Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Important - proposed Food Bill

Not content with meddling with our food by allowing GE into the food chain, the Govt is now wanting to restrict our right to trade seeds, food and natural remedies, making it harder to sell produce at markets etc......
Anyone from NZ should read this info about the Food Bill. Many thanks to from Romi at Kaiwaka Organics for permission to use the following text:


The government is being directed to take away some of the rights that you thought were eternal and inalienable. This will effect all of us. If you want to save seeds from your garden and share them
with other gardeners or seed banks this will effect you.

The Food Bill 160-2 (2010) is before parliament and has already passed through one reading and recommendations of the assigned committee have been made to parliament. This means that it is due to go for it’s second reading at parliament with the recommendations integrated into it. It could easily be mistaken for a Bill designed with public safety in mind, but a closer look reveals that this Bill would put an end to your basic right to freely share our food, seeds, and natural remedies.
Anyone selling their own produce would be required to gain legal authorisation to do so, at a cost. Small scale growers and sellers at farmers' markets would be hit with increased costs of compliance, that would of course push up food prices. hurting the growers and the buyers of produce. Not being legally allowed to share seeds without authorisation will discourage diversity of seeds, encouraging homogenisation of seed stock. This would provide massive market advantage to multinational seed corporations such as Monsanto.
You may wonder why the NZ government would want to push this bill through.There are many reasons, but the main reason being presented is that we must comply with the the rules set out for us in the World Trade
Organisation (WTO) which the the NZ government is a signatory to. So why is the WTO so important?
The WTO is the corporate/elite police which rules 'Free Trade', supervising tariffs, subsidies and export barriers. It’s rulings usually favour the US, it upholds the $US as the global reserve currency. This is the same struggle that is going on all around the world, involving 100s of millions of poor people, and it has been hidden from us by our media.
If this all seems surreal and overwhelming to you, you are not alone. This Bill is not yet law, and despite formal public submissions being closed (though few of us heard about it when the submissions were open), it is not too late for those opposed to the Bill to make our voices heard and have a very real impact on parliament as they consider it’s merits.
What can we do about this attack on our fundamental rights to food sovereignty? While there is very narrow provision within the law to opt out of this proposed law being enforced upon individuals this simply is not enough. We believe that it must be stopped! The law can be changed. This is a call out to everyone to get ready to take action.

Sign the petition on line: http://www.petitiononline.co.nz/petition/

We encourage everyone to forward this email to as many people as possible
There is some helpful analysis and other useful information available here: http://nzfoodsecurity.org/

You can also get an update from Sue Kedgley's blog: http://blog.greens.org.nz/2011/09/13/food-bill-update-from-sue-kedgley/

And you may also want to visit: http://www.combat-monsanto.co.uk/


Matron said...

There was me thinking that NZ was the last bastion of common sense in the world. Here in Europe they pass legislation against curly cucumbers and straight bananas! Haven't they got anything better to do than to attack those of us who swap seeds on our blogs?

Cabbage Tree Farm said...

Sadly common sense does not come into it even here in NZ.