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NEWS: Council of Canadians opposes GM alfalfa

The Comox Valley Echo reports, “The Comox Valley Organic Collective, GE Watch Comox Valley, Council of Canadians Comox Valley, and the Comox Valley Growers and Seed Savers will join farmers and consumers across Canada today (April 9), for a Day of Action to stop the release of genetically modified (GMO) alfalfa. …The call to action asks farmers and consumers contact local politicians. Letters can be sent to Hon. John Duncan and the Minister of Agriculture, Hon. Gerry Ritz on April 9th. An impromptu letter-writing group will be meeting at Zocalo’s Coffee Shop at noon on April 9th to help people craft their letters. The meeting is open to all residents.”

“Carmen Wakeling, owner of Eatmore Sprouts in Courtenay recently wrote that a huge concern for her company specifically, was the threat of contamination of the organic alfalfa seed supply. ‘Certified Organic production does not allow the use of GMOs, which means our 35-year-old company will face some crucial decisions in the very near future. Due to genetic pollution, organic alfalfa seed will be contaminated. Our ability to source non-contaminated organic seed will become very difficult if not impossible.'”

The article notes, “Forage Genetics International has applied Monsanto’s genetically modified Roundup Ready technology to alfalfa. Canadian regulatory authorities approved GM alfalfa for health and environmental release in 2005. There is one more step that must be completed before GM alfalfa is commercially released in Canada – variety registration under the Canadian Food and Inspection Agency (CFIA). This step could be completed as early as this spring.”

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ACTION: Support the day of action against GM alfalfa on April 9