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RSS News Feeds - Organic Consumers Association

Organic Consumers Association News Headlines

The best daily news about organics, consumer issues, the environment, agriculture, fair trade, globalization and health.

Legislature Passes Bill to Ban Toxic Chemicals in Food Packaging in Washington State

The Washington Legislature has approved a measure that would ban certain toxic chemicals from paper food packaging if state regulators identify safer alternatives.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

From the Ground Up: The State of the States on Climate Adaptation for Agriculture

It is difficult to attribute any single weather event to climate change, but the rise in the number of extreme weather events, and the increase in their severity, are consistent with what the science tells us to expect from climate change. This year is on track to be one of the costliest in terms of weather-related damage in American history, consistent with the long-term upward trend in the number of extreme weather events costing more than one billion dollars.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Exercise in Old Age Strengthens Your Immunity and Heart

Older, very active cyclists have been shown to have stronger immune systems than their nonexercising peers, as evidenced by higher T-cell activity; in fact, their immune function was comparable to young adults in their 20s. A pattern of lifelong exercise is believed to contribute to your ability to retain healthy levels of muscle mass, muscle strength, body fat and cholesterol as you age. In a separate study, moderate- to high-intensity aerobic exercise at least four days a week increased the heart health and circulatory function of middle-aged adults, as compared to more moderate exercise performed just three days a week.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

'Dead Zone' in Gulf of Mexico Will Take Decades to Recover From Farm Pollution

A new study says that even in the ‘unrealistic' event of a total halt to the flow of agricultural chemicals the damage will persist for 30 years

The enormous “dead zone” in the Gulf of Mexico will take decades to recover even if the flow of farming chemicals that is causing the damage is completely halted, new research has warned.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Millions More Hungry in 2017 Amid Famine, Conflict, and Numbers Rising-Report

Conflicts and climate disasters, particularly drought, drove the number of people facing crisis levels of hunger up by about 15 percent last year and the situation is getting worse, a report said on Thursday.

Last year 124 million people in 51 countries faced crisis levels of hunger compared to 108 million people in 48 countries in 2016 and 80 million in 2015, according to the Food Security Information Network (FSIN).

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Which Iowa Leader Has Courage to Take on Big Pork?

We'll keep asking the question: How much pork can Iowa reasonably produce

How much before more confinements drive people out of rural Iowa with noxious odors? How much before manure further damages lakes, streams and groundwater?

Every single candidate for governor and the Iowa Legislature should address these questions. The current governor and Statehouse leadership won't.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

'Beyond Organic' Food Labels Seek to Supplant the USDA Standard

The word “sustainable” doesn't pack much punch any longer. Whether through overuse or greenwashing, it seems to have joined the same ranks as  “eco” and “natural,” terms that essentially mean everything and nothing at once. Employed as it so often is—to blithely extoll corporate greening efforts and lifestyle products—some feel the word runs the risk of obscuring more than it reveals. “We should not as a society want to sustain; we should strive to improve,” says  Jeff Moyer, executive director of the Rodale Institute, a nonprofit that conducts and funds organic farming research. “Ask growers in the developing world—they're not hoping to sustain their subsistence farms, but to improve their soil and yields.”

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

How to Change Your Facebook Settings to Opt Out of Platform API Sharing

Tech companies can and should do more to protect users, including giving users far more control over what data is collected and how that data is used.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Amid #DeleteFacebook Fervor, Experts Say Time to Tackle Big Data Profiteers

While the pro-Trump data firm Cambridge Analytica has received a flood of media attention in recent days following reports that it harvested the personal information of over 50 million Facebook users, advocacy groups and experts are warning against allowing focus on this scandal alone to obscure the fact that major tech companies have been allowed to build an entire industry by exploiting the personal data of everyone who uses their platforms.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Risks Associated With Glyphosate Weedkiller Resurface

