The Mexican government is likely to authorize the cultivation of genetically engineered (GE) corn in Mexico. And until now Mexican citizens, with the help of organisations like Greenpeace, have managed to prevent agribusiness giants like Monsanto, DuPont and Dow AgroSciences from gaining approval in Mexico for genetically engineered corn.
Greenpeace activists unfurl a huge banner reading 'Syngenta Pesticides Kill Bees' from the headquarters of the agrochemical company, Syngenta.
Brussels – A clear majority of EU countries have supported the European Commission proposal to temporarily ban three pesticides that are scientifically shown to be harmful to bees: imidacloprid and clothianidin, produced by chemical company Bayer, and thiamethoxam, produced by Syngenta. Continue reading →
Days before the key EU vote to ban bee-killer pesticides, Greenpeace is attending the annual general meeting (AGM) of Syngenta in Basel, Switzerland, in order to alert shareholders to the company’s role in the global decline in bee populations and ask them to challenge the chair of Syngenta board to stop marketing these deadly products.
Activists and beekeepers are demonstraing outside the shareholders’ assembly, while representatives of Greenpeace and the European Beekeeping Coordination are directing questions to the Syngenta board about the reputational and financial risk faced by the company in light of the probable ban. Last month, the European Commission put forward a proposal for a ban on bee-killer pesticides produced by Syngenta and Bayer.
Imagine a democratic government adopting a legislation that would instruct its own Department of Agriculture “to ignore any judicial rulings that block the planting of crops that the court determines to be illegal”(according to Senator Jon Tester D-MT).
In essence, this is what the US Congress has done by adopting a small clause (Section 735) inside the 2013 agricultural budget. Continue reading →
“Monsanto fully supports UK food manufactures and retailers in their introduction of these labels. We believe you should be aware of all the facts before making a purchase.”
This quote comes from an advertisement that Monsanto ran in the UK in the late 1990′s when consumers demanded that genetically engineered food be labeled. Monsanto may not have initially liked the idea, but as the policy became inevitable, they began running ads in support of labeling, to pretend they supported it all along. The European Union mandated labeling of all genetically engineered foods in 2003.
Nearly a decade later, California may become the first state in the US to require genetically engineered food to be labeled. With only a few days until the proposal is put to a vote, Monsanto has already given over $8 million to a front group that is blitzing California’s airwaves with anti-labeling advertisements. The “No on 37″ group has raised well over $40 million so far, with Monsanto as the largest donor.
What gives? Do Monsanto executives think it’s okay for British parents to know what’s in the food they feed their kids, while treating America’s children as “guinea kids”?
Vote Yes on Proposition 37 to ensure the labeling of genetically engineered food in California, because we have the right to know.
Farmer working in a watermelon field in an Indian province
On this World Food Day, I am in Rome where government ministers attending the World Committee on Food Security are facing up to a sobering reality: the food world system is badly broken. From climate change, to biofuels and GE foods, it’s time we take stock and look for solutions.