Organic milk has been a increasingly successful in the US, as people have realized the dangers of consuming dairy infused with growth hormones and tainted with pesticides.
Organic certification assures that dairy cows are free of genetically modified feed grown with pesticides, free of antibiotics used to make animals grow and of the growth hormone rBGH (recombinant bovine growth hormone), also known as rBST. RBST, created by Monsanto to make cows produce more milk, has been found to sicken cows, end their lives prematurely and also has been implicated as a carcinogen in humans.
But while Americans are becoming more careful about the milk they buy at the grocery – switching to non-rBGH milk and also to organic milk every year – they're still slurping up non-organic dairy at most restaurants.
The advocacy GMOInside.org wants Americans to help change that, at least at one busy center of commerce: Starbucks, the world's most successful coffee bistro.
Starbucks serves non-rBGH milk, but it does not offer Organic-certified milk. That means that the 93 million gallons of milk served in the river of coffee products sold by Starbucks come from cows fed a diet of GM corn, soy and cotton seed (though not bovine growth hormones).
GMOInside.org also points to GM alfalfa as a problem feed for dairy cows, though that crop has not been taken over by GM seeds to the same extent as corn, soy and cotton seed. (Please see our poster on the crops that have been mostly converted to GM varieties, reprinted in part below.)
The crux of the problem is that these grains are designed to be grown in tandem with branded pesticides that are poisoning the environment. And because these crops and chemicals are created by powerful corporations like Monsanto, Dow Chemical and Syngenta, it's nearly impossible to stop the wholesale contamination of the food supply.
So GMO Inside.org is asking another mighty corporation, Starbucks, to buck the system and go organic; to be a trendsetter.
Starbucks customers who would like America's biggest coffee shop to go organic can sign the petition set up by GMOInside.