Mayor of Delta – where are you?

Link – blog on council members
Link – blog on school board

This is a preliminary post, of exchanges between myself and the mayor of Delta, BC, on account of GMO and pesticides. I chose the title because I am afraid the mayor is lost on the issue of GMO and is going about it in a completely wrong way, attempting to get herself and her council even more biased towards the science, the economics and the ethics of GMO cultivation in Canada. It reminds me of a ship floundering in turbulent waters, cast adrift without a helmsman or propulsion.

She also makes a false statement that the city council has no power to control GMO, and that all those that are supporting a GMO free resolution are, in essence, jumping a bandwagon that is going nowhere. What is most galling, is her assumption, or implication, that she considers it her duty to bring ‘credible reports’ on the science of GMO and then to study it, so that she, and her council can then pass their verdict and sermon on the people of Delta on what they should or should not eat. Far as I understand democracy, it should be the people that make the decision and the elected public servant that carry out people’s wishes.

I shall deal with most of these issues fully in due course. But lest I forget or miss anything, I am creating the first blog on it, calling it Mayor of Delta – where are you? I believe she is lost and along with her, the residents of Delta are drifting aimlessly, and facing collective peril with regard to our health, environment, biodiversity, food security, seed freedom and our very existence as a free and independent nation capable to charting our own course without interference and control from outside forces, and corporate greed.

But first, the letters. I had asked all candidates of Delta civil election on their position on GMO and if they would support Delta passing a resolution to be GMO free.

I have created two blogs, one for the council members and one for the school board, already. But the mayor deserves a dedicated blog. And here it is.


Tony Mitra


On Oct 26, 2014, at 6:48 PM, Lois Jackson <jacklo12@dccnet.com> wrote:

Mayor Jackson

GREETINGS: WELL, FIRSTLY MY NAME IS LOISŠ

SECONDLY, MAY I SAY THAT WE HAVE NOT BEEN USING PESTICIDES NOR INSECTICIDES IN OUR PARKS FOR SEVERAL YEARS.  WE BAN IT FROM BEING SOLD IN DELTA AND ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO USE łNATURAL˛ METHODS TO KEEP DOWN GARDEN PESTS. AS WITH MANY TOPICS THAT ARE BEING DISCUSSED TODAY IN THE MEDIA AND BY THE PUBLIC, GMO SEEMS TO BE ONE OF THEM. THIS ISSUE HAS NOT BEEN SCIENTIFICALLY PRESENTED TO OUR COUNCIL AND I HAVE ASKED OUR CHIEF ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER, MR. GEORGE HARVIE TO BRING FORWARD GOOD SCIENTIFIC ANALYSIS FOR COUNCILąS PERUSAL.

I MUST ALSO SAY THAT I AM NOT A SCIENTIST NOR A CANADIAN FOOD INSPECTOR NOR CANADIAN LEGISLATOR;THESE ARE VERY COMPLEX ISSUES AND I LOOK FORWARD TO RECEIVING CREDIBLE REPORTS TO OUR COUNCILąS ATTENTION.

AS FAR AS OTHER CITIES AND COMMUNITIES ARE CONCERNED, IT IS SO EASY FOR SOME COUNCILąS TO SIMPLY JUMP AT AN ISSUE, (LOOKING FOR ATTENTION PERHAPS?) AND THEY JUMP ONTO A BANDWAGON WHICH IS EMPTYŠ  EMPTY OF INFORMATION, SCIENCE AND UNDERSTANDING.  OUR DELTA COUNCIL TAKES PRIDE IN ANALYZING THE ISSUE, SEARCHING OUT THE BEST INFORMATION, REFERRING IT TO EXPERTS, BEFORE WE łJUMP ONTO THE BANDWAGON˛.

AS AN EXAMPLE, I REFER TO THE ISSUE OF SHARK FIN SOUPŠ  THIS WAS A FEDERAL IMPORTATION MATTER AND WE HAD NO JURISDICTION TO DISALLOW ITS IMPORTATION NOR SALE IN DELTA.  WE DID HOWEVER, MAKE STRONG PRESENTATIONS TO MANY FEDERAL JURISDICTIONS WHO DID HAVE AUTHORITY.  MANY COUNCILLORS AND COUNCILS CAME FORWARD CONDEMNING THE PRACTICE, HOWEVER, THE SUBJECT WAS AN EMOTIONAL ONE OVER WHICH LOCAL GOVERNMENT HAD NO JURISDICTION.

ANOTHER ISSUE WAS THE łBANNING OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS IN VANCOUVER˛ THERE WAS NO EFFECT OF THIS STATEMENT, AND IT WAS SIMPLY A STATEMENT BY A COUNCIL WHO HAD NO JURISDICTION OVER A MATTER.

THEREFORE, TO BE HONEST AND OPEN AND MAKING GOOD LEGISLATION ON AN ISSUE, I WILL AWAIT THE REPORTS FROM OUR STAFF AND CONTACT YOU UPON DELIBERATION OF SAME,

THANK YOU FOR YOUR QUESTION, AS I REMAIN,

LOIS E. JACKSON MAYOR OF DELTA

I have responded to her by a holding email. But I need to single out this email to show how many ways the politicians are being less than fully truthful, and honest in their statements.

  • Banning of Lawn pesticides in Delta parks and removing them from stores. This is good work done. The work is not finished since anyone in delta can drive across scrott road and buy all the pesticide they need from stores in Surrey. More importantly, this banning was initiated by the municipality of Hudon, Quebec in 1991 – 23 years ago, starting a precedence for the rest of Canada. It took Delta 20 years to catch up on one issue. We do not have another 20 years for Delta to catch up with rest of BC on GMO and Glyphosate(RoundUp) issue.
  • Mayor says she has asked someone to bring good scientific analysis for the council’s perusal. By that statement, the mayor has exposed her lack of grasp of an issue that relates to not just “scientific analysis”, but a) with the denigration of neutral science in North America in the last two decades through industry influence, b) with impossibility of independent science labs to find problems with either GMO or Glyphosate due to “proprietary knowledge” that disallows independent scientists to honestly study their safety, just to name a few. Her statement is so outrageously absurd that I wonder if she is just ignorant, or calculating.
  • The mayor claims she is not a scientist nor a food inspector. That is correct. She is a public servant, and her duty is to check what the public wants. If the issue is complex, she should consider arranging experts on both sides of the argument to come to Delta and present their case, not just to the council, but to the residents of Delta, and let the people then decide what they would like their municipality to do. That, my dear mayor, would be your duty. You do not need to be a scientist nor a food inspector. You are hired to work as a public servant. Nothing more.
  • She belittles other towns and other politicians as if they are jumping a bandwagon and seeking popularity on fake issues. These other towns and politicians, are fighting for the interest and well being of Canada. The mayor, on the other hand, might be knowing or unknowingly sitting in the band wagon of foreign corporations hell bent on subverting Canadian food security and sovereignty. I consider it my duty to expose arrogant, dismissing replies that politicians use in this way.
  • Shark fin soup – I dispute her statement that it was merely federal matter. Hudson, QC defied federal approval and went ahead to ban a product in their town. They faced a barrage of court challenges for ten years and persevered, proving and setting a precedence, that municipalities have the right to ban a product or a practice, if the people there believe this is bad for their health or environment. I would have liked the mayor of Delta to strive to protect Delta people’s wish  as well as the sharks future, and not hide behind an excuse.
  • Banning Nuclear weapons in Vancouver - I would have liked the mayor to consider pushing back at the federal Govt by having the gall to propose a ban on installations or transportation of any nuclear warhead in the municipality or through the municipal land of air or waterways. I would have loved the mayor to take this issue to the public and ask if they agree and support this, and if “yes”, to threaten to pass this law and be ready to be challenged by higher authorities. That is the right way to stand up to principles and make a difference, instead of finding excuses to shirk responsibility. She took a very bad example as an excuse to explain why she would not fight to declare Delta GMO free and strive to work with other BC municipalities to push back at this dangerous onslaught on our food, health and nature.
  • If I appear annoyed and outraged at the mayors response, I feel I am more than justified. At stake is Canada’s future and here is a mayor tap dancing around important and difficult issues.

IT time Canadian politicians, starting from the bottom up, stop using ignorance as an excuse for doing nothing. It is time for them to stop passing the buck by blaming federal politics and claiming Municipalities have no authority. It is time for politicians to stop misguiding the public and obfuscate this issue. It is time for them to get off their high horse and face issues squarely and without hiding behind corporations and lobby groups.

SCIENCE ? WHAT SCIENCE ? The mayor used the term ‘Credible report‘ and the fact that she has asked a city administrator, to bring forward ‘good scientific analysis‘ for the council’s perusal. The mayor also goes on to add that the council takes pride in analyzing issues, searching out the best information and referring it to experts, instead of jumping to bandwagons.

These statements are so hollow that I am going to spend some time on them.

May the mayor and her team first address the issue of how they are going to ascertain that they are getting “credible” unbiased and neutral reports on science ? Are they aware of where scientific neutrality currently lies in Canada or North America ?

Let me refresh the mayor’s memory, that Governments do not fund science research through tax payers money any more, and science is funded by the industry. And the industry has absolutely no interest in funding scientist that may find problems with their product. Not only that, they actually fire any scientist that finds problems with their products, shuts down their labs, gets their papers retracted, forces the universities to discredit them, withdraws their licence if possible, and makes their source of income disappear.
Let me remind the mayor that, due to intellectual property rights clause of patented GMO, no independent science lab is even allowed to study possible ill-effects of GMO
and not allowed to publish any finding without permission of the creator of the GMO and no article that is less than flattering ever gets published because of it. Which planet is the mayor living in, when she she thinks she can get “good scientific analysis” on the subject?

So, to start with, i invite the mayor, & her team to first identify a science institute that is doing meaningful work on testing GMO, that is not funded by the industry and where the scientists are not under either industry or political control.

How about reading the book “Poison Spring” by a retired EPA scientist Mr. Vallianatos? He is an ex EPA scientist that describes how corrupt EPA is due to constant interference of the industry on one side and the White House on the other. And it is this EPA that approves “ALL” pesticide that go into agriculture including Canadian Agriculture. In fact the Canadian health ministry gloats over the fact that it works “closely” with EPA and therefore only approves those chemicals that are deemed safe by EPA.

The EPA scientist Mr. Vallianatos meanwhile states that EPA has gotten so corrupt, that any scientist that ever finds even a little bit of problem with any pesticide, is fired, or gagged or transferred and made irrelevant. Could I invite the mayor to listen to Dr. Vallianatos speaking with me on record on this issue ?

So, how about Delta Council inviting Mr. Vallianatos to Delta (he lives in California) for a first hand presentation of how pesticides are approved by EPA ?

Then we can find the next scientist that can explain how things work inside Health Canada, in approval of questionable substances. How about reading the book “Corrupt to the Core – Memoirs of a Health Canada whistleblower” by Dr. Shiv Chopra, who was fired by Health Canada because he refused to accept a questionable growth hormone for cows imported from the US for approval unless sufficient safety tests were done, despite the fact that EPA had approved it. Because he was not accepting the hormone without safety tests, he got fired by Health Canada. Dr. Chopra and his union is taking Health Canada to the supreme court for wrongful dismissal of a conscientious scientist.

How about inviting Dr. Chopra (he lives in Ottawa) to present his case to the Delta Council?

And if you like to speak with a Canadian genetic engineer and soil biologist that has worked for many years with Agriculture Canada on one side, and is also an organic farmer on the other – there is Dr. Thierry Vrain, from our own British Columbia, currently flying to Ottawa to speak with the health minister Ms Rona Ambrose on the topic of, you guessed it, GMO and pesticide and how dangerous these things are and how none of them have ever been independently tested.

So, how about inviting Dr. Vrain to advise you his take on the dangers of the pesticides that are associated with the GMO ?

And ohh, I forgot to mention – EPA does not test the pesticides, just like FDA or other bodies do not test the GMO. All these tests are “supposed to be” done by the same corporation that produces them, i.e. companies such as Monsanto. Is that a conflict of interest or not ?

How about Dr. Don Huber ? He is a professor emeritus from Purdue University, Idaho, a microbiologist and a plant pathologist among many things. He has beens studying toxic chemicals such as Glyphosate for years and is and outright critic of the GMO science that pushes this dangerous chemical on our agricultural fields. As a result, he is now being hounded by the industry, and the University is trying to discredit him, although he is respected enough outside of the industry to be funded by external sources, including being invited by a few countries to teach them and guide them to move away from GMO and chemical farming to healthy localized sustainable farming.

Dr. Huber was a biological warfare expert, employed earlier by the US military. His job was to protect Americans from biological warfare. He has told me in his own words, that, if he was a terrorist and wanted to invent a harmful bio-molecule that would slowly, steadily and greatly harm America, he could not have invented a chemical better than Glyphosate. And how the terrorists don’t have to do that, because Monsanto is selling it to everybody, supported strongly by the US Govt.

How about asking Dr. Huber to come and give you his presentation on the issue ?

How about calling scientist Dr. Nancy Swanson from Seattle, that drew those charts based on US Govt data, showing correlation between release of Glyphosate and rise of diseases such as Crohn’s, Celiac, or autism ? How about calling Dr. Anthony Samself or Dr. Stephanie Seneff of MIT artificial intelligence laboratory, who are compiling paper after paper about the mechanism by which Glyphosate in our food destroys our gut bacteria that is so important for keeping us healthy ? How about calling Anthony Samsel or Stephanie Seneff or Nancy Swanson ? I know all of them personally and can help introduce you.

Canada signed it but did not ratify it. USA & Australia never even signed it. Rest of the world (except Russia which bans GMO altogether) signed and ratified it, protecting their biological diversity from theft by Biotech corporations or accidental destruction or extinction.

