Monsanto in Action

In Glogpedia

by s97pymqhn
Last updated 5 years ago

Health & Fitness

Toggle fullscreen Print glog
Monsanto in Action

MonsantoMonsanto was founded in 1901 as an agricultural corperation focused primarily on the sale of seeds. In 1998, Roundup ready corn if placed on the market. Today, Monsanto seeds are used in 27% of all mono-crop agriculture worldwide. Currently, they are facing thousands of lawsuits from farmers and food organizations including, the OCA (Organic Consumer Association), IFOAM (the International Foundation for Organic Agriculture Movements), Regeneration International, as well as dozens of Food and Environmental Organizations around the world for Monsanto's injustices towards humanity, nature and for ecocide.

The GMO IssueThe Problems with GMO's range from environmental concerns regarding insect populations and plant reproduction to human and animal health concerns due to consumption of genetically modified material with no long term testing done to weight out possible long term concerns. In opposition to this argument, there are many in the scientific community who believe that GMO's are essential to our agricultural future as they have the potential to be grown in harsher, drier, or colder conditions. These benefits will be necessary for the sustanence of a growing human population throughout the next decades. Scientist Neil DeGrass Tyson speaks on this issue defending the side of GMO's, demonstrating that with every new development in science there will be an opposition or, "fear factor", involved because of it going against the set values and traditions of a society. DeGrass Tyson, most of the food we eat will not start in the ground, it will begin it's production in a lab and that this is just a certainty we must accept. Opposingly on the European Continent, government are rapidly creating GMO labelling laws to combat the spread of ignorant acceptance of GMO's. Politicians argue that this issue should be put in the publics hands, and whether or not they chose to buy Genetically Modified food over traditionally created food should decide the debate. This capitalist form of resolution gives the public a say in how they want to eat. The problem in North America is the total lack of GMO labelling laws. In fact, only Mexico and the state of Vermont have any labelling laws in the entire North American Continent, thus making the consumer completely unaware to the contents of their food and whether it was made on a farm or in the lab. The entire introduction of genetically modified foods were introduced gradually into the marketplace in almost a form of secrecy on part of Monsanto and other major GMO corperations. This does cause a certain air of discomfort in companies like Monsanto. Especially considering Monsanto's history with substances introduced for public consumption too early, with no long term testing such as Agent Orange, and DDT.

GMO'sGMO stands for Genetically Modified Organisms. The global market for genetically modified crops was $400 US billion and it is expected to rise to $800 US billion by 2017. In the USA alone, the corn market is valued at $52 US billion, most of which is now genetically modified due to Monsanto's Roundup Ready seeds.

Crop ContaminationFor years, farmers have traditionally saved the seed from the previous harvest to use the next year. By going through this process, farmers were able to create crops suited specifically to the climate and conditions of the region. Sound like something familiar? Two years after the introduction of GMO's into Canadian agriculture in 1996. farming family by the name of Schmeiser was faced with a lawsuit from Monsanto, claiming theycommited patent infringement for growing roundup ready canola on their feilds without a liscence. Percy Schmeiser, the head of the farm, claimed that they had never used Roundup Ready on their fields. The Schmeiser's explanation for this connundrum was that traces of the Roundup ready from the adjacent farm's feilds. This is a description of a proccess known as crop contamination, a common thing within agriculture. Crop contamination has been a normal and constant occurance throughout history. Seeds from one farm are blown into the adjacent feild via the wind or water systems. Until, recently, it hasn't been a major issue as patent lawsuits haven't been a variable. In the case of Monsanto Canada Inc. vs. Schmeiser, is incidentally was as Monsanto successfully sued Percy Schmeiser for using Monsanto's genetically modified plants in his feild, regardless of crop contamination.This is a serious issue facing farmers as they can now be held accountable for natural occurances.

Monopolizing Agriculture The monopolizing of agriculture is a scary concept. Though there are various corperations with patents on genetically modified plants, if genetically modified seeds do get onto a property without the proper liscences the farmers can be held accountable. This makes it harder and harder to grow organic or GMO free products as there poses a certain risk of liability on those farmers. This is yet another example of Monsanto and other big businesses, forcing the consumption of genetically modified products on the public due to less and less farmers chosing to go organic, or at the very least GMO free. This idea of GMO monopolization is scary due to the long termhealth risks not being closely watched and researched, as well as big corperations like Monsanto's track record with untested chemicals.

