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The Food Safety Law That Threatens To Destroy Small Farmers And Organic Growers All Across America

****Today we have a guest post by Barbara Fix.  She is an outstanding writer and I think that you are really going to enjoy what she has to share with us below.  We encourage everyone to visit Barbara at Survival Diva Blog http://www.survivaldiva.com/.****  Our food chain has been under attack for quite some time. The newest attack, Bill S.510, the Food Safety and Modernization Act, introduced by Senator Harry Reid, makes all the other grabs for our sovereignty pale in comparison. Bill S. 510 has the potential to control our food chain, taking away our ability to buy organically grown fruits and vegetables, and some warn, will open the family garden to scrutiny and complete control. If you’re willing to go down into the depths of darkness in search of the reason for this Bill, consider a day when we are not allowed to purchase heirloom or hybrid garden seed, and are instead allotted GMO seed (more on GMO in my next article).

The following quote best sums up what we are facing:

“If accepted [S 510] would preclude the public’s right to grow, own, trade, transport, share, feed and eat each and every food that nature makes.  It will become the most offensive authority against the cultivation, trade and consumption of food and agricultural products of one’s choice. It will be unconstitutional and contrary to natural law or, if you like, the will of God.”  ~[Dr. Shiv Chopra], Canada Health whistleblower

Some may remember when Clinton passed NAFTA and GATT.  That was the day of lost innonence for me, for it suddenly became clear that our leaders did not always have our best interest at heart. Soon, our manufacturing began pond-jumping to overseas locations for lowered taxes and cheap labor. Seemingly overnight, we became a service-related society. In many ways, The Food and Safety Modernization Act has shades of NAFTA and GATT attached to it. The only difference is instead of controlloing our infrastructure, S. 510 is the kill-shot to take away the one thing none of us can live without—food.

The Bill, HR2749 passed, despite dire warnings that a Tester Amendment attached to the bill was a dupe, promoted as a way to protect small farmers and processors from going out of business, but was in fact a grab for complete control of the food chain. However, the Senate did not pick it up until they had added the death keel to our food sovereignty by taking up Bill S. 510. At that time, they added section 107 to the bill with which to generate revenue—something expressly forbidden in the Constitution when such revenue is not introduced by the House. That should have been the end of it. The Bill should have been given its walking papers, and the promoters and writers of the Bill should have been sent for a time out for the remainder of the session. Instead, they worked double-time to gain back lost ground with several possibilities;

The senate could backtrack and get unanimous agreement on removing section 107; or they could remove the offending revenue generation and the “Tester amendment” and hope to fast-track the Bill through the Senate; the Senate could have taken HR2749, having already passed the house, to be slapped on the president’s desk; or they could have the House Ways and Means shove it on through, forgive the constitutional infraction, and vote on it before the deadline they faced. But this liars poker would never fly because of the legal issues that had the potential to ensnare the many plans put into place with the Food and Safety Modernization Safety Act to regulate our food.

The Bully On The Hill: Here are the highlights: The Tester Amendment included in Bill S. 510 was promised as a complete exemption for all farmers with revenues of less than $500,000 annually.

However, it’s important to watch the slight of hand. If one reads the actual amendment, it is evident that it will not do what it is purported to do for the vast majority of small producers. The Tester Amendment has strict restrictions on those who may be “exempted” from HACCP (Hazard and Critical Control Point) enforcements. Those exempted must agree to have a certifier sign off on the plan, and a team to be trained to make sure the farmer follows the plan.

1996 should have taught us a lesson when HACCP forced many meatpacking businesses out of business. Now, only four large meat packaging make up 80% of the meat packing industry.

The Tester Amendment holds farms with less production exempt as long as the farmer keeps records substantiating their sales. The problem with this approach is that an inspector is allowed to use their desecration (power) and nothing says they will be inclined to play well with others. The farmer must apply to be included in the protections of the Tester amendment and keep meticulous records for three years to prove they meet the category of selling more than 50% of annual revenue within a 275-mile radius, or be slapped with the full force of S.510, which would put them out of business.

When a farmer sells from a roadside stand or at a farmers market, they must keep a running record of sales if they don’t want to lose their exemption, and they’d better get really good at map reading to avoid selling outside the allotted 250-mile marker. This is definitely a case of “May I see your papers, please?” The purchaser’s I.D must be shown to double-check that they reside within the small, allowable circumference. In many ways it is not unlike a grocery rewards cards, where every morsel you buy and every liter you drink becomes a permanent record. If you’re getting a visual of brown shirts and jack boots, you share the view of many!

Officials have stated this regulation will be in effect within the Tester Amendment because of Agenda 21 Suitable Development. This translates to total, complete control over human impact on the environment. And to think some of us thought the spotted owl and wetlands protection was a bit over the top!

What a great way to monitor food distribution and keep the farmer in their cross-hairs. Think about the farmer who has devoted their life to provide food that won’t kill his fellow man and then be forced to register under the Bioterrorism Act of 2002 (aka Section 415), but this is what farmers will be facing if they wish to stay in business.

I did say forced, as in past tense. The Food Safety Modernization Act officially passed in early January 2011 with a vote of 75 to 23. For this to be made possible, it took a bit more than slight of hand. It took a late Sunday night vote without a roll call and it was attached to the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Act H.R. 3082 Act. This is very telling, for something intended for the good of the people could have been voted on in the light of day with a full contingency of Senators in attendance.

Lets take a cleansing breath because this is not unlike trying to master a rubrics cube… blindfolded. But, remember what’s at stake is our ability to eat and keeping the government out of our gardens. It’s worth the read.

Watch out For That Suit!Monsanto claims they have no interest in the bill and would not benefit from it. Lets cosider that statement. Mosanto has said they intend to own the food chain, and so far they’ve done an exempliraly job. Every Judge that has found against them for ruiining a farmers crops (there are a paltry few on this list. Typically, Monsanto sues the farmer for unauthorized planting of their seed which was picked up in the wind, ruining a organic gardenrs crop and livelyhood), or in several cases where a Judge put an injunction against Montansanto from growing crop that held concerning health ramifications has been sumilarily overturned.

In fact,  Monsanto’s Michael Taylor may have connections to writing S. 510 and it has been discussed in high places that he expects to be named “Food Czar” to the FDA in preperation for introducing this new government “Department,” although this position has not been approved by Congress. Lets hope Congress decides to put their Big-Boy pants on and put a halt to yet another of Monsanto’s brass that have been infiltrating the Hill for far too long. Some claim S. 510  will give Monsanto unlimited power over all US seed, food supplements, food and farming.

We can be thankful for a few attachments that were removed before the bill was passed. Most nutritional supplements would have been outlawed through “harmonization” of European Laws and farmers caught selling raw milk, even to their neighbors, would have received a ten-year prison sentence. Even though these mandates were removed, it bears closer scrutiny. The Bill’s authors could only have had a police state in mind when writing such draconian measures in to a Bill that was supposedly there to pave the way for food safety.

Visit Survival Diva Blog http://www.survivaldiva.com/ for more information on rural living, gardening, home canning, food storage, and tips on combating skyrocketing food prices.

Survival Diva, Barbara’s preparedness book is available August 1, 2011 http://www.survivaldiva.com/ Download for just $3.95