April 2024 Newsletter

GM-Free Australia Alliance advocates for food and farming free fromGenetically Modified Organisms (GMOs).
Thank you for your interest in clean GM-Free food for Australia. Welcome to our April 2024 newsletter! This month we go deeper into what are GMOs and currently in Australia what it means for our food. Then internationally, we have Part 2 of the farmed salmon article and find out what GM crops are doing to butterflies as well. We also have Part 2 of the GM corn situation in Mexico and find out what is happening in Australia with GM corn.We’re fast approaching the End of the Financial Year, all donations are tax-deductible. Please consider donating to the Alliance to help us carry on and keep getting the message out. No amount is too small and helps us continue our work.Please DonateGenetically modified organisms (GMOs)GMOs have infiltrated our food supply in Australia, and are often found in processed foods. A GMO is:A plant, animal or other organism that has been modified using gene technologyAn organism that has received modified traits of a GMOThe genetic make-up of an organism is modified to improve disease resistance, drought tolerance or resistance to herbicides and pesticides, or to produce an insecticide itself by inserting genes into another species. Various medicines, such as insulin, and several COVID-19 vaccines are either GMO or contain GMOs.What GM plants have been cultivated in Australia:CanolaCottonSafflowerBlue carnations (Dingley, 2021) (Stick, 2022)This reduces choice of remaining GM-Free. Patent protection of GMOs also allows for control over the food chain. It is important to remain GM-Free as studies on animals have demonstrated that GMOs can have unintended consequences on health. Eat non GMO, organic and biodynamic produce.References(Stick, Nina, Environmental scientist, 16 September 2022) How to live sustainably and chemical-free. Householders’ Options to Protect the Environment (HOPE)Say NO to GMOs by sending us photos of the labels of your favourite GM-Free Foods to add to our list at truefood@gmfreeaustralia.org.auImage of farmer looking over canola field GM “fishy” canola to feed farmed salmon is misleadingly claimed as sustainable Part 2Deformed butterflies

“Taking the pressure off wild fish stocks by growing GM oilseeds that produce health-enhancing long-chain omega-3 fatty acids might seem like a good idea. But a study has found that these fish oils, novel in land-based ecosystems, cause wing deformities in butterflies. The study was not on GM canola, but on the fish oils that such GM crops are engineered to contain. The researchers found that when the long chain omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil – eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) – were fed to cabbage white butterflies, the insects grew into heavier adults and had a higher frequency of wing deformities.

The team was careful to test realistic doses that might be expressed in GM omega-3-producing crops and ingested by butterflies feeding on them.

Dr Angelika Hilbeck, senior scientist at the Institute of Integrative Biology at ETH Zurich, Switzerland and an expert on the ecotoxicology of GM crops, commented: “The fact that these compounds [long-chain omega-3 fatty acids] are novel in terrestrial systems has been entirely overlooked until this study. I congratulate the authors for having raised the issue of this important ecological risk before these crops are planted on a significant scale.”

