Media Advisory for Oct 16th – 24th
Contact: Paul Towers, 916-216-1082, firstname.lastname@example.org
In mid-October, people in the United States and around the world are celebrating fair and sustainable food, from field to fork. Sandwiched between World Food Day (Oct 16th) and US Food Day (Oct 24th), Food Week of Action offers an opportunity to reflect on progress made, and for political leaders to pledge support for policies to build a better food system.
Recognizing the occasion, Judy Hatcher, executive director of PAN North America, said:
“Nearly 70 years after the first World Food Day, we face dramatic challenges as the result of an industrialized food and farming system. Vast consolidation and concentration in the seed and pesticide industries, broken regulatory systems, and corporate influence in science are barriers to progress. But the good news is that Americans and the global community are speaking out and standing up to powerful interests, pushing for fair, green and resilient food systems. We have a lot of work to do, but together we’re making clear progress.”
Among the most pressing food issues and opportunities for action are:
- 1-in-3 bites of food rely on bees for pollination. President Barack Obama and the White House Task Force are considering steps to protect the nation’s pollinators, including steps to protect the nation’s bees from harmful neonicotinoid pesticides.
- The United States faces an unprecedented increase in childhood health harms and developmental delays. California and US EPA officials are considering steps to limit the use of neurotoxic pesticides – linked to falling IQs, ADHD and autism in kids, found in the air near agricultural fields, as well as on some produce.
- Corporate consolidation has meant new challenges in the growth of commodity crops. US EPA officials and President Barack Obama have the opportunity to block the approval of seeds and crops genetically engineered to withstand greater pesticide use that poses direct threats to the health of rural communities and livelihood of farmers.
Pesticide Action Network North America (PAN North America, or PANNA) works to replace the use of hazardous pesticides with ecologically sound and socially just alternatives. As one of five PAN Regional Centers worldwide, we link local and international consumer, labor, health, environment and agriculture groups into an international citizens’ action network. This network challenges the global proliferation of pesticides, defends basic rights to health and environmental quality, and works to ensure the transition to a just and viable society.