Our friend over at Red Garden Clogs recently went to a rally organize by Occupy Big Food and Food Democracy Now, and has the lowdown here. I wasn’t able to make it, but I’m glad we got the report from RGC, as well as some powerful snapshots of signs of the timeline of Monsanto, beginning with its founding in 1901 by a 30-year pharm veteran (yes, that’s pharmaceutical, NOT farm), to the development of Agent Orange (manufactured primarily by Monsanto) in the years 1939-45, which was used from 1961-1971 during the Vietnam War as part of Operation Ranch Hand, to today, when 81 transgenic crops have been approved by the FDA without a single request denied.
I have a friend, Larry (Sarge) Forrest who was the first African-American to serve in the elite Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol (his story is only partly told in the book Six Silent Men) and, he tells me, an invitee to the Tuskegee Airmen Society, recently featured in George Lucas’s Red Tails (I saw it recently and highly recommend everyone reading this does too) since there was really no other place to put him and his friend who trained the mechanics who took care of the red tail planes that these honorable pilots flew. A skilled sniper, he was also a victim of Agent Orange and suffers its effects to this day.
There are so many reasons to be aware of what’s going on with food production today, from the obvious alarming ecological impact to honoring people who have fought the effects of irresponsible food production historically, and of course to try to reduce the number of people who suffer illness and death so that Big Food producers can increase their bottom line.
QUESTION: what are you doing to help bring attention to these issues or raise your own awareness of them? Have your eating and buying habits changed in response to awareness of the issues surrounding Big Food production? Do you have any recommendations how others can do the same? Go ahead … gimme the dirt!