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California judge orders illegal GMO sugar beet crops destroyed

Monday, December 06, 2010 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: GMO, sugar beets, health news

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(NaturalNews) For the first time in history, a judge has ruled that an illegally-planted, genetically-modified (GM) crop be destroyed. U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White of California ruled back in August that all future plantings of GM sugar beets cease until the U.S. Department of Agriculture conducts a valid environmental impact statement (EIS) proving the crop's safety. However, the USDA recently violated this ruling and permitted Monsanto to plant the crops anyway, spurring Judge White to order that they be destroyed.

Last month, Monsanto threw a temper tantrum over the ban, spewing propaganda about how the entire sugar beet industry would supposedly fold if GM sugar beets were not permitted to be grown. The biotechnology giant even went so far as to petition the court to allow the plantings so that the company could avoid the loss of the money it spent on researching and developing the technology (http://www.naturalnews.com/030377_Monsanto_G...).

Judge White held his ground and did the right thing, though, citing myriad evidence about the unknown contamination and other dangers posed by the "Frankencrop", mainly the "irreparable" consequences of cross-contamination. He also challenged the USDA's decision to flagrantly violate his ruling -- and the law -- by permitting Monsanto to plant GM sugar beet seedlings, ordering that they all be uprooted and destroyed.

George Kimbrell, an attorney for the Center for Food Safety, is quoted in a Raw Story piece as saying that Judge White's bold move is a "groundbreaking victory for farmers and the environment," and that "[t]his is the first time ever a federal court ordered an illegal biotech crop destroyed."

You can submit comments on the issue to the USDA at the following link:

http://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2010...

Be sure to remind the agency that telling Monsanto it could plant GM sugar beets in spite of the court ruling is a violation of the law. The agency will accept comments on the issue until December 6, 2010.

Sources for this story include:

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2010/12/judge-ord...

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