Bob's Links and Rants

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Tuesday, November 23, 2004

A company more evil than Halliburton or Enron

Monsanto. The worst of the worst. Their genetically-modified takeover of world agriculture is maybe the biggest, and certainly the most underreported, crime of the past decade. Mike sends me this link which describes how Monsanto is managing to wring profits out of poor South American farmers.
Behind many big promises of "technology transfer" and "feeding the world" lies a brutal truth: biotechnology corporations like Monsanto only care about profits. They are not offering genetically modified (GM) seeds to the South out of charity. They want to take over seed markets and squeeze farmers for as much as they can get - which, even in poor countries, can be a lot. The formula seems to be this: focus on the major cash crops (cotton, soybeans, maize, etc), find an entry point, contaminate the seed supply and then step in to take control. Argentina, the first country outside of North America to start planting GM crops, is a case in point. But the same pattern is being reproduced around the world, as with GM cotton in India and West Africa. The story of what has happened in Argentina should serve as a stark warning of what occurs when GM agriculture takes root.