For those of you who are familiar with the issues around GMO’s and the King Amendment to the Farm Bill click here to sign the petition asking Congress to vote NO. If you have not hear of this yet please read on!
I recently read this article by Dr.Mercola.
This lead me to some research about the King Amendment to the Farm Bill.
I think this bill is misleading. It states it will protect interstate commerce, but it seems to me that they are actually nullifying state’s rights and protecting Agribusiness. Below is a quote from Congressman Steve King’s webpage.
“I am pleased that the Committee passed my amendment, the Protect Interstate Commerce Act (PICA) because states are entering into trade protectionism by requiring cost prohibitive production methods in other states,” said King. “PICA blocks states from requiring ‘free range’ eggs or ‘free range’ pork but covers all agriculture products listed in section 206 of the Agriculture Marketing Act of 1946. By 2014 California will require only ‘free range’ eggs be sold and the impact of their large market would compel producers in every other state to invest billions to meet the California standard of “means of production.” PICA will ensure that radical organizations like the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and PETA are prohibited from establishing a patchwork of restrictive state laws aimed at slowly suffocating production agriculture out of existence.” Here is the link to his page.
The quote uses free range eggs as an example of a state law that is prohibitive to interstate commerce, but you can replace that with anything agricultural including Genetically Modified Organisms’s (GMO’s). I looked at section 206 of the Agriculture Marketing Act of 1946. It is very vague and includes anything agricultural. You can download and read it here.
Let’s disregard GMO’s for a minute and go with free range eggs. Raising pastured free range hens can be challenging. There are many predators that would love to make dinner of a laying hen and will go to great means to do so. I raise a small flock of organic fed, free ranging hens who search for bugs in green grass. I would imagine this is very difficult in an agribusiness. I also know the eggs are the most nutritious with dark yellow/orange yolks. Click here for more information on nutrition and labeling of eggs. This aside the definition of free range eggs according to the USDA is, “FREE RANGE or FREE ROAMING:
Producers must demonstrate to the Agency that the poultry has been allowed access to the outside. “ This definition only requires that a small opening be provided to the outside, but does not regulate how large the outside yard needs to be. You can read more here if you are interested. My point is there is already a loop hole for free range eggs that has many customers looking for pastured eggs. Yes some farms will need to make some changes to sell their eggs in California, but currently each state has the right to create their own laws. California’s citizens should have the right to decide what goes on in their own state. If this laws federal law goes into effect it would open up more federal control on states.
Now coming back to GMO’s, These are considered agricultural. So by adding this amendment you could replace free range eggs with GMO’s. This would make GMO labeling laws of any state ineffective. GMO’s are a great concern to me. Read here for the problems with GMO’s. My largest concern is that they can cross pollinate with NON-GMO crops. This could contaminate our food with no turning back. Read here for a recent incident of cross contamination.
Ultimately it doesn’t matter if you like or dislike free range eggs, GMO’s or anything agricultural. The greater problem is this amendment potential federal law overriding states laws. Where would this lead us?
That’s why I signed a petition to The United States House of Representatives and The United States Senate. Will you sign the petition too? Click here to add your name:
What else can you do? Find out here.