I’ll Have Some Kidney Disease With That Burger

Rat and impossible burger

Rats fed GM yeast-derived protein soy leghemoglobin – the burger’s key ingredient – developed signs of toxicity. Report by Claire Robinson and Dr Michael Antoniou

The Impossible Burger is a plant-based burger, the key ingredient of which is a protein called soy leghemoglobin (SLH for short), derived from genetically modified (GM) yeast. It’s already being sold in restaurants and supermarkets in the US. In 2019 the manufacturing company, Impossible Foods, applied for permission to market the burger in the EU and the UK.

However, the results of a rat feeding study commissioned by Impossible Foods and carried out with SLH suggest that the burger may not be safe to eat.

SLH is the substance that gives the burger its meaty taste and makes it appear to bleed like meat when cut. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) initially refused to sign off on the safety of SLH when first approached by the company. The rat feeding study results suggest that the agency’s concerns were justified. Rats fed the GM yeast-derived SLH developed unexplained changes in weight gain, changes in the blood that can indicate the onset of inflammation or kidney disease, and possible signs of anaemia.

2015: FDA says SLH safety not proven

The company maintains that SLH is safe to eat.[1] It wanted the US Food and Drug Administration to agree with its self-declared conclusion that SLH is “GRAS” (Generally Recognized As Safe), providing reassurance for consumers. But in 2015, in response to Impossible Foods’ first application, the FDA refused to agree that the substance was safe. It responded with tough questions for the company, as revealed in documents obtained under a Freedom of Information request.[2]

The FDA was concerned that SLH has never been consumed by humans and may be an allergen. The agency pointed out that the safety information submitted by Impossible Foods was not specific enough: “Although proteins are a part of the human food supply, not all proteins are safe. Information addressing the safe use of modified soy protein does not adequately address safe use of soybean leghemoglobin protein from the roots of the soybean plant in food.”[2]

The FDA concluded, “FDA believes that the arguments presented, individually and collectively, do not establish the safety of SLH for consumption, nor do they point to a general recognition of safety.”[2]

2017: Impossible Foods tries again

In 2017 Impossible Foods tried again with a new application for GRAS status. It submitted data from a study that the company had commissioned in which rats were fed SLH.[3]

Although Impossible Foods had in its 2015 submission told the FDA it intended to conduct a 90-day feeding study (the standard length for subchronic toxicity in rats), the company said that following “feedback” from the agency, it had decided on a shorter study of 28 days.[2]

While this change would cut costs for Impossible Foods, it is not in the public health interest. That’s because the shorter the duration of a study, the less likely it is to find health effects such as organ damage, which take time to show up.

The number of animals and duration of a feeding study are two key design elements in an investigation of the safety of a GM food substance.

It was always unlikely that SLH would have strong and obvious toxic effects in the short term; any adverse effects from a novel food substance would likely be subtle. Long-term studies with relatively large numbers of animals are required in order to reveal the significance of such effects. Given these requirements, it seems clear that Impossible Foods’ study was statistically weak. There were too few animals in each test group (10 per sex per group) and again, the study was too short in duration (28 days in a rat is equivalent to just 2-3 years in a human) to clarify any health concerns from long-term consumption of this product.

Potentially adverse effects in SLH-fed rats

In light of these limitations, it is remarkable that the SLH-fed rats did show a large number of statistically significant potentially adverse effects, compared with the control group – for example:
* unexplained transient decrease in body weight gain
* increase in food consumption without weight gain
* changes in blood chemistry
* decreased reticulocyte (immature red blood cell) count (this can be a sign of anemia and/or damage to the bone marrow where red blood cells are produced)
* decreased blood clotting ability
* decreased blood levels of alkaline phosphatase (can indicate malnutrition and/or celiac disease)
* increased blood albumin (can indicate acute infection or damage to tissues) and potassium values (can indicate kidney disease)
* decreased blood glucose (low blood sugar) and chloride (can indicate kidney problems)
* increased blood globulin values (common in inflammatory disease and cancer).[3]

The fact that these changes were seen in spite of the statistical weaknesses of the study (stemming from the short duration and low number of animals in each group) gives particular reason for concern.

Reproductive changes in SLH-fed females?

In the study, apparent disruptions in the reproductive cycle were found in some groups of females fed SLH. In normal healthy rats, the uterus fills up with fluid during the proestrus phase of the cycle, in the run-up to the fertile and sexually receptive phase (estrus). In the SLH-fed rats, significantly fewer “fluid filled” uteri were seen. This correlated with decreased uterus weight, as might be expected.[3]

In response to this finding, Impossible Foods commissioned a second rat feeding study, which found no effect on the SLH on the rats’ estrus cycle. The company concluded that the findings of the first study had been a mere artifact of the experimental method used.[3]

For the sake of the women who may eat the Impossible Burger on a regular basis, we hope that the company is correct.

All effects dismissed

Impossible Foods dismissed all these effects as “non-adverse”, as having “no toxicological relevance”, as “transient” on the grounds that they appeared to reverse themselves after some days, and as not dependent on the dose (i.e. the effect did not increase with increasing dose).

It is true that the adverse outcomes may appear somewhat haphazard. However, the fact that there were so many statistically significant changes in multiple organs and systems suggests that closer scrutiny of the safety of SLH is urgently required. The apparent randomness of the effects may be due to the fact that the study design was statistically weak. And it is well known that toxic effects do not always follow a linear dose-response pattern.[4] Dismissing the findings as irrelevant appears irresponsible.

The only way of ascertaining if potentially adverse effects seen in short studies are truly adverse or have lasting consequences is to extend the study length to the rats’ full lifetimes (2-3 years) and to do multigenerational testing. In this case, neither was done.

FDA capitulates

Impossible Foods’ second attempt to obtain GRAS status for SLH succeeded and the FDA issued a “no questions” letter, indicating that it had no further questions.[5]

Contrary to what many people believe, such letters are not an assertion by the FDA that the food in question is safe. They state that the company asserts that the food is safe and remind the company that it, and not the FDA, is responsible for ensuring that it only puts safe foods on the market.

