Thursday, May 27, 2010

Monsanto and Destruction

Monsanto and Destruction, this tittle may seem harsh, but as we will see this Fortune 500 company is worse than a STD. They allow their dirty nasty Genetics to spread like STD's, then they use our courts and patent laws to destroy farmers Heirloom seeds and crops! Well enough of my opinions lets take a tour of the web and see what info we can Digg up on Monsanto.

For our first read in our quest for knowledge, we will see what Wikipedia has to say about Monsanto.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON) is a U.S.-based multinational agricultural biotechnology corporation. It is the world's leading producer of the herbicide glyphosate, marketed as "Roundup". Monsanto is also the leading producer of genetically engineered (GE) seed; it sells 90% of the US's GE seeds.[1] It is headquartered in Creve Coeur, Missouri.[2] Agracetus, owned by Monsanto, exclusively produces Roundup Ready soybean seed for the commercial market. In 2005, it finalized purchase of Seminis Inc, making it the world's largest conventional seed company. Monsanto's development and marketing of genetically engineered seed and bovine growth hormone, as well as its aggressive litigation and political lobbying practices, have made the company controversial around the world and a primary target of the alter-globalization movement and environmental activists.

I would suggest reading the entire Wikipedia page as the above synapses barely scratches the surface of interesting facts at Wikipedia on Monsato.
Next we will present some Pro Monsanto information from a Fortune 500 article. You should read the article as even Fortune 500 has questions, about the Ethics of Monsanto.

(Fortune) -- "It's fascinatin' because we're in uncharted terri-tree," says the genial, Scottish, entertainingly named Hugh Grant, 52. He is the CEO of Monsanto, possibly America's most feared corporation. Monsanto dominates the agricultural biotechnology industry, whose audacious mission is to transform the genetic composition of the world's food supply. More than 80% of the soybeans and cotton harvested in this country now have at least one patented Monsanto gene in them, as does more than 70% of the field corn.

Those who don't vilify Monsanto tend to rhapsodize about it, or at least about its mission. In a world on pace to spawn 9.1 billion mouths to feed by 2050, the black magic of ag-biotech offers the only apparent prospect of salvation: crops that will be, it is promised, ever more resistant to insects, disease, and climatic stress; that will require ever less water, fertilizer, and pesticide; and that will bring forth ever more abundant, hardy, and nutritious harvests.

Many farmers regard the Roundup Ready trait as so crucial that they will not buy other genetically engineered traits unless those are stacked in seeds that already contain Roundup Ready, a gene that makes crops immune to the most widely used weed killer. Trait developers and seed breeders, in turn, can't stack a trait on top of Roundup Ready unless Monsanto gives them permission to do so in a patent license.

So far we have found that Wikipedia nor Fortune 500 were 100% pro for Monsanto and both sources were somewhat hostile. Lets look a little deeper into Monsanto and try to find some recent articles on them.
First I came across this press release from, Monsanto.

Monsanto Donates Corn and Vegetable Seeds to Haiti

On Jan. 12, 2010, a massive earthquake hit Haiti, impacting millions of residents and changing the nation forever. Following the disaster, Monsanto donated money to the recovery, but it was clear a donation of our products – quality corn and vegetable seeds – could really make a difference in the lives of Haitians.

We believe agriculture is key in the long-term recovery of Haiti. That’s why we’ve donated more than $4 million worth of conventional corn and vegetable seeds to be made over the next 12 months in support of reconstruction efforts. The donated seeds include corn, cabbage, carrot, eggplant, melon, onion, tomato, spinach and watermelon.

The Haitian Ministry of Agriculture approved our donation and ensured the seed selected was appropriate for the growing conditions and farmer practices in Haiti.


After Monsanto's press release this story comes out from Wired Haiti.

Do Haitians know that these GM seeds have been declared dangerous by many countries? They often come in kits along with a Monsanto herbicide called "Roundup," which contains glyphosate. In my native Brittany, it has already polluted the water table. But Monsanto insists its product is biodegradable. It is being sued for this by anti-frauid officials in Lyon.
A former employee of Monsanto, Linda Fischer, has just been named to head the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which monitors environmental issues. It's like giving a cat the job of looking after a mouse's welfare.
The Monsanto representative in Haiti is Jean-Robert Estimé, who served as foreign minister under the Duvalier family's 29-year dictatorship.

A week and a day later we get this news from Haiti.

"A new earthquake" is what peasant farmer leader Chavannes Jean-Baptiste of the Peasant Movement of Papay (MPP) called the news that Monsanto will be donating 60,000 seed sacks (475 tons) of hybrid corn seeds and vegetable seeds, some of them treated with highly toxic pesticides. The MPP has committed to burning Monsanto's seeds, and has called for a march to protest the corporation's presence in Haiti on June 4, for World Environment Day.
Haitian social movements' concern is not just about the dangers of the chemicals and the possibility of future GMOs imports. They claim that the future of Haiti depends on local production with local food for local consumption, in what is called food sovereignty. Monsanto's arrival in Haiti, they say, is a further threat to this.

The poorest country in the world has the common sense no to become dependent on GMO Monsanto seed, refreshing is it not?

At this point we will end Monsanto and destruction, check back if this interests you as I plan a Monsanto series of stories in the next few weeks.

Alaskan Dad


Intelligent opinions and structured debate are always welcomed, but name calling and personal attacks do not belong here, have fun!