OCA and Consumer Activists to Picket, Protest GMO Apple at Biotechnology Industry Organization Convention in Chicago

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Katherine Paul, Katherine@organicconsumers.org, 207.653.3090; or Mike Durschmid, campaigns@organicconsumers.org, 630.220.4151

OCA and Consumer Activists to Picket, Protest GMO Apple at Biotechnology Industry Organization Convention in Chicago

Groups Plan Press Conference and Theatrical Activism to Upset the Biotech Apple Cart

CHICAGO - The Organic Consumers Organization, along with other consumer groups and activists, will protest the GMO Arctic® Apple with a press conference and picket line in front of the 2013 BIO International Convention, on April 23 in Chicago.

“Thanks to the biotech industry’s relentless quest to control our food, McDonald’s, Burger King and even school cafeterias will soon be able to serve up apples that won’t turn brown when they’re sliced or bitten into,” said Ronnie Cummins, OCA National Director. “This new frankenfood is brought to us by an almost entirely untested genetic modification technology that many scientists warn is inherently risky. Consumers will be exposed to yet another new genetically modified organism (GMO), untested and unlabeled.”

The Arctic® Apple, made by the Canadian company Okanagan Specialty Fruits, Inc. (OSF), was created using a new bioengineering technique called RNA interference, or double strand RNA (dsRNA). Some scientists say the technology poses health risks, because it allows manipulated RNA to get into human digestive systems and bloodstreams.

OSF will receive BIOTECanada’s “Gold Leaf Award for Early Stage Agriculture” at the BIO convention on April 23. The OCA will be there with free organic apples, Millions against Monsanto T-shirts, banners and posters, to protest the event, following a brief press conference.

“We hate to upset the biotech apple cart, but a pesticide-intensive GMO apple, produced through a risky manipulation of RNA, doesn’t deserve a place on our grocery shelves, much less in the agriculture hall of fame,” said Cummins.

Anti-GMO activists will meet at 11:30 a. m. on Tuesday, April 23, outside the McCormick Place Convention Center (McCormick Square), located at 2233 South Dr. Martin Luther King Junior Drive, Chicago, 60616, just south of the Hyatt Regency McCormick. The press conference and other activities will begin promptly at noon.

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The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) is an online and grassroots non-profit 501(c)3 public interest organization campaigning for health, justice, and sustainability. The OCA deals with crucial issues of food safety, industrial agriculture, genetic engineering, children's health, corporate accountability, Fair Trade, environmental sustainability and other key topics. We are the only organization in the US focused exclusively on promoting the views and interests of the nation's estimated 50 million organic and socially responsible consumers.

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