Just recently, we received a Press Release from Friends of the Earth (FOE), Walmart annouces industry-leading policy to protect pollinators from pesticides. Walmart takes a step to save our bees!
Walmart is the world’s largest food retailer in the world so this is a big deal. Bees and other pollinators are responsible for one in three bites of food we eat. Scientists accross the world are warning that we are in the midst of an “insect apocalypse,” due in large part to the overuse of toxic pesticides. The same pesticides that threaten our pollinators harm human health.
FOE has created a Bee-Friendly Retailer Scorecard and Walmart went from an “F” to a “C+” on that list due to this recent development. They are hopeful that Walmart will set a trend for other large grocery retailers. Pollinators are essential for a sustainable food supply. WIthout pollinators, grocery stores would run short of a wide assortment of fruits and vegetables, nuts, beans, and even chocolate and coffee. Bees also pollinate alfalfa and other crops eaten by cows, even the dairy and meat shelves could look bare without them.
Food Integrity Now spoke with Kendra Klein, Senior Staff Scientist at FOE about this latest news. Walmart has essentially committed to a new policy to be implimented by 2025 that would require all global fresh produce and floral suppliers to Walmart U.S. to adopt Integrated Pest Management (IMP) practices, as verified by a third-party certifier. Their suppliers may work with any of the list of third-party certifications that were benchmarked as having meaningful IPM critieria by the IMP Institute of North Amercia. Walmart is the first U.S. food retailer to adopt this timebound commitment to expand ecological farming methods in its supply change. IPM can reduce the use of pesticides by requiring farmers to use non-chemical approaches to manage pests first, such as crop rotation, planting resistant varieties and fostering beneficial insects. In essence, they will need to use more regenerative farming practices that will help their suppliers to be able to farm without the use of neonicotinoids and other toxic chemicals.
Just after this interview was recorded, a new study was released, in the Journal of Applied Ecology which revealed that Roundup, the most widely used herbicide in the world, and the focus of recent lawsuits regarding non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, is not just a weedkiller but a bee killer as well. Moms Across America and others are taking action to tell the New Head of the EPA, Michel Regan, and the Division of the Pesticide Re-Evaluation Director and Acting Deputy Director to revoke the license of glyphosate herbicides and enact policy changes to require long term, extensive independent safey studies with blood analysis on the FINAL and full formulations on all agrochemicals. Click here to send a quick email and Tweet now.
FOE is fighting for systemic transformation. They are working to transform the econcomic and political systems through strategic reform that lead to systemic, radical changes. The corporate pesticide industry douses our environment with billions of pounds of toxic presticides every year and uses their influence to block fundamental protections for people and the planet. But FOE, using the power of their grassroots membership, convinced the largest garden retailers, Home Depot and Lowe’s, along with Walmart, Costco and 135 others, to phase out bee-killing neonicotinoid pesticides.
All of us are exposed to a cocktail of toxic synthetic pesticides linked to a range of health impacts from our daily diets. Certified organic food is produced without these pesticides. But can eating organic really reduce levels of pesticides in our bodies? FOE did peer-reviewed studies and compared pesticide levels in the bodies of four American families for six days on a non-organic diet and six days on a completely organic diet. They found that eating organic works. See those results here.
Now, we need to get all these retailers to stop selling glyphosate-based herbicides. This has to happen to help our pollinators survive. It’s not just for the bees–but for the health of humanity and the planet. Let’s all work on getting this done!
Listen to the interview below and learn more. Please share with others! We are the solution!
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