Monsanto introduced genetically modified alfalfa in 2003—a full two years before it was deregulated, according to recently released evidence. Global Research reported that a letter from Cal/West Seeds indicated that “evidence of contamination was withheld and the USDA turned a blind eye to proof of contamination,” thus allowing widespread GMO contamination of GMO-free crops. The Cal/West Seeds letter to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) stated they found the Roundup Ready gene in foundation production lots seeds in 2005: according to the letter, the GMO-contaminated foundation seed originated in 2003 from a field in Solano County, California. The letter stated, “Cal/West Seeds had zero access to Roundup Ready seed at that time; therefore we assume the contamination originated from an external source.”
Alfalfa is a perennial plant that grows for more than two years and may not need to be replanted each year like annuals. As a perennial, it is exceptionally vulnerable to contamination. This genetically modified alfalfa could quickly spread to crops across the US, threatening the integrity of organic products—including organic meat and dairy products, if those animals are fed alfalfa believed to be GMO-free, but are in fact carrying Monsanto’s patented genetically modified trait.
In 2010, the USDA released a Final Environmental Impact Statement that acknowledged awareness of the GMO alfalfa spreading its traits to non-GMO alfalfa as far back as 2003. Not only was the USDA aware of the scandal, but the agency also deregulated genetically modified alfalfa with full awareness of the environmental dangers and contamination concerns.
Widespread GMO Contamination: Did Monsanto Plant GMOs Before USDA Approval?
Cassandra Anderson and Anthony Gucciardi, “Widespread GMO Contamination: Did Monsanto Plant GMOs Before USDA Approval?”
Global Research, May 4, 2012, http://www.globalresearch.ca/widespread-gmo-contamination-did-monsanto-plant-gmos-before-usda-approval/.
Student Researcher: Adam Hotchkiss (Sonoma State University)
Faculty Evaluator: Greg Hicks (Mendocino College)