soy. A known endocrine disruptor, Dow’s 2,4-D is linked to cancer, thyroid disorders, decreased fertility and birth defects. Vilsack’s approval of the crops increased the use of 2,4-D as much as 600%.
• Innate potatoes. The former Monsanto scientist who invented this “RNA interference” GMO exposed the dangers of his work four years after Vilsack approved it. He found an accumulation of toxins in the potatoes, and even scarier, he found their double-stranded RNA enters the human bloodstream, where it can influence our own cell function.
• Arctic Apples. These ever-green apples don’t turn brown when they bruise or start to rot, and even retain their bright green pigment when they are juiced. These GMOs were also created using RNA interference technology.
• Cloned animals. When Vilsack was asked in 2010 if cloned cows or their offspring had made it into the North American food supply, he claimed he “didn’t know”. Needless to say, this aroused alarm. While Europe responded with an embargo, Vilsack left the door open for cloned animal products to be labeled “USDA Organic.”
“It is very likely that the offspring of cloned animals are now being used to produce organic milk and other food,” the Organic Consumer’s Association says.
• Synbio dairy substitutes. Vilsack allowed companies like Perfect Day to begin using genetically-altered yeast cultures to manufacture synthetic dairy substitutes. Most vegans have no idea their non-dairy cheese is a product genetic engineering.
• Lab-made meat. Vilsack gave companies like Memphis Meat the green light to engineer cell-cultured meat without requiring USDA inspection or labeling. A former USDA staffer of his ended up lobbying for the company.
Click here to send your senator a message telling them to “vote no” on Mr. Monsanto for Agriculture Secretary.