Genetically Engineered Vaccines in Organic Meat & Dairy

| Aug 10, 2023

The USDA and some organic certifiers have been looking the other way as genetically engineered (GE) vaccines make their way into US organic production. This contravenes the very principles of organic agriculture. This government-sanctioned deception of the public must stop—particularly as we prepare for a wave of mRNA vaccines hitting the market. Action Alert!

Are you prepared to roll the dice with your health when you visit your grocery store?

Access to good, clean food is a pillar of natural health, as is transparency of our food supply chain. As such, many health-conscious consumers pay the premium to buy organic foods because they are meant to be free of synthetic inputs and much closer to the foods grown and consumed by our ancestors. Organic certification also is meant to provide a high level of transparency of organic foods and ingredients.

But large commercial interests have been eroding organic standards for some time. From a plain reading of the law (not to mention common sense) genetic engineering is not allowed in organic production. Yet according to industry watch-dog OrganicEye, the USDA, some certifiers, and certain commercial producers seem to be operating on a “don’t ask, don’t tell” basis when it comes to the use of genetically engineered (GE) or GMO-containing vaccines in organic livestock. The bottom line: there is currently no way for you to know whether GE or GMO-containing vaccines have been used to produce USDA-certified organic meat, eggs, or milk. If we want to protect the integrity of the organic standard, we have to close this loophole that’s being exploited by fraudulent operators once and for all.

At ANH-USA, we’ve been engaged on this issue for over a decade. In 2019, the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB), an advisory committee that helps the USDA shape organic standards, began considering whether to allow vaccines produced through “excluded methods” to be allowed in organic food. “Excluded methods” refers to practices like genetic modification. The NOSB has since recommended to the USDA that GE vaccines be allowed in organic production when an equivalent vaccine not produced through excluded methods is not commercially available.

But make no mistake: GE vaccines are already being used in organic production, and we have no way of knowing in which products. According to OrganicEye: “In discussions pursuant to vaccines at previous NOSB meetings, some certifiers, accredited by the USDA…have publicly admitted that they do not even check to determine if vaccines violate the prohibition against genetic engineering.” This is supported by comments from the organic industry: “Due to the lack of information or guidance about how to identify a GMO vaccine, certified livestock operations, with approval from their certifier, have chosen vaccines based upon effective disease prevention and not based on its GMO status.”

To us, the use of GE or GMO-containing vaccines in organic food amounts to public deceit, a blatant disregard of the law, and probable fraud. The USDA appears to agree, stating, “The use of genetic engineering, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs), is prohibited in organic products.” That the agency is reportedly looking the other way while GE or GMO vaccines are used in organic production is another demonstration of Big Ag’s influence on the integrity of our food supply.

Regenerative agricultural practices and good animal husbandry mitigate the risks to livestock health and should lessen the need for vaccines, period. It is largely factory farm producers that rely on vaccines, which they see as necessary because of the sheer intensity of their animal husbandry techniques. These require that animals are raised in close proximity to thousands of others in limited spaces, while typically being maintained on diets (typically GMO maize, soy) to which they are not adapted evolutionarily. These conditions greatly weaken the immune systems of the animals and trigger demand for large quantities of veterinary pharmaceuticals, including vaccines: a perfect storm and high-risk environment for disease outbreaks.

Allowing the use of vaccines in general, and GE and GMO vaccines in particular, allows factory farms to slap the organic label on their cheaper but inferior products, making it ever harder for farmers following regenerative practices to compete.

If the NOSB is allowed to move forward with its plans, this problem stands to get far, far worse in light of the wave of mRNA veterinary vaccines that are in the pipeline. Researchers are working on mRNA vaccines against porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome, African swine fever, avian influenza, and other food-animal diseases. If mRNA animal vaccines become the new standard, replacing older vaccines currently in use, then we could see a world in which USDA-certified organic products were widely contaminated by GE or GMO components originating from mRNA vaccines.

This is a massive issue for natural health – and one too few are talking about. As we reported previously, there are no long-term safety data for any mRNA vaccines whether used on humans or animals. Not only that, emerging safety data on COVID vaccines, the vaccine being used to justify widespread roll-out of mRNA vaccine technology to both humans and animals, suggests considerably more problems than were anticipated by manufacturers and health authorities at the time of the launch of the mass vaccination program some two and a half years ago.

It is our view, given the current status of scientific knowledge, that any person or authority that claims COVID mRNA vaccines are “safe” to humans – like the CDC –  is misleading the public. We also have no idea about the long-term, potential effects of eating meat from animals treated with mRNA vaccines coding for different patented proteins once they are approved. This is especially the case given data showing that the lipid nanoparticle that contains the synthetic mRNA that codes for the patented spike protein may enter the body’s circulatory system and can travel to different areas of the body, including the heart, a possible mechanism for mRNA vaccine-induced myocarditis.

This all comes down to the fundamental issues of transparency, traceability and truth in labeling, that allow consumers to make informed decisions about the foods they buy. It’s also about creating a level playing field for organic produce, one in which the balance isn’t tilted in favor of Big Ag at the expense of smaller farmers who take the principles of regenerative agriculture seriously, many of whom have simply given up on the USDA to create a new label.

Action Alert! Write to Congress and the USDA, calling on them to clarify that the use of GE and GMO-containing vaccines in organic production is prohibited. Please send your message immediately.

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