How about Studying Cartagena Protocol of the United Nations, which is about protecting your biological diversity against inadvertent damage through introduced GMO. A hundred and sixty countries have signed it, but Canada has not. As a result Canada’s biological heritage is up for grabs and grabbed it has been, by the likes of Monsanto. My question to you is – who in Delta Council is going to spend time studying this protocol and raising awareness so Ottawa is forced to address it? The Protocol Head office is in Montreal, not that far away. How many Canadian politicians even know about this issue ? Canola was a Canadian invention. If we had signed the Cartagena protocol and put up laws to protect our biological inventions and heritage, then Canola would still have remained a Canadian product. Instead, it is now owned by Monsanto. So, would the Mayor and Council still feel qualified to find “credible report” on GMO ?

And even that is not enough. My question to the Delta Council is – who are they to study GMO and make a decision on if the people should eat toxic gene or toxic chemical laden food ? Who gave them the authority ?

Last I checked how democracy is to work, it should be the people that decide if they like pesticide laden food in their meals or not. Last time I checked, the duty of elected officials is to carry out the wishes of the electorate. All that the Municipality and the mayor needs to do, is to check the pulse of the people, and assist them to get both sides of the story without bias and without industry propaganda and without political or corporate interference. Is the Mayor and the Council capable to arranging that ?

Last time I checked, the only leaders that makes decision on what kind of food or anything else is good for the people, are Dictators, and not Elected politicians.

This is one problem that creeps into politics, the moment the public stops watching over politicians – the politicians forget that they are public servants, and starts thinking they might be dictators, or perhaps prophets sent down to this planet by God himself, to make all decisions for us the poor and ignorant people.

The Mayor and the corporation of Delta assumes authority, which they do not have, of deciding what GMO is and if it is good for the people. The elected officials should be joining the people’s wish across the land, to declare themselves to be GMO free and then work with other municipalities and UBCM and FCM to find ways to push back at the current agro-industry contract workers (I find it difficult to call them GMO farmers, since they do not own their seeds and are in effect contract labourers for Monsanto), to take over farming and kill all local farmers.

The farm lands are getting depopulated as the small organic farmers go bankrupt, and move to the cities to become unemployed, while huge swaths of land is coming under control of US biotech industry.

I find myself both annoyed, outraged and exasperated by the Mayors high handed and dismissive note on GMO issues, where she and the other politicians are obviously out of their depth and yet presume to study “credible reports’ without having a clue about how biased the very science has become thanks to the politicians allowing the industry to skewer our science in the first place. How blind can a politician be ?

How about calling Vandana Shiva to Delta? She did her PdD in quantum mechanics in Canada. She is coming to Ontario next month.

If I feel annoyed and outraged by the mayor’s dismissive and arrogant email, perhaps she and other readers will understand that I have sufficient reason to be so. Ms Mayor - please consider calling both sides of the argument and let the people decide. You do not have the authority to decide for the people.

I have no doubt your team with find a lot of pro-GMO pro-industry propagandists. They are crawling all over the place. But I doubt you or your team is able to gather a credible team of scientists that can tell the people the opposing view, those that are beyond the reach of the industry and the Governments, who are willing and able to tell the  people how they are being robbed off their land, their environment and their future, by what amounts to new age cobbler barons. So, please call them and let them speak to the people of Delta.

  • EG Vallianatos (ex EPA scientist) – California
  • Shiv Chopra – (Ex Health Canada scientist) – Ottawa
  • Thierry Vrain (Ex Agriculture Canada scientist) – Comox Valley, BC
  • Don Huber (Ex US Army biological warfare expert, scientist) – Idaho
  • Anthony Samsel (Ex Arther d’Little, scientist) - Massachusetts
  • Stephanie Seneff (MIT artificial Intelligence lab, scientist) - Massachusetts
  • Nancy Swanson (Correlation - Glyphosate & disease, scientist) – Seattle
  • Vandana Shiva, of Navdanya, India, who will be touring Ontario in winter.
  • Read Book – Poison Spring, by Vallianatos
  • Read Book – Corrupt to the core – memoirs of a health Canada whistleblower, by Chopra

I shall come back here later, to add more points for the mayor, the council and the people of Delta. And we shall talk about seed freedom, about farm labour, about economic viability, about local produce against food coming from California while local small farmers die off. We have a lot of ground to cover on the GMO / pesticide issue. The biggest and deepest issue is – political corruption in Canada that has brought Canada to this state of affairs, literally handing over our freedom and ability to control our destiny away from the people’s hands into those of foreign corporations.

Feedback from a North American scientist that is fighting against Industry and Govt repression because he tried to research and speak the truth. He wishes to remain anonymous for the moment, but I expect he will come out in the open soon. Here is what he said. The formatting is mine.

Dear Tony

The big business is very good at destroying the scientists who stand against them

This afternoon if you can wait I will feed you some more of my ideas. We need to learn how to play the game of pseudo-democracy, which is reality.

  • EG Vallianatos, cannot comment much – sounds interesting. I need his curriculum.
  • Shiv Chopra, one guy who was properly destroyed by big business.  A good value.
  • Thierry Vrain, give him a try. Good value if he can speak well.
  • Don Huber, my hero; big business is trying hard to destroy his name.
  • Anthony Samsel, Stephanie Seneff – very imaginative and with ideas to work on for next 50 years, however, they have been the target of the most vicious attacks.
  • and Nancy Swanson. A remarkable person who put together a summary in which I verified a lot of the data.

A scientist is always afraid of misleading correlations. But the search for cause-effect is so often a misleading act in itself.

For example cholesterol plugs arteries but it is a symptom of damage to arteries and not a cause of damage. Mainstream medicine has not caught up yet because the pharmaceuticals have so much control over medical schools.

But various studies showed that lower cholesterol is not a predictor of reduced cardiovascular problems.

I heard a conference at Laval University that went through the whole history of cholesterol research; the very first scientists knew that cholesterol was, overall, a good molecule.

True culprits for cardiovascular problems exist; sugars, excess iron in red meat, trans fats, and probably pollutants of various kinds, which are irritant to blood vessels. But the focus on all fats and on cholesterol was led by a fraudulent scientist named Ancel Keys who published papers ignoring any data that was contrary to his hypothesis. He became so powerful that he crushed all others in his path. And big pharmacy saw a golden opportunity. The result is a 15 billion $ fraud.

Maybe I am out of context, but this is to show how far away from the truth science can go. You see, cholesterol plugs arteries THEREFORE we must lower cholesterol is a cause-effect statement in which the search for the cause was not serious and honest, and thus the true causes were obliterated in USA and in all countries that suffered their influence.

That is the problem we have. Big companies are making money, they want more, and they do not want to know anything that could bother their money-making scams.

Governments have made themselves very dubious entities in our attempts to know the truth. Canadian governments appear to be enemies of true science.


Mayor, consider investigating this, about science in Canada. And I am not joking

In the last months the federal government has emptied all scientific libraries of 99% of books, & 100% of journals. You could not find one scientists who was really consulted. Or perhaps the younger generation does not care about science…

Try to grasp the implication. Many scientific disciplines are getting lost. Of all pathologists that were used to breed disease resistant plants, perhaps only 10% remain, compared to 40 years ago. Once you get rid of those people the only solution becomes CHEMICALS.

This massacre went on everywhere, I understand. Such events of mass desctruction of scientific knowledge have perhaps no equivalent in 2000 years in the history of the world. All the history of the Canadian scientific research in agriculture is gone to the dumpster. All the documents that allow us to see what is changing over time is destroyed.

I was sleepless for days after seeing that. Sometimes, it still gets me awake at night. And if the same is going in in Health Canada, Environment Canada, everywhere… just think about this: moving Canada 40 years behind in a single sweeping move.

One of the main tools of research scientists has been burned to ashes. Books worth a fortune were destroyed; they were not offered for sale, not offered to interested scientists, just destroyed.

What a stupid, dirty, revealing way to deal with public science. And you want to bring “Credible Reports” on  GMO?

Then they claim that the science behind the pesticide industry is sound science, and all I have to say, is – you bullshitters, you do not even know what science is about.

If the govt gets itself in a weaker position which I hope will be sooner rather than later – it may then be safer for a scientist or two to emerge from the shadows to talk about these horrors of Canadian science.

Ms Mayor of Delta – you are way out of your depth on the assumption that you and your office, can check best available information and make educated decision on behalf of the people, about the “science” of GMO. Study, if you like, first, on the issue of destruction of past records of Canadian agricultural documents, studies, reports and data, if you dare.

Pardon my French, Ms Mayor – you are either unbelievably naive or extraordinarily out of your depth here, both on your ability to grasp the science and the business model behind GMO and on what authority you may have in making a decision on it.

Its not that the mayor has not received mails and appeals from concerned citizens on this and related issues before. I have personally written to her several months ago, and put that up on my blog goo. The mayor did not see it fit to respond to it. Her actions do not show any evidence that her office had attempted to study up on it.

.. This is a link to my letter to the Mayor in May 2014 which she did not bother to respond to, and displays no evidence that she cares about.

Podcast : Lisa Fraser of Burnaby, BC, tries to get candidates to explain their stand on GMO. She talks to Tony Mitra about it.

Schoolboard candidates on GMO & Vaccination

Link to mayor Jackson blog.
Link to the Council Election.

Election for the School board and the Municipality of Delta is round the corner. It is considered by me to be a citizen’s duty to try and ascertain, in a short period through minimal exchanges, who to vote for and who not to.

One way would be to vote for someone I know. But, I would personally like to do it not based on my personal friendship, but on issues and who might be better suited to serve the school board.

Education is a complicated subject and has many many elements to it. I also know, that most items considered important in the discussions regarding schools, curriculum, buildings, facilities, computers, wages of teachers, etc etc, all have two sides of the story and are not always black and white.

I can say that from my own life experience, as follows

  • I was born and schoold in India.
  • I went through my entire school tenure barefeet (had no shoes).
  • I attended most of my classes under a tree.
  • English was my third language and I did not study even the elementary A,B,C,D till class 4, or till I was almost 9 years old.
  • And in spite of all that, I had no problem studying Marine Engineering in English in college and going through higher education in UK and USA with flying colours.
  • I had no problem gatecrashing into high end job field globally, having worked for years in Hong Kong, then Miami and then Vancouver in responsible executive positions, in a field of work that required me to interact with, literally, people from across the planet.

I also know that in future, new generation kids, unlike me, would not even have to set foot on these lands in order to take jobs away from local kids. They will do that living right where they are, with nothing more than a click of a mouse.

Thats the future, when it comes to competition in education on a globally flat playing field.

I do not write all this to belittle the school system here. Not at all. I write this to put in my own perspective on what makes a good education and if shoes, buildings, computers, curriculum, high paid teachers etc etc are the only criteria which decides quality of education being imparted to our children (Canada’s children are like my children today), or if there is something else, that gives a child the magic touch of not just education, but a mindset that will move them forward in a quest not just for information, but towards a wisdom that teach them to step outside a box and think different, think independent, think human.

Anyhow, I had to select a few questions, to pass to the candidates, and I selected on GMO/pesticide as one, and forced vaccination of kids as another, to ask the potential candidates.

I would have liked including school vegetable garden as another, to use lawns not to grow grass and use cosmetic pesticides on them, but to actually set up vegetable gardens for school children to learn to grow food, and same time learn soil, biology, genetics, nutrition, health, climate, water purity, composting, and nature. Not only that, should in the future some calamity hurts the existing globalized and industrial agriculture system (our vegetables coming from Mexico and California, instead of from local fields), then those kids will likely know how to save themselves as well as handle a national crisis.

But, I did not include that – I should have. So now I have two questions. Out of which many folks responded to the first one – GMO and pesticide. Few have responded to the second one – forced vaccination of children. I find it unfortunate, but understand that candidates might be afraid to comment on this topic because there is a very powerful medical-industrial-political lobby that pushes for forced or coerced vaccinations on an increasing number of kids and are very intolerant of dissenting voices of caution.

I have had the benefit of reading a lot, exchanging views with scientists and professionals and learning first hand from them. I am also aware that, especially in North America (Canada and USA), science has now become biased and one sided. That is because unlike in the past, public tax money is not used to fund higher science education & research. Scientific research is now entirely funded by the industry, and they have no interest in funding any project or any scientist that might find problem with their products. As a result, science in North America has lost its objectivity and neutrality. This is so sad.

As a result, reading “mainstream science” which the curriculum promotes everywhere, is likely to bring up students with one sided bias on science issues. This is going to hurt the continent, and the people, now and in future. But the industry to day, more or less drives Canadian policy and politics, to a very large degree.

Anyhow, to bring myself to the present, I believe GMO and pesticide are, next to climate change, the most serious disaster or threat facing Canada. Pushing back at it would need politicians to stand up to very strong lobby and forces and powerful foreign corporations that appear to dictate terms with Canadian politicians higher up.

So, if a candidate was willing to stand up against such odds – it is my belief that he or she would be capable of critical thinking, have strength of character, and be able to solve other lower level problems that will always come up – be in crime or substance abuse in school, or, more importantly, how to prepare our kids to face up to competition on a global platform.

As reference, I might include a few external sources on issues of Vaccinations. I am mostly a food security activist and would like to see Canada safe itself from losing her food and seed sovereignty, but understand that kids vaccination might be another trigger for keeping a some unfortunate children affected by forced vaccines of untested and unproven record (untested by any independent body where dissenting scientists have not be gagged).

I consider it my duty, as a citizen of a democratic nation, to be involved and to make my assessment the best way I can, and to pass that to other fellow voters, the best way I can.


