Oklahoma legislators seek to ban castor beans

November 29, 2011 |

In Oklahoma, two legislators have introduced a bill to outlaw the production and transportation of castor beans. Castor beans contain 50 percent or more oil and are increasingly used for producing biofuels. However, they also contain high levels of rincin, a potent toxin that induces a slow, agonizing death marked by vomiting and diarrhea.

Oklahoma State Sen. Mike Schulz, R-Altus, and Rep. Dale DeWitt, R-Braman, are concerned about inadvertent contamination of the food supply. With growing interest in castor beans for biofuels, wheat growers and other crop producers became concerned about a burst of speculative cultivation which could spread castor and ricin residue into fields, planting and harvesting equipment, storage bins and trucks and railroad cars used for transporting grain.

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Category: Policy

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