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Kenoi Signs Anti-GMO Bill Into Law

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It was a full house for a County Council committee meeting today despite the fact that no further testimony was being taken on the measure under consideration. Photo by Dave Smith.
Those looking to testify on Bill 113 filled the County Council chambers on numerous occasions. File photo.

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COMMENTS
  • Why mess with nature?!

    It’s just the beginning. NO to GMO!

    92% of the public wants labeling. It’s gonna happen. When it does, it will spell the END of GMO’s

    Kinda hard to go against that tide, no matter HOW much money they stand to make by screwing us.

    Keep your cross pollinating evil laboratory abomination away from my organic farm.

    GMO salmon??

    They are unleashing a nightmare of untold ramifications. Do they CARE?

    Stop messing with nature. She will ALWAYS win, and it may spell the end of us if we keep tweaking what shouldn’t be tweaked. Science/biotech isn’t always the answer.

    • GregH

      If you eat corn, strawberries, or broccoli, all of which were created by humans, then you already agree that messing with nature is a good thing. You think it was nature that made seedless bananas? And yes, before anyone says it, I know that genetic engineering is different from breeding, that’s why we have different words for them, but different does not imply bad, and now we’ve established that messing with nature isn’t so bad after all.

      If people want labeling, they can buy the food that is already labeled as organic/non-GMO, or simply do a five second Google search to find out what is and isn’t genetically engineered and buy accordingly (in fact, I’ll save you the time: corn, soy, canola, cotton, alfalfa, sugar beet, summer squash, and, my favorite, papaya). If people are not paying the premium on labeled food, what does that tell you about what they want? And if you can already know what is genetically engineered and what isn’t without labeling, what does that tell you about the groups pushing for labeling? Furthermore, I for one can’t wait to get my genetically engineered salmon. I’d much rather eat farmed salmon than one from the already overfished wild stocks, and if we’re going to farm fish, might as well do it efficiently (note that there’s no evidence suggesting that it is harmful).

      Mother Nature used to win a lot. Those wins were called famines. Out of sight, out of mind; how quickly we forget our history. As for your nightmare of untold ramifications, the opposition to genetic engineering has been saying the sky is falling for years. Vague and unsubstantiated doomsaying brings nothing to the table, literally or figuratively.

      • Why mess with Nature?!

        Many people have NO clue that over 90% of those products you mentioned are GMO. What’s wrong with telling them? When I buy a box of cereal that’s ‘all natural’, is it?

        I’m glad you are 100% behind GMO’s, considering how new they are, the limited studies conducted and all the secrecy behind the biotech companies. How trusting, you are. Hey, what can go wrong?

        So you’re going to put all your eggs into the GMO basket? That’s not very smart.

        Why is monsatan (another religious word) suing farmers who’s crops were cross pollinated with their gmo crops? That’s the organic farmer’s fault?

        They say the gmo salmon are voracious eaters. What happens when they escape into the wild and potentially wipe out ‘regular’ salmon. That’s a good thing? What if the gmo salmon turn out to be cancer causing or worse? How can you be sure they’re safe?

        It’ll be a little late to reverse course then.

        Man has to learn to live with Nature, not the other way around. She was here long before man and will be long after he destroys himself.

        And yes, I referred to nature as ‘she’ (that’s for first officer below).

        • First Officer

          Monsanoto sued no Organic farmer, only farmers that have intentionally produced their lines of GM seeds without licensing. An organic farmer, by organic rules would not do that.

          How do you know nature is not hermaphroditic ?

        • First Officer

          Limited studies?

          Google “Massive Review Reveals Consensus on GMO Safety” (This site don’t like links in comments)

          Where are all the studies of new organically bred strains ?

          Wipe out the wild strains? Cause cancer? First, needing more food to survive is not a survival trait. If they were to escape, they wouldn’t wipe out wild salmon anymore than our cattle have wiped out buffalo. GM salmon meat has been studied for proteins produced, etc. They won’t cause anymore cancer than wild salmon.

    • First Officer

      “Evil” and “abomination” are religious arguments. So is the personifcation of nature by you use of gendered pronouns to describe it.

      • Why mess with Nature?!

        And that’s a bad thing?

        • First Officer

          It is when discussing practical, scientific matters. With all due respect to Dr. Zaius, true science often contradicts faith.

