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http://www.i-sis.org.uk/SmartStaxCornCorporateWarOnBees.php

SmartStax Corn: Corporate War on Bees
US regulatory agencies are aiding and abetting in killing bees and more


Prof. Joe Cummins

SmartStax® corn

Smartstax is a genetically manipulated (GM) corn that has eight GM
traits combined or 'stacked' together, six for insect resistance (Bt)
and two for herbicide tolerance. Current stacked GM trait crops on the
market only have up to three traits each. SmartStax was created through
a collaboration between Monsanto and Dow AgroSciences, allowing the two
corporations to share GM traits. The traits are combined together using
crosses between existing transgenic corn lines rather than using genetic
transformation of a single maize strain. Interestingly, a collection of
old transgenes brought together with traditional crosses are being
described as the 'new' technology. Monsanto and Dow are predicting that
SmartStax will be the largest commercial launch of a single GM corn
because it will replace a lot of the existing GM corn varieties on the
market.

The main benefit of Smartstax maize is that it provides above and below ground insect protection along with tolerance to two herbicides
(glyphosate and glufosinate) [1]. Herbicide tolerance and insect
resistance genes are engineered in redundant combinations in the belief
that it will prevent establishment of resistances to herbicides and the
Bt proteins among weeds and insect pests respectively [2]. The USDA
provided a premium reduction in the cost of crop insurance for farmers growing Smartstax maize while the US EPA granted a reduction in the size of the refuge area set aside from 20 percent to 5 percent, which constitutes substantial government financial incentives for growing Smartstax maize
[3]. It is supposed to protect growers of Smartstax
maize from the uncertainties of climatic instabilities associated with
global warming. The USDA crop insurance program covers organic farmers
too, but fails to protect the organic premium on price and will not
consider the crop loss from pollen contamination from GM crops. Organic
and conventional growers are placed at a clear disadvantage in
comparison to growers of Smartstax corn.

*Smartstax can end bees*
Smarstax corn contains a potpourri of transgenes claimed to control
pests both above and below ground. Monsanto's subsidiary Genuity, which
markets Smartstax corn along with stacked versions of GM soybeans and
cotton, uses Acceleron seed treatment products. These contain a
combination of fungicides including ipconazole, metalaxyl and
trifloxystrobin for protection against primary seed-borne and soil-borne
diseases, along with clothianidin, an insecticide, to reduce damage
caused by secondary pests [2]. Clothianidin is a systemic insecticide
that may be carried to all parts of the corn plant including the
pollen-producing tassel and pollen visited by bees [4]. The selection of clothianidin for seed treatment is rather cavalier because the
insecticide has been implicated in bee die-offs [5]. A German judge
prohibited the use of clothianidin in maize seed treatment after the
pesticide was observed to have killed foraging honey bees
[6] Emergency
Pesticide Ban for Saving the Honeybee, SiS 39). A German coalition of
farmers brought legal action against the president of Bayer Crop Science
for marketing the dangerous neonicotinoid pesticides such as
clothianidin that have caused mass death of bees all over the world [7].
The Institute of Science in Society has long maintained that the
neonicotinoid insecticides, such as clothianidin, in seed dressing and
sprays are responsible for the collapse of honey bee colonies, The
insecticides impair the bee's foraging behaviour and its immunity to
parasitic and viral diseases. The Bt toxins such as those contained in
the Smartstax corn have also been found to impair the bee's behaviour and immunity to disease
[8-10] (Requiem for the Honeybee, SiS 35; Saving
the Honeybee Through Organic Farming, SiS 38;To Bee Organic or not to
Bee, SiS 39).

