Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Bill 113 - Final Hearing Recessed Com #393.166

Bill 113 for GMO prohibition on Hawaii island was recessed at 6:30pm and will continue in 2 weeks, on Tuesday, November 19th, at 9 am in Kona & all satellite centers. Public testimony will continue for those who signed up and did not have time today. This is a continuation, so those who already spoke will not be able to testify again.

COM #393.166 was distributed to councilmembers upon, Chair J Yoshimoto's arrival at 5:16pm, and can be viewed online:

The proposed amendments where not on today's agenda, and the public did not have the opportunity to review the communication prior to today's session. When the Council begins their discussion, councilmember Yoshimoto will have an opportunity to introduce his amendment to the council. If the council accepts his amendment the public will have another opportunity to testify (on draft 4) -- prolonging the hearing.

We will provide a more in-depth summary shortly.
Mahalo for standing with us.

Website: http://www.gmofreehawaiiisland.org
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/GMOFreeHawaiiIsland
Email: gmofreehawaiiisland@gmail.com

Hawai`i County Council Contact Information:
County Council Contact Information:

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Everyday GMO activism

Moving forward after months of hard work on GMO prohibition Bills 79 and 113, everyday work on the GMO issue in our community is needed more than ever.  Bill 113 will prevent open air cultivation of new crops, but leaves us with two GMO crops, papaya and corn. 

GMO papaya has contaminated the environment on all the islands of Hawaii, and had to be exempted because it is impossible to clean up.  GMO herbicide resistant corn being grown in the towns of Pepeekeo, Honomu and Ookala on the Hamakua coast by Big Island Dairy, although restricted by Bill 113 to expand its current acreage (350+), will act as a deterrent to those wanting to grow corn for the local produce market, and if market corn is grown in that region, how will the public know if it is safe to eat or has been contaminated by the GMO crop.

Consumer campaigns can raise a powerful tide to wash away those things we do not want, clearing the way for what we do want instead.  Each person concerned about the safety of the food available in our markets can take action every day to work for change.  We are a small community, and if the companies that provide us our food supplies are informed about what we want, they will take what we say into consideration.

Everyday GMO activism takes many forms.

Speak to your market manager if you don't find a non-GMO alternative food product and ask them to bring it in, or you will have to do all of your shopping at the natural food store.

Speak to the produce manager and ask if the papayas are GMO, and if so, why aren't they labeling it.  Point out that Hawaii County has passed Bill 113, and there are many people who don't want to eat GMO food.  Ask them to bring in non-GMO papaya and to label it as such.

Tell the market manager that our community has passed a GMO prohibition law and there are many consumers here that will not buy GMO food products.  Ask that they begin a campaign of support for GMO labeling as a member of their trade group, the Grocery Manufacturers Association.

When ordering at a restaurant ask if the food is made from scratch or pre-packaged, ask if the salmon is farm-raised or wild caught, ask if the beef is local grass-fed beef.  Create the kind of place at which you would like to dine.

Get to know the growers at the farmers' markets and talk about GMO papaya and your concerns.
The Department of Agriculture offers $3 GUS gene tests to determine if their trees are GMO.

At the next talk story with your legislators, bring up the subject of GMO labeling.

Boycott the corporate brands that have bought up our best organic food companies and are using the millions earned from them to defeat labeling campaigns state by state.

Stacy's, Mother's and Near East
Kraft/Mondelez also owns Boca Burgers and Back to Nature
Safeway private label -  “O” Organics
Coca-Cola also owns Honest Tea, Odwalla
General Mills also owns  Muir Glen, Cascadian Farm, Larabar
Con-Agra owns Orville Redenbacher’s Organic, Hunt’s Organic, Lightlife, Alexia
Kellogg’s also owns Kashi, Bear Naked, Morningstar Farms, Gardenburger
Smucker’s also owns R.W. Knudsen, Santa Cruz Organic
Dean Foods also own Horizon, Silk, White Wave