          • Cindy Trautmeyer

            Faith in science is not much better. Especially when scientific logic ignores human fears and trusts corporate money and bribed politicians.

  • First Officer

    “They would also be responsible for “resulting damages to other non-genetically engineered crops, ” This alone will be struck down by the federal courts as it punishes one product over another not because of any negative effect but simply because it was created differently. It’s like restricting left handed weaved baskets.

    The argument that the GMO farmer is harming the Organic Farmer is false. It is the Organic farmer who chose to grow crops to a set of rules that he agreed to, an agreement that the GMO farmer had no part in. The Organic Farmer chose to do this for either monetary or personal gain or both. Therefore it is the Organic Farmer’s responsibility to meet those rules he agreed to, to reap such gains. It would be the same for the GMO farmer if he entered into an agreement that called for 100.00000% pure GM crops

    The argument that some anti-gmo politicians put forth that they want to create an gm free zone for economic gain, only underscores the point, as it will only be a gain for those farmers that choose to non-gm.

    • Why mess with Nature?!

      So your GMO crops cross pollinate with my crops and that’s my responsibility? Nice.

      I hope you don’t mind when your neighbor’s cannabis smoke comes wafting over into your yard, either.

      GMO’s are NOT NATURAL. That’s why they’re called GENETICALLY MODIFIED, as can only be performed in a lab.

      The onus is on YOU to tell us when something is not natural.

      If it’s so great, release all the studies on it and be PROUD to label it as such.

      Why all the secrecy?

      • First Officer

        “So your GMO crops cross pollinate with my crops and that’s my responsibility? Nice.”

        Well, yes it is. Same as when your non-gmo crops cross pollinate with mine. Or, if i were growing broccoli and you brussel sprouts, we’d have the same mutual problem. We can agree to stagger our mutual plantings, share in buffer areas etc. But these bills/laws, puts all the onus on the GMO farmer while allowing the Organic to reap all the benefits.

        Not Natural? We’ve heard that argument before. “If Man were meant to fly, God would have given him wings !” And, i got news for you, the tech to GE is getting easier. Pretty soon, you, one will be able to do it on a kitchen table, as far as the technique will require. As far as lableing it is concerned, one, there’s no pratical reason to do so and two, anti-gmo people are just chompin’ at the bit to use any labeling as Scarlet Lettering.

        • Cindy Trautmeyer

          What’s the “practical” reason for the consumer to distinguish btw farmed and wild fish? Between previously frozen or fresh meat? Of a food containing food coloring? If a food comes from Mexico or Honduras?

          It’s consumer driven economy. Corporations or their scientists have zero say in what consumers want.

          • First Officer

            Imported products may not be governed by the Commerce Clause when first imported, but that, too doesn’t serve a practical purpose, health or environmentally wise. Instead of labeling GMO’s, we should, perhaps, stop labeling for country of origin. Many foods cannot be refrozen and many foods are affected by freezing. Food coloring can make a food seem ripe or better than it really is. Wild vs. farm, is that a legal requirement or voluntary?
            Producers may not dictate what customers want but they do have a say as to what is produced. After all, you need their agreement to produce it.

          • Cindy Trautmeyer

            Producers don’t produce when nobody buys.

            Purchase decisions drive the free market. Information drives purchase decisions. Producers inform (advertise, PR, cultivation methods, benefits, ingredients, origins, warnings etc) consumers to stimulate purchases.

            When producers SUPPRESS desired information, consumers react. Either by voting laws into place or simply not buying.

  • RobertWager

    Sad another local council has been pressured by FEAR over facts to make BAD public policy. Now the lawsuits begin. Money down the drain.

    • Cindy Trautmeyer

      You prevented labeling GMO. So we prevented growing GMO on our island.

      • Lorie Farrell

        You prevented nothing but restricting the Future of Farming and science on Hawaii Island. Not only is the Bill poorly written it’s full of exemptions. Devil is always in the details :-)

        • Cindy Trautmeyer

          The future of farming in Hawaii are specialty products with regional geographic protection of their valuable names. There’s a high demand for them and they are enabling farmers to live on their land, raise families, make a living, stabilize real estate, support tourism, and keep the earned money where it counts: In Hawai’i.

          If it’s deep sea water, koa wood, coffee, or other yet untapped possibilities and products the future is bright when managed well and not being exploited for short term profits and off-island interests. It’s not GMO papayas or GMO corn fed beef falsely declared as ‘grass fed’ Hawaiian beef.

