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    Program ID - bo011905

    Biotech Food

    A recent article in the New York Times blames ingorance and irrational fear as the root of the anti-biotech foods movement.

    When it comes to fundamentally altering the basic fabric of life, however, it's reasonable to want our regulatory process to provide adequate checks and balances - to prevent corporate influence peddling, as well as to take reasonable precautions to insure that the new science offers more good than harm.

    One challenge is to understand the health, environmental and socioeconomic ramifiications of the 'genie', especially when it comes to biotech food issues like:
    • Genetic pollution - with more than 80 million acres of genetically engineered crops in cultivation, it is impossible to prevent contamination of other crops.
    • "Pharming" - a new generation of genetic engineering that inserts medicines into food crops, risking contamination of the food supply.
    • "Terminator" seeds which, unlike anything nature has given us, effectively commit suicide after one generation.
    Tune in this week, and join host Jerry Kay of the Environmental News Network, as the Beyond Organic show goes beyond the hype and delves into the science, policies and realities behind biotech foods.

    This Week's Guests:

    Deborah Koons Garcia — Producer, "The Future of Food"

    "The Future of Food" was shown more than a dozen times in Mendocino County before the March 2004 election, and was a key factor in passing Measure H, which bans the planting of genetically engineered crops.

    Producer/writer/director Deborah Koons Garcia (yep, Jerry's wife) fell in love with filmmaking when she first picked up a Bolex while a student at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in 1970. She went on to receive a Master of Fine Arts from the San Francisco Art Institute. Her educational series "All About Babies," narrated by Jane Alexander, won a Cine Golden Eagle and a Gold Medal from the John Muir Medical Film Festival, among other awards. Her feature film, "Poco Loco" ... "finds its groove in gentle romantic fantasy" according to Variety, and won awards at the Philadelphia, Rivertown and Orlando Film Festivals.

    Garcia was the instigator and chief Creative Consultant for "Grateful Dawg," a documentary about the musical friendship between her husband Jerry Garcia and David Grisman.

    Andrew Kimbrell — Exec. Dir., Center for Food Safety

    Andrew Kimbrell is a public interest attorney, activist and author. He has been involved in public interest legal activity in numerous areas of technology, human health and the environment.

    After working for eight years as the Policy Director at the Foundation for Economic Trends, Kimbrell established the International Center for Technology Assessment (CTA) in 1994 and the Center for Food Safety(CFS) in 1997. Kimbrell has written several books and given numerous public lectures on a variety of issues.

    Kimbrell has been featured on radio and television programs across the country, including The Today Show, the CBS Morning Show, Crossfire, Headlines on Trial, and Good Morning America. He has lectured at dozens of universities throughout the country and has testified before congressional and regulatory hearings. In 1994, the Utne Reader named Kimbrell as one of the world's leading 100 visionaries.

    More information:

  • NY Times article - "Facing Biotech Foods Without the Fear Factor"
  • Read about the film "The Future of Food"
  • International Center for Technology Assessment (CTA)
  • The Center for Food Safety (CFS)

  • Resources for Journalists:

    Journalists who are interested in researching stories related to any Beyond Organic show topic are encouraged to contact Straus Communication for additional resources, including trend data, background materials, experts, statistics, images and more. The service is free.

    Please contact Michael Straus at 415-777-1170 x 302 or email for more information.



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