The Norwegian Food Safety Authority does not appear to have taken this study into consideration in its approval of the omega-3 GM canola for fish feed. And since the crop will not be grown on Norwegian soil, no authority within that country has seen fit to consider the environmental risks of the cultivation of this GM crop.” (Robinson, 2024)We believe that environmental risks need to be assessed in the cultivation of this crop.Image of blue morpho butterfly Photograph: arenapile.blogspot.comFor further reading, visit GM “fishy” canola to feed farmed salmon is misleadingly claimed as sustainable (gmwatch.org)References(Robinson, Claire, 10 January 2024) GM “fishy” canola to feed farmed salmon is misleadingly claimed as sustainable. GMWatch. GM “fishy” canola to feed farmed salmon is misleadingly claimed as sustainable (gmwatch.org)Please DonateThe GM corn situation in Mexico Part 2“Mexico’s response will be followed ten days later by submissions from eight Mexican and U.S. non-governmental groups including IATP, which will highlight Mexico’s right under a novel new section of the US-Mexico-Canada agreement to protect native corn from GMOs as part of its constitutional commitment to protect indigenous cultures. IATP’s Karen Hansen-Kuhn will be in Mexico later in March. You can keep up-to-date on the controversy on IATP’s resource page, Food Sovereignty, Trade and Mexico’s GM Corn Policies.” (Wise, 2024)Meanwhile, GM corn in AustraliaIn Australia, “FSANZ has assessed an application made by Corteva Agriscience Australia Proprietary Limited to amend the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code to permit the sale and use of food derived from a new food produced using gene technology: corn line DP910521. This corn line has been genetically modified for tolerance to the herbicide glufosinate and protection from lepidopteran insect pests. A draft food regulatory measure has been prepared.” (FSANZ, 2024)“This safety assessment addresses food safety and nutritional issues associated with the GM food. It therefore does not address:risks related to the environmental release of GM plants used in food productionrisks to animals that may consume feed derived from GM plantsthe safety of food derived from the non-GM (conventional) plant.”“No potential public health and safety concerns have been identified in the assessment of herbicide-tolerant and insect-protected corn line DP910521. On the basis of the data provided in the present application and other available information, food derived from DP910521 is considered to be as safe for human consumption as food derived from non-GM corn cultivars.” (FSANZ, 2024)This is unsatisfactory and we disagree as the risks are unknown without the proper checks and balances.We have confirmed that Cornitos Nacho Crisps are GM-Free.References(Food Standards Australia New Zealand, accessed 8/03/2024) Application A1281 – Food derived from herbicide-tolerant and insect-protected corn line – DP910521.(Food Standards Australia New Zealand, 23 January 2024) 278 -24. Supporting document 1. Safety assessment – Application A1281. Food derived from herbicide-tolerant and insect-protected corn line DP910521(Wise, Timothy A., accessed 6 March 2024) Science Supports Mexico’s GM Corn Restrictions. Agribusiness, Family farmers and the Future of Food. Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy. Food tank Science justifies precaution for Mexico GM corn (mailchi.mp)Our product of the month is Serious PopcornJoin Our MissionOur mission is to educate the public through the GM-Free True Food Guide to empower all Australians to make healthy GM-Free food choices. We rely solely on the generous donations of people like you, who care about the health and sovereignty of the food that you and your family eat.Help the GM-Free Australia Alliance, help keep GM-Free foods out of the food supply, improve health by remaining GM-Free, and especially feed our children and babies with the best GM-Free food and produce.PLEASE DONATE TO THE GM-FREE TRUE FOOD GUIDE! It’s been a journey over the past 17 years – educating and advocating for GM-Free farms, foods and futures. We’ve influenced public sentiment to demand labelling of GMOs, voice concerns and help grow awareness of GM-Free products all over Australia. To join or Volunteer for our cause, please visit our website to get involved. Follow our facebook pages, GM-Free Australia Alliance and True Food Network for the latest news, info and campaigns.In our next Newsletter, look out for more information on the True Food Guide and the future of food.Our team at GM-Free Australia Alliance Inc. work tirelessly on educating people about the dangers of GMOs, including the next generation of GMOs 2.0, GENE EDITING. We are strongly advocating for GMO labelling through the updating of the GM-Free True Food Guide.TAX-DEDUCTIBLE DONATIONS BY CREDIT CARDPlease Give GenerouslyClick this link:Donate to support our work with the GM Free Australia Alliance – Friends of the Earth Australia (foe.org.au)TAX-DEDUCTIBLE DONATIONSMake a Tax-Deductible bank transfer to:Bank Australia
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MORLEY  Western Australia  6943Reference: Your Name or CompanyWe rely solely on the generosity of donations and volunteers to support our work. Every contribution you make counts and adds your voice to the power of our collective voice in Australia saying loud and clear:NO to GMOs!If your local GM-Free group, Facebook group or other allied group is not already a GMFAA member?– Please JOIN US NOW! Add your voice to our National Alliance!Join Herefruit and vegtablesTHANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!Please share and forward to like-minded family and friends.Please ShareWorking for a GM-Free AustraliaGM-Free Australia Alliance advocates for food and farming free fromGenetically Modified Organisms (GMOs)! We oppose the genetic engineering, editing, modification & manipulationof living organisms.Please DonateYours in True Food Freedom, GMFAA Committee of ManagementGM-Free Australia Alliance Inc. http://www.gmfreeaustralia.org.auinfo@gmfreeaustralia.org.au-=-=-Friends of the Earth Australia · 312 Smith St, 1/, Collingwood, VIC 3066, Australia 
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