As journalists, we have dug into the controversy over the suspected carcinogenicity of the herbicide glyphosate (see B. Url Nature 553, 381; 2018). We searched hundreds of internal documents from its manufacturer, Monsanto, released for pending lawsuits (see We feel that our and others' findings (N. Ghisi et al. Chemosphere 145, 42–54; 2016) justify concern over the expertise used by the regulatory agencies to evaluate the safety of glyphosate.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

From 'Sea to Shining Sea,' Industrial Ag Fouls America's Waterways

Whether it's the animal waste and antibiotics from livestock operations, or the nitrates and pesticides from GMO corn and soy grown to feed the millions of confined animals, from sea to shining sea, industrial agribusiness, led by multi-billion dollar corporations like Tyson, is destroying our most precious natural resource—water.

State and federal regulators by and large use their power to protect corporate profits, not public health.

That leaves citizens to battle it out in the courts. But now some members of Congress want to eliminate even that last resort.

What can you do? To help speed the transition to an agriculture model that heals our waterways, rather than exploit and pollute them? 

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Healthy Planet, Healthy People: Reconciling Global Rules to Promote Food-Secure Farming

The health and survival of humanity and the planet are directly linked to the agro-ecological practices of small-scale farmers and agricultural biodiversity. Farming practices that are agro-ecological involve growing a wide variety of crops, and delivering on productivity goals without depleting the environment or disrupting communities.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Follow the Leader

A year into the Trump Administration, the health and stability of American democracy remain an open question. At a time when almost four in 10 Americans say they are not satisfied with the way democracy is working in the U.S., there is ample reason to ask how committed the American people are to our democracy.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

NEWS RELEASE: Europe bows to Bayer-Monsanto... US may follow

The European Union's Competition Directorate has rolled over and approved the controversial merger of Bayer AG (Germany) with Monsanto (USA), announced on 21 March 2018. Across the Atlantic, it is rumoured that the US Department of Justice will welcome the EU decision and announce its own acquiescence shortly after. 

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Information Brief: Bugs and Bytes

If the Bayer-Monsanto merger is allowed to go through, the resulting company may have a monopoly stake in microbials and big-data enabled precision agriculture technologies, both important new markets for industrial agriculture.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Monsanto Backs New Company Focused on Gene Editing

Monsanto Co. will fund a new U.S. company that aims to develop crops using technology known as gene editing, rather than the genetic modification that helped the ag giant become the world's biggest seed seller.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Putting a Face on the Rural Fight Against Corporate Farms

The residents of Devils Lake, North Dakota have seen huge changes in recent years. The lake the town is named for has quadrupled in size over the last two-and-a-half decades, flooding thousands of acres of farmland. As a result, many of the farmers in the area have had to trade in their tractors to run campsites and other tourism businesses along the expanding waterfront.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Why Are We So Fat Despite Our Best Efforts?

When you think about the causes of overweight and obesity, conditions that now affect the majority of Americans, two factors likely come to mind immediately: dreadful dietary habits and lack of exercise. This is what I call the "orthodox wisdom" that we hear all the time.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

In Nafta Talks, U.S. Tries to Limit Junk Food Warning Labels

The contentious negotiations over the fate of the North American Free Trade Agreement have veered into one of the world's most pressing health issues: fighting obesity.

Urged on by big American food and soft-drink companies, the Trump administration is using the trade talks with Mexico and Canada to try to limit the ability of the pact's three members — including the United States — to warn consumers about the dangers of junk food, according to confidential documents outlining the American position.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

'Catastrophe' as France's Bird Population Collapses Due to Pesticides

Bird populations across the French countryside have fallen by a third over the last decade and a half, researchers have said.

Dozens of species have seen their numbers decline, in some cases by two-thirds, the scientists said in a pair of studies – one national in scope and the other covering a large agricultural region in central France.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

McDonald's Sets Science-Based Target to Reduce GHG Emissions

Today, McDonald's announces it will partner with franchisees and suppliers to reduce greenhouse gas emissions related to McDonald's restaurants and offices by 36% by 2030 from a 2015 base year in a new strategy to address global climate change. 

