Dan Farber on Legal Planet posts about when an environmental impact statement is necessary for USDA approval of genetically-modified crops, and Friday’s federal court decision revoking the USDA approval of genetically modified sugar beets for violating the National Environmental Policy Act.  The concern is that, absent safeguards and due to cross-pollination, genetically-modified crops will over-run conventional crops, i.e., farmers won’t be able to produce non-GMO crops.  This issue has garnered attention of late with the Supreme Court’s decision in Monsanto v. Geerston Seed, and Vermonters should find this case of interest since both the sugar beet and Monsanto (about Roundup Ready alafalfa) cases included High Mowing Organic Seeds of Wolcott, Vermont as a plaintiff.  Their involvement should be of no surprise given that that area of Vermont has been home to, according an article to author Bill McKibben, “the most interesting agriculture experiment in the country,” where neighbors are eating solely from locally produced foods rather than industrial processed foods.

[Note: In writing this post, I learned of a book I will ask the Vermont Law Library to acquire, The Town That Food Saved: How One Community Found Vitality in Local Food by Ben Hewitt.]

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