Michael Dimock, Roots of Change discusses sustainable Ag and biotech seeds

Consumers are asking us many questions about biotech seeds and traits. They want to know why some farmers may choose to use them and what the long-term implications are not only for our health but also for the farming/ranching industry.

All of the challenges and issues facing the agriculture industry are very complex and multifaceted. The issue of using biotech seeds and traits is no different. U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) has encouraged farmers and ranchers to share their experiences and provide some insight into why they choose - or choose not - to use biotech seeds.

They have set up the "food dialogs" on their website and tomorrow have invited myself and Michael Dimock, President, Roots of Change, to hold a conversation streamed live from U.C. Davis in northern California on November 2 at 9:30 a.m. Pacific Time / 12: 30 p.m. Eastern Time. During this approximately 60-minute conversation, we will share our knowledge in and address the questions people have about genetic engineering and what that means for the future of our food.

Click here for more information.

Click here to watch the live video discussion.

Neither Michael or myself represent USFRA or its affiliates

Michael Dimock is president of Roots of Change Fund. ROC Fund develops and provides resources to a network of leaders and institutions in California collaborating in pursuit of a sustainable food system. It has invested nearly $6.3 million directly and attracted nearly $5 million in match for its programs and projects since 2004.

Dimock was a marketing executive in Europe for agribusiness, farmed organically for three years in Sonoma County, and in 1992 founded Ag Innovations Network, where he began his work on community consensus building and strategic planning to create healthier food and agriculture. From 2002 to 2007, he was Chairman of Slow Food USA and a member of Slow Food International's board of directors.

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I finally had a chance to watch this, and it was a valiant effort Pam. Nice job.

But it struck me that it was the same whack-a-mole as always. Same stuff that anti-GMO folks have been told over and over, and they refuse to accept the facts.

The strategy of peeling off his list of issues--resistance, monoculture, ownership, etc, as issues away from the science of GMOs was well done on your part. But do you think it made a difference to him?

Thanks for the kinds words Mem. yes, I think it was useful. he was very courteous and open and I think sincerely wants to advance dialog (unlike many people who take up this debate). I hope he and I will have a chance to meet again soon and perhaps share information on our websites. I am always interested in thoughts on how to advance sustainable agriculture and I believe Michael is truly interested in besing sure he has the science correct.

Great--glad to hear it. I wasn't sure that was connecting for him.

I get very tired of hearing people confuse the business model and the science, and because of that they are working to prevent the academic work. It doesn't make any sense to me--it feeds right into what they claim they dislike.

"Consumers are asking us many questions about biotech seeds and traits."

Mistaking activists for consumers is exactly the mistake they want.

By Eric Baumholder (not verified) on 07 Nov 2011 #permalink

Using bacteria resistant to Round Up, along with e-coli, a cauliflower mosiac virus and an antibiotic gene is in no way " natural". The patenting and ownership of seeds - to the exclusion of "ownership' of the farmer, is an anathema to freedom and choice. You live in an ivory tower of disinformation. More and more, REAL scientific research has demonstrated that the consumption of GM corn or soy causes toxicity in the liver, kidney and in sequential generations, sterility in rats and hamsters.

Genetic engineering is by no means precise. The proteins caused by the insertion of an outside species gene are unpredictable. Even the genome project declares that. Good heavens, read something other than the continued propaganda of the biotech industry. The FDA, by the way, in 1992, dismissed scientists concerns and slapped on "substantial equivalence." I could go on and on. The paucity of this "debate" is shocking. Surely you must know about the largest seed - organic seed - banks in the world are being put together.

Here's a link I'd start with. It's not just the genetic engineering of the food, it's the genetic engineering of humanity. I will pray that you will understand what in the world you are actually promoting.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3FvpvA_cY5U

Denise,

Believe it or not, YouTube is not widely regarded as a source for reliable information.

By Eric Baumholder (not verified) on 12 Nov 2011 #permalink

Honestly I am not much of a believer in "new age" techniques when it comes to producing food, but as the eco-system around us changes I guess there are some changes needed in food production that will amend for the new way of life which came very fast and the human organism that had enough time to evolve beyond those changes...