Why we need to ban Genetically Engineered Grass
by Bill Duesing, CT NOFA Organic Advocate, Old Solar Farm, Oxford, CT
It is urgent for Connecticut to pass a ban on sale of genetically-modified grass and other perennials now.
Scotts Miracle-Gro company has genetically engineered a strain of Kentucky bluegrass to resist Roundup herbicide. It has been reported that employees of the Ohio company will plant this GMO grass seed this summer. It is scheduled to go into commercial production in 2015 and be marketed to consumers in 2016.(1.)
Kentucky bluegrass is a valuable pasture plant which grows well in fertile soil. It is often used in a mix of other grasses and legumes for grazing animals and making hay. It was brought to this continent by the Europeans "to feed their livestock because it was nutritious, fast growing, and able to stand up to heavy grazers." (2.)
Bluegrass is also widely used alone or with other grasses (and sometimes legumes) for lawns and playing fields.
Never missing an opportunity to sell more of Monsanto's Roundup herbicide and encourage lawns that look as close as possible to astroturf, Scotts Miracle-Gro came up with Roundup Ready Kentucky bluegrass.
The idea is that you plant your lawn, playing field or golf course with this fancy and more expensive seed. Once it grows, weed control is easy. Just spray Roundup and every plant except the genetically modified grass is killed. There you have it! A bluegrass monoculture.