For immediate release: Charlottesville, VA
Organic Soaps And Balms, a certified organic manufacturer of body care for super-sensitive skin, splits with the Organic Trade Association (OTA) over OTA's support of the DARK Act.
The DARK (Deny Americans their Right to Know) Act, the law that pre-empted Vermont’s and all other state’s mandatory GMO labeling laws, was passed in July with the support of OTA's board. Even though 90% of Americans want to know if GMOs are in their food, until a new national law is implemented, which can take years, Americans will not know if GMOs are in their food.
“I am vehemently against non-labeling of GMO, I want to know if they are in the goods I buy” says Brigitte Rau co-owner and founding partner of Organic Soaps And Balms. “Besides any long term effects of the artificially created organisms, which we will only know in time, we do know that the current gmo agriculture:
-- has created an extreme increase of herbicide use world-wide. GMO plants are either growing pesticides inside themselves or fields are drenched in at least 400% more toxic weed-killers then non-GMO fields. These herbicides poison our food and the environment and have diminishing returns for crop yields merely for short term profits of their manufacturers.
-- the artificial GMO-plants are escaping the fields and are uncontrollably contaminating other fields (organic and conventional) as well as natural lands.
-- there are no policies in place, nor are any planned, in the new national labeling initiative that would responsibly assign the costs of reparations for contamination and clean-up back to the manufacturers of GMOs. ”
Brigitte asked first herself and then several board members of OTA: “How can an organization that is made up of so many non-GMO farmers and conscientious industry leaders not ask for a better law? A law that satisfies the desires of 90% of their own customers?” The answer of the OTA board was: “We are here to protect organic only”.
Because per definition certified organic products must not contain GMOs, those 90% consumers now can only and therefore must only choose organic products if they want to avoid GMOs. It seems self-serving and short sighted protectionism, disregarding the continuing damage to nature and to their own base of organic farmers that are confronted with cross contamination and super-weeds that have adapted to the ever-increasing amounts of herbicides.
Brigitte explains their position: ”Organic Soaps And Balms crafts organic skin care with the highest quality standards and a mission in mind: to use only the purest ingredients and use the gentlest production methods to make the healthiest body care.
For most companies, that would be enough...Our philosophy goes beyond product. We understand that we are part of a global community, that there are consequences for our every action. By using 82-99% organic ingredients - one of the highest percentages available - we reduce our 'footprint' on the environment. And by supporting sustainable agriculture and Green production methods, we join a growing movement of companies committed to putting Earth first.”
Organic Soaps And Balms will use the freed-up membership fees to support groups that honor the core values of the organic movement. Specifically
the Cornucopia Institute www.cornucopia.org and
the Organic Consumer Association www.organicconsumers.org .