From Donna Burke
Hello Mr. Mitra,

I have not responded to your e-mail yet.  I felt that I had research to do around the extensive info you sent out in your e-mail.
I thank you for educating us; the people who are running for political positions in Delta.
I shun pesticides and GMOs on a family level — that’s my level of control.  I admit that I had not thought about it on a community scale.  I was trusting our Municipality and our School District management to make sound environmental decisions on our part.
I will raise these issues with our School District management to ascertain where we’re at.  I do plan to get back to you, not because I (just) want your vote, but because you have raised very relevant questions that I feel should not be ducked…and I’m very interested in the responses.
Thank you again for raising my awareness.
Sincerely,

Donna Burke
Delta School Trustee and Trustee Candidate

778-987-9298

From Laura Thomas

Hi Tony,

I would love to live in a community that is GMO and pesticide free. I am not a fan of processed foods. I cook and bake from whole ingredients every day, so I would like it to be easier to buy purer, healthier ingredients. The basic, fundamental physical well-being of my family is extremely important to me.
Sincerely,
Laura
Laura Michelle Thomas, B.A., B.A., M.A., Author
Laura Thomas Communications (Canada)
Publisher & Senior Editor jaBlog! The Blog for Junior Authors
Text/Phone 604-307-4971

From Corinne Atwood

Hi Tony

Thank you for your email and concerns regarding GMO’s. Sorry for the slow reply I am between conferences and running off again but wanted to respond.
As you may be aware my current position puts me in front of allot of environmental issues and information. I will give you a readers digest version of my thoughts. While there are many cons of GMO in particular the ones you mentioned and I agree with your efforts I have also seen some good things come from that like a new wheat plant that grows shorter, faster and is drought resistant that can be grown quickly in arid regions thereby assisting with feeding the masses. Where GMO’s go sideways is when as you say they are not disclosed enabling consumer to know the risks or make the choice that is right for them. Follow the money and follow the rational.
I am not sure how much autism we can blame on GMO’s. I think there are allot of other environmental issues that collectively are causing some serious changes to our immediate and long term health. I helped found a group (rethinkitbc) that came out slapping against the recycling monopolies that have been granted status by our current and prior governments.
These monopolistic agents of  the manufacturers that created the products in the first place are making money by putting the people who established  and supported recycling programs on their own dime, by using legislation to evict or annex recyclers from the industry they created. The so called manufacturers agents only interest is to shove all waste into an incinerator because reuse does not make money. They want people to purchase new. The dioxins emitted from an incinerator although they claim would be low would still be present.  The other side of that is that the eco fees paid on any recycling programs are held by the manufacturer / agent not the government (we are talking hundreds of millions here) and there is currently no governing body to monitor any of this. Dioxins and the materials used in manufacturing will exacerbate the issues you describe, (please see a 20 minute video the Story of Stuff) by Annie Leonard .
My family tries to be eco friendly, my son sourced the GMO free seeds for our garden this year and I like spots on my apples. I oppose GMO’s that harm any other creature as none of us can help what we are born and everyone needs to eat. I hope this answers your questions and please keep up the effort.
Something else that might make you wonder the Delta School Board manages just shy of 160 million dollars and even with the recent education issues the trustee candidates such as myself are being left out of all candidate meetings as  we seem to considered less important  candidates. Even one of the newspapers has asked me for info on myself but said trustees info would be part of a section only if they have space. Go figure, and I thought education is in all regards is the most important thing we can do as a society.
ot answer your direct question I would support Delta going GMO free
Cheers
Corinne

Hi Tony
I can honestly say that no one is my circle would suggest that I am avoiding yours or anyone else’s questions by lack of an immediate response to your email but I can only speak for myself when I say that you are not the only person asking for information from candidates and some candidates like me work longer that full time hours on top of campaigning. The fall is always a busy time for me with out of town conferences. I hope you can be a little more forgiving of those who choose not to or do not respond immediately, we are all busy and I believe we are all doing our best.
In regards to your answer on immunizations. My position is that all children should be immunized. I agree that some people have experienced side effects some more severe than anyone would ever hope, but if you look at our health in the big picture our society no longer suffers from the paralysing losses of plagues as shown in our history or the loss of a great number of children due to measles, polio and chicken pox. Your question failed to mention your views on antibiotics or if you have been immunized.
I have had the pleasure of visiting countries that do not enjoy our standard of living and I can tell you first hand I was glad I got a few shots before heading to Bosnia. I visited a very small farming community and took a trip to the local cemetery where it was hard to find anyone there over 55. War and lack of health car during that time took its toll and  myself not having enough of what it takes to battle some of the unpasturized food got a real eye opener. As in some parts of the world a good shot of some mysterious distilled alcohol is what is recommended to sort out the bodies response to less that ideal circumstances. I do not know how I would have fared without any immunizations.
Some people are of the mind that most of the diseases we are currently immunizing for are diseases long struck from our world just because we do not see much of them, but my view (as is shared by many) is that these diseases still exist and lie in wait for a comeback if given the opportunity. In developing and third world countries theses diseases take children by the thousands and I think it would be very easy to find a parent in these countries that would welcome immunization. As a parent I was not willing to take a chance on my children’s welfare.
I never met my paternal grandmother. She had the misfortune of contracting Tuberculosis and Measles at the same time and passed away when my Dad was 5. He was the youngest of 6 children. His oldest sister who was in grade 8 at the time quit school to raise the kids as their Dad worked away on the railroads. She is the last surviving child but at 90 plus still volunteers at soup kitchens. They all grew up eating porridge everyday and had some form of ailment or other that could be traced back to a number of things. I wonder how their world may have been different if immunizations existed then. I had scarlet fever as an infant and while I rarely take any medicines now I am grateful for the availability of antibiotocs as long as they are not over perscribed.  
I thank you for your questions as they bring good debate. While they do not necessarily address direct issues of the municipal elections they are good topics that should make us all stop and think about our views. It is my hope that a difference in opinion does not result in a loss of support but I am steadfast in my beliefs. Ahh….democracy.
My election platform is to offer the people of Delta the benefit of my management skills and experience, not my personal opinions. Debate however always brings awareness and I wish you well in your effort to educate the public. 
Cheers 
Corinne

From Phil Hurt

Thank you for your Question Tony 
I don’t claim to be an expert on this but I will offer my personal opinion on this and how appropriate a question on GMO so close to Halloween.
My understanding on GMO if I can in my view is… Frankenstein engineering of food.
We need more food to feed the planet but remember what happened to Dr. Frankenstein when he cut corners ……he created a monster. 
Chicken is an interesting subject with regard to how it is grown and not raised. The thought of some poor creature in a cage with no feathers or bones and a tube in its mouth has cut down on my chicken consumption dramatically.
10 years ago I had advanced throat cancer. I’m a non smoker and you don’t need to convince me that spraying food with chemicals is going to catch up sooner or later. I try to buy organic fruits and vegetables where I can, I won’t buy grapes from anywhere other than the U.S. It’s not that I agree with what they spray on the grapes but I figure it’s gotta be better than what Chile sprays on them.
One of my co workers told me of a group in the U.S.that was lobbying president Obama to bomb Monsanto because they were poisoning the people of the United states, much the same as it was said that Saddam Hussain had sprayed his own people with poison. I don’t know if this is true or not.
This may seem a simplistic view and these are my personal opinions but running for school trustee I think it would be good time to start educating children on what food is and where it comes from.
Hope this answers your question.
Thank you again
 Phil Hurt

From Brad Sherwin

Hi Tony, thanks for your note.

I think this is more geared to the Council candidates instead of school trustees, so I can’t help much in the discussion.
Thanks for getting involved and engaged in the election.
Regards,
Brad

Hi Tony.  Thanks for your note.

The decision on a vaccination should be between the parent and the child’s doctor.  If the doctor decides that the child, for whatever reason, should not have the vaccination, then the parents should notify the school and opt out.  I don’t believe that is any different from what is happening today, nor should it change.
Depending on the vaccination, however, there may be other factors that come into play.  If the child does not receive a vaccination and is then susceptible to a contagious disease that put other students and teachers at risk, the parents must have a plan to deal with the situation should it arise.  The school is a place of learning, not a hospital – sick children need to stay home and rest.
I appreciate your engagement in the political process, Tony.  Thanks again for your question.
Best Regards,
Brad Sherwin

From Nicolay Slater

Hello Tony,

I do support Delta Corp. being declared GMO & Pesticide free. Especially in residential areas where pesticides tend to be overused. I also would support ending the use of Neocotinoids.
 
Thanks for doing your part. If only there were more citizens taking their democracy as seriously as you do.
 
Warm regards,
Nic Slater

From Laura Dixon

Dear Mr. Mitra,

I have read your email with interest, however I am not a candidate for Councillor in the Municipality of Delta, rather I am running for the office of School Trustee.  Boards of Education exist under the School Act and we do not have the ability to enact by-laws.  We do have a Sustainability Policy that deals with conservation, protection, education and regulation that guides our work for our facilities.

In addition we, have a robust curricular and extra-curricular programs for students regarding sustainability and the environment.  We regularly have student delegations report to the Board at our meetings on their learning and their activities such as science projects, student led committees or district supported initiatives.   I am impressed by their passion and dedication to improving the environment and the support they receive from our staff and I have every confidence that our future will be in good hands.  Please read more at the following link:  http://facilities.deltasd.bc.ca/deltagreen

What is DeltaGreen?

The Delta School District has taken a proactive role in environmental stewardship for many years.  Facilities have been constructed, renovated and retrofitted with energy conservation in mind, schools and other District sites have undertaken paper recycling programs and other waste reduction measures, custodial practices have changed to reduce packaging and incorporate more environmentally friendly cleaning products, and a number of other initiatives have been implemented to do our part in greening our operations.  However, we need to do far more in the areas of climate action, conservation of non-renewable resources, water and the environment, and contribution to sustainable region principles established by Metro Vancouver.  DeltaGreen is the strategy the Delta School District has developed and follows to bring us to sustainable excellence.  Click here to view District Policy #4510 – Sustainability.

Thank you for your interest in the upcoming local elections,

Laura Dixon, School Trustee Candidate

Delta Board of Education, SD37

A few references

The Vaccine Autism Cover-up: How One Doctor’s Career was Destroyed for Telling the Truth

I actually read quite a few books, in clouding one from British doctor Andrew wakefield, where he found possible links with MMR vaccine and sudden onset of autism in kids, and wrote an article on the need to further investigate this issue and not to rush kids through the MMR vaccine, and suggested kids be given individual vaccines for those diseases instead for now (MMR : Measles, Mumps and Rubella).

Dr. Wakefield eventually wrote a book, explaining each and every step of events that lead to his writing that article and subsequent witch hunt he was subjected to, including destroying his medical career. Why ? Only because he raised a cautionary note against possible ill effects of a new combined triple vaccine ?

He as a result was hounded out of business by the pharma industry and the medical profession that is beholden to it.

I might tweak this page a bit in the next few days, and include more responses from candidates, if I receive any. I am scheduled to leave for Ontario and Quebec for some work shortly, and may not be around to follow up on it after the next few days.

Another link : US Doctor Suzanne Humphries on the dangers of Vaccine

I wish everyone well and request the residents of Delta to come out and vote in large numbers, to vote decisively, and to exert control over the democratic process.

I also thank the candidates for their efforts to contribute to our society by wishing to be public servants in an important field.

Thank you/ Tony Mitra/ tony.mitra@gmail.com

Politicians that should and should not win elections

It’s a dog’s life !

Link to mayor Jackson blog.
Link to the School Board Election.

Fighting GMO and pesticide is the most important issue and threat facing Canada, only next to Climate change, and is related to it as well.

Fighting GMO requires standing up against the most powerful corporations and financial giants in a system that is skewered to siphon off more and more tax payers money to accumulate in the hands of ever more powerful few.

GMO surrenders Canadian food sovereignty and food security into the hands of a few foreign (US owned) corporations, and by extension, to US hegemony.

If a candidate is willing to stand up to those challenges and odds, it is my judgment that he or she can easily also handle all the other minor challenges that will come up, such as roads or parks and water service and schools and crime.

And so, I focus on local Municipal elections, the only one where people can interact with their candidates and with their elected representatives, and have a reasonable chance of influencing the electoral outcome. It is the only level where corporate funding is not always working against you in overwhelming odds.

And thus, I asked the candidates by email on their stand on GMO. I attended the candidates meeting in Landner on the 23rd. I placed a question asking if they would support the resolution to declare Delta GMO free and follow the lead of other BC Municipalities.

I had the opportunity to hear the candidates, and interact with a few of them. I shall come back to fill this blog more with details – but meanwhile here are a few candidates and what I think about their candidacy, in pictures.

Its time to influence the elections to favour the concerns of the people, instead of greed of a few corporations. it is time to kick the bums off our Government. Its time to bring honest and incorruptible politicians that are not scared to call a spade a spade into our municipal governments. These honest people should protect Canadian land, air, water and people, who will promote small farmers that use their own seeds and traditional methods of growing healthy local food for the local people. We need an agriculture system where the money stays in the community, and not what we have now, eating our vegetables than come from California and Mexico, and eating pesticide laden unhealthy junk food produce that fatten the wallet of US corporate honchos and make Canadians sick, while driving Canadian small farmers into bankruptcy and extinction.

Time to boot the bums off our Government, save Canada and our future generation. Nothing more and nothing less.

Mayor Lois Jackson has finally sent a response in writing and in bold letters.

I consider her response not only wrong in many ways, but also arrogant, dismissive and snide. Another issue is that she seems to indicate that it is the duty of the council of Delta to understand the science of GMO and then pass a judgment on it. This indication, if true, is another item I shall deal with separately, as to what should be the duty of a mayor and a city council on complex issues that are not just related to science, but also to seed freedom, food security, patenting of life forms by foreign corporations and using them to make all local competitive crops go extinct, and killing off all small farmers in Canada, and handing over the food industry to the stranglehold monopoly of a handful of foreign corporations, to name just a few. I suspect the Mayor, as an educated person capable of rational thinking, can easily understand these factores even if she does not understand GMO or pesticides in our soil and water and food, since the effects of this business model has been eating into Canadian agriculture for about 20 years now. And Canada does not have another 20 years for our politicians to finally come to grips with the situation.

These are not new questions since I sent emails to her in the past on these issues too, and never got a response. I wonder why she bothered to respond, that too in such an arrogant way, at this juncture. I am going to have fun responding to that letter in fuller detail on a separate blog. I take note of some of the terms she used, such as “Looking for attention“, “Bandwagon“, “Empty of information“.

