28 December 2012

Milk Prices to Double

The collapse of artificial price supports for large scale commercial dairies may increase the number of raw milk producers. Apparently the government is too broke to support pasteurized milk producers and prices are likely to double in January.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Price of Milk To Double Without a Farm Bill

Eric Blair
Activist Post

Did you know milk, cheese, and other dairy products could double in January if the farm bill isn't passed before the new year?

At first I thought this was a veiled threat from the farm lobby to get their subsidies, but it looks like it goes deeper than that.  In fact, farmers don't want the price to go up because they fear they'll be swimming in unsold milk.

"Few will buy milk the USDA will be forced to sell at prices consumers can’t afford, so Congress has no alternative but to stop the change," UW-Madison agriculture economist Bruce Jones told the Wisconsin State Journal. "We’ll be swimming in milk, with nobody to consume it."

He added that the dairy industry would experience a short-term windfall but the lack of demand would cause milk prices to eventually plummet which would be a catastrophe for dairy farmers.

But what is responsible for the price of milk, and why would it double without a farm bill?

The price of milk is not set by the free market as Jones suggests.  It's set by USDA regulators that claim to use market indicators and a "variety of pricing regulations":
Over the past 125 years, a complex system of both public and private pricing institutions has evolved to deal with milk production, assembly, and distribution. The pricing of milk in the United States is part market-determined, and part publicly administered through a wide variety of pricing regulations. (Source: USDA)

This complex system is said to be used to create a balance between supply and demand to take the following into account:
  • The need for producer prices to be high enough to maintain production, but not so high as to encourage surplus production;
  • The willingness and ability of consumers to pay for milk and dairy products, and;
  • The interest of producers, handlers, and the public in the orderly flow of milk and dairy products from the producers to the consumers. (Source: PDF)
Apparently this formula is constantly evolving primarily due to economic circumstances, international trade negotiations, and the restructuring of dairy conglomerates which alter pricing relationships, according to the USDA.

And without a modern farm bill to factor in today's market costs, the pricing reverts back to a antiquated pricing system from 1949. According to the Wisconsin State Journal:
National agriculture policy forces the implementation of a 1949 system for pricing milk if the country does not have an active farm bill. That antiquated policy uses a complex formula — based on costs of producing milk by hand and including inflation and other adjustments — that will force the U.S. Department of Agriculture to buy milk at nearly double the recent market price.
There doesn't seem to be much hope that the farm bill or even a stopgap measure will be passed before next year. "There was nothing on the schedule for (this) week to deal with any of this," said Wisconsin Congressman Ron Kind.

"This is crazy. The thought to going back to mid-20th century policies when we’re in the 21st century now is inexcusable," Kind added. "The dairy cliff is going to be amazing if no action is taken."

It seems the "fiscal cliff" crisis has cleared everything else from Congress' agenda and America will go over the "dairy cliff".

How far away have we gone from the free market when an act of Congress is needed to prevent the doubling of a core food in the United States? This is precisely the problem with the government "determining" the price of anything.

As soon as regulators touch anything in the market, its genuine value is tainted forever; and it usually requires more meddling to try to set it straight, but inevitably always makes it worse.

Meanwhile, consumers and farmers alike will suffer.

Is All Food Poisonous?

If all food ingredients studied can be linked to cancer to some degree, does it mean we should give up eating? No, of course not, but it may mean we should limit our meals to one a day and include periodic fasting to give time to the body to rid itself of food ingredients that -while natural to foods- may pose some risk to health. This is important because even though the relative risk of each individual food ingredient may be small, all of them together multiply the risk and make the over all risk of eating very high. These are the principles of How to Eat to Live as taught by the Hon Elijah Muhammad.

All Food Ingredients Linked To Cancer, But Researchers Say Don’t Worry Evidence is Weak

December 27, 2012 | By  1 Reply
There is evidence linking almost every food or ingredient to cancer, but according to researchers, there’s no need to worry because the evidence for pretty much all of it is very weak they say.
Not a week goes by without a new research finding that links part of our diet to an increased risk of some form of cancer, and researchers want us to ignore all these findings because they claim they’re based on weak statistical evidence.
So apparently we should casually mull over all the information we now have on genetically modified foods, artificial flavours, colors, preservatives, emulsifiers, and sweeteners.
Every single artificial flavor and color in the food industry has some kind of detrimental health effect. These include neurotoxicity, organ, developmental, reproductive toxicity and cancer. Ignore them.
Genetically modified (GM) foods causes allergies, organ damage, cancer, immunotoxicty, and damaging transgenes which affect future generations. No problem, no worries.
Artificial preservatives are responsible for causing a host of health problems pertaining to respiratory tract, heart, blood and other. Some are very neurotoxic especially when combined with specific nutrients. Ignore that too.
Sweeteners such as Neotame are thousands of times sweeter than sugar. They are all very potent, neurotoxic, immunotoxic and excitotoxic, but according to researchers there’s no strong evidence.

So What Did They Find? 