          • First Officer

            Interesting. By your economic model, all farmers who don’t already grow kona coffee and organic taro must be nuts to be missing out on all that extra profit. Or are they? To put it another way, there are reasons why General Motors doesn’t only make Cadillacs and Corvettes, even though they bring in more profit per car than Aveos. Typically, the higher the price, the smaller the market, with just a few suppliers able to supply the entire highend demand. You may think you can set Hawaii up to be only a specialty food producer but then you won’t find enough customers to support it. And, if you did, then, rather quickly, competition will move in and the market will shake out the oversupply.

            After all, just how many can afford to buy $100 a pound organic kona coffee? And, out of those that can afford it, how many are willing to actually buy it? Think Warren Buffett. See, “The Millionaire Next Door”.

          • Cindy Trautmeyer

            Look at name protected regions in Europe or all around the world. In Burgundy or Kobe not everyone grows wine or beef, but the WHOLE agricultural infrastructure flourishes. Real estate prices are stable, jobs stay in the community, infrastructure is intact, schools, hospitals are working, crime is low, tourism is steady.

            HAwaii could have many, many protected specialty products, all marketable and sustaining the farmers and communities. Of course you would have to eliminate all the planted figure heads in the Farm Bureau and the government.

          • Lorie Farrell

            Cindy your funny; why stop hiding behind your false name; while you throw out insults. Those figure heads have done more for agriculture than you ever have done.

          • Cindy Trautmeyer

            Fake, me!? You are a paid PR person, as telling what are you being instructed. Tomorrow you’ll work for a politician of whatever party, then for a non-profit, then for a government organization, then on a ‘green’ image project for a gas company.

          • Lorie Farrell

            I didn’t call you fake, I said false name. Clearly you do not know me or of what you speak. I’ve never worked for a politician or gas company in my life and my political party has never wavered. Guilty as charged for non profits, farmers and agriculture in Hawaii…Yes I’m 100% an AGvocate for agriculture and farmers in Hawaii.

            People who live in glass house should not cast stones.

          • Lorie Farrell

            Sorry Cindy but Niche specialty crops wont support or feed Hawaii. There is NO false labled Beef…It is Grass Finished, Born, Raised and grown on Hawaii Island!

          • Cindy Trautmeyer

            Cows can be confined to a pen and fed hay for many months of the year. Also cattle can be given hormones and a steady diet of antibiotics and still be called grass-fed. Hawaii Lowline in Honokaa is the ONLY true grass fed beef company in our state applying the stricter standards of the AGA.

            I

          • Lorie Farrell

            Anything can be confined to a pen. Many Hawaii beef producers particpate in organic programs so I beg to differ. All Hawaii cattle is grass fed. At $600-$700 a ton for imported feed most cows only expereince that type of feeding when weened in Hawaii. The livestock industry is not how you represent it.

          • Cindy Trautmeyer

            So the Hawaii live stock folks don’t need the GMO corn growing in our county after all. Good to hear.

        • Guest

          Restricting the future of farming? That’s funny.

          If I recall, everything was fine here before gmo’s.

          At least our children weren’t getting rashes and falling ill.

          Why try to hide gmo’s in products and not tell the consumer?

          • Lorie Farrell

            The sky isn’t falling and no one is or was getting sick on Hawaii Island… No one is hiding anything.

  • Guest

    Inotherwords, say goodby to science and progress. We’re heading into the dark ages, where fear, superstition and environmental hippy dogma rule

    • Bye Bye

      Gee, I guess you shouldn’t have moved to the Big Isl. It’s not too late for you to leave.

  • Why mess with Nature?!

    Organic is about no pesticides or genetic modification.

    I don’t see any need to study that, it’s just plain smart and healthy.

    Enjoy your gmo’s. I’ll say ‘thanks, but no thanks’.

    • First Officer

      No Pesticides in Organic Farming?

      Got Rotenone ?

      Google: “Mythbusting 101: Organic Farming > Conventional Agriculture”

  • Cindy Trautmeyer

    Belittling the faith of consumers is as idiotic as patronizing their instinctive fears in lobbying, political propaganda, marketing, and strategic planning.

  • Guest

    I’m looking forward to the lawsuits for this stupid anti-science bill