- HR 875: SHORT TITLE.-This Act may be cited as the "Food
Safety Modernization Act of 2009"
- Full text version pdf of HR 875: http:// frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?
- -Wisdom says stop a bill that is broad as everything
yet more vague even than it is broad.
- -Wisdom says stop a bill that comes with massive
penalties but allows no judicial review.
- -Wisdom says stop a bill with everything unspecified
and actually waits til next year for an unspecified "Administrator"
to decide what's what.
- -Where we come from, that's called a blank check.
Who writes laws like that? "Here, do what you want about whatever
you want and here's some deadly punishments to make it stick."
- -Wisdom says know who wrote that bill and be forewarned.
- -Wisdom says wake up.
- Here's the bill. Let's use our imaginations and extrapolate
from the little bit it reveals and from the reality we know.
- SEC. 206. FOOD PRODUCTION FACILITIES.
- (a) Authorities- In carrying out the duties of the
Administrator and the purposes of this Act, the Administrator shall have
the authority, with respectto food production facilities, to--
- (1) visit and inspect food production facilities
in the United Statesand in foreign countries to determine if they are
operating in compliance with the requirements of the food safety law;
- (2) review food safety records as required to be
kept by the Administrator under section 210 and for other food safety
- (3) set good practice standards to protect the public
and animal health and promote food safety;
- (4) conduct monitoring and surveillance of animals,
plants, products, or the environment, as appropriate;
- (5) collect and maintain information relevant to
public health andfarm practices.
- (b) Inspection of Records- A food production facility
shall permit the Administrator upon presentation of appropriate credentials
and at reasonable times and in a reasonable manner, to have access to
and abilityto copy all records maintained by or on behalf of such food
production establishment in any format (including paper or electronic)
and at any location, that are necessary to assist the Administrator--
- (1) to determine whether the food is contaminated,
adulterated, or otherwise not in compliance with the food safety law;
- (2) to track the food in commerce.
- (c) Regulations- Not later than 1 year after the
date of the enactment of this Act, the Administrator, in consultation
with the Secretary of Agriculture andrepresentatives of State departments
of agriculture, shall promulgate regulations to establish science- based
minimum standards for the safe production of food by food production facilities.
Such regulations shall--
- (1) consider all relevant hazards, including those
occurring naturally,and those that may be unintentionally or intentionally
- (2) require each food production facility to have
a written food safety plan that describes the likely hazards and preventive
controls implemented to address those hazards;
- (3) include with respect to growing, harvesting,
sorting,and storage operations, minimum standards related to fertizer
use, nutrients, hygiene, packaging, temperature controls, animal encroachment...
- Ah, such a little paragraph, and so much evil packed
in it. Notice they mention harvesting, sorting and storage operations?
Notice they never mention seeds but they are precisely what those words
- Now, watch how they will be able to easily criminalize
seed banking and all holding of seeds. First, to follow how this will
be done, you must understand that:
- 1. there is a small list inside the FDA called "sources
of seed contamination" and
- 2. the FDA has now defined "seed" as food,
- 3. so seeds can now be controlled through "food
- Those seeds (so far) include:
- *seeds eaten raw such as flax, poppy sesame,
- *sprouting seeds such as wheat, beans, alfalfa,
most greens, etc.;
- * seeds pressed into oils such as corn, sunflower,
- *seeds used as animal feed such as soy ....
- That includes most seeds. It may even be all seed,
given how they are skilled at 'new' definitions.
- And what are the "sources of seed contamination"
inside the FDA? They include only six little items:
- -agricultural water
- -manure (but not chemical pesticides or fertilizers)
- - transporting equipment
- - seed cleaning (sorting) equipment
- -seed storage (storing) facilities
- Did you know that seed cleaning equipment is THE
single most critical piece of equipment for sustainable agriculture? It
is how we collect organic seed. It is the machinery used after the season,
when plants "go to seed," to separate out (sort) the seeds from
the plant material so the farmer can collect (harvest) and then save
(put in storage) seed for the next year at little cost. With his own seed,
the farmer also stays free of patented, genetically engineered, corporately
- This year, 2009, one item on the "sources of
seed contamination" list is suddenly illegal in some parts of this
country - seed cleaning equipment.