The content of the letter deserves a more detailed response from me and will be covered in a separate blog all its own. Here I copy her message so the public can read it already, and form their own opinion on her attitude in dealing with questions that may be uncomfortable for her. I am also being requested by organizers in Ontario and Quebec to bring with me the letters from Councillor Bishop and Mayor Jackson as well as my replies (I have not yet penned my reply to Mayor Jackson, except a brief holding message, but hope to do so soon), in our workshop and presentation to the people, on how one might ask questions to local politicians and what kind of response might be expected. Quote

GREETINGS:
WELL, FIRSTLY MY NAME IS LOISŠ

SECONDLY, MAY I SAY THAT WE HAVE NOT BEEN USING PESTICIDES NOR
INSECTICIDES IN OUR PARKS FOR SEVERAL YEARS.  WE BAN IT FROM BEING SOLD IN DELTA AND ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO USE łNATURAL˛ METHODS TO KEEP DOWN GARDEN PESTS.
AS WITH MANY TOPICS THAT ARE BEING DISCUSSED TODAY IN THE MEDIA AND BY THE PUBLIC, GMO SEEMS TO BE ONE OF THEM. THIS ISSUE HAS NOT BEEN SCIENTIFICALLY PRESENTED TO OUR COUNCIL AND I HAVE ASKED OUR CHIEF ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER, MR. GEORGE HARVIE TO BRING FORWARD GOOD SCIENTIFIC ANALYSIS FOR COUNCILąS PERUSAL.

I MUST ALSO SAY THAT I AM NOT A SCIENTIST NOR A CANADIAN FOOD INSPECTOR
NOR CANADIAN LEGISLATOR;THESE ARE VERY COMPLEX ISSUES AND I LOOK FORWARD TO RECEIVING CREDIBLE REPORTS TO OUR COUNCILąS ATTENTION.

AS FAR AS OTHER CITIES AND COMMUNITIES ARE CONCERNED, IT IS SO EASY FOR
SOME COUNCILąS TO SIMPLY JUMP AT AN ISSUE, (LOOKING FOR ATTENTION PERHAPS?) AND THEY JUMP ONTO A BANDWAGON WHICH IS EMPTYŠ  EMPTY OF INFORMATION, SCIENCE AND UNDERSTANDING.  OUR DELTA COUNCIL TAKES PRIDE IN ANALYZING THE ISSUE, SEARCHING OUT THE BEST INFORMATION, REFERRING IT TO EXPERTS, BEFORE WE łJUMP ONTO THE BANDWAGON˛.

AS AN EXAMPLE, I REFER TO THE ISSUE OF SHARK FIN SOUPŠ  THIS WAS A FEDERAL IMPORTATION MATTER AND WE HAD NO JURISDICTION TO DISALLOW ITS IMPORTATION NOR SALE IN DELTA.  WE DID HOWEVER, MAKE STRONG PRESENTATIONS TO MANY FEDERAL JURISDICTIONS WHO DID HAVE AUTHORITY.  MANY COUNCILLORS AND COUNCILS CAME FORWARD CONDEMNING THE PRACTICE, HOWEVER, THE SUBJECT WAS AN EMOTIONAL ONE OVER WHICH LOCAL GOVERNMENT HAD NO JURISDICTION.

ANOTHER ISSUE WAS THE łBANNING OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS IN VANCOUVER˛ THERE WAS NO EFFECT OF THIS STATEMENT, AND IT WAS SIMPLY A STATEMENT BY A COUNCIL WHO HAD NO JURISDICTION OVER A MATTER.

THEREFORE, TO BE HONEST AND OPEN AND MAKING GOOD LEGISLATION ON AN ISSUE, I WILL AWAIT THE REPORTS FROM OUR STAFF AND CONTACT YOU UPON DELIBERATION OF SAME,

THANK YOU FOR YOUR QUESTION, AS I REMAIN,

LOIS E. JACKSON
MAYOR OF DELTA

Unquote


Syliva Bishop told me she will work to set up a lab in Delta, to test Glyphosate (poison in Monsanto’s RoundUP weed killer) in human body fluids and all food items grown and sold in Delta.

I was hesitant to make this entry, since it is not an easy task, and I was not sure if she is able to deliver on that. Its easier to propose a resolution for GMO free Delta and it is easier to vote for it, whether the motion passes or not. It is far more difficult to actually set up a pathbreaking biotech lab to be set up and get running. However, I am making this entry here for future tracking on her promise. Meanwhile, my vote remains a thumb down.

Heather King gets my vote

Heather King deserves to win – in my view

I asked each candidate, a day earlier, about their stand on GMO.

Heather King responded with : Tony,

Thank you for asking this question.  I have first hand experience with the ill effects of GMO in our food, caring for my mother.  I had read the book – Wheat Belly and realized the full extent of GMO and it’s potential effects on our health.  In particular my mom suffered from acid reflux to the point that she was unable to eat.  At 94 pounds it was alarming and medication was not helping her.  After reading this book I took both her and myself off wheat and other GMO foods.  The results were staggering.  After just one week, she no longer had acid reflux.  She has gained a bit of weight but feels so much healthier now.  So do I.
I will take a leadership role in this for Delta.
If elected, I will put forth a resolution to make Delta GMO free.  I don’t know if you are aware, but I put forth the motion when I was on Delta Council to eliminate cosmetic pesticides in Delta and that motion passed I’m pleased to say.
Now all you need to do is help me become elected as a Delta Councillor again and we can make this happen.
Please call me if you would like to help
Thank you again Tony
Heather King

IT time Canadian politicians, starting from the bottom up, stop using ignorance as an excuse for doing nothing. It is time for them to stop passing the buck by blaming federal politics and claiming Municipalities have no authority. It is time for politicians to stop misguiding the public and obfuscate this issue. It is time for them to get off their high horse and face issues squarely and without hiding behind corporations and lobby groups.

Lori Mayhew gets my vote

Lori Mayhew is another candidate that responded in writing:

Hi Tony.  Thank you for your email. 
This is an easy question for me:  I am against GMOs and the use of pesticides, and I would support a resolution to make Delta a GMO free community.  
Please let me know if you have any other questions. 
Lori Mayhew
Candidate for Delta Council

 

Nicholas Wong and Lori Mayhew get my vote.

Nicholas Wong gets my vote

Then there was Nicholas Wong. He responded : Hi Tony, 

I have friends who have been directly effected by Monsanto and have developed cancer as a result of their pesticides. Farmers are particularly at risk from direct intoxication due to many of the pesticides and chemicals that they use. It stands to reason that this transfers into the food supply. This is not even touching on the issue of GMOs. I am not entirely certain that genetic manipulation is bad as a whole, but the way that the industries involved have refused regulation and surround themselves in secrecy is unacceptable. For that reason, I am entirely in support of having Delta join the list of municipalities declaring themselves GMO free. I will not support an indefinite ban, but, without proper health assessment and regulation, we have no way of protecting the population from its many potential harms and evils. 

The facts you present are more than enough of a reason to support outlawing all GMOs until they pass sufficient health panels and demonstrate that they are not doing us irreparable harm.  I hope that this answers some of the issues. Thank you so much for approaching me with the question and I will look for you in the crowd tomorrow.  Thanks so much,  Nicholas Wong

 Johann Ackermann gets my vote

Johann Ackermann gets my vote

 

Not every candidate had time to respond to my original question in a day, but some of them responded later, such as in the morning of 24th October. Johann Ackerkann is one such and he was clear enough in his email. He mentioned Harold Steves, a hero in not only my eyes, but by an increasing number of Canadians in and outside of BC. He also mentioned that the shifty answer by Ian Paton blew him away. This is what he wrote: Tony,

Please accept my apology for not replying sooner.  Getting home after 10 PM every day is tiring. Yesterday at the all candidates meeting when I heard Ian Paton’s reply to the question I was blown away by his stand on this. 
You mentioned Harold Steves who is a hero in my books. We need more people like him. 
Enough said, I am for standing with Richmond (I grew up in Richmond) and other municipalities against GMO. Concerning pesticides and other chemicals being used in farming, I am totally on board to ensuring we don’t poison our children with these pesticides. As also mentioned yesterday, just because the Provincial or Federal government have control over certain things does not mean that we should lie down and take it. As the last level of government, it’s the council’s obligation to stand up and be counted when the health and safety of the community is at stake. I am the employee Health and Safety co-chair and this is something very dear to my heart.
Thank you for asking the question.
Sincerely,
Johann Ackermann

Jennifer Thoss gets my vote

Hi Tony,
I think I answered you regarding GMO’ but I see no reference in your email below. Is this your comment on twitter? (Screen shot attached-SantanuMitra)
I am confused, please let me know.
Thanks,
Jennifer Thoss
PS- I am totally on board with Delta going GMO free!!

This screenshot received from Jennifer Thoss by email.

Ian Paton does not get my vote

Ian Paton does not get my vote

Ian Paton was one that did not respond by email. However, the next day, October 23rd, during the Council Candidates meeting with the public – he did come across my question. I had penned the question to be fielded to the candidates – that many municipalities in BC had passed resolution to be GMO free, where BC lead the nation, but Delta was lagging behind. Would the candidate join the rest of BC and declare itself to be GMO free as well.Mr. Paton responded like a true politician – regretfully. In other words, he remained slippery and evasive, opting to support GMO labelling, which is not on the table in Canada, and he as a council member has no control over it. On the other hand, the item he has some control over, i.e. passing a resolution in Delta to be GMO free, he did not support it and considered such a resolution to be fluffy. So, supporting labelling, which is not on the horizon and which he cannot influence – is not fluffy, but the one he can do something about – is.

I personally have come across quite a few politicians that talk like that – promising nothing, committing to nothing, never taking a clear stand on issues, and wanting your vote nonetheless. Usually such politicians are to be found higher up in the hierarchy. It was surprising for me to come across such a one at the Municipal level. in my view, Ian Paton is a candidate that deserves to be an unemployed politician.

A response from Ian Paton :

Apparently if you know absolutely nothing about farming or GMO  , but answer yes to your question  ( which is the easy way out )  then  you are a fantastic Council prospect   (  i.e.  Heather , Lori , Nich  )   OR  if  you are a candidate  (8 of them ) that never got asked the question or did not respond  , that gets you a free pass  ( no comment apparently all okay )   However ian Paton who knows a bit about the subject who answers with an intelligent and realistic answer  ( including being in  favour of labelling of GMO grown food )  ,  and stating that Municipalities are helpless to take any action on this topic , which is totally approved and regulated by the Federal Agriculture Ministry   … Is  labelled by Mr . Mitra as a terrible candidate  ( even though I think I have done a ton of  good things for Delta farmers in the past 4 years )    Since you are so in love with Richmonds GMO free movement , let us know how that is working out ?  Does Richmond  have  GMO inspectors going farm to farm packing guns and mobile  testing labs ?  Maybe get them to check on the 3000 acres of ” Roundup ready  ” cow corn that is still grown over there year after year after year  with nothing their  Municipality can do about it . 
                                                                                                                        Mr . Mitra  ..      Sure makes our service to the community worthwhile when getting trashed by people like you        …       Ian Paton

Response from Harold Steves, Farmer and a Councillor, Richmond – who spearheaded the GMO free resolution in Richmond, and is still working on furthering the clean agriculture movement – and a hero not just for British Columbians, but concerned citizens across Canada. The Richmond “ban” on GMO’s has been immensely successful. The ban was not aimed at GMO cow corn that was already in production at a couple of dairy farms in Richmond. They were exempted as non conforming uses previously permitted. 

Chemical agricultu
re is the norm in the dairy industry. As the corn is used as silage to feed cows there is little chance that the chenical residues sprayed on the plants will get into the food chain outside of these farms. 

The GMO ban was complimentary to Richmond’s ban on cosmetic pesticides. As 99% of GMO’s are designed for pesticide use banning both GMO’s and pesticides is doubly effective.

Richmond collects lawn clippings, leaves and other yard waste for composting through an anaerobic digester at Harvest Power in Richmond. Methane gas, normally produced by composting, is burned to produce electricity and CO2. The remaining compost is so clean and free of herbicides and pesticides that it can now be used on organic farms and gardens to produce food. At the same time an equivalent amount of CO2 is sequestered by the plants grown on the composted soil.

Vicky Huntington – Delta MLA was present

With Heather King & independent MLA Vicky Huntington

Independent Delta MLA Vicky Huntington was in the hall, introduced to me by Heather King. I had in fact had previous correspondence with Vicky, but only on email and twitter and never face to face. I had asked her about the use of RoundUp pesticide in Delta agriculture and the latest measurements of the level of Glyphosate in our soil and water, and the report that some farmers were overusing it in hope of killing super weeds and might be crossing the prescribed limit. I also asked about the issue that there are no labs in Canada that are geared to test out urine, blood and mothers breast milk, or our food such as wheat, corn, milk, cooking oil, bread, meat or processed food, for presence of Glyphosate.

Vicky had previously welcomed me to see her at her office, but I had not managed to find the time somehow. We decided we would catch up with each other soon. Anyhow, I reminded her that all my correspondence with her over the months and years have been always either GMO, or the herbicide RoundUp and its active ingredient Glyphosate, and its use in Delta farming, and the fallout from that in the health of the people that are involved in farming and those that live near the farm lands, and the wildlife that use the ground water, etc, and the question of if the city should monitor the toxicity level in our soil, water and especially in the crops that are sprayed with RoundUp. More on this later, on a some other blog, or podcast, or video. Thierry Vrain write to health minister Rona Ambrose

Meanwhile, my friend Thierry Vrain, retired genetic engineer, soil biologist, ex Agriculture Canada scientist and organic farmer as well as partner in our joint GE talk tour across Canada, is off to Ottawa to meet with Canada’s health Minister Ms Rona Ambrose to discuss GMO and pesticides in Canadian food and environment next Monday, Oct 27th.