Researchers in the USA set out to see whether, in fact, all foods have been studied for their effectiveness at curing or causing cancer.
The research, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, took a random sample of 50 foods and ingredients and searched the academic literature to see whether research studies had associated them withcancer risk.
Led by John Ioannidis at Stanford Prevention Research Center, USA, the research team found that 80% of their sample food recipes had been studied in regard to their relationship to cancer, “and the large majority of these studies were interpreted by their authors as offering evidence for increased or decreased risk of cancer.”
“However, the vast majority of these claims were based on weak statistical evidence,” said the research team.
“We have seen a very large number of studies, just too many studies, suggesting that they had identified associations with specific food ingredients with cancer risk,” said Ioannidis.
Food industry champions playing the public relations game with very informed consumers are now having to back peddle and go on damage control.
“People get scared or they think that they should change their lives and make big decisions, and then things get refuted very quickly,” he told Reuters Health. “There’s very strong evidence, and pretty strong expectation, that some nutrients in some foods would be related to cancer risk – either protecting or increasing the risk – but it’s very hard to believe that almost anything would be associated with cancer.”

Study Details

The research team selected 50 foods and food ingredients at random and then assessed whether the academic literature from the previous 35 years provided a suggestion of any link to cancer risk.
“We surveyed recently published studies and meta-analyses that addressed the potential association between a large random sample of food ingredients and cancer risk of any type of malignancy,” the researchers wrote.
The team found that 40 out of their 50 sample foods had been linked to cancer in some way — with half having more than 10 studies reporting on such risks.
Those ingredients linked to cancer were: veal, salt, pepper spice, flour, egg, bread,pork, butter, tomato, lemon, duck, onion, celery, carrot, parsley, mace, sherry, olive, mushroom, tripe, milk, cheese, coffee, bacon, sugar, lobster, potato, beef, lamb, mustard, nuts, wine, peas, corn, cinnamon, cayenne, orange, tea, rum, and raisin.
“These ingredients studied include many of the most common sources of vitamins and nutrients,” said the team, while they noted that the 10 ingredients for which a cancer association was not identified were generally more obscure: bay leaf, cloves, thyme, vanilla, hickory, molasses, almonds, baking soda, ginger, and terrapin.
“We should acknowledge that our searches for eligible studies were not exhaustive,” said Ioannidis and his colleagues.
“Covering the entire nutritional epidemiology literature would be impossible.”
The team added that the interest in linking food and food ingredients to cancer has grown rapidly in recent years, with around 85% of all scientific studies on food and cancer occurring between 2000 and 2011.
Marco Torres is a research specialist, writer and consumer advocate for healthy lifestyles. He holds degrees in Public Health and Environmental Science and is a professional speaker on topics such as disease prevention, environmental toxins and health policy.
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20 GMO Foods At Stores Now

Well now your back is up against the wall. 
The food giants are in attack mode with 20 GMO foods on the way while the FDA says you don't have a right to know. 
But here's the list of what you now need to avoid.


5/5 (100%) 3 votes
If the need to halt GMOs were not urgent enough, this article should scare the pants off you. Here we glimpse some of the potentials for the unabated and bizarre proliferation of GMOs. Some of these developments you will already know about (hopefully), but some will come as a surprise. As I see it we are now at a crossroads where we can still dismantle this dangerous and perverted manipulation of the very fabric of life, the sacred code of nature, which will undoubtedly affect each and every one of us in profound ways now and in the future.
Here we are reminded that the fight against GMOs and to save organics is not just a battle for what we knew yesterday, which is bad enough. It is a fight against the future of the GE movement and the unlikely and increasingly creepy, scary, and deranged turns it will likely take. Just today I read elsewhere that 35 species of fish, in addition to salmon, are slotted to be genetically engineered for various traits. I am not going to preview the highlights of what is below, but maybe you too will be left wondering, “What will they think of next?”
I hope we never have to find out. We have to stop this now before we and future generations have to be genetically engineered, RoundUp and 2,4-D Ready at the least perhaps, to withstand the onslaught of the weird stuff being channelled into our food supply and into our environment. If you haven’t already, perhaps after reading this article you will be more ready to take a real stand against GMOs by enacting the 11 Simple Steps to Eradicate GMOs and join our GMO Eradication Movement. Now put down that bowl of GMO corn chowder, buckle your seatbelts, clear you ears and clean off your eyeglasses for the list of 20 GMOs coming soon and already arrived to supermarket shelves near you.