*Can Smartstax be safe for bees or humans?*

The stacked transgenic varieties assembled using conventional breeding are not regulated by USDA/APHIS and environments assessment is not required. But such introductions are regulated by US EPA, which does not appear to be concerned over the die-off of bees from seed treatment chemicals nor from the transgenic Bt proteins. This is clearly unacceptable, and these regulatory agencies should be held fully responsible for aiding and abetting in the corporate killing of bees.
EPA should also note that ISIS has previously requested the agency to
ban glyphosate and Roundup herbicide based on new evidence over its
toxicity [11] (Death by Multiple Poisoning, Glyphosate and Roundup, SiS
42), and more ****ing evidence has emerged since that glyphosate-based
herbicides are toxic and endocrine disrupting [12]. In addition, a ban
on glufosinate herbicide has been approved by the European Parliament in
January 2009 [13].


References

1. Agbios GM Database MON-89Ø34-3 x DAS- Ø15Ø7-1 x MON-88Ø17-3 x
DAS-59122-7 (MON89034 x TC1507 x MON88017 x DAS-59122-7) SmartStax� 2010
http://www.agbios.com/dbase.php
2. Genuity: Traits: Corn: SmartStax� Early season insect control
utilizing clothianidin, a leading insecticide, to reduce damage caused
by secondary pests.2010
http://www.genuity.com/Traits/Corn/Genuity-SmartStax.aspx
3. California Farmer Monsanto, Dow Agrosciences Smartstax Corn Hybrids
Eligible for Crop Insurance Pilot Premium Rate Reduction Program In 2010
http://californiafarmer.com/story.aspx/monsanto/dow/agrosciences/smartstax/corn/hybrids/eligible/
for/crop/insurance/pilot/premium/rate/reduction/program/in/2010/13/32056
4. Gross M. Pesticides linked to bee deaths. Current Biology 2008,
18(16), R684.
5. Everts S. Germany suspends use of clothianidin after the pesticide is
linked to honeybee deaths. Chemical & Engineering News May 26, 2008, p. 10
6. Ho M-W. Emergency pesticide ban for saving the honeybee. Science in
Society 39, 40, 2008.
7. Environmental News Service German Coalition Sues Bayer Over Pesticide
Honey Bee Deaths 2008
http://www.ens-newswire.com/ens/aug2008/2008-08-25-01.asp
8. Cummins J. Requiem for the honey bee. Science in Society 35, 37,2007
9. Cummins J. Saving the honey bee through organic farming. Science in
Society 38, 16, 2008.
10. Cummins J. To bee organic or not ot bee . Science in Society 39, 41,
2008.
11. Ho MW and Cherry B. Death by multiple poisoning, glyphosate and
Roundup. Science in Society 42, 14, 2009.
12. Gasnier C, Dumont C, Benachour N, Clair E, Chagnon M-C, and Séralini
G-E. Glyphosate-based herbicides are toxic and endocrine disruptors in
human cell lines. Toxicology 2009, 262, 184-91.
13. "MEPs approve pesticides legislation", European Parliament, 13
January 2009,
http://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/...IPR45936-12-01-2009-2009-false/default_en.htm
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The website this so called factoid comes from run by so called Prof Joe Cummins is a fraud.

Not much more really to say but this guy has no credentials that qualify him to be an expert on GMO etc.

Besides how many bees do you see in corn on a typical summer day? Zero!
 

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The bees were heavy in my brother's large patch of sweet corn when it tasseled last summer. But sweet corn is not field corn...
 

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Well, I'm certainly concerned about he use of smartstax corn. Corn is not a favorite source of pollen for bees but they will work it when they don't have other options. This could be particularly bad under drought conditions when cultivated crops are being irrigated and there aren't many other sources of pollen.
 

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My bees went into my Sweet Corn patch to gather the pollen off of the tassles. My understanding is that even Field Corn has the ability to be sweet for just a day or two.
 

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Lately, Great Britain doesn't have the best reputation for producing verifiable, accurate science (see University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit)! :eek::lookout:
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Lately, Great Britain doesn't have the best reputation for producing verifiable, accurate science (see University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit)! :eek::lookout:
Read it again - it's not UK research. And don't get me started on the corruption of US university research by corporate interests.
 

