Debunked: March against Monsanto campaign

lee h oswald

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Seems there's plenty here who've not done due diligence on the subject, O. Plus ca change, eh?



Just a little taster on how Monsanto threaten and harass any dissenters; anyone daring to point out the dire consequences of using their products.

There's a great Canadian documentary called The World According to Monsanto. If you've not seen it, it's a must watch. In it, you'll meet former EPA and FDA scientists; scientists formerly working on research; independent scientists and researchers. The film effectively documents how Monsanto put its own employees into positions at the EPA and FDA in order to push through non regulation. Ie., as a result of their efforts, there are no GM specific safety checks and balances; the existing legislation for conventional agriculture practice was upheld as the standard. Tests showing potential problems, such as pre-cancerous cells developing in lab animals were swept under the carpet and the products were rushed into the market - corporate profit above all else. You'll also get a potted history of Monsanto which speaks for itself.
Michael Taylor is a character you'll meet in the film. A Monsanto lawyer/employee who took up a position in the FDA to help with all that non-regulation. More recently, Obama appointed him to the position of Food Safety Czar.



Thankfully there are people who do care, O. Compassion in World Farming is a good org; but for me the issue isn't just the abomination of power and profit seeking GM pushers like Monsanto (though it's a big one), it's the globalisation and industrialisation of the whole agri business. It's completely unsustainable - most of the world's soil is exhausted of minerals due to intensive farming of crops; the very act of cropping is the act of removing nutrients from the soil without any replenishment. This permanent state of decline leads to necessary annual additions of man-made organo phosphates, just to keep up. It's soil suicide.
Check out Mark Shepard, O - if you're interested in viable alternatives. Mark runs his farm in Wisconsin (if I remember right) along the lines of what he terms Restoration Agriculture, a permaculture based design and error lead system which aims to use many more perennial crops (trees mainly) plus layering crops from tree canopy to ground, increasing the harvest of sunlight and soil on one acre to an optimal 5-6 acres in one (beats chucking a hard grain on the floor and that's your lot), and through that returning the environment to a savannah type, where the livestock can forage and feast on many plant varieties. Mark's system is economically viable and regenerates the soil to a rich, nutrient packed deep loveliness in no time flat. You can find a talk by him on YT - about two and a half hours - for a good overview of what's what. I recommend it.
 

lee h oswald

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Letting DOW chemical off the hook is a North-American tradition. One of Monsanto's best selling products is 'round-up', a potent herbicide that only GMO 'round-up ready' plants are likely to survive//. aside from the 'super weeds' that are naturally developing resistances and are giving GMO cotton/soy farmers I think it was a terribly hard time. That people shouldn't be so silly as to think Monsanto benign, or their intentions good. They have in the past, they do now, and by that pattern almost certainly will in the future put profit far before people.

Quite right, G. And, just to expand on the Roundup thing: it's systemic. The herbicide is sprayed over the entire crop - and the herbicide is designed to enter the system of the plant. It cuts off the plant's ability to uptake vital nutrients and the plant dies, root and branch. Roundup-ready crops have a GE part which makes it resistant to the herbicide - but it still uptakes the poison; then you or your livestock eat it. Roundup spraying is the main cause of injury to agri workers in the US. Roundup has a surfactant (an additive to make the herbicide stay on the leaf long enough to be taken up) which is carcinogenic to humans and animals. Huge areas of crops are sprayed with Roundup - drifting is causing reduced winter hardiness in hedgerows and trees, killing soil microlife, poisoning water courses and killing water borne species from micro-organisms to tadpoles and fish. And, ofcourse, as you point out, there are now other species becoming resistant - an inevitable consequence of introducing GM plants which do not belong in nature. It's nothing short of criminal idiocy.
 

Grieves

Senior Member
Roundup spraying is the main cause of injury to agri workers in the US.
I wasn't aware of that, got any figures you can share? What are the common injuries/ailments associated with use of roundup in the US?
 

JRBids

Senior Member.
Letting DOW chemical off the hook is a North-American tradition.

What do you mean?

