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USDA Organic Seal is now worthless

Posted Jul 06 2009 8:01pm

My normal method of operation when referencing an article is to summarize and then let my readers read the piece for themselves. However, this report is so infuriating that I must comment first in sum and then at a more visceral level.

 First here’s the link to the  story from the Washington Post via MSNBC, written by Kimberly Kindy and Lyndsey Layton

  The once coveted USDA organic seal is now not worth the paper it’s printed on. It’s been compromised and corrupted. Once a badge of high standards and ethical fortitude, it is now just a prop of Big Food and their lobbyists who have the money and the muscle to effectively own the label.

 At the forefront of the ineptitude, negligence and outright incompetence is Barbara Robinson, a functionary of the USDA who is in effect an operative for Big Food. She has continuously and consistently violated the spirit of the USDA Organic Seal, instead pandering to the loopholes utilized by the power of Big Food.

 Joining the list of pimps for Big Food is Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack (Despite his claim to want to “take back” the label) and Tom Harding, a consultant (whore) for Kraft Foods.

 So, know that the organic baby formula you buy contains a synthetic additive that may be an endocrine disruptor. The formula contains HEXANE, a NEUROTOXIN!!! This is in the organic formula. Imagine what’s in the non-organic baby formula.

 Here’s my favorite part of the article, concerning the decision by Ms. Robinson to overrule her staff scientists and allow Hexane in the organic formula.

 In a rare move, Barbara Robinson, who administers the organics program and is a deputy USDA administrator, overruled the staff decision after a telephone call and an email exchange with William J. Friedman, a lawyer who represents the formula makers.

 “I called her (Robinson) up,” Friedman said. “I wrote an email. It was a simple matter.” The back and forth, he said, was nothing more than part of the routine process that sets policy inWashington.

 A phone call and an email. I wish all women were that easy.


Ray Salomone   Personal Trainer and Wellness Activist


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