- To get the drift, perhaps you need to know that the
people who clean seed are being wiped out, as well.
- How can they make such vital equipment illegal? Quietly,
first of all, so as not to alert organic farmers who have a lot of political
ties. And by saying it contaminates food. And by applying their innocent
and reasonable sounding "minimum standards."
- "Contaminate" is their favorite word since
the public fears the deadly contamination that industry itself - not farmers
- has caused. That fear is valuable. Scare the public and it is easy to
get "food safety standards" set without anyone reading them.
39 progressive co-sponsors leap on, thinking this is about "food
safety." But it is only about the use of "food safety,"
not the reality of it
- For to eliminate seed cleaning equipment, the FDA
simple set minimum "food safety" standards for seed cleaning
(the simple separation of seed from plant) such that a farmer would need
a million toa million and a half dollar building and/or equipment to
meet the new requirements ... per line of seed.
- On the ground, where reality lives, a farmer in the
midwest who has been seed cleaning flax for 40 years with his hand made
seed cleaner now can't sell his flax on the market anymore. Never mind
there are NO instances of anyone ever having gotten sick from seed cleaning
equipment. And a farmer in another part of the midwest who has been cleaning
wheat, corn and soy for years with one single perfectly fine piece of
equipment would now need three to four and half million dollars for three
separate pieces of equipment, in order to satisfy the "food safety"
- The FDA isn't so high-bar setting when it comes to
other things like melamine in baby formula. Though it has proven to sicken
and kill infants, initially the FDA just denied the melamine was in all
the corporate baby formula but when people found evidence that it was,
the FDA then quickly supplied a "food safety" standard that
defined whatever level of melamine that was in the formula as fine.
- This game playing about "food safety" standards
- one to eliminate farmers by setting the bar so high no one can climb,
and one to protect industry by setting the bar so low nothing need be
done - is nothing new but now it is being suddenly extended to seeds.
And it comes with penalties that make bankrupting farmers in an instant,
- The effort to eliminate both seed cleaners and seed
cleaning equipment tips us off to who is behind this (shhh) and to this
new means of controlling seeds andmakes it possible to see just a few
suspect words in this bill, and sense where things are heading.
- Organic farmers are not aware of any of this happening.
It appears the organic community is being treated with kid gloves until
HR 875 and related bills should be passed, coddled so they don't get wise
to what's afoot. And they are too disconnected from traditional farmers
to be aware of how the USDA has been tromping on them for years.
- So organic farmers have missed the handwriting on
the wall for themselves.
- Plus, plain ole farmers have a history of no one
listening to them, which is too bad in general but now it's blatantly
dangerous because it is they who are the ones bringing the warning that
these bills are not just bad but deadly. The organic community, lulled
by its own seeming safety, hasn't heard or understood.
- But given what just happened with seed cleaning equipment
(sorting), the method and the intent are exposed. "Food safety"
is the weapon, with public fear, kept at a high pitch, as the driver.
After which, those running this game only need to set the bar at a "food
safety" level impossible to meet and apply horrendous punishments
for not complying. Farmer is either crushed by that pincer move, or quits.
Either way, his land is up for grabs.
- And those severe punishments are essential to control
groups which will see the whole thing for what it is - insane in terms
of farming and anything to do with health, a threat to survival, and
driven solely by profit and power.
- So, one crucial piece of equipment (seed cleaning)
is illegal now and without most people realizing. And simply because a
single "foods safety" bar has been raised.
- In time, as more and more farmers are forbidden from
using their equipment, significant sources of organic seeds will begin
to dry up, at which point the organic community would begin to ask what
was going on. By then, it will be too late.
- Why? Because look at the last item on the list -
(seed) storing facilities.