I have had past exchanges on email with Ms Abrose. These have not been encouraging from my point of view, but then I realize she is, in my judgment, incapable of and disallowed from making independent judgment on the safety of GMO and pesticide. Should she dare to do that, she will likely be fired on the spot. So, in effect, the minister is more like a face, a front, or a puppet, designed to make you feel good when you get to meet her or get an answer from her. Other than that, I do not believe she can or will change Canada’s policy of selling our rights, our food security and our seed freedom, to a handful of powerful foreign agro-industry corporations.

Nonetheless, I wish Thierry success, and am copying this email he recently sent to the minister, as a supplement to this page. It might prove educating to those that have the time to go through and decipher Thierry’s message.

 To the Honorable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Health

 A briefing paper on herbicide pollution and GMO labeling

from Dr Thierry Vrain:

Minister, 

 The confusion about the safety of GMOs is quite simple to address.  The only GMOs in our agriculture are Glyphosate Modified Organisms also known as RoundUp Ready crops and the only GMOs in our food supply are from those crops.   RoundUp Ready crops are engineered to be sprayed with the herbicide RoundUp and this technology has become so successful that RoundUp has become a major pollutant (1).  This chemical pollution is antibiotic, it impacts the microbiome, impairs CYP enzymes, and depletes food of essential mineral micronutrients.  As a background paper for the impact of this pollution I offer my speaking notes to the American College of Nutrition conference last week in San Diego (Texas).  Most of the studies I cite were published in the last five years.   

Glyphosate is the active ingredient of the herbicide RoundUp, a new molecule created in 1960 by Stauffer Chemicals – a US company with a business of cleaning industrial pipes and boilers of mineral scales.  The mineral deposits (same as in electric kettles) are called scales, and the pipe cleaning chemicals are called descaling agents.  Glyphosate was patented in 1964 in the US as a powerful and very broad spectrum descaling agent (2).   Meaning, it binds to metals indiscriminately and does a great job at “dissolving and preventing minerals from being reactive or bioavailable in solution”.   When the descaling solution was disposed of in nature, it was obvious that it killed plants.  The chemical company Monsanto promptly bought the molecule, patented it as a herbicide in 1969, and got it commercialized in 1974 (3).  This molecule is making history because glyphosate has become the most successful agricultural chemical in North and South America wherever RR seeds are used.   The farmers using this technology get simpler and cheaper weed management and despite higher input bills and sometimes disappointing yields, and with weed resistance spreading fast, they adopted it in troves (4). 

The herbicide RoundUp had a completely novel chemistry for a herbicide in 1969.   It was deemed to kill plants by bonding to only one protein enzyme in the chloroplasts – the same enzyme  that is also in bacteria and fungi.   Enzymes are metalloproteins with a metal atom as a cofactor at the active site of the molecule.  Bacteria and plants and fungi have a metalloprotein called EPSPS for short and 5-Enol Pyruvyl Shikimate-3 Phosphate Synthase if you want to know what it does.  It works with other metalloproteins to “make” several of the building blocks of proteins, the aromatic amino acids.   These molecules are also building blocks for a large number of aromatic molecules we call secondary compounds.  Glyphosate binds tightly to the manganese atom at the centre of the EPSPS metalloprotein, so tightly that the protein cannot move and do its work making aromatic amino acids.   No protein synthesis means there is no metabolic work possible, a quick death for the plant, or the fungi or the bacteria. 

Animals do not make their own aromatic amino acids since they lack the shikimate pathway with the EPSPS metalloprotein.   Because of its presumed mode of killing plants, glyphosate was pronounced innocuous to humans and registered as such in 1974 in the USA.  Glyphosate has no acute toxicity, and at the time of registration in the US, and even since, nobody has bothered to check for chronic effects beyond 3 months.  Considering the chemical properties of this pollution one would expect long term chronic effects, very similar to rickets, scurvy, or beri beri, for lack of micronutrients.    The Industry sponsored feeding studies proving the safety of GMOs do not include testing for the safety of glyphosate.  None of them bother to mention the residue levels of glyphosate in the feed.   Meanwhile, a fast growing series of independent studies in various countries published in the last 5 years have ascertained the impact of glyphosate on various cellular enzymes and organs of animals and human cells.

The first RoundUp Ready crops to be commercialized were soy and corn, released in 1996.   Since then, a handful of RR crops have been adopted enthusiastically by farmers, particularly in North and South America.   Today close to 500 million acres of soya and corn, and cotton, canola, and sugar beet, are engineered to be sprayed with RoundUp.  About 40% of  all RR crops are grown in the USA, most of the rest are grown in Brazil, Argentina, Canada, and a few other countries.  RR crops are now sprayed with close to two billion lbs of glyphosate every year, and so much of that finds its way into processed food and feed that the EPA had to raise the legal residue limits last year to accommodate a new reality (5).   

 Glyphosate is antibiotic, a powerful and broad spectrum antibiotic (6).  The mode of kill is again alleged to be very selective.  The glyphosate molecule impairs the functioning of the shikimate pathway in bacteria the same way it does in plants.  Only one enzyme is affected in a pathway that animals do not possess.   The antibiotic patent describes its effectiveness to kill bacteria at 1 ppm and this was confirmed last year in Germany (7).   At this point I usually spend a minute or two explaining why a low level antibiotic diet for the rest of your life is not a good idea.  I describe the recent interest of the medical field in a large joint research project involving many Universities to decipher the huge community of thousands of species of bacteria that call us home.  The Human Microbiome project is the equivalent of the Human Genome project in its scope.   We are vastly outnumbered, roughly ten to one – one hundred trillion bacterial cells call our lower intestine home.  They are forever sending signaling molecules to each other and to all human organs, particularly the brain.  All animals depend on their symbiosis with these bacteria, and humans are no exception.   They are the teachers of our immune system, they make many neurotransmitters for our brain, and have a strong connection to the heart and the whole digestive tract.   They literally feed us all kinds of molecules that we require – we call them essential, like vitamins and such.  They digest and recycle most of our food.   Most human organs rely on molecular signals from the microbiome for normal functioning.  As goes the microbiome, so does its human shell.  A recent review of the medical literature on celiac and other diseases shows the link to imbalances of the microbiome that are fully explained by the antibiotic properties of glyphosate (8).   And the same authors published another review of the impact of glyphosate on the CYP enzymes and the microbiome.   Samsel and Seneff have suggested that glyphosate’s suppression of CYP enzymes and its antibiotic effect on the human microbiome are involved in the etiology of many chronic degenerative and inflammatory diseases that have grown to epidemic proportions since 1996, since the advent of the RoundUp Ready technology (10).

We lack any official data on residues of glyphosate in food or in water in Canada – no epidemiological studies of any kind have ever been done.  All we have are the legal maximum residue limits now allowed by the EPA in RoundUp Ready foods, human cereal 30 ppm, animal grain 100 ppm, soybean 120 ppm, and everything else in between (5).    Here an inquisitive mind will ask why there is such a high residue limit for cereal when none of the grains are engineered to be sprayed with RoundUp.  This is when you learn that RoundUp is sprayed on many non-engineered crops with the intent to kill them right before harvest.  This is done to mature and dry the crops quickly to make them easier and cheaper to harvest.   The RoundUp herbicide has now become a dessicant.

There is direct toxicity to animal cells because glyphosate binds to metals indiscriminately, and not just in plant cells.  It binds to metals in solution and to metal co-factors at the centre of metalloproteins anywhere.   For example glyphosate binds to the iron atom at the centre of a large family of protein enzymes called CYP.  There are 57 different CYP enzymes in the human body, and approximately 20,000 in animals, plants, bacteria and fungi.  The CYP enzymes are oxydizers, the first line of digestion and detoxification of most substrates.  David Nelson wrote in a review of the CYP enzymes: “The CYP enzymes of humans are essential for our normal physiology and failure of some of these enzymes results in serious illnesses (9,10).  

Nancy Swanson has made public her statistical analyses of the US Centre for Disease Control’s statistics about the health status of America when placed next to the statistics of the US Department of Agriculture about the spread of RoundUp Ready soy and corn.  Her correlation analyses show very high coefficient values suggesting strong links between glyphosate residues in RoundUp Ready food and chronic illnesses (11).  

Medical and chemical reviews and peer reviewed studies have explained the mode of action of glyphosate and its impact on many metalloproteins.   Human cell studies have shown acute toxicity (12-15) and animal studies have shown chronic toxicity (16-21).   Glyphosate bioaccumulates in the plants and in any animal that eat the plants. 

Glyphosate accumulates in the lungs, the heart, kidneys, intestine, liver, spleen, muscles, and bones … and chronically ill people have higher residues in their urine than healthy people.”(22)

To conclude this presentation of the nutritional status of Glyphosate Modified Organisms, I would say that crops sprayed with RoundUp, whether they are RoundUp Ready or not, contain residues of glyphosate, that foods made from RoundUp Ready soy and corn and sugar and canola, etc … are depleted of the minerals that are bound to the glyphosate molecules (23).   Foods made from crops containing residues of glyphosate are by definition depleted of minerals and toxic.

Minister, your reassuring words have been quoted widely.  “Currently, there is no… scientific evidence, that says genetically modified foods are unhealthy. It is impossible for us to mandate a label, because our labels have to be based on evidence that it is an unhealthy product for Canadians.”  I hope you have found here the scientific evidence you require to act and that you join over 60 governments in the world who have found this evidence compelling enough in the past few years, to legislate some form of protection from labeling to banning RoundUp Ready crops and the herbicide RoundUp.

Respectfully,

 Dr. Thierry Vrain

thierryv@telus.net

Literature cited

1 Battaglin W.A., Meyer M.T., Kuivila K.M., Dietze J.E.  2014. Glyphosate and its degradation product AMPA occur frequently and widely in US soils, surface water, groundwater, and precipitation.  J. Amer. Water Res. Assoc. 50, 275-290.

2 U.S. Patent  3,160,632 Stauffer Chemicals 1964

3 US Patent 3,455,675 Monsanto Chemicals 1969

Fernandez-Cornejo J., Wechsler S.J., Livingston M. and Mitchell L.  2014.  Genetically Engineered crops in the United States.  USDA Economic Research Report No. (ERR-162) 60 pp.   http://www.ers.usda.gov/media/1282246/err162.pdf

5 EPA 2013 MCL (US Environment Protection Agency legal Maximum Contaminant Levels). http://www.epa.gov/ogwdw/pdfs/factsheets/soc/glyphosa.pdf

6 U.S. Patent Number 7,771,736  Monsanto Chemicals 2010.

Shehata, A.A., Schrödl, W., Aldin, A.A., Hafez, H.M. and Krüger, M.   2013. The effect of Glyphosate on potential pathogens and beneficial members of poultry microbiota. Curr. Microbiol. 66:350-358.

8 Samsel, A. and Seneff, S.  2013.  Glyphosate, pathways to modern diseases II.  Celiac sprue and gluten intolerance. Interdiscip. Toxicol. 6: 159-184

9 Nelson, D.  2013. A world of cytochrome P450s. Philo. Transac. Royal Soc. London B 368 No 1612.

10 Samsel, A. and Seneff, S.  2013. Glyphosate’s suppression of cytochrome P450 enzymes and amino acid biosynthesis by the gut microbiome: pathways to modern diseases. Entropy 15: 1416-1463.

11 http://www.examiner.com/gmo-in-seattle/nancy-swanson

12 Gasnier, C., Dumont, C., Benachour, N., Clair, E., Chagnon, M.C. and Séralini, G.E. 2009.  Glyphosate-based herbicides are toxic and endocrine disruptors in human cell lines. Toxicology 262: 184-191.

13 Benachour N. and Seralini, G.E.  2009.  Glyphosate induces  apoptosis in human umbilical, embryonic, and placental cells. Chem. Res. Toxicol. 22: 97-105.

14 Koller, V.G., Fürhacker, M., Nersesyan, A., Mišík, M., Eisenbauer, M. and Knasmueller, S.  2012.  Cytotoxic and DNA-damaging properties of glyphosate and Roundup in human-derived buccal epithelial cells. Arch. Toxicol. 86: 805-813.

15 Thongprakaisang, S., Thiantanawat, A., Rangkadilok, N., Suriyo, T. and Satayavivad, J. 2013. Glyphosate induces human breast cancer cell growth via estrogen receptors. Food Chem. Toxicol. 59: 129-136.

 16 Senapati ,T., Mukerjee, A.K. and Ghosh, A.R. 2009. Observations on the effect of glyphosate based herbicide on ultrastructure (SEM) and enzymatic activity in different regions of alimentary canal and gill of Channa punctatus (Bloch). J. Crop  Weed 5: 236-245.

17 Paganelli, A.,  Gnazzo, V.,  Acosta, H.,  López, S.L. and Carrasco, A.E. 2010. Glyphosate herbicides produce teratogenic effects on vertebrates by impairing retinoic acid signaling. Chem. Res. Toxicol. 23: 1586-1595.

18 Vecchio, L., Cisterna, B., Malatesta, M., Martin, T.E. and Biggiogera, M. 2004. Ultrastructural analysis of testes from mice fed on genetically modified soybean.  Eur. J. Histochem. 48:448-454.

19 El-Shamei, Z.S.Gab-Alla, A.A.Shatta, A.A.Moussa, E.A.Rayan, A.M.  2012. Histopathological changes in some organs of male rats fed on genetically modified corn.  J. Am. Sci. 8: 684-696.

20 Séralini, G.E., Clair, E., Mesnage, R., Gress, S., Defarge, N.,  Malatesta, M., Hennequin, D. and de Vendômois, J.S.  2014. Republished study: Long-term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize. Environ. Sci. Eur. 26:14 

21 Clair. E, Mesnage, R., Travert, C. and Séralini, G.É. 2012. A glyphosate-based herbicide induces necrosis and apoptosis in mature rat testicular cells in vitro, and testosterone decrease at lower levels. Toxicol. in Vitro 26: 269-279.