“No questions” letters may protect the FDA from liability in case something goes wrong. But they do not protect the consumer from unsafe novel foods.

Another GMO ingredient

In 2019 Impossible Foods introduced a new recipe for its Impossible Burger. In addition to GMO-derived SLH, the burger now contains another GMO ingredient: protein from herbicide-tolerant soy.[6] The company introduced soy protein to replace wheat protein in order to improve the texture and to avoid gluten, the protein in wheat that some people cannot tolerate.[7]

As a result, Impossible Burger Version 2.0 can contain residues of the “probable carcinogen” glyphosate,[8] the main ingredient of the herbicide used on GM soy.

Testing by Health Research Institute Laboratories, commissioned by the advocacy group Moms Across America, found glyphosate at a level of 11.3 ppb. The level was 11 times higher than the Beyond Meat burger, another plant-based burger that is made from non-GMO ingredients.[9] (However, Beyond Meat’s crashing stock suggests that the hype over any fake meat product is misplaced.)

Knowing the concerns that the use of GMO soy protein and glyphosate residues may raise, Impossible Foods CEO Pat Brown has gone to some lengths to reassure the buying public.[10] But based on what the rat feeding studies tell us about the potential health effects of the Impossible Burger, the company would be well advised to shelve SLH and the reformulate their product with natural – and if possible organic and minimally processed – ingredients.

References

1. Strom S. Impossible Burger’s ‘secret sauce’ highlights challenges of food tech. The New York Times, December 22, 2017. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/08/business/impossible-burger-food-meat.html

2. Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP. Response to FDA Questions – GRAS Notice 540 soybean leghemoglobin – Impossible Foods, Inc. May 2015. https://tinyurl.com/255e3s98

3. Impossible Foods, Inc. GRAS notification for soy leghemoglobin protein preparation derived from Pichia pastoris: GRAS Notice (GRN) No. 737. October 2017. https://www.fda.gov/media/124351/download

4. Hill CE, Myers JP, Vandenberg LN. Nonmonotonic dose–response curves occur in dose ranges that are relevant to regulatory decision-making. Dose-Response. 2018;16(3). doi:10.1177/1559325818798282

5. US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Re: GRAS Notice No. GRN 000737. July 2018. https://tinyurl.com/msufbvpk

6. Brodwin E. The inside story of how the Silicon Valley burger startup Impossible Foods is going global after its sizzling Burger King debut. Business Insider, May 16, 2019. https://www.businessinsider.com/impossible-burger-national-launch-gmo-soy-burger-king-2019-5?r=US&IR=T

7. Watson E. Impossible Foods replaces wheat with soy protein concentrate in its plant-based burger; says color additive petition won’t delay retail launch. Food Navigator USA, January 8, 2019. https://www.foodnavigator-usa.com/Article/2019/01/08/Impossible-Foods-replaces-wheat-with-soy-protein-concentrate-in-its-plant-based-Impossible-burger

8. International Agency for Research on Cancer. IARC Monographs Volume 112: Evaluation of Five Organophosphate Insecticides and Herbicides. Lyon, France: World Health Organization; 2015. https://monographs.iarc.fr/iarc-monographs-on-the-evaluation-of-carcinogenic-risks-to-humans-4/

9. Moms Across America. GMO Impossible Burger positive for carcinogenic glyphosate. July 8. https://www.momsacrossamerica.com/gmo_impossible_burger_positive_for_carcinogenic_glyphosate
Note that when interpreting the health implications of the level of glyphosate found, it is daily intakes that count and not the concentrations in ppb that were detected.

10. Brown P. How our commitment to consumers and our planet led us to use GM soy. Medium.com. May 2019. https://medium.com/impossible-foods/how-our-commitment-to-consumers-and-our-planet-led-us-to-use-gm-soy-23f880c93408

An earlier version of this article appeared on the GMOScience website in 2019. It is republished here in updated form with permission.

from:    https://www.gmwatch.org/en/106-news/latest-news/20099-rat-feeding-study-suggests-the-impossible-burger-may-not-be-safe-to-eat

Bill Gates & The Seeds of Doom

Bill Gates’ ‘Magic Seeds’ Won’t Solve World Hunger But Will ‘Create Ecological Disaster’

Bill Gates is rebranding genetically engineered seeds as “magic seeds” and says they’re the answer to world hunger, but according to Vandana Shiva, Ph.D., a “failed, clumsy crude manipulation of living systems does not create ‘magical seeds.’ It creates an ecological disaster.”

Bill Gates said he believes the global community must invest in engineered crops using what he calls his “magic seeds” to solve world hunger.

Food aid alone cannot address the problem, Gates said in an essay accompanying the  Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s (BMGF) Goalkeepers 2022 Report, released earlier this month.

What is needed, he said, are “magic” seeds that have been genetically engineered to be resistant to hot and dry climates or to grow three weeks faster than natural seeds.

“Temperature keeps going up,” Gates said. “There is no way, without innovation, to come even close to feeding Africa. I mean, it just doesn’t work.”

However, André Leu, organic farming expert, former president of IFOAM Organics International and author of “Growing Life: Regenerating Farming and Ranching,” criticized Gates for calling his genetically modified seeds “magical.”

“This is patently false and an example of spin doctoring by public relations companies to rebrand products that are widely regarded as Frankenfoods,” Leu told The Defender.

According to Vandana Shiva, Ph.D., environmental activist, author and founder of Navdanya International, “[Natural] seeds as the source of life are magical. They hold their implicate order within them, and unfold to relocate the unique patterns and structures of life in its diversity.”

In contrast, Shiva said, “Genetically engineered seeds have been made to own life through patents.”

Shiva told The Defender:

“[Genetically engineered seeds] are a failed technology.

“Herbicide-resistant crops were supposed to control weeds. They have created superweeds. Bt toxin crops were supposed to control pests. They have created super pests, increased the need for pesticides, increased farmers’ debt and driven farmers to suicide in India.

“A failed, clumsy, crude manipulation of living systems does not create ‘magical seeds.’

“It creates an ecological disaster of monocultures of GMOs [genetically modified organisms] displacing the rich diversity of crops that we need for the health of people and the health of the planet.”

According to Gates, he’s concerned about the planet — at least how it may be impacted by climate change.

The BMGF on Sept. 6 released an “Agriculture Adaptation Atlas” that uses predictive modeling to estimate how climate change may affect growing conditions for crops in African countries.

The BMGF is also promoting the use of artificial intelligence (AI) that processes the genome sequences of crops along with this environmental data to conjure up a data-based vision of what farms should look like in the future.

“From this computer model, researchers can identify the optimal plant variety for a particular place,” Cambria Finegold, director of digital development for CABI, an intergovernmental organization that is developing models for the BMGF, earlier this month told The Associated Press (AP). “Or they can do the reverse: pinpoint the optimal place to grow a specific crop.”

Finegold added:

“It’s not just, ‘how do we get through this crisis and get back to normal?’ It’s, ‘what does the future normal look like?’”

But critics pointed out this reliance on AI and genetically modified seeds would exacerbate environmental issues because the modified seeds require heavy use of fossil-fuel fertilizers, which must be transported across great distances, and pesticides that threaten biodiversity.

According to Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa and AGRA Watch, a group that “works with partner organizations in Africa and the US to support sustainable, agroecological, socially responsible, and indigenous alternatives,” the BMGF’s industrial agricultural programs in Africa, including its Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), cause biodiversity loss, hurt small-scale farmers and cause environmental harm — all while failing to solve hunger.

Rachel Bezner Kerr, a professor of global development at Cornell University, told the AP there are existing alternatives — such as locally managed seed banks, composting systems that promote healthy soil and non-chemical pesticide interventions — that can build more resilient farming systems and reduce the need for food aid.

Kerr, a lead author of the food chapter of the latest report from the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, said that although the panel doesn’t make recommendations, “overall, the kind of focus on a few technologies and reliance on fossil fuel-based inputs isn’t in line with ecosystem-based adaptation” or a biodiverse future.

However, BMGF CEO Mark Suzman contended fertilizer is necessary. “You simply cannot meet overall productivity gains without it,” he said on a call with reporters, according to the AP.

Gates also dismissed alternative ideas.

“If there’s some non-innovation solution, you know, like singing ‘Kumbaya,’ I’ll put money behind it,” Gates told the AP in an interview. “But if you don’t have those seeds, the numbers just don’t work.”

Gates said, “When researchers in Kenya compared plots of this new [genetically modified] maize, which they called ‘DroughtTEGO®,’ with the old one, they saw the DroughtTEGO farms were producing an average of 66% more grain per acre.”

Shiva said genetically engineered crops and seeds aren’t the answer.

“To end world hunger we must stop treating food as a commodity and seeds as corporate ‘intellectual property,’” she told The Defender.

“To solve world hunger every farm must become biodiverse and ecological. Biodiversity intensification produces more nutrition per acre, with no dependence on external inputs of seeds and toxic agrochemicals as our report ‘Health Per Acre’ shows.”

“We can feed the people while regenerating the biodiversity of the planet,” Shiva said.

Leu agreed. “The scaling up of regenerative organic agriculture based on the science of agroecology would easily solve the global food insecurity crisis. It is low-cost, proven, and effective, and scaling it up globally would be less than the cost of developing one GMO crop.”

Claiming GMOs have no place in solving world hunger, Leu said:

“Despite more than 40 years of hype that GMO seeds were going to dramatically increase yields, solve pest and disease problems, reduce pesticide use, drought-proof crops, allow them to be grown in saline soils, and numerous other extravagant claims, this has not been achieved.

“The research by independent scientists — not by the scientists employed by the biotech companies who have an obvious conflict of interest — clearly shows that there have been no yield increases over conventional breeding.

“The only two things GMO crops have succeeded in doing are dramatically increasing the use of toxic pesticides such as glyphosate (Roundup) in our food, bodies, and environment and the profits of the large agribusiness pesticide companies.”

Leu emphasized the effectiveness of teaching organic farming methods to small-scale farmers to address hunger.

“The majority of food-insecure people are smallholder family farmers and others who depend on them in rural communities,” he said.

“We have proven many times that teaching good organic farming practices can increase their yields by over 100% so they can feed their families and local communities. They also get an income to pay for healthcare, education and many other things that are important for a good quality of life.”

Who really suffers and who profits from ‘philanthrocapitalism based on biopiracy’?

The BMGF and the Gates-led AGRA say they aim to transform agriculture in Africa by increasing incomes and food security for millions of smallholder farmers.

On July 13, Gates pledged to donate $20 billion to the BMGF so it can increase its annual spending to “mitigate some of the suffering people are facing right now.” The donation brought the foundation’s endowment up to $70 billion, CNBC reported in July.

The BMGF has spent $1.5 billion on grants focused on agriculture in Africa, according to Candid, a nonprofit that researches philanthropic giving.

But an independent evaluation of AGRA’s efforts, released in late February by the consulting firm Mathematica, found “mixed” outcomes on inclusive financial, output markets and farmer outcomes, The Defender reported.

According to Joeva Rock, Ph.D., assistant professor of development studies at the University of Cambridge who wrote a not-yet-released book about food sovereignty in Ghana, activists in Africa questioned whether the funds could have been better spent elsewhere.

In Ghana, field trials for four varieties of genetically modified seeds began in 2013, Rock told the AP.

“What would happen if those went into increasing funds to the national research centers in Ghana, to building roads, to building storage, to building silos or helping to build markets?” Rock said.

Food insecurity is not caused by low yields, Leu told The Defender. “It is caused by unfair and inefficient food distribution systems.”

Leu said:

“Industrial farming systems are not designed to feed the poor. The COVID-19  pandemic lockdowns and war in Ukraine are examples of why it is the wrong model.

“Growing food thousands of miles away from where it is needed instead of growing it locally is the problem. People are dependent on supply chains that can easily be disrupted.

“Also, food-insecure people are the poorest on the planet. Even if the food gets to their country, they can’t afford to buy it.

“On the other hand, we now have an obesity epidemic in the more affluent countries and regions due to an oversupply of calories empty of nutrition from industrial agriculture.”

In 2006, the BMGF joined with the Rockefeller Foundation to spur a “green revolution” in Africa by creating AGRA.

“Over the long term, the partnership, called Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), intends to improve agricultural development in Africa by addressing both farming and relevant economic issues, including soil fertility and irrigation, farmer management practices, and farmer access to markets and financing,” the groups said.

At its inception, AGRA declared Africa deficient in what it referred to as “improved inputs,” such as fertilizer and “advanced” seeds, and has worked to implement policies that would make African farmers use manufactured fertilizers, pesticides and engineered seeds — which are all patented products that generate profits for their owners.

AGRA Watch — founded to respond to and challenge AGRA’s policies — calls BMGF’s efforts “philanthrocapitalism based on biopiracy.”

Although the BMGF and AGRA claim to be “pro-poor” and “pro-environment,” their alignment with transnational corporations such as Monsanto, and foreign policy groups such as the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), makes their motives suspect, according to AGRA Watch:

“[BMGF] takes advantage of food and global climate crises to promote high-tech, market-based, industrial agriculture and generate profits for corporations even while degrading the environment and disempowering farmers.”

A three-part video series “Rich Appetites: How Big Philanthropy Is Shaping the Future of Food in Africa” explains why exporting the U.S. agribusiness model to Africa is a “grave mistake” and exposes how “Big Philanthropy” — namely the BMGF — is destroying farming and food in Africa by seizing control from local interests.

As of Sept. 20, Forbes estimated Gates’ net worth to be around $104.4 billion.

from:    https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/bill-gates-genetically-engineered-seeds-world-hunger-ecological-disaster/?utm_source=salsa&eType=EmailBlastContent&eId=8ad4e1dd-353b-431d-9c30-7212afb73ef1

WHAT!!! Climate Change is Natural Phenomenon

“Nothing To Do With Man” – Astrophysicist Says Climate-Cultists “Are On A Gravy Train” To Make Money
BY TYLER DURDEN
SATURDAY, SEP 10, 2022 – 06:30 PM

This year’s heat waves and subsequent droughts resulted in the hottest summer in recorded European history, according to a report by the Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) – an EU-funded Earth observation agency.

“We’ve not only had record August temperatures for Europe, but also for the summer, with the previous summer record only being one year old,” said Freja Vamborg, a senior scientist at the Copernicus Climate Change Service.

Of course, this ‘record’ heat in the summer has prompted activists to trot out the same old tropes that this ‘confirms climate change’ is having a catastrophic effect on the world already. With the energy crisis facing Europe, this is not a particularly comfortable topic as numerous nations abandon – albeit apparently temporarily – their green policies in favor of not letting their citizenry starve or freeze.

Given that it’s all ‘settled science’, the following RT News anchor was probably expecting a rote response to his questions about climate change.

He was in for a big surprise…

Piers Corbyn – physicist, meteorologist, and elder brother of former UK Labor Party leader Jeremy Corbyn – explained to the shocked RT anchor that the climate “has always been changing, but this has nothing to do with man”

The astrophysicist instead believes that changes in the Earth’s climate and its weather are dictated primarily by cyclical activity on the surface of the sun (and not, pointedly, by the effects of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere). 

“For one thing science doesn’t do settled opinions,” Corbyn says.

“And for another they are all wrong.”

“Surely man has something to with this,” exclaims the struggling new anchor, to which Corbyn responds:

“No, the only connection is that man is here at the same time as the sun and the moon are doing things.”

The frustrated anchor falls back to consensus, asking “so how come then that so many climate change scientists disagree with you and they get so much support for that?”

Corbyn’s laughing response was straightforward:

“…those that say this are just trying to make money… They’re on a gravy train for heaven’s sake.”

Watch the brief interview below:

Finally, we note that in former UK PM Boris Johnson once lauded Corbyn as “the world’s foremost meteorological soothsayer”.

We suspect this is the last time Mr.Corbyn will be allowed on TV…

from:  https://www.zerohedge.com/weather/nothing-do-man-astrophysicist-says-climate-cultists-are-gravy-train-make-money?utm_source=&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=914

Long Term Effects on Sperm Count, Fertility from Pesticides

Sounding the Alarm on Connection Between Fertility and Pesticide Exposure

A systematic review of scientific studies on pesticides and fertility finds exposure associated with lower semen quality, DNA fragmentation and chromosomal abnormalities.

A systematic review of scientific studies on pesticides and fertility finds exposure associated with lower semen quality, DNA fragmentation and chromosomal abnormalities.

Published in the journal Andrology, the review is yet another warning from a long string of researchers sounding the alarm over the connection between global fertility and toxic chemical exposure.

With data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicating roughly one in five couples are unable to conceive after a year of trying, and trends continuing to slope downwards, it is critical that contributing factors be identified so that protective changes can be made.

After screening more than 1,300 studies, researchers narrowed their review down to 64 papers assessing semen parameters and DNA integrity after pesticide exposure. Each study is analyzed for its design, the pesticide investigated, the population studied, controls and reproductive effects determined.

Pesticides are evaluated for their impacts to sperm quality and DNA integrity based on their chemical class. Organochlorine insecticides, which are all banned but still persistent in soil, air, water and food in the United States, include a range of impacts to sperm quality.

Higher levels of DDT or its breakdown metabolite DDE are associated with lower semen count, and motility and morphology below normal threshold values established by the World Health Organization (WHO). (Under WHO threshold values, a sub-fertile condition is defined by values lower than the fifth percentile of the general population.)

Several studies find that as organochlorine concentrations increase in individual males, sperm parameters also fall.

In addition to sperm quality, organochlorines are associated with chromosomal aberrations in several studies, including effects such as sperm disomy, where sperm have extra or missing chromosomes. This can result in viable offspring, but those offspring are at greater risk of abnormalities.

Organophosphate, the class of insecticides that replaced the organochlorines as they were phased out, also present a range of deleterious impacts. These chemicals include pesticides like malathion, still widely used, and chlorpyrifos, which is only now being phased out of agricultural use.

Effects on sperm parameters are particularly pronounced for individuals in farming regions or with a history of occupational pesticide work.

However, studies on the general population also show cause for concern, finding total sperm count and concentrations inversely related to urinary metabolites of organophosphate insecticides.

Apart from sperm quality, the literature reveals several studies showing organophosphate exposure resulting in missing or extra chromosomes in sperm, with particular attention paid to diethyl phosphate, a non-specific organophosphate metabolite.

Synthetic pyrethroids are also singled out in the scientific literature for their links to sperm damage. These are the insecticides that are replacing the organophosphates, as they are being phased out for their myriad health hazards.

Unfortunately, the game of whack-a-mole played by the pesticide industry with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s allowance has not resulted in chemicals that are safer for long-term human fertility.

Like organophosphates, occupationally exposed individuals are particularly affected, with pyrethroid factory workers showing higher rates of sperm abnormalities and lower motility than non-exposed individuals. Factory workers are also more likely to exhibit DNA fragmentation in their sperm.

Another concentration-dependent relationship is found, with individuals reporting higher levels of urinary 3-phenoxybenzoic acid (3-PBA), a non-specific pyrethroid metabolite, having a lower sperm counts, disomy and a greater chance of exhibiting sperm morphology below WHO thresholds.

Beyond these three classes, scientists did find evidence of negative associations with carbamate class insecticides, fungicides and herbicides, but the low number of studies does not allow for extensive analysis. Mixtures of various pesticides are cited as having similar effects to the three main pesticide classes investigated though firm results were difficult to specify due to lack of complete information.

In general, occupationally exposed workers are most at risk, with chronic exposure being associated with greater sperm defects.

The results of the study are concerning in light of steadily declining sperm counts. A 2017 study found that sperm counts since 1973 have fallen by nearly 60%.

One author of that study, Shanna Swan, Ph.D., captured public attention regarding sperm declines through her book “Countdown,” which goes into great depth regarding the impact of environmental chemicals on human fertility.

Watch Dr. Swan’s talk, “Modern Life and the Threat to the Future,” at Beyond Pesticides’ 2021 National Forum, Cultivating Healthy Communities.

Researchers have been sounding the alarm on the impact of pesticides on fertility for decades. In 2013, a previous literature review evaluating pesticide impacts on fertility found pesticides strongly associated with declines in sperm count. 

As she recounted in a presentation at Beyond Pesticides’ 2021 National Pesticide Forum Dr. Swan’s own work is borne out of efforts to try to disprove a paper published in 1992 by Carlsen et al., which highlights significant declines in sperm quality since the late 1930s.

As the human civilization grapples with a range of cascading crises, from climate change to the insect apocalypse and global biodiversity crisis, we may be missing the chance to address one of the most critical aspects to the continuation of humanity as we now know it.

Originally published by Beyond Pesticides

from:    https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/male-fertility-toxic-pesticide-chemical-exposure/

Download for Free: Robert F. Kennedy’s New Book — ‘A Letter to Liberals’

What’s In Your Salad?

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — Vaccinations can be a controversial subject for many people, especially when it comes to injections. So what if you could replace your next shot with a salad instead? Researchers at the University of California-Riverside are working on a way to grow edible plants that carry the same medication as an mRNA vaccine.

The COVID-19 vaccine is one of the many inoculations which use messenger RNA (mRNA) technology to defeat viruses. They work by teaching cells from the immune system to recognize and attack a certain infectious disease. Unfortunately, mRNA vaccines have to stay in cold storage until use or they lose stability. The UC-Riverside team says if they’re successful, the public could eat plant-based mRNA vaccines — which could also survive at room temperature.

Thanks to a $500,000 grant from the National Science Foundation, researchers are now looking accomplish three goals. First, the team will try to successfully deliver DNA containing mRNA vaccines into plant cells, where they can replicate. Next, the study authors want to show that plants can actually produce enough mRNA to replace a traditional injection. Finally, the team will need to determine the right dosage people will need to eat to properly replace vaccinations.

“Ideally, a single plant would produce enough mRNA to vaccinate a single person,” says Juan Pablo Giraldo, an associate professor in UCR’s Department of Botany and Plant Sciences, in a university release.

“We are testing this approach with spinach and lettuce and have long-term goals of people growing it in their own gardens,” Giraldo adds. “Farmers could also eventually grow entire fields of it.”

Plants are capable of growing more vaccines

Giraldo and a team of scientists from UC-San Diego and Carnegie Mellon University say the key to making edible vaccines are chloroplasts. These are small organs inside plant cells which help convert sunlight into energy.

“They’re tiny, solar-powered factories that produce sugar and other molecules which allow the plant to grow,” Giraldo explains. “They’re also an untapped source for making desirable molecules.”

Previous studies have shown that it’s possible for chloroplasts to express genes which are not a natural part of that plant. Giraldo’s team accomplished this by sending genetic material inside of a protective casing into plant cells.

In the new study, Giraldo teamed with UC-San Diego’s Professor Nicole Steinmetz to use nanotechnology to deliver more genetic material into chloroplasts.

“Our idea is to repurpose naturally occurring nanoparticles, namely plant viruses, for gene delivery to plants,” Steinmetz says. “Some engineering goes into this to make the nanoparticles go to the chloroplasts and also to render them non-infectious toward the plants.”

“One of the reasons I started working in nanotechnology was so I could apply it to plants and create new technology solutions. Not just for food, but for high-value products as well, like pharmaceuticals,” Giraldo adds.

from:   https://www.studyfinds.org/vaccines-salad-growing-plants/

More Ways to Deal With Climate Change

Bioethicist Proposes Engineering SMALLER Humans With Beef Intolerance to Fight “Climate Change”

skynesher/iStock/Getty Images Plus

North Korean defector Yeonmi Park recently said that America has, unbelievably, become even crazier than her native country. A reality evidencing this is that factual articles about real stories too often now sound like satire. Thus is the case with the subject here: a New York University “bioethicist” who has a solution to climate change, which he and his collaborators call “arguably one of the biggest problems that confront us today.”

To wit: engineer humans who are smaller, smarter, and beef-averse.

Mathew Liao, an immigrant born in Taiwan, has all the “right” credentials, having attended Princeton University and boasting a Ph.D.in philosophy from Oxford; he also holds the Arthur Zitrin Chair of Bioethics at New York University. In other words, he’s the kind of pseudo-elite to whom other pseudo-elites listen.

This is why his pronouncements matter. And perhaps this is why Fox News commentator Tucker Carlson brought his human engineering scheme to light yesterday evening.

Focusing on insanity committed in science’s name, Carlson’s segment opened discussing how it wasn’t just British zoologist Peter Daszak funding coronavirus gain-of-function research in China’s Wuhan lab — using tax dollars provided by Dr. Anthony Fauci — but also monopolistic corporation Google. Daszak and the tech leviathan then conspired to hide from the public information indicating that SARS-CoV-2 likely escaped from the lab.

Google’s complicity was essentially admitted some days ago by one David Feinberg, who heads up the company’s “Health Division.” Answering a reporter’s question, he said that the tech giant was censoring information because it didn’t want to “lead people down pathways that we would find to be not authoritative information”

Yet Liao is also authoritative; in fact, Carlson claims he’s “among the most influential bioethicists in the world.” And that’s why his comments, made years ago but largely ignored, matter.

“My view is that what we need is a really robust ethical framework … to solve big world problems” such as “climate change,” said Liao at an event called the World Science Festival (WSF) in 2016. It “turns out we can use human engineering to help us address climate change.”

Now, “anyone who uses the phrase ‘robust ethical framework’ wouldn’t know ethics if they got in the shower with them,” warned Carlson. This is because such people virtually never know much about what’s a prerequisite for understanding good ethics: morality. Beware those loath to use the term “morality” — for this is usually because they don’t believe in its reality.

But “[h]uman engineering?” stated Carlson rhetorically. “The name alone should make you pause. People aren’t bridge improvements. You can’t just add rebar, pour a few yards of concrete, and improve the human condition, much less the human soul.”

“People are living beings,” the host continued. “They’re alive. They can’t be engineered.”

But don’t tell Liao, who, with collaborators in a 2012 paper titled “Human Engineering and Climate Change,” wrote that “existing solutions such as geoengineering might be too risky … to mitigate climate change.” So we’re instead proposing “human engineering, which involves biomedical modifications of humans so that they can mitigate and/or adapt to climate change,” the scientists continued, also stating that the ethical concerns “can be addressed.”

As for Liao’s proposals, he said at the WSF that people’s consumption of meat was often due to just a “weakness of will.” “So here’s a thought…we have these [sic] intolerance,” he explained. “For example, I have milk intolerance, and there’s, some people are intolerant to crayfish. So possibly we can use human engineering to make it the case that we’re intolerant to certain kinds of meat, certain kinds of bovine proteins. …So that’s something we can do through human engineering.”

 

But Liao wasn’t done. He also suggested at the WSF that we could create smaller humans. “So it turns out the larger you are, think of the lifetime of greenhouse gas emissions that are required, the energy that’s required to transport larger people rather than smaller people, right?” he elaborated. “But if we are smaller just by 15cm…I did the math and that’s about mass reduction of 25%, which is huge. And 100 years ago we’re all on average smaller, exactly about 15 cm smaller, right? So think of … the lifetime greenhouse gas emissions if we had smaller children, right? So that’s something we can do” (video below).

Liao has also argued that we could engineer people to be more intelligent, as higher IQs correlate with lower fertility.

Last week I wrote about how our society is beset by “credentialed morons,” but Liao isn’t dumb. Listening to him makes clear that he’s also not a man of ill will. Yet this perhaps makes him more dangerous. We all know what the road to Hell is paved with, after all.

His ideas aren’t new, either. Using science to improve man was all the rage a century ago in the form of “eugenics,” the science of improving humanity via selective breeding. It’s now associated with the Nazis, whose embrace of it discredited it. But prior to the National Socialists’ rise (in 1933) and till World War II’s conclusion, eugenics was quite popular among American and British pseudo-elites. In fact, the scientist who coined the term “eugenics” was an Englishman, Sir Francis Galton.

And now we’re coming full circle; only, we’ve graduated beyond selective breeding since we now can directly manipulate life genetically. This history repetition was predictable, too, as it’s “what science looks like when it’s been completely decoupled from wisdom, decency and Christianity,” said Carlson.

He’s correct about faithlessness lying at this problem’s heart. Upon concluding that we’re just “cosmic accidents” — the result of godless, unguided evolution — it follows that perhaps we should facilitate that evolution. (Note here that Galton, a half-cousin of famed evolutionist Charles Darwin, acknowledged that he was building on his relative’s work.)

Consider here that people would be very unlikely to fiddle with what they view as God’s design, but they’ll be very likely to try to correct “accidents.” When not believing in God, it’s tempting to play god.

The bottom line is that we should take Liao’s ideas seriously, especially since he has scientific allies in promoting them. For the Critical Race Theory march, “transgenderism,” and so many other destructive movements began with an idea, propounded first by one person and initially dismissed as crankery. And we know what happened with them.

from:   https://thenewamerican.com/bioethicist-proposes-engineering-smaller-humans-with-beef-intolerance-to-fight-climate-change/

Time to Honor the Soil

Toxic Corporations Are Destroying the Planet’s Soil

Colin Todhunter

Anewly published analysis in the journal Frontiers in Environmental Science argues that a toxic soup of insecticides, herbicides and fungicides is causing havoc beneath fields covered in corn, soybeans, wheat and other monoculture crops. The research is the most comprehensive review ever conducted on how pesticides affect soil health.

The study is discussed by two of the report’s authors, Nathan Donley and Tari Gunstone, in a recent article appearing on the Scientific American website.

The authors state that the findings should bring about immediate changes in how regulatory agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) assess the risks posed by the nearly 850 pesticide ingredients approved for use in the USA.

Conducted by the Center for Biological Diversity, Friends of the Earth and the University of Maryland, the research looked at almost 400 published studies that together had carried out more than 2800 experiments on how pesticides affect soil organisms. The review encompassed 275 unique species or types of soil organisms and 284 different pesticides or pesticide mixtures.

Pesticides were found to harm organisms that are critical to maintaining healthy soils in over 70 per cent of cases. But Donley and Gunstone say this type of harm is not considered in the EPA’s safety reviews, which ignore pesticide harm to earthworms, springtails, beetles and thousands of other subterranean species.

The EPA uses a single test species to estimate risk to all soil organisms, the European honeybee, which spends its entire life above ground in artificial boxes. But 50-100 per cent of all pesticides end up in soil.

The researchers conclude that the ongoing escalation of pesticide-intensive agriculture and pollution are major driving factors in the decline of soil organisms. By carrying out wholly inadequate reviews, the regulatory system serves to protect the pesticide industry.

The study comes in the wake of other recent findings that indicate high levels of the weedkiller chemical glyphosate and its toxic breakdown product AMPA have been found in topsoil samples from no-till fields in Brazil.

Writing on the GMWatch website, Claire Robinson and Jonathan Matthews note that, despite this, the agrochemical companies seeking the renewal of the authorisation of glyphosate by the European Union in 2022 are saying that one of the greatest benefits of glyphosate is its ability to foster healthier soils by reducing the need for tillage (or ploughing).

This in itself is misleading because farmers are resorting to ploughing given increasing weed resistance to glyphosate and organic agriculture also incorporates no till methods. At the same time, proponents of glyphosate conveniently ignore or deny its toxicity to soils, water, humans and wildlife.

With that in mind, it is noteworthy that GMWatch also refers to another recent study which says that glyphosate is responsible for a five per cent increase in infant mortality in Brazil.

The new study, ‘Pesticides in a case study on no-tillage farming systems and surrounding forest patches in Brazil’ in the journal Scientific Reports, leads the researchers to conclude that glyphosate-contaminated soil can adversely impact food quality and human health and ecological processes for ecosystem services maintenance. They argue that glyphosate and AMPA presence in soil may promote toxicity to key species for biodiversity conservation, which are fundamental for maintaining functioning ecological systems.

These studies reiterate the need to shift away from increasingly discredited ‘green revolution’ ideology and practices. This chemical-intensive model has helped the drive towards greater monocropping and has resulted in less diverse diets and less nutritious foods. Its long-term impact has led to soil degradation and mineral imbalances, which in turn have adversely affected human health.

If we turn to India, for instance, that country is losing 5334 million tonnes of soil every year due to soil erosion and degradation, much of which is attributed to the indiscreet and excessive use of synthetic agrochemicals. The Indian Council of Agricultural Research reports that soil is becoming deficient in nutrients and fertility.

India is not unique in this respect. Maria-Helena Semedo of the Food and Agriculture Organization stated back in 2014 that if current rates of degradation continue all of the world’s topsoil could be gone within 60 years. She noted that about a third of the world’s soil had already been degraded. There is general agreement that chemical-heavy farming techniques are a major cause.

It can take 500 years to generate an inch of soil yet just a few generations to destroy. When you drench soil with proprietary synthetic agrochemicals as part of a model of chemical-dependent farming, you harm essential micro-organisms and end up feeding soil a limited doughnut diet of toxic inputs.

Armed with their multi-billion-dollar money-spinning synthetic biocides, this is what the agrochemical companies have been doing for decades. In their arrogance, these companies claim to have knowledge that they do not possess and then attempt to get the public and co-opted agencies and politicians to bow before the altar of corporate ‘science’ and its bought-and-paid-for scientific priesthood.

The damaging impacts of their products on health and the environment have been widely reported for decades, starting with Rachel Carson’s ground-breaking 1962 book Silent Spring.

These latest studies underscore the need to shift towards organic farming and agroecology and invest in indigenous models of agriculture – as has been consistently advocated by various high-level international agencies, not least the United Nations, and numerous official reports.

from:   https://off-guardian.org/2021/06/23/toxic-corporations-are-destroying-the-planets-soil/

Time To Act for the Earth = For Yourself!!!

Please!!!

Send your intentions and prayers to the planet for healing, for overcoming all the planetary engineering activities — drought, lack of moisture, HAARP, planetary heaters.

Prayers and good intentions ae powerful, even more p[owerful than the evil that people are trying to do in terms of killing the planet, killing the population, killing the animals, killing the ecosphere.  

Corporate based organizations and charities are not the answer when their concern is the bottom line and not us, not what they refer to as “Useless Eaters.”

Its is time to take action before it truly is too late:

Take a listen:

https://rumble.com/vi9o25-climate-engineering-causing-drought-and-earthquakes-dane-wigington.html

Stand Up For Your Local Farmers

Support local food sources!

Support local food sources!

When the conventional food system showed its fragility during the COVID shut-downs, local producers kept feeding their communities with high-quality meat, eggs, dairy, and produce.  Artisanal small businesses provide fermented foods, kombucha, and many more foods vital for nourishing our communities.

Yet these local farmers and artisanal producers all too often face unnecessary difficulties created by government regulations, policies, and programs.

Now we have a rare opportunity to urge USDA to change!  The disruptions in the food system over the last year have led President Biden to direct the USDA to submit a report that assesses the supply chains for the production of agricultural commodities and food products.

As part of developing that report, USDA is accepting public comments on “Supply Chains for the Production of Agricultural Commodities and Food Products” until June 21.  The agency will also consider the public comments in its decision on how to spend stimulus funds, since it has been directed to increase durability and resilience within the U.S. food supply.

This is an important opportunity to talk about the significance of localized, decentralized food systems – and to give the agency specific action steps that would help move us to those systems!

In writing your comments, please try to include (1) examples of the challenges farmers and other food producers face in raising, processing, and marketing their products; and (2) specific action items that would help small-scale and diversified producers to build resilient, diversified systems.

Note that the USDA cannot change statutory law.  So issues such as the requirement that meat be processed in an inspected slaughterhouse are outside the scope of this comment period.  But the agency can change its own regulations, policies, and where it directs funding – so there is a lot that it can do to address problems with that meat inspection program, for example.

Topics to consider including in your comments:

  1. Meat processing: USDA should take steps to support the continuation and establishment of new small- and mid-sized operations.
    1. Share your own story about meat processing. Farmers: Were you able to provide meat during the meatpacker shutdowns last spring? Or have you been unable to because of a lack of processing? Consumers: What did you see during the pandemic? From whom did you get meat?
    1. As a small farmer or processor, what changes do you think are needed? Remember to focus on things that are in the regulations and policies, as well as direct relief funding for financial support, not statutory changes that are beyond the agency’s ability to change.
    1. Consider expressing support for these policy changes:
      1. Revise USDA’s policy governing multiple owners of animals that are processed in custom-exempt slaughterhouses. The USDA currently requires that the custom slaughterhouse record each owner and do the division of the meat, which makes it impractical for more than 4 people to co-own an animal. But the statute and regulations merely provide that the meat must be for the personal or household use of the owners. If USDA modified its policy, then “animal shares” could be far more flexible, allowing farmers and consumers to agree to use custom processors.  In effect, we could implement the Wyoming herd share law without the need for new state statutes if USDA makes a simple policy change.
      1. Reform the scale-prejudicial regulations and policies on small-scale slaughterhouses, including: (1) prioritize inspector availability for small-scale processors and provide training specific to small-scale processors; (2) revise the pathogen testing and process-control testing to ensure that small plants are tested proportionally to large plants; (3) reduce the difficulty and expense in developing HACCPs by providing model HACCPs, posting applicable peer-reviewed research, and identifying the control points for different types of products.
  • The agency needs to stop adopting regulations and policies that are scale-prejudicial.  For example, electronic animal ID is much more expensive for small-scale producers, yet the benefits flow to the large players and exporters.
    • Share your concerns about electronic ID, both its impact on you and on others in the industry. Do you run your animals in pasture conditions where they are more likely to lose tags, increasing the time and monetary expense? Does your local sale barn have infrastructure for running all electronic ID or would it be forced to spend tens of thousands of dollars to install it? Would your veterinarian have to buy new equipment to deal with an electronic system?
  • Other areas of needed infrastructure, whether physical (such as commercial kitchens and storage) or logistical (support for food hubs, farmers markets, etc.): What do you see as needed to build resilient, vibrant local food systems? Again, this can involve changing regulations, policy and guidance documents, or providing funding through USDA programs.

You can submit your comment online at

https://www.regulations.gov/commenton/AMS-TM-21-0034-0076

DEADLINE: Monday, June 21

from:    https://www.westonaprice.org/support-local-food-sources/

Solar Cycles

The Termination Event

June 10, 2021: Something big may be about to happen on the sun. “We call it the Termination Event,” says Scott McIntosh, a solar physicist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), “and it’s very, very close to happening.”

If you’ve never heard of the Termination Event, you’re not alone.  Many researchers have never heard of it either. It’s a relatively new idea in solar physics championed by McIntosh and colleague Bob Leamon of the University of Maryland – Baltimore County. According to the two scientists, vast bands of magnetism are drifting across the surface of the sun. When oppositely-charged bands collide at the equator, they annihilate (or “terminate”). There’s no explosion; this is magnetism, not anti-matter. Nevertheless, the Termination Event is a big deal. It can kickstart the next solar cycle into a higher gear.

Above: Oppositely charged magnetic bands (red and blue) march toward the sun’s equator where they annihilate one another, kickstarting the next solar cycle. [full caption]

“If the Terminator Event happens soon, as we expect, new Solar Cycle 25 could have a magnitude that rivals the top few since record-keeping began,” says McIntosh.

This is, to say the least, controversial. Most solar physicists believe that Solar Cycle 25 will be weak, akin to the anemic Solar Cycle 24 which barely peaked back in 2012-2013. Orthodox models of the sun’s inner magnetic dynamo favor a weak cycle and do not even include the concept of “terminators.”

“What can I say?” laughs McIntosh. “We’re heretics!”

The researchers outlined their reasoning in a December 2020 paper in the research journal Solar Physics. Looking back over 270 years of sunspot data, they found that Terminator Events divide one solar cycle from the next, happening approximately every 11 years. Emphasis on approximately. The interval between terminators ranges from 10 to 15 years, and this is key to predicting the solar cycle.

Above: The official forecast for Solar Cycle 25 (red) is weak; McIntosh and Leamon believe it will be more like the strongest solar cycles of the past.

“We found that the longer the time between terminators, the weaker the next cycle would be,” explains Leamon. “Conversely, the shorter the time between terminators, the stronger the next solar cycle would be.”

Example: Sunspot Cycle 4 began with a terminator in 1786 and ended with a terminator in 1801, an unprecedented 15 years later. The following cycle, 5, was incredibly weak with a peak amplitude of just 82 sunspots. That cycle would become known as the beginning of the “Dalton” Grand Minimum.

Solar Cycle 25 is shaping up to be the opposite. Instead of a long interval, it appears to be coming on the heels of a very short one, only 10 years since the Terminator Event that began Solar Cycle 24. Previous solar cycles with such short intervals have been among the strongest in recorded history.

These ideas may be controversial, but they have a virtue that all scientists can appreciate: They’re testable. If the Termination Event happens soon and Solar Cycle 25 skyrockets, the “heretics” may be on to something. Stay tuned for updates.

from:    https://spaceweatherarchive.com/2021/06/11/the-termination-event/