One of Monsanto's best selling products is 'round-up', a potent herbicide that only GMO 'round-up ready' plants are likely to survive//. aside from the 'super weeds' that are naturally developing resistances and are giving GMO cotton/soy farmers I think it was a terribly hard time.

That people shouldn't be so silly as to think Monsanto benign, or their intentions good. They have in the past, they do now, and by that pattern almost certainly will in the future put profit far before people.

I was addressing Joe's post which is comparing Agent Orange' safety with genetically modified food's safety: "Monsanto invented Agent Orange they said it was safe as well ? If you are what you eat and your food is genetically modified what does that make your descendants ? pure evil he who controls the food or water controls the world , that should be there motto"

I don't know why the choice has to be Monsanto is benign or Monsanto is evil. How about Monsanto is a huge corporation that makes a lot of money for itself and like viturally every other huge corporation is more concerned with it's own bottom line.
 

JRBids

Senior Member.
Quite right, G. And, just to expand on the Roundup thing: it's systemic. The herbicide is sprayed over the entire crop - and the herbicide is designed to enter the system of the plant. It cuts off the plant's ability to uptake vital nutrients and the plant dies, root and branch. Roundup-ready crops have a GE part which makes it resistant to the herbicide - but it still uptakes the poison; then you or your livestock eat it. Roundup spraying is the main cause of injury to agri workers in the US. Roundup has a surfactant (an additive to make the herbicide stay on the leaf long enough to be taken up) which is carcinogenic to humans and animals. Huge areas of crops are sprayed with Roundup - drifting is causing reduced winter hardiness in hedgerows and trees, killing soil microlife, poisoning water courses and killing water borne species from micro-organisms to tadpoles and fish. And, ofcourse, as you point out, there are now other species becoming resistant - an inevitable consequence of introducing GM plants which do not belong in nature. It's nothing short of criminal idiocy.


You make it sound as if the fields are being sprayed by planes or something. We used to use round up around the vines in our vineyard and you have to be very careful how windy it is an how you apply it.
 

Oxymoron

Banned
Banned
Quite right, G. And, just to expand on the Roundup thing: it's systemic. The herbicide is sprayed over the entire crop - and the herbicide is designed to enter the system of the plant. It cuts off the plant's ability to uptake vital nutrients and the plant dies, root and branch. Roundup-ready crops have a GE part which makes it resistant to the herbicide - but it still uptakes the poison; then you or your livestock eat it. Roundup spraying is the main cause of injury to agri workers in the US. Roundup has a surfactant (an additive to make the herbicide stay on the leaf long enough to be taken up) which is carcinogenic to humans and animals.

Bang on and here is the result of all the toxic spraying inc Roundup but not only Roundup.
 

Oxymoron

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Banned
You make it sound as if the fields are being sprayed by planes or something. We used to use round up around the vines in our vineyard and you have to be very careful how windy it is an how you apply it.

No doubt they were your 'organic' vines lol. Most big operations spray it all over the place but assume it is safe because it is done early on when the crop is young. That is incorrect. It does lasting damage
 

lee h oswald

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Banned
I wasn't aware of that, got any figures you can share? What are the common injuries/ailments associated with use of roundup in the US?

Now you're asking! I don't recall the exact source for that, G. Sorry. (Was part of my studies a few years back; glyphosate was but a sub-set of the whole). But there's a plethora of available studies/info - and it's mostly eye and respiratory issues (and worse, longer term problems); try some of these for size -
Hope that's useful, G.
 

Grieves

Senior Member
I was addressing Joe's post which is comparing Agent Orange' safety with genetically modified food's safety
Yar, but you stated you couldn't see any connection between herbicides and GMO's. Evidently you're aware of the connection if you've made use of roundup yourself.
I don't know why the choice has to be Monsanto is benign or Monsanto is evil. How about Monsanto is a huge corporation that makes a lot of money for itself and like viturally every other huge corporation is more concerned with it's own bottom line.
It isn't down to one or the other by any stretch, even if that's how the discussion is framed by some. I don't think Monsanto is 'evil', I just think what they're trying to do is wrong, and given their history should be fought.
Hope that's useful, G.
Indeed it is, thanks for saving me the search!
 

lee h oswald

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Banned
You make it sound as if the fields are being sprayed by planes or something. We used to use round up around the vines in our vineyard and you have to be very careful how windy it is an how you apply it.

So you're a poison sprayer, then? And in that process you directly fund companies like Monsanto - Please consider alternative methods. There are many.
 

Jay Reynolds

Senior Member.
So you're a poison sprayer, then? And in that process you directly fund companies like Monsanto - Please consider alternative methods. There are many.

Got a good plan to eliminate poison ivy from woodlands?

You people are a few years too late spewing your bile against Monsanto. Their patent on the active ingredients in Roundup expired
thirteen years ago. Much of the glyphosate being used worldwide is coming from China. Probably 90% of the useful idiots marching in the protest had no idea.

Look East for your next demons my furry friends........
 

lee h oswald

Banned
Banned
Got a good plan to eliminate poison ivy from woodlands? You people are a few years too late spewing your bile against Monsanto. Their patent on the active ingredients in Roundup expired thirteen years ago. Much of the glyphosate being used worldwide is coming from China. Probably 90% of the useful idiots marching in the protest had no idea. Look East for your next demons my furry friends........


Roundup is a trade name, n'est pas? Made by Monsanto.

Do you really want my advice on removing poison ivy? Probably be the same as it was last time.

Are you still an 'organic' farmer growing GMO corn on the side and spraying glyphosate in your woodlands? Or just a US military contractor?
 

SR1419

Senior Member.
. Roundup spraying is the main cause of injury to agri workers in the US.

I wasn't aware of that, got any figures you can share? What are the common injuries/ailments associated with use of roundup in the US?

Now you're asking! I don't recall the exact source for that, G. Sorry.

Perhaps you can't recall the source because it isn't an accurate statement?

http://www.ncfh.org/docs/fs-Occ Health.pdf


http://southwestfarmpress.com/management/farm-safety-emphasized-march-4-10

http://nasdonline.org/document/1001/d000984/agricultural-injury.html

http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/aginjury/OISPA/pdfs/AI-19.pdf

Aginjuries.jpg

http://nasdonline.org/document/2905/d002282/farm-injuries-in-ohio-2003-2006-a-report.html

http://nasdonline.org/document/2758...ury-rates-of-utah-agricultural-producers.html

more data:

http://nasdonline.org/browse/452/statistics-surveillance-and-survey-instruments.html
 

Pete Tar

Senior Member.
How would I know if an event was not covered? If people on social media reported an event but there were no news stories about it.
Is this a trick question?
 

Jay Reynolds

Senior Member.
Roundup is a trade name, n'est pas? Made by Monsanto.

Do you really want my advice on removing poison ivy? Probably be the same as it was last time.

Are you still an 'organic' farmer growing GMO corn on the side and spraying glyphosate in your woodlands? Or just a US military contractor?

Neither of your guesses are correct. The poison ivy is gone, thanks to generic glyphosate. I am currently employed as the Chief Engineer on a 295 ft. vessel which goes about the Gulf of Mexico removing old unused oil production platforms. When wefinish, nothing but mud remains.

Guess you never had to deal with hundreds of poison ivy plants among the trees? Silly me for asking someone who hasn't a clue.
 

Oxymoron

Banned
Banned
How would I know if an event was not covered? If people on social media reported an event but there were no news stories about it.
Is this a trick question?

I don't think it's a trick question.

Can you give some historical examples, say over the last decade?
 

Pete Tar

Senior Member.
I don't think it's a trick question.

Can you give some historical examples, say over the last decade?

Well, it's certainly a strange question seeing the term was only used in the context of it being provably drama queen level bullshit to claim a 'media blackout' of the Monsanto march - to which you also responded 'what's your definition of media blackout?'

Not this.

NBC-
http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/Chicagoans-March-Against-Monsanto-208961781.html
http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local/Protesters-Rally-Against-Monsanto-208989341.html
http://www.nbcnews.com/id/52000920/...sters-march-against-monsanto-seattle-olympia/
http://www.nbcnews.com/id/51999785/...e/t/protesters-march-against-monsanto-cities/
http://www.nbc-2.com/story/22423735/locals-march-against

FOX -
http://www.kptv.com/story/22423185/protesters-march-against-monsanto-in-250-cities
http://fox4kc.com/2013/05/25/march-against-monsanto-brings-hundreds-to-plaza/
http://www.fox21online.com/news/video/northlanders-join-world-march-against-monsanto
http://www.foxbusiness.com/news/201...-against-monsanto-genetically-modified-seeds/

ABC -
http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wireStory/correction-marching-monsanto-story-19265495
http://www.abcactionnews.com/dpp/news/march-against-monsanto-in-tampa-st-pete
http://www.abc15.com/dpp/news/national/protesters-to-march-vs-monsanto-in-250-cities
http://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/protesters-march-monsanto-250-cities-19256536

CBS -
http://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2013/05/25/hundreds-march-against-monsanto/
http://dfw.cbslocal.com/2013/05/25/protesters-march-against-monsanto-in-north-texas/
http://stlouis.cbslocal.com/2013/05/25/march-against-monsanto/


What's yours?

The claim of media blackout was obviously made in hysterical glee following on from the claims of media blackout of the occupy movement - they followed the script started then.

If the question was asked however in the interests of wider discussion - well, my answer stands, as I would either have to rely on time to pass for it to come out, or happening to know of it due to social media, police trackers, forums, etc..., or the efforts of independent investigative journalism.

Examples of media blackout in the last decade - well Wiki gives some -
Also I think there was some controversy over the bodies of soldiers arriving back home being discouraged from being shown to media - but obviously I heard about it, through the media. Though I'm Australian.

Other modern example would be Syria -

China -
http://www.smh.com.au/world/china-media-blackout-on-fugitive-dissident-20120430-1xv0s.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/01/world/asia/01crackdown.html
http://www.voanews.com/content/in-china-close-newsreading-the-news-for-political-clues/1540103.html

And apparently the 'day of rage' in America was unreported, but those of other countries was.


I think in a lot of cases the term media blackout is just a propaganda tactic to give validity to something by making it seem suppressed. Monty Python's "Help, I'm being repressed!" scene springs to mind.
It does happen, but is not a sustainable state.
 

Cairenn

Senior Member.
The problems resulting from the use of Agent Orange was not from the Agent Orange itself, but from the fact that it had been contaminated with dioxin. Agent Orange is NOT Roundup--they are different chemicals.


Was Monsanto careless in producing Agent Orange? Probably yes. Was it deliberate, no. Was the dioxin deliberate? NO.

We are not talking about Agent Orange, but we are talking about GM plants.

Trying to drive the thread to a discussion of Agent Orange, seems to be a deliberate attempt to not face the facts about the safety of GM products. The same with discussing factory farming.
 

Trigger Hippie

Senior Member.
in the context of it being provably drama queen level bullshit to claim a 'media blackout' of the Monsanto march


http://www.foodexposed.co.za/global...ted-2-million-protesters-with-media-blackout/


WEAR-TV is the ABC-affiliated television station in Pensacola Florida. :rolleyes:
 

Oxymoron

Banned
Banned
Well, it's certainly a strange question seeing the term was only used in the context of it being provably drama queen level bullshit to claim a 'media blackout' of the Monsanto march - to which you also responded 'what's your definition of media blackout?'

Interesting, detailed and well thought out post Pete; Appreciated. I largely agree with what you say. However, there are degrees of coverage and whilst it may be factually inaccurate to claim a media blackout, some people use the term in a less precise manner to denote what is perceived, and may factually be, a very low level of coverage or coverage that is biased in that it is portrayed in a derogatory way.

I think this normally happens when Government policy is challenged, such as in anti war protests, Occupy etc, where participants are often reported in a derogatory fashion.

I think the media are very fickle and will often report in a populist vein in the belief that it is better for sales.
 

