Perdue Scientist Dr. Don Huber, PhD, discovered a rare micro-fungus in glyphosate RoundUp Ready corn and soy; he sent a letter to USDA Secretary Vilsack warning of a potential emergency. Huber’s signature indicates he worked for APS and USDA NPDRS.
What are USDA NPDRS and APS?
The National Plant Disease Recovery System (NPDRS) was called for in Homeland Security Presidential Directive Number 9 (HSPD-9) which was issued in February of 2004 to ensure that the tools, infrastructure, communication networks, and capacity required to mitigate the impact of high consequence plant disease outbreaks are such that a reasonable level of crop production is maintained in the U.S.
NPDRS Recovery Plans focus on a threatening disease, assess the status of critical recovery components, and identify disease management research, extension, and education needs for that disease. These recovery plans are not intended to be stand-alone documents that address all of the many and varied aspects of a plant disease outbreak and all of the decisions that must be made and actions taken to achieve effective response and recovery. They are, however, documents that will help USDA and others guide efforts directed toward preparation for and recovery from new plant diseases in the U.S.
The plans are a cooperative effort of university, industry, and government scientists sponsored by The American Phytopathological Society (APS) and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The pathogens discussed in these plans have been nominated as critical threats to U.S. agricultural production and reviewed at annual workshops of APS and USDA held in April of 2006, April of 2007, and October of 2008.
As noted in his letter, the research Huber reports on is still preliminary. However, Huber, who has 40 years experience working as a scientist for “professional and military agencies that evaluate and prepare for natural and manmade biological threats, including germ warfare and disease outbreaks,” believes this should be treated as an emergency until more research can confirm or disprove these initial findings.
The recent deregulation of GE alfalfa is something to think about, because that will dramatically increase the use of Roundup on animal feed and the feeding of Roundup Ready crops to our livestock.