Monday, September 24, 2012

Rally to Keep GMO Canola out of Willamette Valley

The Rally is to keep all canola out of the Willamette valley actually, but that includes genetically engineered canola. It is being held at the same time a hearing is going on to allow canola into the Willamette Valley. The rally will be outside of the hall where the hearing is being held. 

Why Canola cannot Coesist With Vegetable Seed Production:

Canola, species Brassica rapa and B. Napus, readily cross pollinates with turnips, rapini, some kales, rutababa and possibly with radishes and broccoli.

Canola is a very aggressive plant and becomes a weed along roadsides and rivers. It remains in fields where it was previously grown.

Canola is a low value commodity crop grown in massive acreage with minimal management, while specialty seeds are high value, focused on quality and purity. Contamination would be irrelevant to canola for oilseed production, but would be devastating for the specialty vegetable seed industry.

The FDA has deregulated GE canola, so through the years of mixing, the canola that would be planted would very likely be GE canola.

Canola is host to four serious diseases and two serious insect pests that would transfer directly to specialty seed and fresh vegetable production of all Brassica species.

The Willamette Valley is one of the last premiere seed growing regions of the world. Other countries such as France and Australia have had their seed growing regions destroyed by canola in exactly the same way. 

We need as many people as possible to come to the rally and for those of you who are farmers or gardeners who raise any type of Brassica seed, come to the hearing too.

Important – the emphasis of our comments and signage need to be anti-canola – not just anti-GMO canola.  Any type of canola is a disaster for our seed production.  Plus, as we all know, conventional canola seed stock is highly contaminated with gmo-canola. 

We need to emphasize our rights as citizens, gardeners and the rights of our existing seed farmers.  We should have the right to refuse this crop.  An unprecedented alliance of conventional and organic, seed farmers and fresh market, clover, wheat, and even GM sugar beet farmers are against canola being allowed in the valley.  Please join us!

Also, please spread around Friends of Family Farmer's facebook page for the event: 

The details and address for the hearing and the rally is  
Date: September 28th, 2012
Time: 9am-afternoon
Location: Friendship Square at the Oregon State Fairgrounds, Cascade Hall – 2330 17th St. NE, Salem, OR 97301 

 Here is the layout of the Salem Fairgrounds so you can find your way to the correct place one you get there: