USDA identifies some of the mysterious, unsolicited seeds after all 50 states issue warnings

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N’dea Yancey-Bragg | USA TODAY | 19 hours ago 4-6 minutes

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has identified 14 different kinds of seeds in the mysterious packages that appear to have been sent unsolicited from China to people around the country.

All 50 states have issued warnings about the packages some of which contain flowering plants like morning glory, hibiscus and roses, according to Osama El-Lissy, with the Plant Protection program of USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. El-Lissy said other packages contain vegetables like cabbage and herbs including mint, sage, rosemary, and lavender. 

“This is a just a subset of the samples we’ve collected so far,” he said Wednesday.

A spokesperson for the USDA said the department is urging anyone who receives the packages not to plant them and to contact their state plant regulatory official and keep the seeds and packaging, including the mailing label, until they receive further instruction.

“At this time, we don’t have any evidence indicating this is something other than a ‘brushing scam’ where people receive unsolicited items from a seller who then posts false customer reviews to boost sales,” the statement said. “USDA is currently collecting seed packages from recipients and will test their contents and determine if they contain anything that could be of concern to U.S. agriculture or the environment.”

Robin Pruisner, state seed control official at the Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship in Iowa, told Reuters she’s concerned the seeds may have been coated with something, possibly insecticide or fungicide, that could damage crops.

“I’ve had people describe to me that the seeds are coated with something purple. I haven’t had it in my hands yet, but it sounds an awful lot like a seed treatment,” she told the outlet.

Sid Miller, Texas agriculture commissioner warned the packages could contain harmful invasive species or be otherwise unsafe, according to a release. Invasive species are organisms not native to a certain region. The introduction of invasive species could cause the destruction of native crops, introduce diseases to native plants and could be dangerous to livestock.

“An invasive plant species might not sound threatening, but these small invaders could destroy Texas agriculture,” Miller said in the release. The Texas Department of Agriculture “has been working closely with USDA to analyze these unknown seeds so we can protect Texas residents.”

Some of the packages were labeled as jewelry and may have Chinese writing on them, according to agriculture officials.

Lori Culley, who lives in Tooele, Utah, told Fox 13 she was excited to find two small packages in her mailbox that appeared to contain earrings.

“I opened them up and they were seeds,” Culley said. “Obviously they’re not jewelry.”

Culley told the outlet she posted about the strange incident on Facebook, and “at least 40 people” reached out to her saying something similar happened to them.

Contributing: Alana Edgin, San Angelo Standard-Times

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“FREE Mystery Seeds from China Sent to USA & WORLDWIDE by Mail to Homes WARNINGS USDA wants Packages”

Save Doomsday Vault Seeds From Environmental Destruction

Climate change could soon claim Earth’s largest supply of life-saving seeds. Ask world leaders to protect the doomsday seed vault that insures against a global catastrophe.

Source: Save Doomsday Vault Seeds From Environmental Destruction

Petition: Save the Gangsta Garden from Eviction: Support Ron Finley’s Food Revolution!


http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/294/483/467/

The secret GMO war: double agents, betrayal, greed?

Nwo Report

We need to understand the distinction between two kinds of labeling

The secret GMO war: double agents, betrayal, greed?Source: Jon Rappoport | Infowars.com  

I’ll start at an odd place, a seemingly innocuous place. Bear with me:

We need to understand the distinction between two kinds of labeling.

Voluntary labeling=“I own this health-food store, and I’m doing my best to sell you non-GMO products. All such products will carry a seal that says ‘Non-GMO’.”

Mandatory labeling=“Vermont has decided that all food products sold in the state which contain GMOs must be labeled as such—‘this product contains GMOs’.”

Two very different types of labels. They contain different information.

Also, one type is voluntary, and the other becomes mandatory after passage of a vote, in a legislature or through a ballot measure.

So what?

Well, let me put it to you this way. What would happen to Whole Foods’ program of voluntary GMO labeling if there were mandatory labeling…

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Photo of the Day: Plant Food, Not Corn; Eat Plants, Not Meat!

The Paw Report

CornThe above graphic was taken from a recently published article, “A hard look at corn economics — and world hunger.” As you can see, corn is not a “foodstuff,” but “industrial material.” And the majority of the crop becomes animal feed.

In a world where 842 million people are malnourished, should we really be using our limited land space and depleting resources (like water) on raising and feeding livestock? Consider:

“Take corn, and add in other giant crops that basically just feed animals—crops like soybeans, barley, hay, sorghum—and two-thirds of U.S. farmland goes to animal feed. […] The trick would be convincing the country—and other countries that import animal feed from the U.S.—to go vegan. […] Would it be enough to feed the 10 billion people the United Nations projects as global population by 2100? ‘We would have more land available for the 10 billion than…

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Can Organic Agriculture Really Reverse Climate Change?

Emilio Cogliani

Organic_Walk

by guest blogger “Coach” Mark Smallwood, Rodale Institute executive director

Over the past 14 days, I have been on a walk–a walk that, I hope, will change the way that we look at climate change.

Each day I walk 10 miles on a journey from the Rodale Institute in Kutztown, Pennsylvania, to Washington, DC. Along the way, I have had the honor of meeting with farmers, local public officials, community members, students, and activists. Every person I meet has been affected by the impacts of climate change, from the disastrous hailstorm that occurred in Reading, PA, in May to the local fisherman concerned that atrazine was found in spawning beds of smallmouth bass in the Susquehanna River. Climate change affects us all, and the impacts and destruction caused by catastrophic weather events are more noticeable with each passing year.

coachwalk

Along the way, I continue to tell people that climate…

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Serious about saving the bees? Time to rethink agriculture

Serious about saving the bees? Time to rethink agriculture.

Tell Swiss Zoo To Stop Selling Meat From Its Own Animals

10 things that would fix the food system faster than GMO-labeling

10 things that would fix the food system faster than GMO-labeling.

Goats better than herbicides, new study

Dear Kitty. Some blog

This video is called common reed (Phragmites australis).

From Duke University in the USA:

Goats better than chemicals for curbing invasive marsh grass

18 hours ago

Herbivores, not herbicides, may be the most effective way to combat the spread of one of the most invasive plants now threatening East Coast salt marshes, a new Duke University-led study finds.

Phragmites australis, or the common reed, is a rapid colonizer that has overrun many coastal wetlands from New England to the Southeast. A non-native perennial, it can form dense stands of grass up to 10 feet high that block valuable shoreline views of the water, kill off native grasses, and alter marsh function.

Land managers traditionally have used chemical herbicides to slow phragmites’ spread but with only limited and temporary success.

Now, field experiments by researchers at Duke and six other U.S. and European universities have identified a more sustainable…

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Colorado farming, ranching water ‘in the crosshairs’ as big reservoirs dwindle

Summit County Citizens Voice

Water experts to discuss role of agriculture in Colorado River puzzle

h Can ag water save the Colorado River?

Staff Report

FRISCO — A new $11 million effort to keep water flowing in the Colorado River to Lake Powell could up the pressure on Colorado farmers and ranchers to sell or lease their water.

In fact, agriculture is in the crosshairs in Colorado, according to the Colorado River Water Conservation District, which represents western Colorado water interests. Low water levels in Lake Powell and Lake Mead — the key storage buckets on the Colorado — have prompted measures to put more water in the river.

The CRWCD’s annual water seminar (Sept. 19, Grand Junction) will focus on what that means for western Colorado, with panel discussions and presentations on ag efficiency, the worth of ag efficiency and how ag efficiency works with the chief goal of sustaining ag as a…

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