- Farmers, gardeners, seed saving exchanges, seed companies,
scientific seed projects, and seed banks, all require sorting. All are
working overtime to protect biodiversity that is rapidly disappearing
specifically because of genetic engineering. As Monsanto began reducing
access to seeds, people around the world have worked hard to compensate.
- But now the effort is to take over the whole game,
going after even these small sources of biodiversity - by simply defining
seeds as food and then all farmers' affordable mechanisms for harvesting
(collecting), sorting (seed cleaning) andstoring (seed banking or saving)
as too dirty to be safe for food.
- Set the standard for "food safety" and
certification high enough that no one can afford it and punish anyone
who tries to save seed in ways that have worked fine for thousands of
years, with a million dollar a day fine and/or ten years in prison, and
presto, you have just criminalized seed banking.
- The penalties are tremendous, the better to protect
us from nothing dangerous whatsoever, but to make monopoly over seed
absolutely absolute. One is left with control over farmers, an end to
seed exchanges, an end to organic seed companies, an end to university
programs developing nice normal hybrids, and an end to democracy - reducing
us to abject dependence on corporations for food and gratitude even for
genetically engineered food and at any price.
- When you know that Monsanto, with the help of the
US government, plundered ancient and rare seed banks in Iraq that held
seeds with a genetic heritage (a biohistory belonging to all of us) going
back 1000s of years and then made it a crime for farmers there to collect
or use their own normal andnon-patented seeds off their own land, you
see how extreme the intent to control is.
- Now, perhaps it is possible to see how the identical
thing is being done here, only it comes in a heavily, heavily disguised
way - through "food safety" that isn't "food safety"
at all - and quietly sitting in only one tiny little paragraph within
a very large bill (and with no reference to seeds at all).
- The Iraqis are now utterly at the mercy of Monsanto
and the US for survival itself and will have to pay whatever prices are
set for food. They can no longer just grow their own and be free people.
So, no matter what form of government they may ever have, as long as this
is true, they are now enslaved because the control over them is that extreme.
Kissinger was right - control food and you control people.
- We are inches from this ourselves. The Left needs
to wake up.
- In Afghanistan, people are buying and planting beans
from America which at the end of the season have nothing whatever inside,
the pods are empty. In Equador, the potatoes there do not develop eyes
so can't be planted next season to grow potatoes.
- Biotech's claim to care about feeding starving multitudes
is belied by its blocking human access to normal seeds and its terminator
technology (empty beans). Monopoly is monopoly is monopoly. And at this
level, and when it comes to seeds which are life itself, monopoly terminates
democracy as well as beans.
- This trick of setting bars above any ability to be
in the game was done to blacks and in realizing this, we must hold Obama
accountable for pushing these bills which are profound civil and human
- There are three other items of the list which surely
will be controlled as well. In toto,that little list of six items (agricultural
water, manure, harvesting, transporting and seed cleaning equipment, and
seed storage facilities) contains the pieces to deconstruct farming itself,
- Take action -- click here to contact your local newspaper
or congress people:
- Immediately withdraw HR 875, SR 425, HR 814, HR 759,
and all related bills. They are intended to destroy small farmers and
will trap us into GMOs
- Click here to see the most recent messages sent to
congressional reps and local newspapers
- Linn Cohen-Cole
- Is Organic Farming Killer Rep. Rosa DeLauro Becoming
the Most Hated Woman in America? (I Hope So) Mar. 20, 2009
- http://educate-yourself.org/cn/ rosadelaurooppositiongrowing20mar09.shtml
- Goodbye Farmers Markets, CSAs, and Roadside Stands
by Linn Cohen-Cole (Mar. 19, 2009)
- http://educate-yourself.org/cn/cohen- colegoodbyefarmersmarkets03mar09.shtml
- Banning Organic Farming & Regulating Home Gardening,
HR 875 & S 425 (Mar. 13, 2009)
- http://educate-yourself.org/cn/ HR875andS425organicfarmingban13mar09.shtml