This is a Call to Action for a Non-Hierarchical Occupation of Monsanto Everywhere
Whether you like it or not, chances are Monsanto contaminated the food you ate today with chemicals and unlabeled GMOs. Monsanto controls much of the world's food supply at the expense of food democracy worldwide. This site is dedicated to empowering citizens of the world to take action against Monsanto & it's enablers like the FDA, USDA, EPA, GMA, BIO, and the processed food companies that use Monsanto's products.
Millions protest genetically modified food, Monsanto, organizers say
Two million people in more than 50 countries marched over the weekend in protest against a company called Monsanto, organizers claimed. CNN could not independently verify those numbers.
Monsanto is a giant, $58 billion multinational corporation with field offices in 60 countries. It was founded more than 100 years ago – and is best known for producing the chemical known as Agent Orange that scorched thousands of miles of earth during the Vietnam war.
Monsanto currently produces pesticides designed to deliver a death blow to living things, and also produces seeds designed to resist those lethal chemicals.
Now the company, with a history of questionable ethics practices and close ties to the government, may have received protection from future trouble. Slipped into a bill signed by President Barack Obama back in March is something called the “Monsanto Protection Act,” which would shield Monsanto seeds and other genetically modified crops approved by the Agriculture Department to be grown – even if there is action in the courts against them.
The weekend protest was focused on genetically modified organisms, or GMOs. GMOs are plants, bacteria, and animals whose genetic makeup has been scientifically altered.
Some opponents want GMOs banned, others say foods whose DNA has been changed needs to at least be labeled.
Monsanto is a leading producer of genetically modified seeds and herbicides. In the last quarter alone it sold seed – much of it modified – worth more than $4 billion. The company said their business helps to feed the planet.
“It’s a vision that strives to meet the needs of a rapidly growing population,” said a Monsanto ad.
Some of the outrage was sparked by shocking photos showing massive tumors that developed on rats that ate genetically modified corn over a lifetime.
The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Caen, France. It has been criticized by many in the scientific community, and by the European food safety authority, who said it is simply not up to scientific standards.
Even so, the disturbing tumor photos lead many to question their own standards about what exactly they are eating.
But consumers have no way of knowing if they are eating genetically modified food, or feeding it to their family.
Last week, U.S. senators debated whether states could require food labeling for products with genetically engineered ingredients. The legislation, introduced by Independent Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, failed.
“When you take on very powerful biotech companies like Monsanto and large food corporations, who, in many ways, would prefer that people not know what is in the food that they produce, they’re very powerful,” said Sanders. “They were able to gather a whole lot of support in the Senate.”
On its website, Monsanto states, “plant biotechnology has been in use for over 15 years, without documented evidence of adverse effects on human or animal health or the environment.”
Legislators who sided with Monsanto say the company is improving on nature.
“I think it would more accurately be called a modern science to feed a very troubled and hungry world,” Kansas Republican Sen. Pat Roberts said on the Senate floor last week.
But Sanders said the company, and others like it, need to be more transparent, and that slipping protection for Monsanto into that March bill was wrong.
“People have a right to know what is in the food they’re eating,” said Sanders.
“You have deregulated the GMO industry from court oversight, which is really not what America is about. You should not be putting riders that people aren’t familiar with, in a major piece of legislation,” said Sanders.
Law or no law, grocery giant Whole Foods said they will start labeling all genetically modified food by 2018.
“The fact is there are no studies, as yet, linking GMO to health problems,”said Michael Moss, New York Times investigative reporter and author of “Salt, Sugar, Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us.”
The flip side, said Moss, is there are few scientists doing that kind of research, and the agency in charge of GMOs is “the FDA, which has a real spotty record on food safety, which concerns people.”
At the moment, the issue appears to be evolving into a matter of disclosure.
“People care about what they’re putting into their bodies, and they want to know what is in the products that they’re eating, so they can make that decision,” said Moore.
Yesterday we created a community spreadsheet on Google Docs. The spreadsheet was designed to catalog all of the March Against Monsanto media that was generated over the last week. From local TV coverage to unedited Youtube videos to Facebook photo galleries of the March Against Monsanto, we hope you will consider adding to spreadsheet so that others will see the success of your March Against Monsanto. Below we have over 170 different items but we know that this listing is only the tip of the iceberg!
