Tag Archives: Genetically modified food

homemade mayo : purging the pantry of GMOs

homemade mayonnaise

Not the most glamourous picture, I admit. But it was my first batch, and I was proud.

I can’t believe I’ve never made mayo before.

Eggs from the garden, organic olive and canola oil, organic mustard, lemon juice and some sea salt. Nothing freaky-deaky. Barely more than two seconds in a mason jar with the immersion blender and La-DEE-Da. Mayo. Magic.

No matter that Hellman’s says they’re on a campaign for “Real Food”, I’m not buying it. Canola and soy are two common oils used by Hellman’s, and they’re also the two most common GMO crops out there. It’s not organic and it doesn’t bear a “GMO Free” label, so it’s time to go Hellman’s. Buh-bye.

Homemade mayo may seem a bit over the top to some, but to me, it’s one small and steady step towards food-freedom. A palaver? Maybe. Maybe the seeds of revolution spread between slices of bread. You choose.

Homemade Mayo Recipe

  • 1 egg yolk – fresh, pastured, organic
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup organic olive oil
  • 1/2 cup organic canola oil
  • sea salt to taste
  1. Pour everything into a mason jar.
  2. Let it settle briefly.
  3. Put your immersion blender in the bottom of the jar and whir.
  4. As you see the mayo start to form, slowly move the blender up and down. It will be super thick and should take not much more than 30 seconds.

Yield : Just over one cup. Keep refrigerated. It will keep for about a week.

Feel free to use different oils. I personally like the rich flavour of olive oil but you might not. You can also use vinegar instead of lemon juice. Have fun, experiment. Add pureed chipotle peppers, garlic, herbs, whatever floats your boat.

after the march against monsanto: responsible activism

Well, the march came and went. We got some news coverage. Some. We also got some people talking. Success? . . .  A start.

The incredible traffic my posts on Monsanto received afterwards, and the searches that people are using to find me give me hope that people are starting to ask the right questions – mainly –

Who the heck are these guys and why didn’t I know about them before??

Unfortunately social media has been our main method of communicating about the issues surrounding Monsanto, and this is proving to be a double-edged sword.

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When a world-wide peaceful protest ISN’T news : The March Against Monsanto

A note from Stacey:

This post has been seen by over 400 people in just the last few hours. I just want to say thank you to everyone who is taking them time to educated themselves on this important issue. When you are done, please share this post and my related post regarding why we need to care about Monsanto. I have heard back from some of the media outlets I contacted regarding the lack of coverage and their responses have been pathetic. It’s time for us to create a NEW mainstream media. It’s up to us. Spread the word. Share the information. SHARING IS REBELLIOUS. Cheers, Stacey The Slow Foods Mama

march against monsanto sign          no to gmo alfalfa           no patents on life

Yesterday morning we headed to downtown Vancouver to take part in our local March Against Monsanto, signs in hand and munchkin in tow. It was POURING. When we arrived at the Art Gallery, the turn out was decidedly disappointing, but to my encouragement there were tons of kids there. TONS. Mamas, wee babies, other prego ladies, lots and lots of families.

march against monsanto vancouver

We waited and waited in the pouring rain, and as we did, our numbers grew, and grew . . . and grew. By the time we got marching, we were at the end of the line, pushing the buggy – 15 minutes in the march had grown to such an extent that I couldn’t see the end of it!

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GMO food dialogues : AKA sh*t that makes me crazy

Ok – fair warning. I feel a rant post coming on.

So, a while back I find myself supposed to be working, but I check in to twitter for the first time in ages and see a #FoodD hashtag with some interesting tweets.

Now, I’m totally out of the loop regarding the goings-on in agriculture in the great wide world at the moment. Usually I work hard to stay informed; right now I’m too busy trying to actually farm to keep up on arguments about farming. Apparently there’s a big panel discussion going on and they’re getting my goat.

You can watch the dialogue at Food Dialogues website here.

Gah.

What the heck is the matter with people???? Seriously.

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Link

GMO Apples in Canada

I love getting random GMO news through cartoons and info-graphics. So bizarre to become aware of such important developments from such sketchy sources. 

This one came to me by way of a viral Snow White meets GMO mashup.

An apple that never browns . . . .

a secure food-system : keeping seeds in the public domain

Food Advocacy Goal #2 : Keeping seeds in the public domain

From the very beginning of my interest in food-security, I realized that this was the scariest element of the assault on our food system. A handful of corporations control the majority of our food system.

For example, Monstanto alone owns:

  • 17 agricultural seed brands
  • 4 “traits, technologies & partnership” companies (whatever the hell that means)
  • 18 weed control brands
  • 2 vegetable seed brands
  • 4,000 individual vegetable seed varieties representing 20 species of vegetables

As if that’s not scary enough, they are aggressive about protecting their business interests.

Monsanto has sued farmers for patent infringement when pollen from their GMO crops CONTAMINATED the farmers field.  Monsanto also sues farmers who save seeds. You can see Monsanto’s explanation for why they sue here. Here’s some more scary details about Monsanto’s policies to protect their patents.

Why do they have the right to patent the seeds of life?

We’re not talking about owning a chicken or a backyard full of tomato plants. We’re talking about genetic code, the very building blocks of life.

The arrogance is staggering.

Thank goodness there is a bit of light in this insanity, right here at home in Canada! Percy Schmeiser took on Monsanto and won!

What can I do to keep seeds in public hands?

Although the patenting of seeds is one of the scariest assaults on our food security and food sovereignty with the widest, most serious implications, it’s also one of the easiest problems to address.

Simple.

Grow heirloom varieties. Save your own seeds. Plant them. Enjoy them.

Share them.

Sharing is the most rebellious, political act you can undertake in a paradigm in which sharing is on par with treason. Really, I guess sharing IS a kind of corporate treason.

See, don’t you feel rebellious??

heirloom tomato

Heirloom seeds are essential to our food security for a ridiculous number of reasons.

Open-pollinated seeds, unlike hybrid seeds or GMO seeds, can be saved year after year and have the plant come true to the parent.

Instead of splicing frog genes or something equally ridiculous into the seed’s genes to “improve” them, a farmer can select for the tastiest, strongest, healthiest plants and gradually improve his crop year after year.

It doesn’t take any money, or a degree in bio-chem. All it takes is observation, patience and little bit of practical knowledge.

Saving seeds from your garden selects for a crop that will become uniquely suited to your particular location and micro-climate. We grow tomatoes from seeds saved by my mum’s neighbour, Ed, and his tomatoes are invariably the last ones standing in our damp fall garden. They are strong, productive, healthy and most importantly – delicious.

In our own little garden here in Vancouver we have a virtual Noah’s Ark of genetic material. From critically endangered Chantecler chickens to two dozen varieties of heirloom tomatoes, we are saving and sharing that genetic information for future generations, and enjoying some wicked toasted tomato sandwiches in the meantime.

Who knows what cancer-fighting compound might be found in the genes of these tomatoes? What health benefits, what pest-resistence, disease-resistance . . .

We can’t know. Isn’t that worth saving?

If you really want to get serious about saving seeds and being a local genetic diversity hero, keep an eye on your local community centres for seed swaps in late winter, find your local Seedy Saturday event, or join Seeds of Diversity. Don’t have one close by? Start your own! All it takes is a few seeds changing hands between neighbours to help keep our invaluable seeds in the public domain.