Sunday, June 13, 2010

Methyl Iodide has me Seeing RED

I asked all my facebook friends to call the Governor and ask that Methyl Iodide not be approved for use in CA. One of them asked me the following question: "Mari, what is your Alt. form of pesticide for the commercial farmer in the strawberry business?
I would like to become and informed consumer about this but you do realize you need some type of pesticide on a commercial farm or the strawberries will just get eaten up by pest's (sic)and will not grow to maturity for pick and sale.
This would cause the over all price of this fruit to be to expensive for most mkts. and then pass this price on to the consumer currently the strawberry price on the east coast is buy 1lb get one free these strawberries are from Driscoll in Watsonville CA.
Certified Organic by CCOF do they use Methyl Iodide on these i don't know? and i would really like to know.
Thanks,
Ron"
Here's my answer:
"First of all, right now, no strawberries or any other crops in CA are grown using methyl iodide ( the research that I have done so far reveals that MI is used for soil sterilization, not for direct use on the crops ) and given its toxicity, I can't imagine that it will be used by organic farmers - I've always assumed that organic farmers use solar/heat/steam sterilization, but I just contacted the CCOF to ask them a few questions about it and to know what their stand is on this matter. ( At the very least, I'd think they would have a statement on their website about this issue. )
Even though the organic strawberries and tomatoes I buy are unlikely to be directly impacted by this in the short term - our environment is all connected and there will be long term effects. Plus, the health of the people who have no choice but to work in that industry will be impacted - I feel strongly about this issue b/c I believe that human life is too high a price to pay for cheap strawberries for the masses, just as I believe that a polluted ocean and the loss of animal and human life is too high a price to pay for cheap oil. I have no problem with people making money - but at what cost?
There are safer alternatives - I don't claim to be an expert on this issue - but the experts have spoken - the scientists who know about this chemical recommended that it NOT be used - their warnings were ignored! We ALL need to become as informed as possible - and speak up while we have this swiftly closing window of opportunity to let our legislators know that we will not sit idly by as greedy profiteers continue to trash our earth and kill our animals and citizens in the quest for the almighty dollar."
I've never been a person to just blindly follow what is popular, I've always done my best to march to the beat of my own drum. I don't expect you to just do something because I tell you to do it either - I encourage you to read the information and make your own decision.


http://www.pesticidereform.org/article.php?id=342
http://www.ccof.org/
http://www.ucanr.org/freepubs/docs/7250.pdf

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