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California Biosafety Alliance

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The California Biosafety Alliance is a cross sector, multilevel and inter-ethnic alliance of individuals and organizations working together to engage in broader outreach around genetically modified (GMO) food issues and to bring together strategic coalitions of diverse stakeholders to advocate for a GMO free food supply, as a means of pushing for a shift from an industrial food model, to a model of local resilience. GMOs are a symbol that represent the industrial food system and a key point that needs to be addressed in order to address and shift away from the industrial food model.

Their vision is to get the multi-faceted number of issues with GMOs, ranging from health, to social justice, to environmental destruction, to a major contributor to climate change though topsoil degradation and numerous un-factored externalities, to corporate consolidation, to enter the framework of various groups that have not traditionally focused on the issue of GMOs as a central theme and point that needs to be addressed to push for a systemic shift in the current corporate food regime.

Conference[edit]

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e-Conference Events: September 14-15th 2011

Main Conference Days: September 16-17, 2011 The Women’s Building and other locations in the Mission District, San Francisco California Biosafety Alliance www.biosafetyalliance.org


About: We are at a time of many crises. And in the face of all the global challenges before us, the domination of the food supply, and the contribution of the current food regime to climate change, numerous environmental crises, humans rights abuses and displacement of people to name a few, makes it perhaps the most pressing issue before us.

To control food is to control people. To destroy topsoil is to destroy the most elemental thing upon which we all depend. And to convince people that this system is the only way and that there is no other option is one of the most pressing myths before us that needs to be shattered.

The conference: JUSTICE BEGINS WITH SEEDS will be a space for movement building to actively address the the symbol of the corporate food regime: genetically modified food, address the many layered implications of GE/GMO food, and build strategic coalitions and deeper collaborations amongst diverse stakeholders more widespread political action addressing GMOs in varying levels throughout the state of California.

The conference will focus on hands on workshops and panels on how to build alliances, how to start a rights based campaign, and how to get involved with GMO labeling initiatives throughout California. People from different organizing contexts will have the space to discuss, share strategy and build the movement to address the corporate food regime, encouraging people to actively take on the issue politically.

Pre-conference keynote event:

Vandana Shiva: Navdanya (September 14th--Separate Ticket Sales)


Keynote Plenary panelists:

   Ignacio Chapela: UC Berkeley 
   Miguel Altieri: UC Berkeley
   Anuradha Mittal: Oakland Institute
   Gayle Mclaughlin: Mayor of Richmond 
   David Campos: San Francisco Supervisor
   Marcia Ishii-Eiteman: Pesticide Action Network
   Eric Holt Gimenez: Food First
   Carl Anthony: Breakthrough Communities
   Jeffrey Smith: Institute for Responsible Technology
   Mari Margil: Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund
   Dave Henson: Occidental Arts and Ecology Center



Workshop and Panel Tracks:

1 Local global connections:

GMO movements, trade policy, low-income and food access--systemic problems, global connections, land grabs, human displacement and immigration, past GMO campaigns and perspectives, global perspectives on food and farming, IAASTD report and global policy.

2 Biocultural diversity: from soil to plate: what is and what can be Food sovereignty and small farmers successes, monoculture and soil degradation, land management, problems with GMO 'co-existence', farm practices: dry farming, carbon farming: restoring topsoils, agriculture and climate change: how agriculture contributes to climate change, and how it can solve climate change, resistance and resilience through diversity, peasant perspectives.

3 Food, health and policy: Legal issues, policy, health issues and our right to know, emerging GMO issues, current legal challenges, deregulation of GMOs, issues of patents, health implications of GMOs, Roundup and health and environmental impact, food access, etc.

4 Building the Movement: resistance and alternative structures Our democratic right to know, organizing and effective campaigns, passing local ordinances, rights based organizing, learning from what was and moving forward, storytelling and movement building, grassroots experience from other contexts, lobbying, pressuring business, educational strategies, working with local politicians, etc.


Endorsers:


Bay Localize

Breakthrough Communities

Californians for Pesticide Reform

Center for Food Safety

Comite de Defensa del Maiz Criollo

Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF)

Food Democracy Now!

Food First/Institute for Food and Development Policy

Food and Water Watch

David Campos: San Francisco Supervisor District 9

Gayle Mclaughlin: Mayor of Richmond

Global Exchange

GMO Free Los Angeles

International Development Exchange (IDEX)

Institute for Responsible Technology

Institute of Near Eastern and African Studies (INEAS)

Latin American Alliance for Immigrant Rights (ALIADI)

Latino Environmental Advancement and Policy Institute (Valley LEAP)

Mandela Marketplace

Movement Generation

Navdanya

National Organization for Women (NOW)

Oakland Institute

Oakland Food Connection

Occidental Arts and Ecology Center

Organic Consumers Association

Pequenos Agricultores de California (PAC)

Pesticide Action Network

Pesticide Watch

Rainforest Action Network

San Francisco Urban Agriculture Alliance

South Central Farmers Cooperative

If you would like to submit a proposal for a panel or workshop, click here for details.

If you would like to apply for a scholarship: click here for details


The California Biosafety Alliance