Cassandra Anderson & Anthony Gucciardi
May 2, 2012
Did Monsanto actually plant genetically modified alfalfa before it was deregulated by the USDA? There is some shocking evidence that, until recently, was withheld from the public showing that Monsanto’s genetically altered alfalfa may have been set free in 2003 — a full two years or more before it was deregulated in 2005. In a letter, obtained by NaturalSociety with permission to post for public viewing, it becomes clear that the USDA may have turned a blind eye to the entire situation, allowing widespread GMO contamination of GMO-free crops.
Amazingly, the letter actually proves that the USDA was fully aware of the situation. In order to fully understand the intricate details of this event, it is first important to understand a few key factors regarding alfalfa and its connection to the entire food supply.
Alfalfa is a perennial plant that grows for more than 2 years and may not need to be replanted each year like annuals. Because it is a perennial plant, it is exceptionally vulnerable to contamination. Interestingly, the modified alfalfa — created by Monsanto in partner with a group known as Forage Genetics — was the first perennial plant to be deregulated for open planting by the USDA. But did Monsanto unleash the plant before this occurred?
This is very serious because it is only a matter of time before alfalfa across America could be corrupted with Monsanto’s patented genetically modified trait. Organic meat and dairy could be tainted when animals are fed the modified alfalfa as well, threatening the very integrity of the organic food supply. What’s more, the contamination of natural alfalfa could be nearly impossible — if not entirely impossible — to remedy, so it could actually fracture the genetic stability of the entire crop on a global scale.
Shocking Letter Reveals Monsanto’s Contamination Dates Back 2 Years Before Deregulation
A letter from Cal/West Seeds shows that evidence of contamination was withheld and the USDA turned a blind eye to proof of contamination in 2005 which shows it was planted at least two years before it was initially deregulated in 2005. As you can see for yourself, the official letter states:
We first discovered the unintended presence of the Roundup Ready gene in our conventional alfalfa seeds in 2005. It was identified in one of our foundation seed production lots grown in California. We tested the foundation seed lot priot to shipping it to a producer who intended to plant it for organic seed production.
In another telling segment, the author writes:
We detected the presence of the … Roundup Ready gene in both our foundation seed and certified seed prior to deregulation.
In order to protect the safety of the individual, some further contents cannot be divulged. Remember in the past, those who have stood up against Monsanto have received anonymous death threats — in one case, the threats were directed towards a mother and her children.
This video documents the timeline of events that led to the deregulation of Monsanto & Forage Genetics’ GMO alfalfa that is contaminating natural alfalfa. As the video explains, the lawyers representing the farmers against Monsanto failed to hold an evidentiary hearing so the injunction (ban) against planting GMO alfalfa was removed and the case was sent back to the lower district court. The lawyers pursued no further action on this case.
Contamination levels are still very low, but will undoubtedly increase over time with unexpected results (like superweeds), so stopping the further planting of GM plants like alfalfa is of high concern. Furthermore, it would set a precedent for banning other GMO perennial plants as well — a monumental move in the legislative fight against GMOs. This letter, compounded with the other evidence presented in this article, is paramount in displaying just how serious of an issue genetic contamination is. What’s more, the USDA appears to have known the entire time. It’s time to spread the word.
This article first appeared at NaturalSociety.