You asked to keep updated in this crucial week prior to the upcoming vote on S510 set to occur the Monday after Thanksgiving. This just in from Citizens for Health to warn about Agribusinesses active behind the scenes to remove the Tester-Hagen Amendment which shields small suppliers and farmers from the onerous reporting and bureaucratic regulations needed for the giants.

From Citizens for Health:
“For months trade organizations representing the interests of big Agribusiness have supported passage of S.510, and the reason should come as no surprise. Corporate growers see it as an investment – they would get a boost to their public image by appearing to improve food safety practices while protecting themselves from some legal liabilities. The bonus for Agribusiness is that they can eliminate the competition: they can easily absorb the costs of compliance while local food producers and small farms would be leveled by the new regulatory burdens.

While this has been clear to local and organic food activists all along, Agribusiness let its true intentions be known late last week when twenty of its hired-gun lobbying groups sent a letter to the Senate stating that they would oppose S. 510 if it included the Tester-Hagan Amendment.

Agribusiness doesn’t care one whit about food safety, unless it makes sense financially. The real reason they oppose the Tester-Hagan Amendment is that it sets a precedent that small, direct-marketing producers are different, and should be regulated differently, from the large Agribusinesses. While the amendment is currently part of the updated bill agreed to by six bipartisan sponsors, until the final vote anything can change.

As your families gather to celebrate the things for which we can all be grateful, give thanks that we can make our voices heard on decisions that affect the food we choose to eat.

Call your Senator and urge him or her to keep the Tester Amendment in S510:
http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o/750/p/dia/action/public/?action_KEY=5255

End of message from Citizens for Health

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