Friday, August 12, 2016

Farmer's Markets: You Need to Be Vigilant and Ask the Source

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Farmer's Markets: You Need to Be Vigilant and Ask the Source 

One of the great things about summer is buying fresh produce from the farmer's markets, supporting local farmers and buying what is thought to be higher quality produce without herbicides and pesticides.

I am sure each region is the same as one area stands out as being the best for produce. For the best fresh corn in the west, it is either Chilliwack in BC or Taber in Alberta. A line was forming for Taber corn and I stood in queue. Most were buying by the dozen, for who can eat just one cob, right? When it came my turn, the lady said,"Hello, will it be 6 or 12?" I said,"I would like 12, but before I buy them, I have a question to ask: are these grown without GMO seeds?" She looked me straight in the eyes and said, “All corn being sold here today at each of the vendors is from GMO crops. You will be very hard pressed to find any farmer growing without. Even if they say they aren’t, they are because of the government incentives."

And she was right. The Canadian government has produced a video in order to fight the anti-GMO movement.



Visiting farmer's markets are still a great joy, but now we must not take these natural ventures for granted. We need to begin asking questions about how the product was grown, or why else would you pay a premium for what you can buy cheaper in your local grocery store?

Now is the time to make a difference and to voice your concerns. If we don’t, the seduction of GMO-engineered crops will take a firm hold into everything we eat. If you don’t want GMO’s, don’t buy GMO’s; your purchasing power can make the difference. If you continue to buy GMO-produced foods knowing that they may be damaging your family's health, who’s fault will it be when the truth becomes publicly known?

I do feel for the farmers, and the enticement of government incentives. It means more money in their pockets, but what will it cost us concerning our health in the long run?

According to Canadian Biotechnology Action network (CBAN) you can ask the following questions (keeping in mind that the farmer may not be aware he/she has purchased GMO seeds):
  • Is your sweet corn genetically modified (also called genetically engineered)?
  • Is it “insect protected”? (This is how insect resistant GM corn is described in seed catalogues)
  • Is it herbicide tolerant? Did you use Roundup or Liberty on your corn? Is it called “LibertyLink” or “Roundup Ready”?
  • Did you sign a Technology Stewardship Agreement for this sweet corn?
  • What is the name of the variety of sweet corn you planted?
  • What company makes this sweet corn?
  • What company or seed dealer did you buy from?
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