Medford, Ore. –18 tractors from various Jackson County farms rolled through downtown Medford Friday afternoon, expressing their views on ballot measure 15-119.
“18 days, 18 trailers. All the farmers wanted to make a statement. Ballots are being mailed out today, [they are] reminding everyone that supporting your local farmers is really important,” said Elise Higley, from Our Family Farms Coalition.
If passed, the measure would ban genetically modified organism’s (GMO’s) from being grown in Jackson County.
Farmers say that genetically engineered crops can cross pollinate damaging their own crops.
They also believe GMO’s pose a health threat.
But bio-tech corporations like Syngenta and Monsantosay GMO’sare a solution. They help to grow more food quickly and point out that there’s no recognized hard science proving GMO’s are bad for you.
If the ballot fails, the state will obtain full control over seeds and crops.
Voters in Josephine County will also be voting on the topic of GMO’s with Measure 17-58.
The measure goes against a state law passed last year stopping local GMO bans.
Jackson County is exempt from that because the petition process had already started.
If the measure passes in Josephine County, a legal challenge of the state law would take place.