Bob's Links and Rants

Welcome to my rants page! You can contact me by e-mail: Blog roll. Site feed.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Polluting the World's Food Supply--"Accidentally"

Liza Grandia writes about the threat that genetically-modified corn presents to subsistence farmers in Latin America, and to the world's corn crop in general. Excerpt:
Syngenta admitted this week that, for over four years, it "mistakenly" sold hundreds of tons of an experimental corn seed not yet approved for human consumption.
The agribusiness giants know that small, subsistence farmers like Don Pablo will not voluntarily buy their expensive GM seeds. By "accidentally" dumping GM-contaminated corn on the poor, they can make a quick profit and systematically contaminate the world's corn seed. Perhaps the biotech giants hope the global citizenry will shrug off contamination as inevitable and allow regulators to loosen restrictions. Or perhaps it is a back-door trick to eventually demand royalties on the seed, as Monsanto has already done to Percy Schmeiser and other organic canola growers in Canada.

But, if the center of the world's genetic corn diversity in Central America gets contaminated further, we all risk a major plague wiping out humanity's third largest food crop. Have we learned nothing from the Irish potato famine?