Monsanto’s Broken Promises and Impacts on Mexico

March 22, 2014
As we troll internet forums across Mexico, interesting topics pop up. Apparently, there is a documentary film making the rounds reporting Monsanto’s adventures in GMO agricultural products and Monsanto’s abusive practices of suing neighboring farmers when Monsanto’s GMO products jump to neighbors fields and enter our food supplies.

As a scientist, I am left wondering if Monsanto’s 3 decades of promises are valid or hollow**.

Before diving into the science and data, there’s also an interesting loose-end about Mexico supposedly banning GMO corn in Oct. 2013. The claim of a ban is not broadly true.

Note: Hawaii legally banned GMO corn in 2013, and France just banned Monsanto corn on March 15, 2014. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ocean-robbins/huge-gmo-news_b_4129311.html and http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/15/france-monsanto-idUSL6N0MC0BR20140315

Mexico? Internet searches report country-wide “bans” that: “suspend all activities involving the planting of transgenic corn in the country and end the granting of permission for experimental and pilot commercial plantings”.

junk food eater2Unfortunate reality: There is no ban of GMO corn in Mexico. There was a fairly narrow judicial ruling by Amparo (similar to a Temporary Restraining Order), issued by a single judge, ordering only the temporary suspension of planting GMO corn in Mexico, to allow a group of other lawsuits to make their way through the Mexican judicial system.

* * * * *
Back to our regularly scheduled program:
In gringo internet discussions, some people are still believing that GMO corn and GMO products work.
Does Monsanto’s GMO corn deliver on Monsanto’s broad promises?

**Decades of reliable evidence says each and all of Monsanto’s GMO promises are false:

Reality: “In the 20 years since GMO crops first came on the market, studies have found that they have led to higher pesticide use, and no meaningful improvement in flavor, nutrition, yield or water requirements. Instead, what they’ve created are plants that are engineered to withstand massive dosing of toxic herbicides, and plants that function as living pesticide factories. Monsanto’s Bt. corn, for example, is actually registered with the EPA as a pesticide.

Why report this?     It explains why governments are finally recognizing the real risks of GMOs,  and    it supports governments rejections of Monsanto’s decades of inflated false promises.

GMO corn does   not   use less water.    GMO corn does    not    give higher yields.    Other than GMO corn’s pesticide properties and its resistance to Monsanto herbicides,   GMO corn (like Monsanto’s GMO cotton et al) does   not  ultimately provide    any   of the promised benefits.

Ironically, even Monsanto’s top promise of lower herbicide usage is false.   In response to Bt Corn and other GMOs:   Nature has simply created  “super-weeds”  that require far higher amounts of herbicide spraying – leading to the highest levels ever seen of herbicide contamination in US and India’s rivers due to over-spraying required by GMO corn and GMO cotton.

Mexican Corn FarmerGMO corn and cotton simply do not deliver on Monsanto’s decades of false statements and false promises.

http://www.nature.com/news/case-studies-a-hard-look-at-gm-crops-1.12907 and

http://www.greens-efa.eu/fileadmin/dam/Documents/Studies/GMO/TESTBIOTECH%20Cultivation_GE_%20plants_US.pdf

Conclusion: Since there is no long-term Mexican ban on GMO corn, there is still risk that Monsanto’s $$ payoffs to politicians can overturn the judges temporary amparo, resurrecting the risks of GMO corn to Mexican farms, farmers, and Mexican corn.

*      *      *      *
Feel free to copy while giving proper attribution: YucaLandia/Surviving Yucatan.
© Steven M. Fry

Read-on MacDuff . . .

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2 Responses to Monsanto’s Broken Promises and Impacts on Mexico

  1. There’s a scientist (PhD biologist with a degree in computer science) who is in Monsanto’s crosshairs at the moment, for contending that glyphosphate (their “RoundUp” herbicide) causes gluten intolerance. We can bet that they will attempt to hound her off the planet:

    http://www.alternet.org/food/meet-controversial-mit-scientist-who-claims-have-discovered-cause-gluten-sensitivty

    • yucalandia says:

      gaaah….

      Nobody likes a bully – but somehow there have been almost no consequences for Monsanto for their actions….

      Amazing what/who can be bought , if you have deep pockets.

      Had you seen that over 120,000 farmers in India have committed suicide, because they were ruined/bankrupted – family lands lost forever – by Monsanto’s predatory practices and corporate “misrepresentations” about their products.

      These poor farmers bought Monsanto’s hollow promises – and they sprayed the bejesus out of their Monsanto GMO crops & fields, exclusively using Monsanto’s “wonder-herbicides” and “wonder-pesticides” – and the India farmers crop yields actually fell – as their costs went way up – forcing them to take out loans to buy yet more Monsanto GMO seed and Monsanto chemicals that did not work and the fine print clauses in the Monsanto-driven contracts and loan agreements have ultimately forced 100,000′s of poor farmers off their land –

      ~ leaving these farm families with only debts ~ and no way to pay them ~ lands lost to bankers ~
      ~ all to benefit Monsanto shareholders and wealthy execs….

      $$ billions in US taxpayer subsidies each year for decades, paid to US cotton farmers in the Tea Partiers “free market” state of Texas and across the Tea Partiers “free market” US southern states have also kept cotton prices way below production costs for 2 decades.

      American taxpayers have paid $3 billion a year in subsidies for over 20 years to already-wealthy US southern cotton farmers – taxpayer dollars ~ given as welfare ~ to these US “Capitalists”, so the supposed “free marketeers” can dump artificially-cheap American cotton onto world markets at below productions costs….

      (artificially making US the biggest cotton exporter in the world due to tax-payer subsidized dumping)

      “American ingenuity” and “American” “free market” “capitalism” at its best

      ~ paired with Monsanto’s false advertising and crony capitalism by buying politician’s support on the US govt. Ag committees ….

      Nice, eh?

      ~ all causing 120,000 poor Indian farmers to commit suicide ~
      ~ just to make already-rich Americans even richer
      ~ using US taxpayer $$ .
      . ~

      Ain’t “Free Markets” grand .
      ~ Go USA ! ~ Go Tea Party ! ~ Go Capitalism ! ~

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