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Intro: "Russia has suspended imports of Monsanto corn, while France continues investigations into the possible dangers of GMOs to human health."

California voters will decide on mandatory labeling of GMOs in November. (photo: California Right to Know)
California voters will decide on mandatory labeling of GMOs in November. (photo: California Right to Know)

Russia Suspends Import of Monsanto Corn on Health Concerns

By Anne Sewell, Digital Journal

26 September 12


ollowing the recent rat study on NK603 GMO corn, Russia has suspended imports of Monsanto corn, while France continues investigations into the possible dangers of GMOs to human health.

On Tuesday this week, Russia suspended the import and use of Monsanto's genetically engineered corn, following the scientific study released on September 19 on rats fed with this corn, which caused serious health problems, including tumors and organ failure.

The study was run over a period of two years, which is the lifetime of the rats being studied and was the first animal feeding trial, set up to study the lifetime effects of exposure to NK603 Roundup tolerant GM maize, and also to Roundup, the world's best-selling herbicide and weedkiller.

According to the peer-reviewed study which was published in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology and was presented at a news conference in London, the animals on the genetically modified (GM) diet suffered mammary tumors, as well as severe liver and kidney damage.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the consumer-rights watchdog in Russia, Rospotrebnadzor, has said that the country's Institute of Nutrition has been asked to assess the validity of the study.

Rospotrebnadzor has also contacted the European Commission’s Directorate General for Health & Consumers to ask for the EU’s position on the corn’s safety.

After the French study was complete, Monsanto said that it did not think this study would affect its license to export NK603 to Europe, but that they would wait to hear from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

A spokesperson for the company said: "Based on our initial review, we do not believe the study presents information that would justify any change in EFSA’s views on the safety of genetically modified corn products or alter their approval status for genetically modified imports."

Also following the rat feeding study, the French government has called for an investigation into GMOs and has said that it would seek an immediate ban on EU imports, should the findings indicate a detrimental impact of human health. The French Agriculture Minister has asked European authorities to abandon the use of GMO crops.

The French government has asked its health and safety agency to assess the study and had also sent it on to the EFSA.

The French Health, Environment and Farm Ministries said in a joint statement, "Based on the conclusion ..., the government will ask the European authorities to take all necessary measures to protect human and animal health, measures that could go as far as an emergency suspension of imports of NK603 maize in the European Union."

As yet, the US Food and Drug Administration has not reacted to the study.

Gary Ruskin, Campaign Manager for Proposition 37, says, “Across the world, there are heightening concerns about the health risks of eating genetically engineered foods.”

“There is a giant question mark hanging over these foods and their health risks. For those of us in California, the case for labeling of genetically engineered foods has never been stronger.”

In November of this year, California voters will decide whether to require labeling of genetically engineered foods sold in the state – a requirement which is already in place in 50 other countries.

Monsanto has supported GMO labeling in Europe. One Monsanto advert which ran in the UK read: "Before you buy a potato, or any other food, you may want to know whether it's the product of food biotechnology. We have complete confidence that our food crops are as safe and nutritious as the standard alternatives."

"Recently you may have noticed a label appearing on some of the food in your supermarket. This is to inform you about the use of biotechnology in food. Monsanto fully supports UK food manufacturers and retailers in their introduction of these labels. We believe you should be aware of all the facts before making a purchase."

However, the company is spending millions to defeat the labeling of GMO products in California.

For more information about Proposition 37, visit your social media marketing partner


