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Petition for Sustainable USDA

Posted by Miwa at Dec 22, 2008 03:00 PM |

From guys at Roots of Change:

Friends:  Signing this petition is important if we are going to have sustainable and urban health leadership in the Department of Agriculture.  At the end are some of my thoughts why we need this.

Michael Dimock, president of Roots of Change
reports that he was on a conference call with Obama’s transition team last week.
He says that the transition team is aware of the Food Democracy Now petition, and said that 25,000 endorsements would get their attention. Also that 50,000 could really influence Obama’s pick.

As of Monday, December 23, 10am HST the count is 58,862 . While the goal has been reached, more is always a stronger statement.

To reiterate: this petition has the attention of Obama’s team, and they are expected to make their choice public very soon.


From Kathryn Mathewson:

Some of my reasons why we need this: We need a leader in the Dept. of Agriculture who understands the relationship between healthy food and healthy soil.  We cannot continue to kill our soil and food health with pesticides.  Local urban agriculture will also improve health and reduce our oil consumption.   Also, agriculture is the biggest user of water.  Research shows that healthy soil without pesticides will reduce plant water needs by 50 to 75 percent.  This will help address our drought issues.  We need the discussion of soil biology and agriculture on every level of government (agriculture, HUD, EPA, Health, Commerce, International).  It is vital that a leader in the Dept. of Agriculture understands these issues.

Planting Your Vote, Taking Names

Since the announcement late last week about the attempt to corrupt and co-opt traditional farmers’ attempt to secure a simple 10-year moratorium on GMO taro, we’ve heard your outrage! Many of you have written to ask for details about the vote. You’re getting ready to plant your vote, and you’re taking names!

NINE Ayes (Voted pro-GMO in favor of amendments)
Rep. Clift Tsuji, Committee Chair (South Hilo to Kurtistown, Big Island)
Rep. Tom Brower (Waikiki/Alamoana, Oahu)
Rep. Jerry L. Chang (Keaukaha to South Hilo, Big Island)
Rep. Robert Herkes (Puna to Kona, Big Island)
Rep. Joey Manahan (Sand Island, Mokuea, Kalihi Kai, Kapalama, Oahu)
Rep. Ryan I. Yamane (Waipahu/Mililani, Oahu)
Rep. Kyle T. Yamashita (Pukalani to Ulupalakua, Maui)

TWO Ayes with reservations
Rep. Glenn Wakai (Moanalua to Salt Lake, Oahu)
Rep. Corinne Ching (Nuuanu/Alewa Heights, Oahu)

THREE Nos (Voted in support for true protection of Haloa)
Rep. Lyla Berg (Kahala to Hahaione, Oahu)
Rep. Faye P. Hanohano (Puna to Pahoa, Big Island)
Rep. Colleen Rose Meyer (Kaneohe to Laie, Oahu)

The “poison pill” amendments prohibit any future moratoriums on any GMO, even at the county level. At the same time, these legislators reduced the moratorium to 5 years and limited the protected taro plants to the Hawaiian varieties only. Read the amendments:


Call Your Representatives:

Call Your Senators:

You can also copy and paste the email addresses below, to email all of them:,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Again, we are NOT giving up. With your help, we are all our telling our elected representatives that Hawaii’s traditional farmers and those who support them KNOW their humble, grassroots efforts have been stolen and co-opted in favor of biotech corporations. We can do better!

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