Center for Food Safety

Green groups sue EPA over BASF herbicide

Comparing the herbicide trifludimoxazin to dicamba, two environmental groups asked the U.S. appeals court in San Francisco to set aside the EPA’s unconditional approval in May of the new weedkiller. Trifludimoxazin is sold by BASF under the brand name Tirexor and is the first new “mode of …

Lawsuit calls for USDA to release study on QR codes and GMO food labeling

The anti-GMO group Center for Food Safety filed suit against the USDA to force release of a study on the impact of using digital disclosures such as QR codes to identify foods made with GMO ingredients. "In the United States, there has never been a food labeling requirement met by QR codes," says the center, which prefers a written label on food packages.

USDA weighs open-air trial of GE moth to combat crop pest

New York "is one step closer to becoming the first state to have genetically modified, non-sterile insects released" for an open-air trial against the crop-damaging diamondback month, says news site EcoWatch. The public comment period has closed on USDA's environmental assessment, which says the proposed field trial is unlikely to cause adverse effects on plants, soil, water and people.

EPA wrongly approved use of neonics in 59 instances, says judge

A U.S. district judge in California ruled that the EPA violated the Endangered Species Act when it issued 59 registrations from 2007-12 that allow use of neonicotinoid insecticides in agricultural, landscaping and ornamental uses. District Judge Maxine Chesney issued a mixed verdict that upheld some the issues raised by beekeepers and environmental groups but denied others.

Seed companies win major case on Hawaiian GMOs

In a victory for Monsanto, Syngenta and other seed companies farming in Hawaii, a federal appeals court ruled that counties can’t regulate pesticide use or GMO crops, says Civil Beat. “The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals concluded Friday that Hawaii state pesticide law is comprehensive, and that the Legislature intended it to be 'uniform and exclusive of additional, local rules.'”

Rodale launches national association for organic farmers

A longtime advocate for, and researcher of, organic agriculture, Rodale Institute is launching the Organic Farmers Association, which it says will be the first U.S. group speaking solely for organic farmers. The USDA reported last week that there are 12,818 certified organic farms covering 4.36 million acres, a small share of the 2.07 million farms and 912 million acres of farmland in the country.

Obama signs GMOs-in-food disclosure law; rules in two years

Reversing a two-decade federal policy on labeling, President Obama has signed a law that mandates disclosure of GMO ingredients in food via a symbol, a digital code or wording on food packages.

U.S. to decide by mid-2019 whether monarch butterfly is endangered

Under terms of a settlement, the Interior Department will rule by June 30, 2019, whether the monarch butterfly, which has suffered a huge drop in population, deserves protection under the Endangered Species Act, said two environmental groups. The groups say without help, the well-known orange-and-black insect is at risk of extinction.

Report calls for Hawaii to clamp down on pesticide use

Hawaii’s legislature should “undertake a major update of [state] pesticide laws and regulation,” says a draft report commissioned by the Hawaii Department of Agriculture, and by Kauai county.

Lawsuit would force decision on monarch butterflies

Two environmental groups sued the Interior Department to force a decision on listing the monarch butterfly as an endangered species.

Lawsuit is planned over protection of monarch butterfly

Two environmental groups said they plan to sue the Interior Department to force a decision on whether to protect the monarch butterfly as a "threatened" animal under the Endangered Species Act.

Oregon’s “right to farm” no barrier to county GMO-crop ban

A federal judge says the voter-enacted ban on GMO crops in Jackson County, in southwestern Oregon, "is legal under state law," said the Medford Mail Tribune. Two alfalfa farms challenged the ban, approved a year ago, as a violation of Oregon's "right to farm" law and also asked for $4.2 million as compensation if they had to destroy their genetically modified crops. The ordinance allowed a 12-month transition period, giving farmers time to harvest crops before they would have to be removed.

Dual-herbicide seeds to be Monsanto’s biggest GE launch

After a decade of development, Monsanto anticipates its genetically engineered Xtend soybean and cotton varieties will be its "largest biotech trait launch...with six times the number of varieties" that it offered in a previous set of GE strains.

New pesticide-tolerant crops close to USDA approval

Cotton and soybean varieties genetically engineered by Monsanto to tolerate the herbicide dicamba should be approved for use by farmers, said USDA in issuing its final environmental impact statement (EIS) on the strains.

Yes on 92 concedes, Oregon says no to GMO food label

The Yes on Measure 92 campaign admitted defeat of the Oregon referendum to put special labels on food made with genetically modified organisms. In a statement on its Web site, the campaign said it "is ending its efforts today." The initiative lost by 837 votes out of 1.5 million ballots, according to unofficial results of an automatic recount, two dozen more than the certified Nov 4 results.

Merkley is top Dem on Senate panel handling ag funds

Second-term Sen Jeff Merkley of Oregon is the ranking Democrat on the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on agriculture and FDA for the 114th Congress, said Sen Barbara Mikulski, the Democratic leader on the committee, in a statement.

US approves GE potato that reduces suspect acrylamides

The Agriculture Department approved cultivation of the Innate potato developed by JR Simplot Co. and genetically engineered to produce smaller amounts of acrylamides when it is fried.

Rogue GE wheat puts USDA controls in doubt

Food and environmental groups are renewing calls for the Agriculture Department "to adopt a slower, more stringent approval process" for genetically engineered crops, says USA Today.

As Oregon vote nears, dispute over cost of GMO labels

Oregonians probably would pay a penny, or less, a day if they pass a referendum to require labels on food made with genetically modified organisms, says a study commissioned by two groups who support the initiative.

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