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Choices in the Wake of Oregon Voting

November 6, 2014

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOregon had a voting contest that was hotter than the governor race Tuesday. With nearly 70% of voters turning out (awesome turn out – kudos Oregon!) to vote, the GMO labeling initiative was white hot.

And defeated. Critics bemoan the use of ‘big ag’ and millions of dollars that made people vote differently. Some blame “evil Monsanto” and much like the wake of California and Washington, the talk is the same. And that’s why it failed. After Washington I took a look here at how the measure got defeated in both states. Many of those things are still true here, and in Colorado where GMO labeling was soundly defeated. So now folks are looking for what state next to set a precedent and ignoring the obvious change needed. Well, not all are. On the Organic & Non GMO Report Facebook page some folks are getting it! What a breath of fresh air these folks are!

Tony A. Cicciarelli To look at it a different way – 1/2 the people in Oregon now believe that GMO’s are a problem and will probably avoid purchasing them. The message is spreading. Voting with your dollars will always prevail!

Debbie Gunn So much passion in these comments. ..we really need to focus on what we CAN do and go forward
Nancy Poznak Everyone can vote with the ‘feet’ and their ‘wallets.’ What we DO and what we BUY cast far more votes than any we cast on voting day.
ScienceLab Guy We just have to use our common sense, wits and persevere on our own. We can do it despite the labelling. In fact, we are beyond labelling now with the GNO verified campaign gaining momentum.
Those aren’t the only ones but first noticed on a skim back through over 400 passionate comments. Voting to label or voting to ban takes incredible resources. If the only reason to do it is to make Monsanto and other companies spend money that’s unspeakably wrong. Many buy Monsanto products and are happy with them. If they didn’t work then it’s a non-issue as Monsanto wouldn’t be in business. To be fair, Monsanto does a lot of good with community gardens and school projects far beyond a GMO issue, but I suspect many will be incensed that I say that.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASo folks can fill pages of information online, sign petitions and a host of other things. Spend hours drumming up support – and look at the results. Roughly half of California, Oregon and Washington voters want nonGMO. Stick with me here folks. Many are angry that they can’t outspend “evil corporations”, many depressed that others don’t choose like they do and a few calling for riots and destruction. Wow. Really? People won’t agree so we’ll riot – the new society.
How about instead of filling up hours online we do something that makes a real difference. Here are five things folks can do – and with half the voters in Washington, California and Oregon that’s a big start! Many other posters from other states were watching so their state can do it too, like some team or sorority issue. Stop! Act. Five things. All of this are in your realm, dear reader, and none depend on a vote or government mandate. None are “bought and paid for” by “big ag”. Just you…and a small farm. Ready?
1.Right now – find a small farm and spend, sponsor or donate $100. It’s coming on the Christmas season and I know we’re practically begging for support and a piece of that Christmas shopping dollar. I also know we’re not the only one. $100 isn’t a lot of money to many – 20 trips to Starbucks, a couple stops at Whole Foods and those are still big companies! Put it towards small farms, organic, heirloom, nonGMO. We NEED an influx in order to get ready for next year and continue offering food choices. We need to be here when people want that choice and notice us.
2.Change your buying habits. This month pay attention to what you’re buying and buy nonGMO or organic. If this is truly what you want stop relying on the government to dictate labels, and stop worrying about who owns the company. Buy nonGMO. Consider it a bet, or a dare. You have 3-4 months between now and what farmers buy to plant in 2015. Will it be nonGMO? Will you drive demand to insure that it’s nonGMO? If you do, guess what they will plant. If you wrap up in perceived justice of can’t buy from this or that company then guess what – they’ll plant GMO corn because that is what is selling and no one can hold onto a crop that doesn’t sell. So are you down for a few months, or a year to really institute change? Or are you willing to be a victim and claim no choices when we’re spoiled with choices? Farmers are going to plant something – tell them in action what you want!
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA3. Find a farm or group of farms to purchase at least $1,000 in products from over the next year. Impossible? It’s just about money? Consider this – $1,000 in a year is $83 per month. Is that worth having nonGMO choices? You’ll be financing what you support AND getting foods and products you want. With things like our packages it provides it for others who can’t afford it and maybe they will see a benefit to choices when the only one they have is what they can afford.
4.Look for processors to support. Farmers can’t sell meats and other things to consumers without a processor. Where a USDA processor is required, we NEED those small businesses. Without them we have no market and you have no choices.
5.Stop the fear factor. Breathe. Ignore Monsanto. Ignore biotech. They are no longer a stress and no longer in your world if you do the above. If you honestly create what you want, there will be more of what you want. For those who can’t afford options and must rely on what they can afford you have a productive choice – buy for them so they aren’t restricted to GMO influenced food. Pay the difference in their food budget.
Are you up for the challenge? Are you ready for change? Are you ready to be the change. Get started right now! I dare you. What’s to lose? $1,100 and some time? Is it just about the money or is it making a change? Change takes action and your action counts! If one quarter of Americans – way less than half of the election battles – makes this change it will not matter what opponents think. The influx into alternatives makes that possible. A fraction of that can create huge changes. Go! Need a starting place – $25 here for a subscription. 100% of funds go into equipment, raised beds, organic heirloom seed and heritage breeds. Want to see a difference? Be the difference. The only riot should be a financial shakeup that we’ve never seen. Food choices are for all, but made by those with means to do so.
Be the solution.

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