Good luck distinguishing these Frankenfoods from real, natural food as they flood our supermarkets.
Genetically altered to withstand heavy applications of toxic chemicals, resist disease or contain more nutrients, so-called “Frankenfoods” are appearing on supermarket shelves at a rapid rate. Currently, genetically modified (GM) corn and soy can be found in many processed foods, and the produce section may contain GM zucchini, corn on the cob and papaya. But beyond those that have already been approved for human consumption, many more GMOs are on the way – and they probably won’t be labeled. These 20 crops and animal products include both those that are already available (whether we like it or not) and some that are still in development, like cows that produce human breast milk.
If you eat any kind of processed food on a regular basis – tortilla chips, cereal, granola bars – chances are, you consume genetically modified corn. The Center for Food Safety estimates that over 70% of the processed foods in American grocery stores contain genetically modified corn or soy. Corn is altered to contain proteins that kill insects that eat them, so they effectively produce their own pesticides.
Rice plants are often modified to be resistant to herbicides and pests, to increase grain size and to generate nutrients that don’t exist in the grain naturally. Varieties include Bayer’s herbicide-resistant “LibertyLink” rice, vitamin A-infused “golden rice” and the bizarre Ventria Bioscience “Express Tec” rice, which has been altered to contain human proteins naturally found in breast milk. The latter is used globally in infant formula.
Among the first foods to be genetically altered, GM tomatoes have been developed to be unnaturally high in anti-oxidants, to have more intense flavor and to stay fresh longer. While there are not currently any genetically modified tomatoes on store shelves, they’re being used extensively by scientists to study the function of genes that are naturally present in the plants.

The most common genetically engineered food of all is the soybean. Since 1996, scientists have been creating varieties of soybeans that are resistant to both pests and herbicides, and they wind up in places you’d least expect them, like candy bars. A new GM soybean with higher levels of healthy oils was approved by the USDA in 2010; chemical companies DuPont and Monsanto are both working on their own versions of the biotech bean.
We don’t think of cotton as a food, and technically it isn’t – but we still end up eating it. Cotton isn’t classified as a food crop, so farmers can use any chemicals they want when growing it. That means cottonseed oil, which is present in products like mayonnaise and salad dressing, can be packed full of pesticides. Along with soy, corn and canola, cotton grown for oil extraction is one of the most frequently genetically modified crops in the world.
Canola Oil
Canola, a cultivar of rapeseed, produces one of the most commonly consumed food oils, and it’s one of America’s biggest cash crops. What you may not know is that canola stands for “Canadian oil, low acid,” referring to a variety of rapeseed developed in the 1970s. 80% of the acres of canola sown in the U.S. are genetically modified, and a 2010 study in North Dakota found that the modified genes of these plants have spread to 80% of wild natural rapeseed plants.
Sugar Beets
Despite the fact that an environmental impact study has yet to be completed, the USDA has announced that farmers may now plant Monsanto’s Roundup Ready sugar beets, which have been altered to withstand the company’s herbicide. This decision comes despite a 2010 court order that prohibited planting the GMO beets until the study was performed. Sugar beets provide about half of America’s sugar.
Salmon may become the first genetically modified animal to be approved for direct human consumption. The FDA has decided that a variety of GM salmon that grow twice as fast as their natural, un-modified peers is both safe to eat and safe for the environment.
“We’re looking here at a scenario where the fish might wind up sooner or later in the ocean,” Brian Ellis, plant biotechnologist at the University of British Columbia Vancouver, told Discovery News. “I think if we go down this route, we have to be prepared to accept some potentially unknown consequences.”
Sugar Cane
Providing the other half of America’s precious sugar, sugar cane is set to debut on our shelves in genetically modified form sometime soon. Brazil’s state-owned agricultural research agency has beenhard at work developing drought-resistant sugar cane that also bears increased yields for years now, and may have it certified for commercial use within five years. Australia is also working on its own version.
After the Ringspot Virus nearly destroyed all of Hawaii’s papaya crops, a new variety was engineered to resist the disease, and it now represents the majority of the papayas grown in the United States.
“Papaya would be unique in the sense where the industry in Hawaii is dependent on biotech,” says Kevin Richards, director of regulatory relations for the American Farm Bureau. “What you have in Hawaii is a very contained, isolated agro-eco system, which is vulnerable to diseases.”
The first genetically modified food to be approved for cultivation in Europe in over a decade, Amflora potatoes are currently being grown in Sweden. High in starch content, the potatoes are actually meant for use in paper, glues and other commercial products rather than as food, but that doesn’t mean they won’t end up affecting the food chain. Nearby farmers worry about their rabbits, deer, and especially their bees.
Could genetically modified crops have something to do with the mysterious ailments that are killing honeybee colonies by the billions? Some researchers believe so. A zoologist in Germany found that genes used to modify rapeseed crops had transferred to bacteria living inside bees. GMOs are currently considered to be among the possible causes of Colony Collapse Disorder. And if the genes are causing changes within the bees, they’re also likely to cause changes to the honey that the bees produce.
After banana crops in Uganda were affected by a bacterial disease that caused the plants to rot, scientists developed a genetically modified variety that could help alleviate the $500 million annual loss. The ban on GM crops was waived to make way for the GM version of Uganda’s staple food. A gene from sweet pepper was inserted into the bananas that make them resistant to the bacteria. Cultivated bananas have almost no genetic diversity, so supporters of this decision argue that introducing the GMO fruits will actually help bananas as a whole.