Shareholders for Monsanto gathered on the campus of the Creve Coeur agri-giant’s world headquarters Thursday to elect members of the company’s Board of Directors.
Approximately eight demonstrators, calling themselves Occupy Monsanto, spent several hours Thursday afternoon holding signs and banners along Olive Boulevard. The group was protesting Monsanto’s use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and its lack of transparency in research.
Adam Eidinger, speaking on behalf of Harrington Investments and the Pesticide Action Network, read a statement to protesters before heading inside to speak to other shareholders. Eidinger said he owns 75 shares of Monsanto stock.
Eidinger said he was going to speak to the shareholders about transparency in labeling, research and business practices.
His speech read, in part:
The way forward is by upholding the Company’s pledge to transparency. First, this means following the lead of other Fortune 500 companies like Apple, Coca-Cola and Walmart and begin to stream over the Internet audio and video of all future shareholder meetings. Second, the Company should cease its efforts to stymie legislative solutions that provided increased transparency around GMO foods. States like Washington, Hawaii, Connecticut, Oregon, New Mexico, Vermont and even here in Missouri have legislative solutions in the works. These efforts should be embraced by the Company, not fought off with lobbyists and lawyers. Third, the Company needs to provide scientists access to the Company’s seeds and existing body of research. Let independent scientist provide the much needed peer-reviewed studies, so the public at large believes this Company is being truly transparent.
Eidinger quoted Monsanto CEO Hugh Grant from an interview with the Wall Street Journal. Grant said “we (Monsanto) needs to do a much better job explaining where food comes from.” To view the full WSJ interview, click here.
Below is a generic press release that can be used by your GCU to contact the media about your decontamination event. Just modify the sections within the brackets [ ] with your GCU’s information. To view some examples, check out the earlier Occupy Monsanto Press Releases.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE [DATE]
GCU Media Liaison: [Press Liaison Name & Cell Phone Number]
Activists to Occupy Monsanto Facility in [Your City]
Protests a Part of Global Week of Action Against Biotechnology Giant
[YOUR CITY IN CAPITAL LETTERS, BOLDFACE TYPE] – On [DAY OF THE WEEK], September [17-24], 2012, Occupy Monsanto’s field agents with the Genetic Crimes Unit (GCU), a group whose aim is to expose Monsanto’s crimes against humanity, will wear bio-hazmat suits during the occupation of the Monsanto facility located at [Street Address]. The GCU opposes Monsanto’s bid to increase spraying of crops with toxic weed killers like 2,4 D (the main ingredient in Agent Orange) and dicambia, the continued genetic contamination of the organic food supply, and other risks associated with genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
[INSERT QUOTE] “In the name of Wall Street profits, chemical corporations such as Monsanto genetically engineer crops to withstand high doses of their herbicides and pesticides that contaminate our food and water, and have not been proven safe. We deserve to know what we are eating. Europe, Japan, China, Australia, New Zealand, and other industrialized nations require the labeling of GMOs so that citizens can make informed choices. Other nations like Peru and France have even banned GMO crops. But thanks to companies like Monsanto, US consumers are denied the right to know if their food is GMO. ” said GCU’s [GCU ACTIVIST NAME/ALIAS]. “Monsanto pays Congress vast sums of money under the guise of lobbying efforts to keep GMO labels off their patented Frankenfood products. Our Congress is contaminated with GMOs and toxic chemicals, and the lack of rational, responsible labeling policy threatens our health and the health of the planet,” says [GCU ACTIVIST NAME/ALIAS].
WHO: Occupy Monsanto’s [YOUR CITY] Genetic Crimes Unit (GCU) WHAT: Identifying Victims of Monsanto’s Genetic Crimes by GCU Agents in Bio-Hazmat Suits WHEN: September [17-24], 2012 at [TIME] WHERE: [ADDRESS OF MONSANTO FACILITY]
More than 1.1 million people have signed onto the JustLabelit.org citizens’ petition to the Food and Drug Administration for GMO labeling (the most to sign an FDA petition ever). Citizens across America demand that President Obama keep his campaign promise to label GMO foods. Video of the promise can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zqaaB6NE1TI In California Monsanto faces a 2012 ballot proposition on GMO labeling. On September 17, 2012 Occupy Monsanto is calling for hundreds of actions internationally, https://www.occupy-monsanto.com