Genetic PatentsBy June 2000, most of the genomes in the human body were mapped. After, many corperations, as well as individuals and governments requested patents on the genes in the human body, thus creating a serious debate of the ownership of the building blocks of human life. The result was the private ownership of approximately 20% of the human genome. For other types of genome, it is legal to have patents on them, and all of Monsanto's products are patented. This has led to hundreds of lawsuits against farmers for the wrongful use of Monsanto seeds, that is without a liscence for using their genetic patent.

How does Monsanto and corporations like it use genetic patents to protect, privatize and monopolize the agricultural industry at the expense of farmers and the consumer?

Monsanto In Action

BtBacillus thuringiensis bacteria are "naturally" produced toxins found in Roundup Ready products, especially in Maize. This toxin is responsible for acting as a pestice, killing insects upon consumption and literally splitting open their stomachs. Though Bt products are claimed to be safe for human consumption by Monsanto's scientists, recent independant studies have conclused otherwise. In one study done by the Journal of American Sciences, three groups of rats were tested over a 91 day period, and one group was given GM food. Only on rat died in the GM group. However, the GM group has varing differences from the other two groups including organ weight and functionality. The point to be made is GMO's, specifically ones with Bt genetically programed into them, have not have not had fair enough testing to be sold widespread in markets worldwide with little to no awareness of this fact by the general population.,. "Global Non-GMO Market Could Reach $800Bn By 2017; Demand Not Unanimous". N.p., 2016. Web. 13 Jan.,. "What Is Sustainable Farming?". N.p., 2016. Web. 13 Jan.,. N.p., 2016. Web. 13 Jan.,. "Company History". N.p., 2016. Web. 13 Jan. 2016.NationofChange,. "The 10 Companies Controlling The World’S Seed Supply". N.p., 2016. Web. 13 Jan.,. "Millions Against Monsanto". N.p., 2016. Web. 13 Jan.,. "Recent Studies Find Monsanto’S Bt Corn Toxic To Humans". N.p., 2016. Web. 13 Jan. 2016.The Grand Disillusion,. "Monsanto Vs Farmer". N.p., 2009. Web. 13 Jan. 2016.

ConclusionMonsanto is a big corperations, and if there is anything we've learn in the past, its that our safety and wellbeing comes second to profits in all too many cases. Monsanto is a corperation known for harmfull substances such as DDT and Agent Orange, both of which were utilized in close contact with the public with little testing and no long term monitoring before it was already too late. Monsanto and companies like it have utilized economic, and legal modes to take advantage of the common farmer as well as the general public. This issue relates to the 3 Pillars of Sustainability as follows...1: SocialHealth risks, the degrading of traditional and organic agriculture, the monopolization of agriculture, the unawareness of GMO products to the eyes of the general public., the pursuance of small farms and farmers in order to enstill Monsanto products in mainstream agriculture through fear culture. 2: EconomicMonopolizing agriculture, making it harder for organic farmers to make a living, putting all our metaphorical agricultural eggs in one basket, producing a potentially harmful product with no "plan B" and jeporadizing stock in both Monsanto and other genetic-agriculture companies. 3: EnvironmentalCrop contamination leading to loss of organic crops, creating plants that naturally produce toxins harmful to both human and animal populations, creating pesticide resistant plant through genetic modification and using harsher and harsher pesticides which can destroy the surrounding environment, putting patents on the basics of life on earth. In all seriousness, the issue is not entirely the fault of Monsanto. The issue lies also in the unawareness of the general population. We don't fully know what we are putting into our bodies anymo0re, and by allowing companies to get away with this, quite frankly, insane level of deception poses enough graver questions about us as a society. We are so unwilling to look into issues and choosing the all too simple virtue of ignorance in place of common sense and rational inquisitive understanding of matters in our world.


    There are no comments for this Glog.