News

Where organic people meet - World Organic Trade Fair

 

BioFach and Vivaness 2010 (17 to 20th February 2010) the recent held Trade Fair Exhibition at Nurnberg attracted some 43,500 trade visitors across the Globe and was a massive success. Amongst the dignitaries were many highly qualified international professionals.
The Trade Fair focused on everything worth knowing about agricultural and marketing supplies, Natural Personal Care and Wellness and exhibited an extensive range of organic food and fair trade products.

 

1) BioFach 2010: Organic + Fair
The Exhibition attracted 2557 exhibitors and high quality visitors and was clear proof of an optimistic view of the future that the organic market has retained its impetus and the trend to organic and ecological sustainable consumption is uninterrupted.  More and more customers the world over now focus their food  consumption on quality and values. The basis for this is organic, and fair production and trading conditions are other vital aspects. The exhibition duo BioFach and Vivaness was geared to Organic + Fair in 2010. There were 52 exhibitors and around 100 product presentations which reflected the whole variety of the Theme of the Year.

Almost 8,000 participants used the 180 events at the BioFach Congress and the six special forums to exchange views on the market with special emphasis on the fairness and sustainability aspects. The Fair & Ethical Trade Forum alone attracted some 750 interested visitors.


2) Vivaness 2010: World market leaders and new discoveries
Fairness and sustainability were also key issues at Vivaness: “The visitors specifically enquired about the added value of our products this year. The Fair trade practices and sustainability for raw materials and for packaging are very decisive values today” according to Dr. Alexandra Vogel, Director Public Relations, Berlin. There were  183 * manufacturers from 21 countries who presented their products at this year’s Vivaness, the international platform for natural personal care and wellness.

The international organic sector meets in the Exhibition Centre Nuremberg next time from Wednesday to Saturday, 16–19 February 2011.

For more info visit biofach.de

 

BT BRINJAL

 

What is Bt Brinjal - Controversy Update


What is bt brinjal? Why BT brinjal in India is banned after bt brinjal controversy? Here are answers for those who are confused with these terms in simple layman language.

 

Bt Brinjal

The insertion of the gene into the vegetable is said to give the plant resistance against insects like the brinjal fruit and shoot borer. Upon ingestion of the Bt toxin, the insect’s digestive processes are disrupted, ultimately resulting in its death.
Why Bt brinjal in India is banned after Bt brinjal controversy?


Bt brinjal would have been the first genetically modified food crop to be introduced in India. In view of the concerns raised, Union Environment Minister Mr. Jairam Ramesh decided to hold public consultations across the country before taking a final decision. Thousands of people who are liable to be affected by GM crops — including farmers, consumers, and other legitimate interest-groups like scientists, food safety and security activists, environmentalists and ordinary citizens — were given a chance to express their views in public assemblies.


Union environment minister Mr. Jairam Ramesh’s open-ended moratorium on the commercialisation of Bt Brinjal could last a minimum six years. Bt Brinjal won’t get government approval “till such time independent scientific studies establish the safety of the product”.


If Bt Brinjal was cleared as planned earlier, it would have opened the gates for several other crops which are at different experimental stages. However, it seems unlikely that Bt products will be introduced in a hurry and the scientific experiments will have to be continued for a longer time.
There are valid reasons why people are opposing it? Several studies on Bt crops in particular and GM crops in general show that there are many potential health hazards in foods bio-engineered in this manner. GM-fed animals in various studies have shown that there are problems with growth, organ development and damage, immune responsiveness and so on. They say normal brinjal has several natural toxins, which could become more potent if the genetic material is tampered with. Scientists don’t know if the toxin produced by the inserted gene (Cry1AC) in the brinjal breaks down in food or in the human gut. Even Monsanto the firm in charge of the ongoing experiments admits that it might remain active in an alkaline environment. And the human digestive system is mildly alkaline, not acidic.


With Bt crops, a recent study from Madhya Pradesh in India shows adverse human health impacts in farm and factory workers with allergies caused by Bt Cotton. Itching skin, eruptions on the body, swollen faces etc., were also reported, correlated with levels of exposure to Bt Cotton.
Organizations like Greenpeace have been in the forefront of the campaign opposing the GM variety of Brinjal. They have welcomed the moratorium and in the statement issued insisted  that  stringent monitoring measures should be immediately put in place to ensure that no releases of GM crops happen and a strong message be sent out by making GM developers liable for any accidental or illegal releases.


The statement added “The moratorium is a good step towards charting the path for sustainable agriculture and food security for our country,"

 

Krishi  Jaivikamela at Hassan

 

This is a regular annual farmer’s mela at Punya Bhoomi, near Hassan organised by Dr.Vijay Angadi.
Vanpro sponsored the two day program in January 2010 and it was attended by more than 1000 progressive farmers.

There were special stalls highlighting the various benefits of Organic Agriculture and how it helps sustainable farming.There were interactive programmers and field visits and talks by subject matter specialists which provided the enthusiastic gathering with a lot of practical information and knowledge regarding the actual implementation of organic farming and its long term benefits to the farmers as well as environmental protection advantages.  Several seminars were organized at the venue.