Hawaii has always been the hub for newer varieties of corn and many other genetically modified crops; that is until this week. The island of Kauai was recently in the news, for the approval of the measure which meticulously regulates the growth of biotech crops in the island. This much debated bill passed in Kauai has certainly sent ripples across the US, among diverse sections.
It is expected that the passing of this bill will have far reaching effects which includes the many biotech companies operating in the region, the farmers involved in production and on the general agribusiness of the region.
Hawaii is considered to be the hub of seed companies and plant development processes mainly due to its tropical climate which makes production just perfect. Breeders have the scope of growing up to 3 generations of corn in the islands, which actually helps in speeding the work involved in newer variety production. As per the ordinance passed, the seed companies will now have to disclose the pesticides they are using in the production of crops. It also establishes certain no-spray zones where pesticides will not be sprayed which includes public roads, schools, homes, waterways and medical facilities. With the approval of the bill here, conditions are bound to change in other parts of US.
The passing of this bill in Kauai is very significant as this is the first place in US which has passed such a tough GM regulation, which is expected to affect the industry in a huge way. There has been a lot of debate and uproar in the past and still continuing about GMO regulations, the need of non gmo products and effects of pesticides on human health.
As per Reuters, the bill passed in the island does not ban GM crops but “The version of the bill that passed late Tuesday was stripped of some of its tougher conditions and now requires the agricultural companies to disclose the presence and use of genetically modified crops and pesticides; it also establishes buffer zones around schools, hospitals, homes and other areas, and requires the county to conduct a study on the health and environmental impacts of the industry”. This implies that there will be significant change in methods of farming – a step towards healthier non gmo products consumption.
Passing an ordinance in Kauai is just a step to regulate production and a move towards non gmo food consumption but we need to do our bit too, to support this initiative. If every household practices organic gardening, it will be a huge contribution to support the need for non gmo food products and create awareness among others, about the need and importance of growing fresh organic fruits and gardens at your home.
Heirloom plants are easy to grow and the health benefits of these surpass any gmo foods. Vegetables and fruits grown from heirloom seeds are healthier and richly loaded with essential minerals, vitamins and other nutrients. With organic gardening you are certainly going to be healthier, eat better and feel the best.