Nobody wants to read anything about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). It involves 12 countries; the politics are muddy; its text is not entirely public; our legislative leaders are not following the status-quo (Republicans are praising Obama on his agreement with pushing it through Congress on a so-called “fast track”). It’s all just too much.
But, here I am, just a girl, sitting in front of her computer, asking a reader, to love her blog. (If you have no idea what I’m referencing here – you need more Hugh Grant in your life: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RESwG23_YGw).
So, here we go – we’re gonna talk about the TPP.
BUT, I’ll give you a respite – we are completely ignoring all that trade and politics and NAFTA talk. We’ll stick to food.
Within the TPP content (content “advised” by a committee that is 85 percent execs or lobbyists for corporations like Monsanto, DuPont, Cargill and Syngenta) are two big “food” issues:
1). GMO labels for US food would not be allowed.
2). Food inspections could be outsourced.
Let’s start with GMO (Genetically Modified Organisms): A large source of seed in big farming operations is the RoundUp Ready® brand and chemical/seed manufacturers (weird to have those two industries be stuck together with a “slash” but they’re one in the same these days) are developing plants that resist 2,4-D (found in Agent Orange) and dicamba to take out (probably temporarily) the ‘superweeds’ that have outsmarted RoundUp®.
The FDA does not require the chemical/seed corporations to test long-term ingestion of their products. The World Health Organization recently announced that glyphosate (the most widely-used chemical in these herbicides) is a “probable carcinogen.”
The TPP would make labeling of GMOs illegal, so unless you grow your own food, shop organic (or from a local farmer who can’t afford to legally go “organic” but you know there’s no spraying), you won’t know if your food might cause cancer (or, has been suggested, Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s). (93 percent of Americans want GMOs labeled).
On to number 2 – the TPP would allow food inspections to be done by foreign countries if they claim their standards meet our standards (even if they actually violate them). This is because we can’t run an entire FDA in the other 11 countries involved in the deal to check up on them (we can barely run our own FDA).
This is scary because other countries’ standards may be horrifying, but also because the U.S. standards are pretty embarrassing already. The European Union has banned U.S. beef and GMO Papaya and our “arsenic-laced” chicken – (yep FDA is OK with arsenic in our chicken); Russia has banned all U.S. meat; U.S. farmed salmon is banned in Australia and New Zealand; and the list goes on.
- No GMO labeling paves the way for corporations to produce more GMOs, which means more chemicals in our water, our air, our soil, our food, our bodies.
- No oversight on food inspections paves the way for contaminated food to make it to our shelves.
Not too difficult to follow is it?