22 Kruger, M., Schledorn, P., Schrodl, W., Hoppe, H.W., Lutz, W. and Shehata, A.A.  2014. Detection of glyphosate residues in animals and humans. Environ. & Anal. Toxicol. 4:2

23 Zobiole, L.H., Kremer, R.J., de Oliveira, R.S. and Constantin, J. 2012. Glyphosate effects on photosynthesis, nutrient accumulation, and nodulation in glyphosate-resistant soybean.  J. Plant Nutri. Soil Sci. 175: 319


I shall fill this out more in the next few days. Watch this space.

Catherine Colvin – a unique journey in the path of detoxification

Here is a remarkable story of Catherine Colvin of Minnesota, USA.
Sick from possible excessive exposure to harmful chemicals, she had a series of debilitating illnesses from childhood.

Catherine Colvin

By the time she was in her 40s, the doctors had given up on her, suffering from Multiple Sclerosis, Thyroid, and blood cancer to name such a few. She was looking towards another 2 or 3 years to live under lingering pain and disability.

She lost her job, her medical insurance and her support system from the healthcare industry. That was in 2006. She should have been dead long before today.

and yet, she survived, and is well on her way to curing herself, without funds, without medical insurance and without western medicine, so to speak.

Her primary tactic was to remove synthetic chemicals from her life and her lifestyle. Her second line of defence was to study alternative medicine practiced by just about everybody except the western medical profession. And she lived to tell the tale.

  • She was a military child, and was exposed to a chemical environment from childhood.
  • She had allergies, small cysts on skin, asthma. She got sick after vaccines
  • Her mother had her on birth control to her at 13
  • She wen anemic at 14
  • She developed endometriosis symptoms at 14 though not diagnosed until 19
  • Doctors recommended that she should have a hysterectomy because it was the only cure and she would never have children anyway. She did not have the hysterectomy at the time, thankfully – and eventually got to be a mother of two healthy sons – now, 29 and 34.
  • She had multiple sclerosis from childhood.
  • In 1989 she finally had a hysterectomy
  • In 2005 She was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis
  • Same year, 2006 she was confirmed to have multiple sclerosis
  • Also in 2006, she was diagnosed with acute paraproteinemia – a blood cancer.
  • She was to face life expectancy of next 2 to 3 years. She should not be alive today at all.
  • She lost her high paying job. She lost her medical insurance. Doctors stopped speaking with her. She only had to wait for death.
  • But she outlived all expectations, and cured most of her illness, without the medical establishment, without insurance and mostly without western medicine.
  • The most effective treatment she did – was remove synthetic chemicals from her life.
  • She learned what alternative treatments, usually outside the U.S. such as Chinese, Indian, African, Latin American and American Indian treatments.
  • Changed diet drastically – eating things that were easy to digest and beginning to heal her gut microbiome.
  • She avoided trans fats, sugars
  • She went on celiac diet for about 6 months
  • She detoxed herself with the lemonade diet or Master Cleanse for a few months and now twice yearly
  • She used mega-doses of zero toxicity supplements such as liposomal vitamin C which she can now make at home, vitamin D, E, K, A, the B’s and others.
  • She mixed her own RO (reverse osmosis) water with baking soda and sea salt and trace minerals
  • She used dehydrated greens 3 times daily as a drink
  • She used 35% food grade hydrogen peroxide to dilute and use for soaking in baths and washing vegetables
  • And she went organic – organic – organic.
  • Within months most of her symptoms where receding. Her blood cancer started curing itself. Today, it is undetectable.
  • Multiple sclerosis started healing. She could walk a block without collapsing.
  • She tried every unconventional treatment. She found out that, for her thyroid, in some nations, patients are given a diet of the thyroid gland of a cow or pig, chopped up and raw. She found the same treatment used in the west for pets, such as thyroid issues for a pet dog or cat – but not humans.She ordered thyroid gland from an organic grass fed cow, for her imaginary “sick dog”. Then she ground out the meat, and ate it raw herself, along with enzymes to help her digest it (she had gone vegetarian by then, so she needed help to digest raw meat). Her thyroid problem is fast improving.
  • She removed chemicals from her life by tossing out store sold soap and makes her own, for washing her clothes, her dishes and even herself.


Today, she has not only outlives expectations, her blood cancer cannot be detected, her sheer tiredness is gone. She has a spring in her step. At 53, she is healing and aging at the same time. Far as I can tell, she is going to outlive me and many others of our generations.
.
This is the story of my friend Catherine Colvin of Minnesota, USA.

I am editing my interview with her – for a two part podcast.

The picture above is a recent one – well on her way to healing.

Introducing – Catherine Colvin – who defied death by stepping away from western medicine, diet, and to a large extent, rejecting the traditional western lifestyle – though she kept the motorcycle.

Is Croplife Canada trying to keep RoundUp under the carpet?

Dr. Thierry Vrain and self had a few presentations, talks and question and answers in Manitoba last month, including one in the town of Steinbach. The talk from Dr. Vrain was about Glyphosate and how dangerous it can be for our soil, water, food and in our body.

I spoke about Canada not having a single lab in Canada were we can test our body fluids and food for presence of Glyphosate, as well as how citizen’s grassroots actions, and political engagement at the Municipal level, can push back at this relentless encroachment of corporations into our rights to good health, environment and food.

Meanwhile, the president of Croplife Canada, wrote a letter to the editor of the Southeastern Manitoba newspaper – The Carilloon, which was posted by the paper. The letter basically criticizes Dr. Vrain, but misses his presentation completely.

The content of his letter is as attached.

I found this to be a misrepresentation of facts, considering the fact that Dr. Thierry Vrain focusses on Glyphosate, the weed killing chemical in Monsanto’s RoundUp herbicide, rather than Gene transfer technology in GMO. Mr. Menzies appears to be either unaware of Dr. Vrain’s presentation or may be willfully attempting to sidetrack the main issue of Dr. Vrain’s talks – which is damages to health and environment brought on by Glyphosate, the molecule in RoundUp herbicide suspected to be robbing the mineral nutrients from soil and food as well as killing our micro-biome, the colony of our gut bacteria that are so vital to our well being.

Since Mr. Menzies appears to be so generous in offering his views about it, albeit sidestepping the herbicide, I thought it might be proper to bring the focus back where it was supposed to be – on Glyphosate the weed killer in our food.

Dr. Thierry Vrain

Dr. Vrain has sent a letter to the publisher. I shall copy that here for the people around the world, as Dr. Vrain’s response does throw more light on the issue. Here is what he said :

Dear Sir,

Mr Ted Menzies, President of Crop Life Canada, has not been made aware of the Food Safety and Sustainable Agriculture Forum that took place last month in Beijing.    Over 300 scientists from China, the USA, the UK, Russia, France, Denmark, Germany, Australia, Argentina, Brazil and Peru, met to review and discuss scientific studies of engineered crops and food.  These were not anti GMO activists and conspiracy theorists with an agenda, they were biologists and biotechnologists, and medical doctors and veterinarians,  and there were also farmers, and social and food safety activists,  and representatives of NGOs.   The broad consensus was that the RoundUp Ready technology that was invented to boost the sales of the herbicide RoundUp is not sustainable because of the chronic toxicity of the herbicide.  The technology has been very successful and revolutionized agriculture since 1996, particularly in North America and a few countries of South America, but it is deeply flawed.  This chemical is now spread (and sprayed) all over the food supply in North America and a few other countries, it has become as common as a food additive.  It is also in the air, the rain, the water and of course it bio-accumulates in our body organs.  There is a large body of science showing severe chronic toxicity in animals and pointing the finger at many of the degenerative and inflammatory diseases that we have seen become epidemic since RoundUp has been sprayed on RoundUp Ready crops.  Many countries including political allies of the USA (64 at the last count) have now legislated some form of regulation of engineered crops and foods, or banned them altogether.

The fact that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and Health Canada personnel seem to have caved in to political pressure or lobbying to keep ignoring the latest science is not reassuring at all.   Studies from the US Department of Agriculture show that engineered grains are depleted of metal micronutrients.  Just like they would if they contained residues of a powerful and broad spectrum chelating agent that binds the missing minerals.   Studies from many countries show that glyphosate is also antibiotic (at one part per million, as cited on the 2010 US patent).  Does this mean that people are fed low level antibiotics like industrial chickens and cattle?  Business as usual is not acceptable anymore, this was the strong message from the Forum that took place in Beijing last month. 

Cui bono ?  Mr Ted Menzies finds it disconcerting that I am not getting paid and still consider it my civic duty to protect the health and safety of Canadians and raise the alarm.  Who is this technology good for if it depletes the food of essential mineral nutrients and threatens our health?  

 Dr. Thierry Vrain


And then here is what I wrote to the editor of the same paper, today, August 5th 2015:

Dated: August 5, 2014

Dear sir,

As a concerned citizen, I write to you drawing attention to apparent misinformation posted by Mr. Ted Menzies, President of Croplife, in his letter as published in your paper recently.

Dr. Thierry Vrain speaks primarily about Glyphosate, the active ingredient contained in Monsanto’s RoundUp herbicide, and not GMO or gene transfer technology. Mr. Menzies sidesteps the main presentation about the effects of RoundUp herbicide in our food and environment, and attempts to falsely drag Dr. Vrain into a debate on if GMO is good or bad. Is that not falsification of facts?

I would encourage Mr. Menzies to provide peer reviewed science papers that actually prove that presence pesticides in general, or Glyphosate in particular in our food, is good for our health.

I would further like Mr. Menzies to either provide proof that Glyphosate is not an antibiotic although it is patented by Monsanto to be such, or that glyphosate does not damage the micro-biome in our gut in spite of being an anti-biotic.

I would be delighted if Mr. Menzies can further provide data where Canadian citizens can have their blood, urine, and food tested for presence of Glyphosate, to check if levels of this poison has crossed minimum safety limits imposed by USA, by Europe, and other countries. I would also encourage Mr. Menzies to furnish data on what safety limits the Canadian Government might have set on presence of Glyphosate in our food, and if Croplife, or Health Canada or anybody has conducted thorough testing of Canadian food for presence of Glyphosate and if so, where those results are available.

Lastly, I would recommend that Mr. Menzies to actually attend one of Dr. Vrains talks and tries to absorb the content of his presentation, and then write his views on it.

Tony Mitra
(address, phone # & email)


Eric Rempel with Tony Mitra

I was happy to note that Dr. Vrain’s letter was published by the paper, along with another letter from Mr. Eric Rempel, who I had the pleasure of meeting in Manitoba, and who is perhaps planning to stand for election in the local Municipal Council, and do in his neighbourhood what Harold Steves did for Richmond. Below is the copy of his letter to the editor.


I wrote a follow up note to the editor, not necessarily wanting them to publish my comments, but rather, advising them of this blog and its readership, and inviting the editor or other staff to consider posting their own view on this blog, about mainstream media, social media, citizen journalism and alternative media in this new age of internet that has essentially placed the printed newspapers in an almost existential crisis. Add to it the fact that many of the large news-media conglomerates are, by definition, under control of a shrinking body of media corporations that exert a disproportionate amount of influence on what is published and what is not. In the process, free press as we understood it two generations ago are fast becoming a thing of the past.

So here is what I wrote to the editor.

To: The Editor, Mr. Grant Burr
The Carillon,

377 Main Street
Steinbach, Manitoba R5G 1A5
Phone: 204-326-3421 

Dear Mr. Burr,

cc: Dr. Thierry Vrain, Eric Rempel

Subject: Glyphosate, GMO, and the letter to editor by Mr. Ted Menzies, president of Crop Life, Canada.

This is a follow up of my previous email to you dated 5th of August, 2014 on the subject.

I am a citizen journalist, writer, blogger (www.tonu.org), podcaster, videographer and food security activist, and have covered this issue on my blog at http://www.tonu.org/2014/08/05/invisible-glyphosate/. I accompanied Dr. Thierry Vrain on the cross Canada GMO talk tour, speaking after Dr. Vrain, on citizen action issue on Glyphosate Testing, and on grassroots level political activism to counter an unholy alliance between foreign biotech corporations and our political system in Canada.

The blog itself is reasonably popular on a global scale, getting between 1,500 to 2,000 hits a day, mainly from North America, but also from clusters in Western Europe, Asia and elsewhere, and is being picked up even in remote and unlikely locations such as Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Pago Pago island, Turkey, Peru, Hawaii and Guyana . The most recent statistics (past 48 hours) from the server in a visual map is included below for your record.

I was happy to note that you have included at least two of the letters sent to you presenting an opposing view to Mr. Ten Menzies’ note, since Mr. Menzies clearly has a conflict of interest, since he is the president of Crop Life, and since Crop Life benefits from sale of both GM crop seed as well as RoundUp herbicide.

From Dr. Vrain’s point of view, largely supported by an increasing number of citizens, scientists, organic farmers, naturopaths and food security activists, it is the pesticide in general and Glyphosate in particular, that is the 900 pound gorilla at our dinner table and more clearly identifiable as the toxic element in our environment and food.

It is perhaps for this reason, that the industry would prefer to sidestep any debate on Glyphosate (the poison in RoundUp herbicide, the most used poison in the world today) in our food and in our body, and try to shackle the debate on the narrow topic of GMO and gene transfer.

I send this note to you for your information, not necessarily requesting you to post this comment in your paper, but rather, to encourage you or your staff to read up on the blog, and perhaps offer your own comments, which I shall be happy to append at the bottom of the blog, should I receive any.

I do not have Mr. Ted Menzies’ email, but in case you do, you are welcome to pass him this note, in case he should wish to offer any counter argument.

This letter, like most things we citizen journalists often write, will be for public consumption, and therefore may be included at the bottom of the same blog, and also freely circulated through internet, etc.

I am copying this note to Dr. Thierry Vrain and Mr. Eric Rempel, whose letter you were gracious enough to print.

This is for your information. Congratulating you for maintaining a balanced view on the topic, and airing both sides of the argument.

Wishing you and your paper a prosperous future.

