GMOs and the Monsanto Monopoly

In the comments section of an earlier post there was a wonderful discussion on the usage of GMO (genetically engineered organism) crops. Coincidentally, there just happened to be a story breaking about this very topic.

According to recently released confidential contracts from Monsanto, the agragiant has genetically modified about 95% of all soy and 80% of all corn grown in America.  This has allowed them (through their patent and licensing contracts) to basically control the seed market and squeeze out competition.

These licensing and contract agreements are all based upon a shaky legal foundation of patent law. Basically, Monsanto has been able to patent their seeds, or at least the modifications they have made to them. Therefore should any company or farmer desire to use their product, Monsanto demands some type of contract agreement. Some of the clauses in the contracts demand things like this:

… one contract provision bans independent companies from breeding plants that contain both Monsanto’s genes and the genes of any of its competitors, unless Monsanto gives prior written permission — giving Monsanto the ability to effectively lock out competitors from inserting their patented traits into the vast share of U.S. crops that already contain Monsanto’s genes.

Basically if you want to sell any type of “Round-Up Ready” seeds in America, Monsanto is demanding their cut.

How are they able to accomplish these practices, you might ask? The same way Goldman Sachs is able to run our financial sector: through a revolving door. Many of the people in the USDA or the FDA have either contracted for, worked directly with, or are currently on the payroll of Monsanto or one of their subsidiaries. What better way to lobby then to have your men working as the regulator?

Sadly this is not an unfamiliar story.  For further understanding I suggest you look up documentaries such as “The Future of Food” and “The World According to Monsanto,” as well as in books such as “Genetic Roulette” and “Seeds of Deception.”

Published in

Post a comment