Janisse Ray, a farmer and author of The Seed Underground: A Growing Revolution to Save Food and Pamm Larry, leader of California’s Prop. 37 campaign to label GMO’sJanisse Ray’s book is informative and engaging, and takes us into the world of seeds–populated by organic activists and corporate monopolists. We learn that 94% of seed varieties available in 1903 are gone, and that a handful of giant corporations now control most crop seeds. Monsanto not only bought up many seed companies, it is using its dominance to promote GMO (genetically modified organism) crops that are bio-engineered to survive pesticides like Roundup. Ray explains the damge to the food system from GMO’s and factory farming, and celebrates the power of individuals to grow their own food organically. We talk about Monsanto’s agressive legal actions against Canadian Percy Schmeiser and other farmers who never wanted GMO plants on their farms, and Ray offers her candid comments on Monsanto and the Obama administration, including Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack.
About 48 minutes in, we are joined by activist Pamm Larry, a grandmother from Chico, CA who is leading the campaign to pass Prop. 37 in California this November, which simply requires labeling of GMO content in food products. We talk about the recent cigarette tax ballot measure that was narrowly defeated in June after Big Tobacco spent $50 million to defeat it. The food industry has declared the defeat of Prop. 37 as its top priority, and Larry says the industry will outspend the tobacco companies. Visit the Prop. 37 website here.