Tony Mitra
(Contacts)

PS – I have a habit of not proof reading my letters, so please excuse any typo.


I would also invite the editor of the newspaper, The Carillon, to offer his comments if he so wishes, on this blog. I do not have the contact details of Mr. Ted Menzies, president of Crop Life Canada. In case any of the readers has his contacts, you are welcome to invite Mr. Menzies for his comments as well.

In case anyone is interested to write a letter to the newspaper, The Carillon, which presumably covers South-eastern Manitoba, their contacts as displayed on their web site is:
Editor : Mr. Grant Burr
The Carillon, 377 Main Street, Steinbach, Manitoba R5G 1A5Phone: 204-326-3421Fax: 204-326-4860

To better present what Dr. Thierry Vrain talks about, we should shortly have a copy of his presentation video on the internet for the general public to see.

Tony Mitra at University of Regina

We had an event at the auditorium attached to the education centre of the University of Regina.

I spoke for about 21 minutes. Here is a recording of my talk there. Points covered:

  • Cartagena Protocol on preservation of biological diversity, how 160 odd countries have signed and ratified it but Canada did not. How India did ratify it and using it to protect its flora and fauna from theft and biopiracy by corporations that wish to steal the genome of indigenous varieties to create patented life forms as GMO.
  • Comment from Scientist Don Huber, on Glyphosate
  • Comment from Scientist Stephanie Seneff on Glyphosate and autism.
  • Glyphosate Testing – how Canada does not have a lab to test glyphosate poisoning of humans and food.
  • Our effort to get an US lab to offer low cost testing for Canadians on a social cause.
  • How grassroots groups cropped up in Canadian towns to organize batch processing of human body fluid samples as well as food.
  • How Americans and even scientists came forward to use this price breakthrough.
  • Pressure was exerted to stop this service before it could get off the ground. The US lab regrettably stopped offering this service without testing a single sample.
  • How we are looking to create a citizen’s lab in USA and Canada that does not depend on Govt or industry and therefore cannot to shut down.
  • Political corruption in Canada.
  • Municipal Governments, the lowest level of elected Government, is more approachable by the people, than higher levels at provincial or federal government.
  • How Harold Steve of Richmond, BC, got his town to pass resolution to be GMO free.
  • How two dozen other towns in BC follows suit. How the union of BC municipalities passed a province wide resolution to be GMO free.
  • How other towns and provinces are trying to follow suit outside of BC.
  • How people of Regina can also start making a change from the bottom up.
  • How some councillors get elected with only five votes. This is because Canadians do not vote and do not get engaged at the Municipal level, which is something we aught to, so our rights are not taken away by unscrupulous politicians that work for the interest of corporations rather than the people they represent.

I shall be happy to hear your views on it.
Tony Mitra

Glyphosate Testing – Packaging for shipment

Creative Diagnostics of New York, has abruptly terminated the low cost testing service for Glyphosate in human body fluids and food.

This has resulted in disappointment on one side, and determination on the other, to continue search for a suitable lab that will provide low cost service for the people, at a pounce point that is within reach of average Canadians and Americans. This effort, including possibility of setting up a few “citizen’s labs” are on the drawing board. It is not certain when such labs may be available for the masses. We hope it will be sooner rather than later.

Meanwhile, here is an option still available to the people – albeit for a hundred USD per test, which might or might not include shipping charges.

Microbe Inotech Laboratories11754 Westline Industrial Drive, St. Louis, MO 63146, USA, (800) 688-9144
Breast milk (10+ samples) – $115/sample, minimum of 2mL
Water/urine (10+ samples) – $100/sample, minimum of 10mL
If you are able to obtain your own sampling containers (polypropylene bottles/vials), then there will be no additional charge. All samples should be shipped in suitable packaging to prevent the samples from being crushed in transit. In addition, the samples should be ‘cold-packed’ and/or frozen and shipping be expedited (1-2 day) if possible. Please let me know if you have any other questions. We look forward to working with you. Thanks.
 
Ben Winkler 
Research Laboratory Manager 
Microbe Inotech Laboratories, Inc. 
(314) 645-2177 x104 

Although the quotation of a hundred dollars should be valid for water and urine for a minimum order of 10 samples, he is willing to forego that for now, since Canadians need to test the waters first, especially if there is any glitch in the shipping of Human Specimens for lab test across the border, with the US Customs.

I have decided to try this out by sending my own urine etc for testing, via Fedex, and see what happens. There are some regulations to be followed, in order to ensure the shipment reaches the lab without getting stuck at customs. Correct packaging and labelling seems to be the key.

This blog post is made specifically to help with the people, in arranging their own shipment of specimens, to Microbe Inotech or any other lab in the US or other countries.

I have borrowed from the Fedex document called “Packaging Guideline for Clinical Samples

It says:

Requirements for Clinical Samples

This guide outlines the requirements for shipping with FedEx Express. In addition, all shipments must comply with all applicable local, state and federal laws governing packing, marking and labeling. Blood, urine, fluids, and other specimens containing or suspected of containing infectious substances must be shipped according to applicable government, International Air Transport Association (IATA) and International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) regulations.

For the purposes of this guide, clinical samples are generally defined as non-infectious human or animal materials including, but not limited to, excreta, secreta, tissue and tissue fluids, blood and FDA-approved pharmaceuticals that are blood products.

General Packaging Requirements

For liquid clinical samples, you must include four layers of packaging:

  1. Primary watertight inner receptacle. Use watertight containers for liquid specimens with:
    1. positive closure such as a screw-on, snap-on or push-on lid, taped for an additional seal. If you place multiple fragile primary receptacles in
    2. single secondary receptacle, they must be individually wrapped or separated to prevent contact between them.
  2. Absorbent material. Place absorbent material between the primary and secondary receptacles, using enough material to absorb the entire contents of all primary receptacles. Acceptable absorbent materials include cellulose wadding, cotton balls, super-absorbent packets and paper towels.
  3. Secondary watertight inner receptacle. Use a watertight sealed plastic bag, plastic canister or screw-cap can.
  4. Sturdy outer packaging. Use rigid outer packaging constructed of corrugated fiberboard, wood, metal or plastic, appropriately sized for the contents. Chipboard or paperboard boxes are unacceptable outer packaging.

Black plastic box as sturdy outer packaging

Tube Rack – if many sample tubes are to be shipped together

Sample 10 mL tubes

Labels that need to go on the box, for human or cow body fluids

Additional Packaging Requirements for Non-Infectious Clinical Samples

To ensure safe delivery of your clinical sample shipments, we provide these additional guidelines.

Liquid Clinical Sample Marking Requirements

Include a marking on the package that properly identifies the shipment as “Exempt Human Specimen” or “Exempt Animal Specimen” as appropriate to comply with current IATA and ICAO regulations. If you prefer, package markings may be in the form of a label.

Dried Samples

While non-infectious samples of dried blood, tissue, saliva and hair are not dangerous goods and are not required to meet dangerous goods regulations, they do require special packaging that meets FedEx Express guidelines. Enclose dried-blood samples on absorbent pads or cards in water- tight plastic bags and ship them inside a Tyvek® or flexible plastic envelope, padded envelope, paperboard envelope or paper mailer measuring 6″ x 8″ or larger. Cushion samples on glass or plastic slides and ship them inside a sturdy outer container.

Clinical Specimen Pack front

Fedex Clinical Pack, back

Redesigned FedEx® Clinical Pak

For your convenience, we offer the FedEx Clinical Pak as an overwrap for exempt clinical-sample shipments. We recommend the FedEx Clinical Pak for use when the sturdy outer packaging of your properly packaged shipment is smaller than 7″ x 4″ x 2″ (minimum acceptable size).

To help ensure the timely delivery of your shipment and the safety of shipments exposed to yours, the FedEx Clinical Pak has been redesigned. With this redesigned overwrap, your FedEx Clinical Pak shipments stand apart from other shipments. Replace any old packaging you may have with this redesigned packaging. Since the previous FedEx Clinical Paks were made of plastics with a resin identification code of “7,” you should contact your local municipality to determine the best way to recycle any unused packaging.

The FedEx Clinical Pak can only be used to ship clinical samples. If you need an overwrap for shipments containing Biological Substance, Category B (UN 3373) materials, use the FedEx® UN 3373 Pak and package your shipments

Packaging Restrictions

  • Foam boxes, plastic bags & paper envelopes are unacceptable outer containers.
  • The FedEx® Envelope, FedEx® Tube, FedEx® Pak, FedEx® Padded Pak, FedEx UN 3373 Pak and FedEx boxes, including FedEx brown packaging offered at FedEx shipping locations, are not acceptable as outer containers for clinical samples.
  • The FedEx Clinical Pak cannot be used to ship Biological Substance, Category B (UN 3373) shipments.
  • The FedEx Clinical Pak should not be used to ship dried samples unless the dried samples are packaged following the requirements for liquid samples.
  • Shipments marked or labeled 6.2(infectious materials) and shipments containing dry ice cannot be shipped in a FedEx Clinical Pak.
  • If you have questions about whether your shipments require a biohazard label, consult the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for the applicable regulations.

NOTE: Never place liquid clinical samples in a FedEx Express® Drop Box. Select FedEx Office and FedEx World Service Center® locations accept FedEx Clinical Pak shipments that are not classified as Biological Substance, Category B (UN 3373). Call 1.800.GoFedEx 1.800.463.3339 to be directed to a FedEx location equipped to handle these shipments.

FedEx Package Evaluation Services

We offer free package evaluation services, and we encourage you to submit a sample of your clinical sample packaging for evaluation.

Clinical Packaging Evaluation Request Guidelines

Follow these steps for submitting your packaging for evaluation. An active FedEx account number is required. You and your FedEx account executive should expect evaluation results via e-mail in approximately 5 to 7 business days from FedEx Packaging Services’ receipt of your packaging.

  1. Obtain a FedEx Packaging Test Application, or contact FedEx Packaging Services at packagingservices@fedex.com or 1.800.633.7019.
  2. Complete and sign your application, referencing the name of your FedEx account executive on the form.
  3. Prepare a sample package including all the components in the exact configuration you intend to ship. Do not include any specimen(s). Indicate “Non-Hazardous Content” on the samples and on the sample outer box.
  4. Place your completed application, any pertinent product documentation and your sample clinical package labeled “Evaluate This Package” along with any necessary cushioning material in a sturdy outer container marked “Overpacked/Clinical Sample Inside.”
  5. Send your shipment to the address indicated on the FedEx Packaging Test Application.

Contacts and Resources

How to Pack guidelines at fedex.com/packaging.

1.800.GoFedEx 1.800.463.3339; press “81” or say “dangerous goods.”

NOTICE:

FedEx Express will refuse to accept packages that do not meet FedEx Express, government, or IATA and ICAO requirements. This brochure is in no way intended to replace requirements mandated by 49CFR and IATA. This is for informational purposes only.

Cost of shipment

The best we can guess, priority Export cost to St. Louis, Missouri for a package weighing up to 1 Lb is between $65.00 to $66.00, according to above Export Rates, page 35 dated 1st Jan 2014. If this is true, it raises the cost of shipment substantially, and it may be worthwhile to combine a few samples together, to bring average cost down.

We are planning to use bulk packaging to test urine from homeless and poor people from one location in one shot, perhaps from Vancouver or lower mainlands area. Those who are in contact with food bank services or social workers connected with the homeless and disadvantaged people, and wish to assist in this effort, please contact me.

We shall update the information as we get to know more, including setting up or locating more labs that will test Glyphosate using economical means for the public. Please stay tuned or contact me at tony.mitra@gmail.com for info.

To the leader of Green Party of Canada, Elisabeth May, about a sense of betrayal

There is apparently a motion, or a resolution, to be placed on the table for voting by the Green Party members next week. The motion is about changing the party’s policy in GMO. So far it had been against adoption of GM technology with its patented seeds, monoculture and pesticide dependent model in Canadian agriculture. But now, they are contemplating a reversal of policy and support of GM Crop and pesticides for Canadians.

This is considered so outrageous a development by many sustainable living and ecologically conscious people, and by a vast majority of the population that do not like GMO and pesticide, that it shocked the traditional Green supporters.

So, following the original wording of the proposed motion, I wrote the leader of the Green Party, Ms Elizabeth May, the following letter. The original wording of the motion is taken from their site and copied below my letter.


