Dr. Huber has been good enough to talk to us because we have friends in common and we pestered him. Now we are letting the man get back to work. First, here are some things to know about this story:
He didn't leak his own letter to Secretary Vilsack. It was hand-delivered, so it could have been leaked by one of several people.
He hasn't been asked to keep quiet.
The USDA may still be allowing Roundup Alfalfa to be sold, but they are looking seriously into this pathogen. We got a lot of detail about what constitutes "serious" and there are two main things: 1. They are finishing sequencing the DNA probably this week, then they will attempt to classify the organism 2. They are creating the processes researchers need to investigate it such as the PCR amplification procedures. Dr. Huber said they are committed to this open inquiry because there are now a lot of scientists with this information- no one will be dropping it or attempting to shush it. It is recognized as necessary.
He doesn't know it is caused by use of Roundup- he made a case for the correlation being strong enough just by seeing there were no cases of the pathogen where there was no Roundup, therefore we shouldn't add another Roundup-dependent crop until these seed-chemical packages are "exonerated."
We thought it was all show on the part of the USDA - but the reason we're convinced its not should give people an idea of how serious it all is. It can't be hidden. The knowledge of it by people can't be delayed by industry or anyone else. There is a pathogen that is sterilizing animals and causing miscarriages and it is present in food. Whatever crazy pro-GMO regime our USDA and FDA and Executive Branches have been for fifteen years, it makes no difference. It doesn't matter if Monsanto doesn't want this known either. How Monsanto handles this will determine a lot of their future.
Hey, Monsanto: Your product is under investigation as one of the potential causes for a pathogen. It has not been implicated, only correlated at this point. You must recall your product voluntarily. Until the USDA is actively announcing this problem, you may simply need to do this by putting the product on back order status, and advertise the policy that you will buy back seeds that have not been planted. You could explain that there are lawsuits going on, so its in everyone's best interest to wait until those outcomes are known. Wouldn't that be nice of you? You should consider it carefully.
If you allow more seeds to be sold while there is a good chance the use of your product threatens human lives and our food supply due to a horrendous pathogen, we Americans will never forgive you, nor will the rest of the world. You have a numbered days- maybe less than a month to avoid being public enemy number one and then bankrupt. If your product is exonerated, this act will give you some of the good PR you sorely need. We believe GMO alfalfa is so dangerous that it is better to appeal to you to see the writing on the wall and save yourself in order to minimize the crops planted, than to watch you go up in smoke taking with you all the farmers and economies and the future of the cleanup we're going to have to do. Its good for your bottom line too because wherever we find your gene, whether its a health or environmental harm, we're sending youthe bill.
As for us, we consumers have to get ourselves off of this dependence on these crops by increasing yield on other things- and the only way to do that is to buy them and keep those non-GMO companies turning a profit. We'll keep growing our alternate food system up until it is our main system by refusing to eat or buy GMO food.