Grieves

Senior Member
Was the dioxin deliberate? NO.
from your own quote:
Internal memoranda revealed that Monsanto (a manufacturer of 2,4,5-T) had informed the U.S. government in 1952 that its 2,4,5-T was contaminated.
The Vietnam War (Vietnamese: Chiến tranh Việt Nam) was a Cold War-era military conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955[A 1] to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975.
Monsanto knew what its own product contained, the state department knew as well, and the decision was none the less made by Monsanto to sell it, and by the US to buy it/dump it on Vietnam.
We are not talking about Agent Orange, but we are talking about GM plants.

Trying to drive the thread to a discussion of Agent Orange, seems to be a deliberate attempt to not face the facts about the safety of GM products. The same with discussing factory farming.
You miss the point, and have seemingly missed the thread topic. Agent Orange is very pertinent in evaluating Monsanto as a corporate entity. Their work with chemical herbicides was the backbone of thier GMO business-plan, made entirely obvious by the fact their best-selling products are herbicides and GMO plants designed to resist them. Monsanto is responsible in part for thousands of deaths/injuries, and the decimation of millions of acres of farmland. They knowingly sold large amounts of a product they KNEW to be harmful to people for use on a civilian population. Can anyone honestly believe such a corporation has the best interests of the world's hungry poor at heart? Or are they going to keep marketing their products in a way that yields the most profit? Is anyone so indoctrinated by the fiscal mysticism of modern economics to still believe the hunt for maximum profit has the best possible result for everyone involved?
 

Critical Thinker

Senior Member.
Talking about Agent Orange is a straw man argument. That was back in the 60's, over 50 years ago. Might as well protest Bayer aspirin for using slave labor in WW2. Lets stick with the 'rationale' that the March against Monstanto are using to justify their protest.
 

Grieves

Senior Member
Talking about Agent Orange is a straw man argument. That was back in the 60's, over 50 years ago.
There's an old adage about folks who forget their history.... can't remember it for the life of me, though.

Lets stick with the 'rationale' that the March against Monstanto are using to justify their protest.
Ok. Monsanto is the biggest name currently in agribusiness, and are aggressively expanding, with a high level of influence within several governments. They currently have a large, near-quarter share of the global seed market, and have a fair measure of influence over food pricing. The bigger they grow, the greater that influence will be. With enough of a market-share, influence could become manipulation. Monsanto seeks high profits above most all else. Starving poor are not a source of high profits, and are thus less than likely to factor into their thinking/plans.
Those are the facts, the uncertainty of the debate over GMO's themselves aside. Within those facts I see a recipe for disaster, not the end of world hunger.
 

SR1419

Senior Member.
Monsanto is the biggest name currently in agribusiness

Thats not really an accurate statement- (I guess it depends on what you mean by "biggest name"- they certainly are the biggest lightening rod- but not the biggest Agribusiness company but a large margin )

Monsanto currently has revenues of approximately $11.8 billion...

However, that is dwarfed by the true giants of Agribusiness- Cargill and Archer Daniels Midland with revenues of $113 Billion and $80 billion respectively.

Both Cargill and ADM have a much larger role in a wider range of foodstuffs and effect a larger number of people than a seed company.

Most people have never heard of Cargill:

http://www.cargill.com/company/glance/
 

Grieves

Senior Member
Neither Cargill or ADM are big names in agriculture itself. They're processors, meaning they buy up what farmers produce and turn it into the products companies like Kraft or other major food-corps make use of, i.e buying up corn and turning it into sweetener/ethanol/whatever. Cargill isn't even exclusive to this roll, also offering financial services and industrial products. Monsanto is the biggest corporate name in agriculture itself.
 

Critical Thinker

Senior Member.
There's an old adage about folks who forget their history.... can't remember it for the life of me, though.