From: Tony Mitra
Subject: Inviting you to take part in the nationwide testing of Glyphosate poisoning
Date: June 26, 2014 at 9:57:58 PM PDT
To: Elizabeth May

WHEREAS  the Government of Canada has never conducted nor ordered any independent study on long term effects of Genetically Engineered crop and its associated pesticides on the environment, on Canada’s biological diversity and on people;

WHEREAS  the Government of Canada has never even set up or encouraged any lab in the country to test for presence of Glyphosate (the main poison in Monsanto’s RoundUp week killer) in human body fluids or human food;

WHEREAS  the Government of Canada only accepts toxicological study of industrial toxins from the promoters of the product, which is a case of conflict of interest;

WHEREAS  the Government of Canada fires Health Canada scientists should they find bio-engineered products of foreign corporations to be lacking in sufficient evidence of being safe;

WHEREAS  Health Canada and Environment Canada keeps mentioning working with EPA of the US to assess safety of agricultural products such as RoundUp ready crop and their associated pesticides, where EPA itself does not engage in independent study of safety and bases its approval on reports submitted by the product maker;

WHEREAS  there is clear evidence of a revolving door policy between the industry and the Government in both USA and Canada, allowing unprecedented level of control and interference by a handful of corporations in driving national agriculture, forestry, environment and trade policies;

WHEREAS retired scientists from EPA have blown the whittle on how corrupt EPA is, ref “Poison Spring” by Dr. EG Vallianatos;

WHEREAS Canada signed the Cartagena protocol but never ratified it, and did not put in place international standards in preservation of our biological diversity from unintended harm from introduction of living modified organisms, while over 160 other countries did;

WHEREAS calling genetically engineered agricultural products, with associated pesticide driven model to be “green” and associated with the Green Party is considered by the people to be a joke and a betrayal;

WHEREAS there are enough evidence from independent scientists, such as Seralini, Goulson, Pusztai and many others, that GM corn and RoundUp can be very harmful for mammals, in studies conducted in Europe, and if Canada finds those studies to be doubtful, prudence and precautionary principle would demand that Canada conducts its own “independent” study on it instead of listening to the promoter of the product, and yet Canada did not conduct any truly independent safety study on GM products and pesticides;

WHEREAS it is an open secret that education is no more public funded and science is now shackled to funding from Industry, which does not like its product to be found wanting, as a result of which science is losing its objectivity and neutrality and has become biased, vindictive to differing views, and pugnacious and feared;

WHEREAS  the Government of Canada ignores all the independent safety warnings, such as extremely uncanny and strong correlation between usage of Glyphosate and rise of all kinds of chronic disease and their pathway links – through papers of Nancy Swanson, Anthony Samsel and Stephanie Seneff;

WHEREAS overwhelming majority of the people in Canada as well as in USA do not like pesticides and GMO and will avoid it if labelled and reasonable alternatives are available:

WHEREAS promotion of this unproven and potentially dangerous GM agriculture model is likely to push Canada into a future where all the food Canadians eat will be owned by a foreign corporation and small organic farmers have to go extinct or convert to grow only GMO, and where they have no more any right to save their own seeds;

WHEREAS this model of corporate control may be dangerous for Canada’s food security and very foundation of her political and economic independence;

WHEREAS supporting GM technology flies in the face of the very concept of being “Green”;

WHEREAS a growing number of Canadians stopped believing the Government on GMO and pesticides and are engaged in direct  self driven and funded initiative to conduct a nationwide test of Glyphosate in people, their environment and food;

WHEREAS our counterparts in the US are also engaged in a coast to coast testing of Glyphosate of their body fluids and food;

THEREFORE, we request, that you too join this grassroots movement, paying for your own urine sample for measuring Glyphosate content if any, costing around $32 only for batch processing in a lab in the US, and also paying for another homeless or low income person that does not have the luxury of eating carefully selected organic food, and cannot afford even $32, to get his/her urine tested. Please write email to glyphosate.testing@gmail.com to join and partake in the test and encourage your other party members to do the same. Also, while you and your party is always begging the people for donations, here is a counter suggestion of donating back some of that public fund towards a crowd sourcing scheme to allow homeless and poor people to pay for their own Glyphosate test at : https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/nationwide-glyphosate-testing.

Thanking you
Tony Mitra
(Address and tel #)

And now, the original wording of the motion the full text here :

Comments: 

This policy motion will force a rewrite of G06-p14, G06‐p34, G06‐p53, 1998 Environment, 1996 and 1998 Agriculture policies, which declare support for a complete ban on the Canadian use of genetic engineering in agriculture and pesticides, and oppose experimentation and research by Agriculture Canada.

Preamble: 

WHEREAS national science academies of the U.S., Britain, Germany, France, China, India, Brazil, and Mexico, Third World Academy, World Health Organization, International Council for Science, European Academies Science Advisory Council, Health Canada, U.S. National Research Council, American Medical Association, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Society of Toxicology, Washington State Academy of Sciences, American Society for Cell Biology, American Society of Plant Biologists, Scientific American magazine, Science magazine, European Commission’s review of 130 studies across 25 years from 500 independent research groups, an Italian review of 1783 studies, and 600 peer-reviewed papers have concluded that genetically engineered foods are safely regulated;

WHEREAS bioengineered organisms from anthocyanin-rich purple tomatoes to vitamin A-rich golden rice have no universal biochemical traits distinct from products developed through thousands of years of traditional breeding;

WHEREAS peer-reviewed literature over a 20-year timeframe found bioengineered Bt contributing to biodiversity through decreased insecticide usage in northern China (Nature, 2012), with similar findings from a Landes Bioscience review of 155 papers (Carpenter, 2011), and a Nature Biotechnology review of 49 peer-reviewed journals surveying farmers of 12 countries, finding the greatest bioengineering benefits for developing world farmers (Carpenter, 2010);

WHEREAS dissenting papers identifying health harms in animals have methodological errors such as missing hypotheses, testing of specific products like NK603 instead of the engineering process, or retraction like with the Food and Chemical Toxicology journal to the 2012 Seralini study;

Operative: 

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Green Party of Canada will support Health Canada’s existing regulatory regime for genetically engineered foods and will permit bioengineering experimentation by Agriculture Canada.

Letter to Minister of Health, Canada

Letter to the Minister of Health – Govt of Canada

The Honourable Rona Ambrose, P.C., M.P.Health CanadaBrooke Claxton Building, Tunney’s PasturePostal Locator: 0906COttawa, Ontario K1A 0K9
cc: Libby Davies, MPNew Democrat Health Critic542-N Centre BlockHouse of CommonsOttawa, ON   K1A 0A6 Libby Davies, MPNew Democrat Health Critic2412 Main StreetVancouver, BC V5T 3E2
cc: Hedy Fry, MPLiberal Health CriticRoom Number 800 Justice BuildingHouse of CommonsOttawa, ON, K1A 0A6 cc: Hedy Fry, MPLiberal Health CriticDenman Place Mall, 106 – 1030 Denman StVancouver, BC, V6G 2M6
cc: Alex Atamanenko, MP337 Columbia Ave,Castlegar BC V1N 1G6

Friday, June 20, 2014

Dear Honourable Minister Ambrose

Subject: Testing body fluids including milk for presence of Glyphosate, for Canadians

We are a group of concerned citizens in a grassroots organization, Canadians for Glyphosate Testing, that wish to know the extent to which this synthetic killer chemical named Glyphosate has entered our living space, our food and our body.

Glyphosate is the active poison in Monsanto’s RoundUp weed killer and in many other brands today, and is the highest selling poisonous chemical in the planet. It is also suspected to be linked with rapid rise of many serious illnesses from autism and cancer to celiac, crown’s, infertility and others, and with possible species extinctions in the past 20 years.

People are basically fed up with inaction from our medical and political system with regard to finding out to what extent people may have been poisoned by Glyphosate. it is their right to know, so they decided to engage directly and get the tests done with their own money, bypassing the entire Government health system.

In this endeavour, we were shocked to learn that there is no lab in Canada that can even test Glyphosate in body fluids. This is being considered as evidence that the Canadian Government never considered accumulation of this weed killer in humans as a safety concern, despite doubts raised on the subject globally both by independent scientists and public. Canada apparently has never ordered any long term independent study, outside of control of the industry or politicians, to test toxicity effects on mammals due exposure to Glyphosate or its accumulation in body. Canada does not even have a lab to check presence of Glyphosate in animals and people. Labs here can apparently test for Glyphosate only in water and soil, and nothing else, that too at a relatively steep cost of $250 to 300 per test – quite out of range for ordinary Canadians.

We have thankfully found labs in the US that will use ELISA screening (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) method to test for Glyphosate in all kinds of matrices such as water, urine, soil, milk, and various kinds of food at a more reasonable cost of $100 to 150.

Further, we found that some labs may consider performing these tests in large batches, if there is public interest, thus bringing the price substantially down, within reach of average people. Thus, the people in Canada are now engaging in a nationwide Glyphosate testing initiative. Groups are forming in all regions that will collect samples and order testing in batches, collecting funds to do so. Poor & homeless people are likely more exposed to the toxin since they cannot afford to be selective on what they eat. They are also least likely to be able to afford testing their urine. So we initiated a crowd funding scheme to support them.

Testing of milk, both human breast milk from nursing mothers and cow milk has posed a problem. Although individual labs can do these tests in USA for over $100, we could not find any lab initially that could do batch processing of milk at a lower cost.

Testing milk is important. Monsanto claims that Glyphosate does not pose a problem even if ingested by mammals, because the body flushes it out through urine and feces. Based on that assumption, the limit to which the chemical can be present in the environment has been set higher. Therefore, finding it in breast milk, or even cow milk, would prove that mammals cannot flush it all out and it can accumulate, and that the limits allowed in the Environment should be lowered drastically. Glyphosate has been discovered in breast milk from nursing mothers in the US recently.

Luckily, we have obtained details of how a lab can separate the clear liquid in milk from the white fatty matter so that this clear liquid can then be tested accurately for Glyphosate, using the ELISA kit. Technical documents on this have been passed to a few inquisitive US and Canadian labs. We hope that some day, Canadian labs would be able to test human breast milk, cow milk and a whole range of other food products economically, for Canadian citizens, even if the Government or the healthcare industry will not engage in it.

The purpose of this writing is two fold. This is not to plead with the Government to consider funding this Citizen’s test. People believe that the ministry of health might only look for excuses why this test should not be done. The people have therefore decided to bypass the Government and conduct their own tests, and find out how much they have been poisoned and from what sources.

The reason we write this are to ask:

  1. If the Government might consider assisting and encouraging a few labs in Canada to expand their services to include low cost volume processing of human body fluids as well as food etc for presence of Glyphosate, so that we do not have to send money overseas and support the US lab science industry. We should be supporting our own.
  2. Why does the Government bother setting safe limits of Glyphosate in water, if it does not care if the same Glyphosate accumulates humans and animals?

Please also note, this grassroots group is transparent and open source. This letter may be circulated among members, volunteers, local organizers and the general public, through emails, social media or on the web, and may get into my own blog at – www.tonu.org.

Thanking you

On behalf of Canadians for Glyphosate Testing

Tony Mitra
Blog: http://www.tonu.org/
Web: http://gmofreenetwork.com/

Continent Wide Glyphosate Testing – calling local organizers

Dear all,

We regretfully announce that the below offer has been withdrawn by Creative Diagnostics, USA, before the first batch of samples could even be shipped. This has caused disappointment among some, but has also resulted in renewed effort to find a lab that will serve the people at a price point that is affordable for the people. More folks are now working to make this happen. We shall keep you all appraised. Meanwhile, folks still have the option of getting the same tests done through Microbe Inotech Laboratories, the details of which is covered here. July 7th, 2014.


We finally have a solution and a quotation – mass scale Glyphosate testing at affordable cost – all in USD.

A major breakthrough has been achieved in negotiation and technical preparation for processing of milk – cow milk and human breast milk – using the same ELISA kit. And now, even Soy Milk, which is strictly speaking a vegetable product – can also be tested.

This is considered important since accumulation of Glyphosate in milk would bolster the proof that the nasty molecule jumps our internal safeguards and does not fully get flushed out through urine and feces. Nursing mothers should seriously consider getting their breast milk checked, and at this price, it is almost a no brainer for those that are employed and not financially stressed. For those that do not have nursing women at home, testing for store bought milk is a good way to check if and how we might be getting our dose of poison. It is a well known fact that factory farming of dairy cows with GM corn and soy feed are usually laced with Glyphosate and that this is expected to be in the animals milk. Further, we have been advised by scientists that once it is in the cow, it will be in the milk and it cannot be filtered out through pasteurization or other follow up processes. This means, milk from those cows, sold in stores, or processed to produce butter, cheese, or added to bread or cake, are all expected to contain Glyphosate.

Those of you that are still wondering what Glyphosate is – it is the molecule that is the prime killer in Monsanto’s RoundUp herbicide, and suspected by many to be linked with a series of chronic and serious illnesses as well as possible species deaths. But unfortunately for us, the Government of Canada, or the US Govt has apparently not conducted any test of its own, or ordered any independent tests free from political or the industry control, to see if this weed killer is causing any harm to the living eco-system or to human beings.

Above is the basic breakdown, for Canada. All prices are in USD and the cost is same for USA except the shipping cost, which will be $20 or so less for USA, far as I remember.

The basic explanation is in the table itself, but what it means is that:

We need local groups in each region in Canada, to organize and muster people that are willing to pay for at least 40 samples. The basic cost will be 28.50 per test or water, urine and blood. It will be 29.50 for cooking oil such as canola. And it will be 31.50 for soil, bread and corn.

For liquids, it needs to be in 2 mL botles. For solids: 5-10g/tube.

In case we stick with line item 3, i.e. water, urine and blood, the total cost should be USD 1140. The box we receive will have the white insulated container and also a cage and 40 tubes in it along with a cold pack. The cold pack needs to be put in a fridge, to cool it down and then, when samples are drawn and in the box, the cold pack needs to be inserted before it is shipped out.

We have Jenny White, Rob and Tina in Ontario that will prepare the first batches from Toronto region. I expect to have more batches from Edmonton and places in Alberta and I am hoping Craig can muster up a batch from Montreal.

Wally Martine and friends in the Tri-City region are getting together to muster local groups there. We also have Stephanie from Vancouver island that will work with others to be the first to order this service for the islanders.

We are hoping that the moms from Squamish will also get organized on this. Wishing them the best of luck. We have not yet had direct message from the Maritime Provinces. It is our hope that they too will join the nationwide effort sooner rather than later.

Meanwhile, Moms Across America group has taken this up for a coast to coast testing drive. Also, Catherine from Minnesota is a volunteer that works closely with us and might round up more local groups from her region. I hope more people come forward to join the tests.

Eventually we shall have a need for some web-database guy to help prepare the database that will put up the results, without personal names and ID, so the real picture emerges on how much poisoning North Americans are subjected to – thanks to Glyphosate.

More on this later. Those that are wondering what the 96T ELISA kit is all about, the picture above is only an abbreviation of the first two steps. It involves addition of standard samples, antibody solution and enzyme conjugate before washing the plate and adding of substrate/colour solutions, stopping solution and finally a calibration, or measurement, of the resultant colour. That, in a single sentence is what 96T ELISA test – which stands for Enzyme-linked Immunosorbet Assay – is all about.

Those that wish to get organized – and need flyers, can download this one.

This offer is for batches of 40 only. So anybody that is willing to muster up 40 samples from each region and collect the funds for this, and is ready to place order – please send email to either me, or to Glyphosate Testing Canadian or US team or check with Zen Hunneycutt of Moms Across America.