Tell Congress to reject the DARK Act

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GMOs: Why the secrecy?

The new Congress is now in session, and it’s only a matter of time before what’s known as the Deny Americans the Right to Know (or DARK) Act is re-introduced. If passed and signed into law, this act would overturn state laws that require the labeling of genetically engineered (GMO) foods.

Big Food and the biotech companies like Monsanto are pushing to reintroduce the DARK Act, which would:
Prevent states from adopting their own GMO labeling laws.
Block any attempt by states to make it illegal for food companies to put a “natural” label on products that contain GMO ingredients.
Prevent the FDA from requiring companies to label GMO ingredients and instead continue a failed “voluntary” labeling policy.

Voluntary Labeling is a Proven Failure

While we usually support voluntary programs over mandatory programs, when it comes to GMOs, this is the wrong approach. There has already been voluntary labeling for the last 13 years — and not one company has voluntarily labeled its products as containing GMOs.…

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2015 TOFGA Conference

 

Texas Organic Farmers & Gardeners Association Conference
January 29 – 31, 2015
Hilton San Antonio Airport
San Antonio, Texas

Click Here to Register

A wide range of Texans and neighbors of many ages, backgrounds, and experiences will gather at the city once called the Crossroads of the nation to exchange ideas and knowledge in order to reclaim our Texas food system and garden and farm communities.

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FARFA endorses Linda Curtis for Texas HD 17

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Since Texas State Representative Kleinschmidt has resigned his seat, there will be a special election for House District 17. This district includes Bastrop, Caldwell, Gonzales, Karnes, and Lee Counties.

Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance is proud to endorse Linda Curtis in this election.

Linda has an impressive track record of fighting for the interests of regular Texans, bringing people from rural and urban communities together for important causes. She played a significant role in the successful effort to stop the Trans-Texas Corridor from taking farmers’ land to build an expensive toll road for the benefit of a foreign corporation. She has consistently spoken up for local taxpayers and small businesses, standing up to big business interests. Most recently, she is the leading voice for protecting precious water resources in District 17. Without water, local agriculture, and ultimately the local economy, is dead.

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Tester-Hagan Sign On Letter 2014

[CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD PDF VERSION OF THIS LETTER]

Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305)
Food and Drug Administration
5630 Fishers Lane, Room 1061
Rockville, MD 20852
December 15, 2014

Re: Preventive Controls Rule: FDA-2011-N-0920
Produce Standards Rule: FDA-2011-N-0921

Dear FDA:

The undersigned organizations, farms, food businesses, and concerned individuals jointly submit these comments on the Tester-Hagan provisions, also referred to as the qualified exemptions, in the proposed rules under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).

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What Does the Right to Farm Mean to You?

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The Texas Legislature will soon consider a bill addressing local regulation of farming operations. The Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance wants to hear from you in order to help shape our position on this issue.

“Right to farm” laws affect not only what farmers can do on their own property, but what rights their neighbors (both farmers and nonfarmers) and community have.  Read more to learn about the history and potential future expansion of the Right to Farm statute, as well as how you can provide your feedback via a short survey.

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Action Alert: Keep Small Farmers and Food Producers in Business

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Take Action on FDA’s 2014 Proposed Food Safety Regulations!

The FDA’s re-proposed Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) rules will have a disastrous impact on small, sustainable farms and food businesses if they are approved as written. Many producers will have to raise prices, or could be driven out of business, reducing consumer access to local, healthy foods.

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Texas Legislative Agenda 2015

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The Texas legislative session is approaching fast! Although the Legislature won’t convene until January 2015, bills will start being filed in mid-November after the elections. The Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance has an ambitious agenda again this year. Since bills often take more than one session to pass, we will continue to fight for important bills from the last round:

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Don’t Let Big Money Sneak the Trans-Pacific Partnership Through

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January 21, 2015:  Thanks to thousands of people who spoke up for our national sovereignty and our economy, Americans successfully stopped two damaging trade agreements from being “fast tracked” last year.  But it’s not over yet!

As President Obama made clear in his State of the Union address, he is still intent on getting authority for the  “Fast Track” approach, which prevents an open debate on the terms of trade agreements. And the Republican leadership appears to be prepared to abandon Congress’ constitutional duties  and give the President a blank check to essentially re-write our laws.

All of this is being driven by powerful corporations such as Walmart, Cargill, and Monsanto.  While the public isn’t allowed to see the draft trade agreements, these companies have been involved in the negotiation process.

The public deserves the right to know what is being proposed in our names fnewTPP map croppedor international agreements that could set the rules in our country not only for tariffs — but also for food safety, “Buy Local” preferences, energy and environmental policy, financial regulations, consumer labeling and more.…

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Action Alert: Protect Small Farmers and Food Producers from FSMA Regulations

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Updated November 5, 2014.

We fought hard for the Tester-Hagan amendment to exempt small-scale, direct-marketing farms and artisan food producers from the most burdensome aspects of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). This exemption is essential to the continued vitality of the local foods movement.

Now the FDA is proposing rules that would make it very easy for the agency to force even small-scale farmers to comply with the onerous FSMA regulations, and all but impossible for these vulnerable farmers to protect themselves.

Consequences of the Proposed Rules

Under the proposed rules, if the FDA decides to revoke the Tester-Hagan exemption and force a small-scale, direct-marketing farmer or artisan food producer to comply with the new federal requirements:

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Friday Roundup: Latest Food & Activism News

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Country of Origin Labeling, Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership, San Antonio Water Supply, Citizen Activism Workshop in Austin, TX

As the weather starts to cool down, food and agriculture issues are heating up.

At the federal level, The World Trade Organization (WTO) has ruled that the United States’ mandatory country of origin labels (COOL) rules for meat and poultry are an improper trade barrier. This international power play is a stark reminder of why we need to oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement, which may be coming back in the lame duck session after the elections. (And stay tuned for the latest news on food safety regulations, coming next week!)

Meanwhile, in Texas, San Antonio politicians appear bent on jumping into a financially risky public-private partnership to build a 142-mile pipeline to grab water from rural areas and ship it down to San Antonio in order to allow development over their own environmentally sensitive aquifer recharge zone.…

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