Sunday, March 20, 2011

Call to Attend the Agriculture Committee Meeting

Public Notice:

Tuesday March 22, 11:00-1:00, Room 362, East Block, Parliament Hill, Ottawa

Come on out! Show your support for the motion for a moratorium on GM alfalfa!

Please note: It is fairly certain that this meeting will now happen but to double check on Monday and Tuesday see for a posted update.

WHAT: Tuesday March 22, 11:00 - 1:00 the House of Commons Agriculture Committee is meeting a second time to discuss the motion for a moratorium on GM alfalfa. The Committee will vote on the motion on Tuesday unless the Conservatives stall the vote again by prolonging "debate". The motion will then go to the House of Commons for a vote.

WHY: A large audience of interested observers at the meeting will help push the moratorium through! It is a small room and an audience of 16 almost filled the gallery on March 10 when the motion was first debated. There is rarely a significant audience at the meetings and so it will be remarked on and show strong public support. Your presence at the Committee hearings will make a lasting impression to these MPs of the public support behind the moratorium. If the motion is passed, this impression will help Conservatives and Liberals to support the motion in the House of Commons.

On March 10, Conservative Agriculture Committee members delayed the vote on a motion but at the same time Conservative Saskatchewan MP Randy Hoback made sure to say that “The concern I have isn’t necessarily with the motion itself…When I go to my farmers in my area – we have a lot of alfalfa production – they’re concerned about Roundup Ready alfalfa…I don’t want to defend it [GM alfalfa].” Pierre Lemieux, Conservative Committee member and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture also said “There’s nothing wrong with this motion.”

TIMING: 11:00 - 1:00  the meeting will open to the public and the motions will be debated.

LOCATION: New Location on Parliament Hill! Room 362, East Block (the building East/Right of Centre Block/Peace Tower), Parliament Hill, Ottawa.

Read the Public Notice

* Bring photo ID. You will not be permitted entry without your ID.
* Arrive 15 minutes ahead of time so you can go through security and get a pass.
* Please remember that observers to Committee hearings, just as to Question Period, cannot participate in the meeting and are asked to refrain from making loud comments etc. However, a nice round of applause after a good decision is not unprecedented and can be most welcome to Committee members who rarely get this feedback.
* A lunch will be brought in for the MPs to allow the Committee to meet over the lunch period, please note that food and beverages are for the MPs and we are asked to refrain from munching.
* There is a small waiting area outside the Committee room where we can wait - there is often another Committee that meets until 10:45.
* There are translation devices so that you can listen in English or French. Unplug these to unwind the cords. If the Bloc members speak and you do not speak French you will appreciate easy access to your device - Channel 1 should be English.
* CBAN Coordinator, Lucy Sharratt, will be attending and will arrive for 10:45.

Come on out to show your support, make change happen, and witness the results of your actions! Your presence could make a big difference.

Please contact me if you have questions. Best, regards, Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator, Canadian Biotechnology Action Network

Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator
Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN)
Collaborative Campaigning for Food Sovereignty and Environmental Justice
431 Gilmour Street, Second Floor
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K2P 0R5
Phone: 613 241 2267 ext. 25
Fax: 613 241 2506

Support the Moratorium on GM Alfalfa! Take action at

Monday, March 14, 2011

Irish Cream Chocolate Tart

In honour of Pi Day I present this recipe from Life Made Delicious. I haven't had a chance to make it yet but it is very much on my list.

1/2 pkg Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crusts, softened as directed on box (1 crust)*
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) semisweet chocolate chips
1 can (300 mL) sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup (75 mL) Irish cream liqueur or whipping cream
2 eggs

1/2 cup (125 mL) icing sugar
1/3 cup (75 mL) cocoa
Dash salt
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) whipping cream
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla
Additional cocoa, if desired
White chocolate curls, if desired

  • Heat oven to 425ºF. Remove crust from pouch; press in bottom and 1 1/2 inches up side of 9-inch springform pan. Bake 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Place chocolate chips in medium microwavable bowl. Microwave on High 40 seconds. Stir; microwave 5 to 15 seconds longer or until chocolate is melted and smooth. Cool 3 minutes.
  • In large bowl, beat condensed milk, liqueur, eggs and melted chocolate with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Pour into cooled baked shell.
  • Bake 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350ºF; bake 20 to 30 minutes longer or until centre is set. Cool completely on cooling rack, about 1 hour. Refrigerate 2 hours.
  • In medium bowl, beat all topping ingredients except additional cocoa and chocolate curls with electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form. Spread topping over tart; sprinkle with additional cocoa and garnish with chocolate curls. Store in refrigerator.

* Here is a recipe for making your own pie crust instead of using the store bought kind.