I will never forget the gorgeous spring morning when I was hiking with my girlfriend in the Redwoods. The dappled sunlight was filtering through the ferns and underbrush, creating a veritable mosaic of color. I almost expected to see a wood fairy but instead, when I rounded the bend, the cutest Lilliputian baby skunk was ambling across the path like a little drunken sailor. It was the cutest little black and white fur ball I had ever seen. We crowded around to get a better gaze and marvel at its adorable perfection, when suddenly momma appeared out of a hollow log and boy was she perturbed! By the arch of her tail and the gleam in her determined eye it was apparent she would stop at nothing to protect her offspring.
This is exactly the intent and strength of the organization “Mothers across America”, a national coalition of unstoppable moms committed to empowering millions to educate themselves about GMOs and related pesticides, requiring GMO labeling and offering GMO free and Organic solutions.
It was almost by chance that I met this group of fiercely committed mothers at Expo West last spring. A friend of a friend mentioned “you should meet these women” and an impromptu and last minute meeting was set on the last day of the show. The minute I shook their hands and met their gaze I was struck by their intensity and focus. They were clearly on a mission, and it turned out to be passionately protecting their offspring and the children of America. Despite the lack of many scientific studies they had personal anecdotal proof that feeding children GMO food was unhealthy. In fact it was making their children sick!
The stories they told were astounding and you can read many more testimonials on their website. Stories such as: “My son was diagnosed with asthma. We went organic and he went from being on a nebulizer 3xs a day to zero asthma…” or “My son has had severe autism, but now we only eat organic and after 2 weeks we saw huge improvements. This year he entered high school and not one of his teachers could tell he used to have severe autism symptoms.”
Moms across America is the brainchild of Zen Honeycutt, mother of 3 boys, one of whom had life threatening allergies. That is until she found out about GMOs and helped her son to avoid them. Passionate about caring for her family, and inspired by Robyn O’Brien’s Ted Talk “Patriotism on a Plate” and Jeffrey Smith’s “Tipping Point Network” concept, Zen created a forum for Moms to reach out and encourage one another. “The power of one”—it starts a movement. And now they are organizing Marches during 4th of July parades in 44 states and counting.
Last Spring Moms across America and Sustainable Pulses released an in house report that revealed the world’s number 1 herbicide, Glyphosate, was detected in mothers’ breast milk in the U.S. In the first ever testing on glyphosate herbicide in the breast milk, they found high levels in 3 out of 10 samples tested. The shocking results point to glyphosate levels building up in women’s bodies over a period of time, which has until now been refuted by both global regulatory authorities and the biotech industry. They also found high levels of Glyphosate in drinking water and in urine. The testing was done at Microbe Inotech Labs in St. Louis, Missouri, and was not meant to be a full scientific study but to inspire and initiate full peer-reviewed scientific studies on glyphosate by regulatory bodies and independent scientists worldwide. You can read more on the study here.
History can teach us many things and we need to remember some of the lessons we learned from past experience. A few examples, not excluding getting to close to a newborn skunk, are:
1.) Monsanto marketed PCBs under the trade name Aroclor from the 1930’s through 1977 and insisted they were not toxic. According to the EPA, PCBs, which were widely used for over 40 years as dielectric and coolant fluids, have now been shown to cause cancer in humans and were banned in 1979.
2.) DDT was developed as the first of the modern synthetic insecticides in the 1940s and used extensively through the 1960’s for insect control in crop and livestock production, institutions, homes and gardens. In 1972, the EPA banned the use of DDT based on adverse environmental effects on wildlife, as well potential human health risks. DDT is known to be very persistent in the environment and it accumulates in fatty tissues. It can travel long distances in the upper atmosphere. Since the use of DDT was discontinued in the United States, its concentration in the environment and animals has decreased, but because of its persistence, residues still remain a concern!
Could the herbicides 2, 4-D and Roundup be the next chapter in the history books of “Oops, we shouldn’t have allowed that?” Could these concerned mothers who have seen their children’s health improved by eating GMO free and Organic be onto something?
The UNFI Foundation supports Moms across America and looks forward to the marches the organization is planning in conjunction with the Fourth of July. What’s more apple pie than mothers in a July 4th parade? Don’t get in their way, because they are marching for the future of food, the health of our children and national right to know what is in our food.
There are many ways you can support their cause by clicking here. Look out Monsanto, don’t mess with these mommas!