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Can Food-Focused Medicine Cure Food-Related Disease?

So-called “modern” food, produced through industrialized, chemical-intensive farming practices, is causing a host of chronic, hard-to-diagnose and hard-to-treat health problems in children and adults, say Michelle Perro, MD and Vincanne Adams, PhD, authors of “What's Making Our Children Sick?” 

The book explores the impact chronic exposure to toxins in our food—pesticides, hormones and antibiotics—is having on children, many of whom suffer from myriad health problems that are often linked to an impaired gut and overtaxed immune system. 


(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Could It Be Your Gut Keeping You Awake at Night?

When we lie awake at night, unable to sleep, we usually blame stress, depression, anxiety, adrenaline or the memory of something stupid we said in 2003. But what if our guts were actually the culprit? What if the trillions of microbes sitting in our small intestines – known collectively as the microbiome or microbiota – were actually affecting our mood, digestion, overall health and ability to get a full eight hours' shut-eye? 

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Arsenic in Wine? Michelob Moves to Organic? Why the Alcohol Industry Is Making Changes

Today Moms Across America is releasing new findings of glyphosate in all of the most popular brands of wines in the world, most of which are from the US, and in batch test results in American beer. The findings were at first, confusing. But one thing that was clear was that the beer and wine industries must and in many cases are, moving away from Monsanto's Roundup in order to avoid contamination by this chemical herbicide, a known neurotoxin, carcinogen, and endocrine disruptor, which causes liver disease.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

European Commission Clears Bayer's Acquisition of Monsanto, Subject to Conditions

The European Commission has approved under the EU Merger Regulation the acquisition of Monsanto by Bayer. The merger is conditional on the divestiture of an extensive remedy package, which addresses the parties' overlaps in seeds, pesticides and digital agriculture.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

The War Against Weeds Evolves in 2018

According to the latest Stratus Ag Research survey, 73% of nearly 4,000 growers polled across the United States reported having glyphosate resistance on their farm in 2017. That figure represents 120 million acres, and it's a 15% jump in just one year – even after more than a decade of growing awareness, and the industry doing basically everything short of discovering a new mode of action itself, to curb the problem of weed resistance.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Are You Ready for the New Wave of Genetically Engineered Foods?

Everyone loves a feel-good story about the future. You've probably heard this one: high-tech foods enhanced by science will feed the 9 billion people expected on the planet by 2050. Food made in labs and crops and animals genetically engineered to grow faster and better will make it possible to feed the crowded world, according to stories that spin through our institutions of media and education.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

What do you get out of the deal?

Water. Without it, there would be no food.

Yet food production—that is, today's industrial food production system—is degrading this essential natural resource faster than any other industry, depriving you of your right to clean water.

As we approach World Water Day (Thursday, March 22)—and near the end of our spring fundraising campaign—I thought it fitting to say a few words about how your're helping us bring down, and replace, America's factory farms.

And why we your support is so critical.

Your donation will help fund a massive collaborative effort to build an alternative to Monsanto's failing industrial, GMO-fueled factory farm agriculture model.  Please help us reach our quarterly fundraising goal by donating today online, by mail or by phone—details here.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Water Shortages Could Affect 5bn People by 2050, UN Report Warns

More than 5 billion people could suffer water shortages by 2050 due to climate change, increased demand and polluted supplies, according to a UN report on the state of the world's water.

The comprehensive annual study warns of conflict and civilisational threats unless actions are taken to reduce the stress on rivers, lakes, aquifers, wetlands and reservoirs.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

Why Mike Pompeo Could Be Even Worse for the Environment Than Rex Tillerson

As Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson was one of the most blatant revolving-door cases in the Trump administration and a clear sign that Trump's government was of, by and for the fossil fuel industry. But make no mistake: Mike Pompeo could be far worse.

(01/01/1970 @ 01:00)

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