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OP-ED: ORGEON VOTE A HUGE SETBACK TO ORGANIC COMMUNITY
by Mischa Popoff, B.A. (Hons.) U. of S.
Former USDA contract organic inspector

As a former organic farmer and USDA-contract organic inspector, let me just say that last week's vote in Jackson County Oregon to ban GMOs is a HUGE setback for the organic community in America.

We were never in the business of denying our neighbors the right to use advanced forms of technology. We only stipulated that WE would not use them, and then let consumers decide if they agreed with our philosophy.

This non-combative approach has worked extremely well. We are now worth more than all of Major Leagues Baseball, and publicly-traded organic businesses hold their own on the NY Stock Exchange against any conventional food companies.

For years we argued that the farming community should respect OUR right to be organic. With last week's vote in Jackson County - making it the third jurisdiction in America to ban a perfectly-safe form of agricultural science from the landscape - we've gone yet one more step down the road to denying our neighbors their rights. And that goes against everything it has ever meant to be organic.

My grandfather used to say you can't sell a Ford by beating up on a Chev. It's time for anti-GMO organic activists to realize that someday they might not be able to sell any Fords if they keep trying to eliminate Chev altogether. Consumers have a funny way of turning on you when you bend the rules of fair play.

This is America. If we don't live by the free market, we shouldn't be surprised if the free market suddenly turns on us.

Peace is that glorious moment in history when everyone stands around -- reloading.


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