Friday, March 4, 2011

Please support a moratorium on GM Alfalfa

Please distribute widely: Issued March 4, 2011     

Urgent Action Alert - Support a Moratorium on Genetically Modified Alfalfa -  Take Action Before Thursday March 10!

A moratorium on genetically modified (GM) alfalfa in Canada could be approved this month! Take Action today at

On Thursday, March 10, the House of Commons Agriculture Committee will vote on a new Liberal Party motion for a moratorium on the approval of GM alfalfa! Your actions before March 10 could make this moratorium happen.

Watch and share the video!

Write instant letters to the Agriculture Committee members at and check back for more action.

Genetically modified (herbicide tolerant) alfalfa threatens the future of organic food and farming. Conventional farmers will also lose their markets. In addition to export markets for processed alfalfa products, alfalfa is used as a forage crop in pastures and as hay for high-protein feed for dairy cows, beef cattle, lambs, and pigs. It is also a natural source of nitrogen to fertilize the soil, making it particularly important for organic farming. Alfalfa is pollinated by bees and other insects, making it easy for contamination to spread. Alfalfa is also a perennial which means that each new GM alfalfa plant can grow and produce viable seed for several years.
The House of Commons Agriculture Committee needs to put the motion for a moratorium on the top of their list in order to vote "yes" to the motion on March 10th. The NDP and Bloc both support the motion, the Liberals need to act to make sure their motion is more than just words, and the Conservatives need to support the moratorium.

Your actions to support Bill C-474 made this motion happen! Liberal Agriculture Critic Wayne Easter said in his March 3 press release: "The reason for this direct call to action stems from testimony presented to the committee during its study of biotechnology, as well as, from the debate on a Bill focused on potential economic harm in to export markets from GM seeds.”

Motion: "That the Standing Committee on Agriculture & Agri-food recommend that the government place a moratorium on any approval of Roundup Ready Alfalfa until the Government completes public research : (a) into Canada’s ability to ensure the genetic integrity, production and preservation of a diversity of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), non-GMO and organic alfalfa production; (b) the ability of Canada’s handling and transportation system to ensure segregation of forage seeds and detection of genetic co-mingling in alfalfa seeds and hay; (c) the development of industry-led, third party audit and verification systems;  (d) that these findings be reported back to the Committee; and (e) that this motion be reported to the House."

In a press release, NDP Agriculture Critic Alex Atamaneko, who has been working for this step, said “I will certainly be supporting the committee motion just introduced by Liberal Wayne Easter recommending a moratorium on GMO alfalfa until further research is completed.”

The next two weeks are critical. Please take action now and stay tuned to for more information, updates and new actions!

This action alert was issued March 4, 2011 by the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network.

Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator
Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN)
Collaborative Campaigning for Food Sovereignty and Environmental Justice
431 Gilmour Street, Second Floor
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K2P 0R5
Phone: 613 241 2267 ext. 25
Fax: 613 241 2506

Support the Moratorium on GM Alfalfa! Take action by March 10, 2011 at

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