Someone sent me this e-mail today;
Tell USDA No Drugs in Rice!
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is close to approving a
request to grow up to 3,200 acres of genetically engineered (GE)
pharmaceutical rice. The rice, developed by California-based Ventria
BioScience, is set to be grown and processed in Kansas, after the
company was chased out of other states, including Monsanto's stomping
grounds, Missouri, and Ventria's home-state, California. Ventria has
developed three varieties of rice, each engineered with a different
modified human gene to produce one of three recombinant human
proteins. Two of them -- lactoferrin and lysozyme -- are
bacteria-fighting compounds similar to natural versions found in
breast milk and saliva. The third makes recombinant serum albumin, a
blood protein used in medical therapies.
Drug-producing food crops grown out-of-doors pose great risks to
public health and the economic well-being of farmers because they are
likely to contaminate the food supply. In fact, while Southern rice
growers were still reeling from last year's contamination of
long-grain rice with an unapproved GE variety, a second variety of
rice was found to be contaminated with a second unapproved GE line
this month, throwing the rice market into further turmoil. As a
result, Southern rice growers are facing a severe shortage of
uncontaminated seed for planting this spring. Incredibly, USDA
appears poised to approve Ventria's request even though the
pharmaceutical substances in Ventria's drug-producing rice have not
been approved by the FDA.
Tell USDA enough is enough, and to reject this risky proposal!
Please take a moment to send your comment today - we need to have your
comments by March 28th to get them to USDA by the close of the comment
period on the 30th! Go to the Center for Food Safety....