Archive for the Seeds Category

Johnny’s Selected Seeds hosts farm tours for Student Organic Seed Symposium

Press release by Johnny’s Selected Seeds. Waterville, Maine: August 5–8, 2016 — Johnny’s Selected Seeds greeted the fifth annual Student Organic Seed Symposium (SOSS) with a full-day tour of its research farm and facilities in Albion and Winslow. From their base at Colby College, a group of 50 students and global leaders […]

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State of Organic Seed 2016

State of Organic Seed 2016

  The Organic Seed Alliance (OSA) has just released their updated report on the State of Organic Seed for 2016. Building upon an initial assessment of organic seed released in 2011, the 2016 edition of the report synthesizes stakeholder data compiled in 2014 and 2015. One conclusion drawn from both editions: […]

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Keeping Soybeans Free of GE Contamination

Keeping Soybeans Free of GE Contamination

  Soybean (Glycine max) Soybeans have the distinction of being the first GE crop deregulated in the US in 1994. Just twelve years later, in 2006, 95% of the U.S. soybean acreage had been converted to GE. Soybean is considered a low-risk candidate for GE contamination due to its nature […]

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OSGATA Comments on Organic Standards

OSGATA Comments on Organic Standards

  At the upcoming meeting of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) in Washington, D.C., on April 24-27, many important issues are on the docket. Organic law grants NOSB sole authority to make recommendations regarding what materials are allowed in organic (those appearing on the National List), as well as recommendations on a wide variety […]

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Mitigation of GE Sugarbeet Contamination

Mitigation of GE Sugarbeet Contamination

Sugarbeet (Beta vulgaris) Sugarbeets engineered to resist glyphosate were first deregulated in the U.S. in 1998. Market hesitancy, however, stalled the adoption by commercial producers until nearly a decade later. In the U.S., most of the sugarbeet seed production is controlled by a handful of agribusiness corporations and is focused […]

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Avoiding GE Contamination in Canola

Avoiding GE Contamination in Canola

  Canola (Brassica napus; B. rapa) Canola is a high-risk crop in terms of contamination from GMOs. Its basic biology along with its ability to persist outside of cultivation in disturbed habitats (like field edges and roadsides) presents multiple avenues of potential contamination. And contamination poses threat beyond canola seed […]

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Keeping Alfalfa GE-Free

Keeping Alfalfa GE-Free

Alfalfa (Medicago sativa) In 2005 alfalfa became the first perennial GE crop to attain approved status in the U.S. Within a year of GE alfalfa’s initial commercial release, contamination had occurred in the commercial sector. The Roundup Ready™ trait was identified in conventional non-GE plantings of alfalfa in Montana, Wyoming, […]

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GMO Corn Contamination 101

GMO Corn Contamination 101

Corn (Zea mays) Ninety percent of all corn grown in the U.S. is genetically engineered. This fact, coupled with corn’s outcrossing nature, equals significant risk of GE contamination for organic corn growers. Of course, the individual degree of risk differs based on various factors: the region in which the organic […]

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Protect Your Seed from GE Contamination

Protect Your Seed from GE Contamination

Since the genetically engineered Flavr Savr tomato was first approved for the American marketplace in 2004, GE crops have grown to become part of the agricultural mainstream. Plantings of GE crops in the U.S., measured in acres, increased by 68% between 2000 and 2005 and climbed another 45% between 2005 and 2013. In 2013, American farmers planted […]

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New OSGATA Policy on Principles of Organic Plant Breeding

New OSGATA Policy on Principles of Organic Plant Breeding

  The following new OSGATA  Policy on Principles of Organic Plant Breeding was unanimously approved by the OSGATA membership at the 2016 Annual Membership Meeting held at the 8th Organic Seed Growers Conference on February 6, 2016, in Corvallis, OR:   OSGATA Policy on Principles of Organic Plant Breeding Preamble. Seed is […]

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OSGATA President on Organic Integrity & Corporate Interest

OSGATA President on Organic Integrity & Corporate Interest

Video coverage of OSGATA President Jim Gerritsen’s presentation at the 2015 National Heirloom Exposition is now available. Gerritsen delves into seed consolidation, right-to-know GMO labeling, and democracy  in his talk [23:20]. Regarding protecting the integrity of organic certification, he said,: “We are going to continue to defend your interest. Our organization, […]

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Help Organic Farmers & Get a Garlic Gift Pack!

