Great thing to join a huge crowd of people actually attempting to be do-gooders – at the Ferry Bldg. SF 11am TODAY to march to Civic Center. AB2470, the CA Seed Law, prohibits farmers from selling (our future food!) seed. Makes absolutely NO sense to me – who’s making a profit from this?

Email just now from Bob McFarland, CA State Guild Pres./CA State Grange Pres.:

In protest of AB2470, the California Seed Law, there will be a “Save our Seeds” march today in San Francisco at 11:00am, starting from the Ferry Building at the Embaradero and ending at the Civic Center (about 1.5 miles). Guest speakers will inlcude Vandana Shiva. The march is sponsored by Biosafety Alliance and the CSG following the two day “Soil Not Oil” conference in Richmond.

FACTS About the California Seed Law AB-2470.

Without testing, commercial packaging and labeling,

– AB-2470 makes it illegal for a farmer to sell, trade, exchange or barter their seeds more 3 miles from their farm or garden
– AB-2470 redefines “neighbor” as not to exceed 3 miles from one another
– AB-2470 makes illegal community seed exchanges, swap meets, and seed libraries due to the 3 mile restriction
– AB-2470 makes it illegal for a farmer to share their seeds to a friend 3 miles down the road
– AB-2470 unfairly creates competition and threatens the disruption of organic, heirloom seeds, favoring genetically modified (GMO) seeds
– AB-2470 gives the Secretary of Food & Agriculture full authority to dictate what can and cannot be grown in California counties and cities
– AB-2470 provides that any ordinance adopted by a county or municipality after January 1, 2015 that would restrict the production of GMO crops is subject to a veto by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA)
– AB-2470 limits the rights of local governments from making decisions for the health and safety of it’s citizens and constitutes a state preemption of local control
– AB-2470 redefines “person” to include “corporations”

Further explanation from the Lost Coast Outpost, 2014:

Proponents of GMO Cultivation Ban, Measure P, Say It’s Now or Never Due to Looming State Law
Ryan Burns / Friday, Oct. 31, 2014 @ 5:15 p.m. / Government

Proponents of Measure P, the much-discussed ballot measure that would ban the cultivation of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in Humboldt County, say that a new state law set to take effect on Jan. 1 would prevent any and all future attempts to pass such a measure in the future.

“Local voters need to seize the opportunity to vote ‘yes’ on Measure P on Tuesday,” the Yes On P committee said in a press release issued today. “They may not have that chance again.”

Here’s the background on this new twist in the Measure P debate:

Assembly Bill 2470, which offered tweaks to the existing California Seed Law [pdf], quietly and unanimously passed the State Assembly back in May and was signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown on Aug. 25 — following the addition of a few amendments.

And there’s the rub.

At first glance, the bill seems to be a relatively innocuous series of clarifications and minor changes to definitions of terms in the state’s seed law. But, as an unidentified someone recently alerted local Measure P proponents, an amendment was added late in the process that states, in part:

The bill would also prohibit a city, county, or district, including a charter city or county, from adopting or enforcing an ordinance on or after January 1, 2015, that regulates plants, crops, or seeds without the consent of the secretary [of Food and Agriculture].