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+17 # angelfish 2012-09-26 11:01
WHY are they still in business? HOW can the powers that be accept THIS kind of murderous experimentation on our unsuspecting populace? FINE them into oblivion, and, hopefully, put them OUT of business!
+13 # SMoonz 2012-09-26 11:12
The sad thing is most people are not well informed and Prop 37 opponents are winning on a 3 to 1 margin. Monsanto pays millions, along with PepsiCo and Coca Cola, tell people that food prices will increase because of labeling and voila, Monsanto wins.
+8 # Vermont Grandma 2012-09-26 13:21
It's depressing how stupid Americans really are. There's already labeling for lots of things. Adding GMO labeling will only affect GMO foods and won't cost virtually anything. If folks in California are so air-headed as to believe the Prop 37 opposition, including its claims that the science shows such foods are safe, it's really, really a sad commentary. Then again, if you watch Jaywalking on the Jay Leno show, you won't be surprised at the capacity of people, including folks training to be teachers, for far-reaching ignorance. Glad I'm on the other side of 60 and won't be around all that much longer to see this kind of ignorance. AND that I live in Vermont where non-RBST milk and cheese and butter ARE labelled and where we have the most community-suppo rted-agricultur e outfits per capita. Not a long growing season here, but lots of good food!!!
+13 # PABLO DIABLO 2012-09-26 11:39
Boycott these companies.
0 # LeeBlack 2012-09-26 13:40
Remember that old ad: Better Living Through Chemistry?
+3 # Kootenay Coyote 2012-09-26 16:22
That was DuPont's, & that situation hasn't gotten much better, too.
+4 # LeeBlack 2012-09-26 22:58
Don't forget Dow and Agent Orange.
+9 # Street Level 2012-09-26 14:00
Yes! This couldn't have come at a better time. While Prop 37 is getting outspent by more than 10-1, the majority of people I come across are for food disclosure and labeling, no matter the science behind it.
They may have the money, but we have the people and we're growing.
+10 # Kev C 2012-09-26 15:09
The so called appeasement of the British people with labelling of the food is worthless because we don't have GM food on sale in the UK without labels anyway and the only food stuff that is GMO is the cooking oil used in fast food outlets. Even they have to put up a sign saying they use GMO cooking oil or they face a massive £5,000 fine.
So why do they want to stop the labelling in the US? Simple. They have a ready market for all the crap they can throw at you and there is nothing you can do to stop them doing it. Unless you get the law passed to label food and then the sales will tumble because more people have become aware of the dangers of GMO food stuffs and will simply choose not to buy it. That is why they don't want labelling in the US.
Its nothing to do with being nice and wanting us to know precisely what is in our food in the UK. That is simply a ploy to persuade us that GMO food is safe (when it clearly isn't). In the US the audience is enslaved to their control and that is precisely what they had intended all along. They also want to keep you enslaved permanently so they can continue to make a profit and use that profit to sue your asses and lobby our governments in the EU to allow them to sell their crap here too.
Its not going to happen in the EU. We ain't that easily conned.
+3 # Replicounts 2012-09-26 18:36
The U.S. system of letting something be used until it is known to be bad is insane. Europe traditionally does safety testing first.

GMO crops could have legitimate uses to increase food supply. But not to assure Monsanto's lock on the market. And they must be labeled.
-2 # dkonstruction 2012-09-27 13:31
While i'm glad that Russia (or anyone else for that matter) tries to prevent Monsanto from spreading its poisoned food stuffs around the world this seems to me more about Putin appearing to be tough vis-a-vis the US for his own domestic political consumption needs and is not some new found ethics regarding the health and safety of his people.
0 # dkonstruction 2012-09-28 09:45
Quoting dkonstruction:
While i'm glad that Russia (or anyone else for that matter) tries to prevent Monsanto from spreading its poisoned food stuffs around the world this seems to me more about Putin appearing to be tough vis-a-vis the US for his own domestic political consumption needs and is not some new found ethics regarding the health and safety of his people.

guess the two thumbs down means that you think Putin is a real progressive? Surely, you jest. If you really believe this please give examples. In Putin's Russia life expectancy for men is down to 56 years...are we going to blame this on Monsanto as well (i am not blaming all of this on Putin as these conditions have been going on since the break-up of the Soviet Union and Russia adopted the horrific "shock therapy" economics promoted by the likes of Jeffrey Sachs and his boys at Harvard but Putin has done nothing to change this overall situation)? As i said, glad to see Russia standing up to Monsanto but that doesn't make Putin any less of a former KGB authoritarian pig that he is.
0 # tapelt 2012-09-30 07:29
Sorry guys, this study turned out to be total garbage.

1. They used a population of rats that get tumors at a high rate.

2. Despite this, the rats got a LOWER rate of tumors than expected for that group.

3. The control group was only 20 rats.

4. There were many other problems with this study `that totally invalidate any findings you could make from it.

This is well discussed here:


Sep 29 2012

Interview with Pamela Gay
This Day in Skepticism: CERN
News Items: Ig Nobels 2012, GM Corn Rat Study, HIV and Faith Healing, Emoticons turn 30
Who's That Noisy
Science or Fiction

Rat study discussion starts at 13:45.

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