Have you signed the #Science14 letter yet?

A word cloud of the current signatories!

A word cloud of the current signatories! Two weeks ago, I announced that the Cornell Alliance for Science and Biology Fortified co-sponsored an open letter to the professors and academic scientists who were targeted by the US Right to Know (USRTK) organization, seeking to read over two years of their correspondence. Our goal is to reach 1,400 signatures – 100 for every scientist who has been targeted with a FoIA. And we are less than 100 signatures away from that goal! Have you taken the time to sign it yet? We need your voice.

Plushies have arrived!

plushieparty

Hooray! It’s the day we’ve all been waiting for. The Frank N. Foode™ and Lanakila Ā. Papaya™ plushies have arrived! I was just sending an email yesterday to get an update on the status of our shipping, and before the manufacturer could get back to me, I got a phone call from our mailbox. A pallet with our name on it showed up at their loading door. My wife and my plans for the evening changed immediately, and we took the truck out before dinner to fetch the boxes of plushies. It took two trips even with the truck to

Silencing Public Scientists

ag letter excerpt

Last week I received a FOIA request that all of my emails bearing certain terms were going to be obtained and turned over to an activist group.  US-RTK, a San Francisco-based activist group, namely Gary Ruskin, wanted to know my ties to Big Ag and their PR arm. The first thing I did was pick up a phone, call Gary Ruskin, and say, “What can I tell you?” We spoke for 10 minutes, he seems like a decent guy, but what’s the deal with assuming that I’m guilty of something before even talking?  I’m not one to do things the

USRTK wants the Emails of Public Scientists

The logo of USRTK

The logo of USRTK This is troubling news for academic scientists. An organization called “US Right to Know” has issued at least a dozen legal requests to the home universities of public scientists who have made efforts to educate the public about genetically engineered crops. Using the US Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and state laws, they want access to all of the emails sent to and from the targeted scientists and a list of industry and industry-associated organizations. Claiming to only be interested to “understand the dynamics between the agrichemical industry’s PR efforts, and the public university faculty who

Comment Today on the next Genetically Engineered Potato

Innate Potato next to a conventional one

Innate Potato next to a conventional one There’s always a little catch-up to do when coming out of the Holiday season. Back in December, the USDA public comment period opened up for a next-generation transgenic potato variety developed by Simplot. The previous Simplot “Generation 1 Innate” potato, which reduced browning, acrylamide, and bruising, was approved by the USDA in November last year. Back in 2013, we conducted an interview with Haven Baker at Simplot to find out answers to your questions about the potato and its new traits. Now they have another potato variety with more traits – Generation 2