If the various agencies of the US Department of Agriculture have their way, seed banks will soon be a thing of the past. Currently, there are thousands of seed banks across America saving heirloom and specially cultivated seeds for everything from cannabis to cauliflower, but with outlandish regulations proposed by Big Ag and the Dept of Ag, all those seeds could soon be in danger.
Just last year, officials of the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture sent a terse letter to a seed bank/seed exchange group housed at the Joseph T. Simpson Public Library in Mechanicsburg, PA telling them they needed to test every variety of over 400 seeds they were saving with very impractical and pointless extremity to make sure that their seeds were ‘up to regulation standards.’
Due to this ridiculous infringement on public rights, the library will now only give out seeds that are commercially packaged – which means, by and large, that the biotech companies behind seed monopolies have won in Pennsylvania for the moment – organic farmers and master gardeners can no longer exchange seeds at their local library.
Department of Agriculture authorities said this was done in the name of “protecting and maintaining the food sources of America.” One news article that went viral stated: “Agri-terrorism is a very, very real scenario.”
This was a comment by Dept. of Ag regulators.
Ironically, it is the practice of seed exchange that has kept our fields fertile for centuries. It is not an act of terrorism, but anti-terrorism, as the Department of Agriculture shows its true colors – fighting for the very companies that have almost annihilated our food supplies around the world with biotech tinkering. This, with the purposefully illegal planting of genetically modified crops and the spraying of billions of tons of carcinogenic chemicals on the soil and in the air to the detriment of entire ecosystems and most assuredly human health.
Even the Department of Health warns against pesticide exposure, but now its being bred right into our food. 800 million pounds of pesticides (and counting) simply can’t be washed off at the kitchen sink. Yet the Department of Agriculture has targeted a library – the same place books reside where likely the words of Franklin D. Roosevelt are printed in aged ink – “A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself.”
Our organic seeds are our food salvation. The Department of Ag has no right to take the ability of good people to grow good food.
“Our seed are seeds of resistance – let us plant them together.” ~ Vandana Shiva
Christina Sarich is a humanitarian and freelance writer helping you to Wake up Your Sleepy Little Head, and See the Big Picture. Her blog is Yoga for the New World. Her latest book is Pharma Sutra: Healing the Body And Mind Through the Art of Yoga.