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I don't think it is their intention is to kill off the honey bee or other pollinators, but their actions certainly need to be questioned :scratch:

Monsanto: The can literally shut off seed production of any plant. :(
Dow: They're Poison :(
Government: They ruin everything they put their dirty hands on.:doh:
 

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The sky is falling, the sky is falling! Evil chemical companies are out to get you!

This is nothing but hyped up propaganda. Unfortunately, it's this type of sensationalist conspiracy drivel that has gotten most to ignore "experts". Unfortunately, when an expert may come across something that's truely important, no one, myself included is going to listen.

The US Government?, now that's a drunken hippo. Stumbling about, not knowing it's own strength, eating everything yet wanting more, crushing whatever it touches (intentionally or not). Things are much better when it lays down to sleep it off.
 

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Alarmist Nonsense

I have not read your post past your subject line because it is, of itself, screams of alarmist nonsense.

Not all Americans believe our government is evil, corrupt, drunk, etc.

Perhaps some of the humans that are employed by it are any or all of the above, but our government, as an institution, is not planning to kill our bees.

This is the stuff that leads people to fly their planes into IRS buildings or shoot people outside the Pentagon. They see the alarmist headlines or hear the screaming soundbites on the radio and go nuts.

Wayne
 

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One can link all the info they want and it will not make the original post any less sensationalist. Just because it's on the internet doesn't make it so. If everyone dropped their pants every time someone made their claims (either side) we'd all be walking around in skirts. ;) I inherently trust neither side, I read, listen and look at it logically then decide. Sensationalism though shows desperation and numbs the senses.

Just because we are beekeepers doesn't mean that we should stop thinking for ourselves.
 

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Re: Alarmist Nonsense

I have not read your post past your subject line because it is, of itself, screams of alarmist nonsense.

Not all Americans believe our government is evil, corrupt, drunk, etc.

Perhaps some of the humans that are employed by it are any or all of the above, but our government, as an institution, is not planning to kill our bees.

This is the stuff that leads people to fly their planes into IRS buildings or shoot people outside the Pentagon. They see the alarmist headlines or hear the screaming soundbites on the radio and go nuts.

Wayne
Well, let's not forget that the government burned women and children in Waco, and shot some folks in Idaho. Native Americans might have a few comments about government instigated genocide as well.

There are enough extremists on both sides of any issue to make the rest of us sceptical. But our scepticism should help us see the kernel of truth that exists in the midst of all the hyperbole.

And here's a for instance: What accounts for the increased incidence of Autism in this country the past few years? Now, that is just an example, not an intent to start a new thread. I'm not anti-chemical or anti-medicine, but I do believe that we are dumping a lot of stuff into our food chain of which we know very little, esp. regarding long term, cumulative consequences. Expecially as these various substances interact with one another. Do both camps, the pro and con chemical folks need to get a grip on reality? :lookout:
Regards,
Steven
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
One can link all the info they want and it will not make the original post any less sensationalist. Just because it's on the internet doesn't make it so....Sensationalism though shows desperation and numbs the senses.
There was nothing sensationalist about that post, except perhaps for the headline - and that is what headlines are for: to attract attention.

If you would all rather pretend that agrichem/GM companies either don't exist, their products are entirely benevolent or they are somehow charitable towards bees and beekeepers, then go ahead - you may want a fantasy novel to go with that.

On the other hand, if you all want to understand what is really going on in the world (and I'm not targeting D Coates here), may I suggest you look for sources of information that are not Fox News, and concede that there are people out there who actually care about the future, the environment and yes - bees - and who are concerned when a conglomerate of Monsanto and Dow start pushing crops onto farmers - with government incentives.

Don't believe everything you read, but don't automatically disbelieve it because it was said by someone you don't know or don't like, or by someone who dares to criticize a sacred cow. That way lies narrow-mindedness and, in extremis, fascism.
 
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