PCC, a food co-op in Seattle ( http://www.pccnaturalmarkets.com/ ) that’s almost old enough for Medicare, is an invaluable institution. They’ve done great things, like asking all of their suppliers to remove high-fructose corn syrup from their products. But they still make many compromises for the sake of cheaper prices and higher sales. For example, they’ve been very slow to pick up on the Glyphosate issue.
Since it’s very important to all of us, I want to quote a letter to the editor of their newsletter, from http://www.pccnaturalmarkets.com/sc/1701/editor.html …
“One of our main food sources in this country is wheat. I notice PCC carries a lot of non-organic wheat products. PCC customers, here is a big reason to buy only organic wheat products:
“An article I read recently said, “Wheat harvest protocol in the United States is to drench the wheat fields with Roundup/glyphosate several days before the combine harvesters work through the fields as withered, dead wheat plants are less taxing on the farm equipment and allows for an earlier, easier and bigger harvest …”
“According to a Canadian wheat farmer we met recently, glyphosate also is sprayed on the ground before planting for weed control. Just how much glyphosate can a person ingest and remain healthy? — Dawna F.
“PCC replies: You ask an important question but unfortunately, we don’t really know how much glyphosate people are ingesting from food. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) started testing certain foods this year to determine dietary exposures and reported finding glyphosate in oatmeal, baby formula and honey. But then the FDA suddenly suspended testing after a report from Food Democracy Now! and the Detox Project exposed dangerous levels in popular (nonorganic) foods.
“Scientists tell us glyphosate is not acutely toxic but total exposure from all sources combined is a real question. Be aware that in addition to nonorganic wheat, nonorganic oats and nonorganic garbanzo beans tend to have high levels of glyphosate. Studies also have found glyphosate in non-organic bread, beer and feminine hygiene products.
“PCC always advocates buying organic food to avoid pesticide residues and for the health of the soil, water and environment as a whole. We have organic choices in virtually every category.”
Which demanded that I write them a letter on the subject again…
“Thanks for your response to Dawna F’s letter in the January ’17 Sound Consumer. I’m delighted to see that you’re getting educated on Glyphosate. Some very salient points that you neglected, however…
“1. Glyphosate is an FDA-certified antibiotic. Ingested antibiotics decimate your good Gut Bacteria along with the bad, and your good Gut Bacteria are the first line of defense in your Immune System. Also, the Gut Bacteria produce more neurotransmitters than the brain does, so your mental health is impacted as well. We can take all the Probiotics and Pre-biotics we want to try to heal our Gut Bacteria, but if we’re continually blasting our gut with more antibiotics, we’re not only destroying our physical and mental health, but also wasting our money (which we’re eventually going to need for medical expenses and mood-restoring drugs).
“2. It’s not just non-organic Grains and Legumes that are blasted with Glyphosate, but also almost all non-organic Sugars. The UN says that Glyphosate is a suspected carcinogen (contrary to your assertion that “Scientists tell us that glyphosate is not acutely toxic” – you forgot to mention who’s paying these “scientists”), and Cancer loves Sugars. This interaction is hardly “not acutely toxic.” The “hockey-stick chart” for Cancer occurrence mirrors the hockey-stick chart for Glyphosate use. Yes, certainly, correlation is not causation, but that’s not a reason to fail to investigate high correlations further. We should be demanding non-commercially-supported proof that the causation is not there (and if not, then what is the cause?), rather than continuing to risk poisoning ourself because we haven’t proved causation.
“3. It’s not just Glyphosate that these non-organic crops are being sprayed with, it’s usually Roundup, which in addition to Glyphosate also contains other toxic chemicals. It’s going to get a lot worse now that Monsanto and Bayer are merging, since Bayer purveys even-more-toxic chemicals as “GRAS.” Since Roundup is increasingly ineffective against weeds that have outsmarted it, the herbicides used by non-organic agriculture will get a lot more toxic, especially as a new business-oriented government removes regulations.
“4. Eventually, if you wipe out your Gut Bacteria thoroughly and continually enough, you end up with “Intestinal Permeability” or “Leaky Gut” – holes in your intestinal lining that allow larger molecules into your bloodstream than are appropriate for good health. Hence “Gluten Sensitivity” and “Dairy Sensitivity” – it may not even be the Gluten or Casein that’s causing this “epidemic,” but ultimately, Glyphosate. It’s very difficult to find non-Gluten packaged food that’s also organic – in other words, even though we may be eliminating some of the large molecules we react to by eliminating Gluten, if we’re still eating non-organic non-Gluten food, we’re continuing to exacerbate the root problem.”