Help Organic Farmers & Get a Garlic Gift Pack!

  OSGATA launched its end-of-year fundraising campaign yesterday on #GivingTuesday, and we’re already more than a quarter of the way to our $5,000 goal. To help us close the gap, OSGATA members have generously donated gifts produced by them. Today, December 2, 2015, OSGATA member Southern Exposure Seed Exchange is offering garlic […]

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OSGATA Addresses Organic Integrity at NOSB Meeting

OSGATA Addresses Organic Integrity at NOSB Meeting

Next week the four-day meeting of the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) will be held in Stowe, VT, on October 26-29. OSGATA President and Maine certified organic seed farmer Jim Gerritsen will testify on behalf of OSGATA’s membership about the critical need to maintain integrity in the organic industry, and more specifically in organic seed. […]

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OSGATA President Joins Panel with Vandana Shiva at 2015 National Heirloom Exposition

OSGATA President Joins Panel with Vandana Shiva at 2015 National Heirloom Exposition

OSGATA President and Maine organic seed farmer Jim Gerritsen joins world-renowned activist and author Vandana Shiva for a panel presentation on the impact of seed patents on farmers at The 2015 National Heirloom Exposition in Santa Rosa, CA. On Thursday, Sept. 10, Gerritsen, Shiva, and Food Democracy Now! co-founders, Dave Murphy and Lisa Stokke, will […]

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Organic Seed Growers Conference Call for Proposals

Organic Seed Growers Conference Call for Proposals

  The 8th Organic Seed Growers Conference, held February 4-6, 2016, in Corvallis, OR, brings together the organic seed community in two days of presentations and networking events focused on organic seed. Hosted by the Organic Seed Alliance, the conference theme is Cultivating Resilience. Proposals for presentations, workshops, posters, and panels addressing […]

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Link Between GE Cotton and Indian Farmer Suicides Explored in New RT Documentary

Link Between GE Cotton and Indian Farmer Suicides Explored in New RT Documentary

India is the fourth largest producer of genetically engineered (GE) crops, with Bt cotton accounting for the entirety of the country’s GE plantings. A new RT documentary “100% Cotton. Made in India” [26:36] takes an in-depth look at the rise of Indian farmer suicides in relation to the widespread adoption of GE cotton technology. […]

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Altered Genes, Twisted Truth

Altered Genes, Twisted Truth

FDA fraud is exposed in Steven Druker’s newly released book Altered Genes, Twisted Truth. OSGATA President Jim Gerritsen offers insight into what he calls a “game-changer” with this recent WZON interview [9:13]. Some may remember Druker as the public interest lawyer who sued the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the late ’90s. Gerritsen summarizes, “Through […]

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Fruition Seeds in the Dominican Republic: Reflections on Seed

By Petra Page-Mann, Fruition Seeds We are fortunate to live in a country where we have access to certified organic, regionally adapted varieties that are open-pollinated for us to save, even if we don’t plan to ever save a single seed.  I (Petra) spent the last week of January in the Dominican […]

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Powerful Organic Seed Documentary Now Available Online

‘Open Sesame- The Story of Seeds’ has been made available, beginning today, for online streaming. The film, which depicts the importance of organics and the enormous effort to protect organic seed, by New York-based filmmaker Sean Kaminsky is also available for DVD purchase online. ‘Open Sesame’ is a groundbreaking film with a […]

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Beach Road Farm: Saving Hawaii’s Seed

Beach Road Farm: Saving Hawaii's Seed

  Lyn Howe and Geoff Rauch, Beach Road Farm, Pahoa, HI Lyn Howe and Geoff Rauch cultivate a diverse three-acre polyculture on a 750-year-old lava flow spanning the main island of Hawaii. Over 130 different varieties of fruit are interplanted with nut and spice trees, medicinal and culinary herbs, some […]

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