Ok. Monsanto is the biggest name currently in agribusiness, and are aggressively expanding, with a high level of influence within several governments. They currently have a large, near-quarter share of the global seed market, and have a fair measure of influence over food pricing. The bigger they grow, the greater that influence will be. With enough of a market-share, influence could become manipulation. Monsanto seeks high profits above most all else. Starving poor are not a source of high profits, and are thus less than likely to factor into their thinking/plans.
Those are the facts, the uncertainty of the debate over GMO's themselves aside. Within those facts I see a recipe for disaster, not the end of world hunger.


So they are a big business, which claim is it that you are saying is valid that has not already been addressed?


Why do we march?



  • Research studies have shown that Monsanto’s genetically-modified foods can lead to serious health conditions such as the development of cancer tumors, infertility and birth defects.



  • In the United States, the FDA, the agency tasked with ensuring food safety for the population, is steered by ex-Monsanto executives, and we feel that’s a questionable conflict of interests and explains the lack of government-led research on the long-term effects of GM products.



  • Recently, the U.S. Congress and president collectively passed the nicknamed “Monsanto Protection Act” that, among other things, bans courts from halting the sale of Monsanto’s genetically-modified seeds.



  • For too long, Monsanto has been the benefactor of corporate subsidies and political favoritism. Organic and small farmers suffer losses while Monsanto continues to forge its monopoly over the world’s food supply, including exclusive patenting rights over seeds and genetic makeup.



  • Monsanto's GM seeds are harmful to the environment; for example, scientists have indicated they have contributed to Colony Collapse Disorder among the world's bee population."
 

Grieves

Senior Member


  • In the United States, the FDA, the agency tasked with ensuring food safety for the population, is steered by ex-Monsanto executives, and we feel that’s a questionable conflict of interests and explains the lack of government-led research on the long-term effects of GM products.
Valid. Monsanto does have an inordinate level of influence within American politics.

For too long, Monsanto has been the benefactor of corporate subsidies and political favoritism. Organic and small farmers suffer losses while Monsanto continues to forge its monopoly over the world’s food supply, including exclusive patenting rights over seeds and genetic makeup.
Valid. Monsanto's inordinate level of influence within American politics give it an advantage over others.

Research studies have shown that Monsanto’s genetically-modified foods can lead to serious health conditions such as the development of cancer tumors, infertility and birth defects.
Possible. There has been evidence of infertility in livestock as the result of GMO feedstock.


  • Monsanto's GM seeds are harmful to the environment; for example, scientists have indicated they have contributed to Colony Collapse Disorder among the world's bee population."
Possible. Colony Collapse Disorder is a big concern, and roundup/other pesticides remain a major suspect.
 

SR1419

Senior Member.
Neither Cargill or ADM are big names in agriculture itself. They're processors, meaning they buy up what farmers produce and turn it into the products companies like Kraft or other major food-corps make use of, i.e buying up corn and turning it into sweetener/ethanol/whatever. Cargill isn't even exclusive to this roll, also offering financial services and industrial products. Monsanto is the biggest corporate name in agriculture itself.

What???

Thats not even remotely accurate.

"Agribusiness" is much more than seeds. Cargill DWARFS Monsanto in terms of size and importance in global agribusiness. They yield much more influence politically, globally and financially than Monsanto.

Cargill may not be a household name (because they are private) but they have a much greater role in the food you eat than Monsanto.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/global-de...s/2011/jun/02/abcd-food-giants-dominate-trade

http://money.cnn.com/2011/10/24/news/companies/cargill_food_business.fortune/index.htm

Here is an interesting report on the truly big Agribusiness companies from OxFam:

http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfa...ets-grain-traders-agriculture-30082012-en.pdf

 

Grieves

Senior Member
Here is an interesting report on the truly big Agribusiness companies from OxFam:

http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam...0082012-en.pdf

This research report provides an analysis of the role and impacts of the world’s largest commodity traders on the modern food system.

"Agribusiness" is much more than seeds. Cargill DWARFS Monsanto in terms of size and importance in global agribusiness. They yield much more influence politically, globally and financially than Monsanto.

Cargill may not be a household name (because they are private) but they have a much greater role in the food you eat than Monsanto.
You're right. In the broader context of Agribusiness beyond food production itself, Cargill is the bigger name. Once again though, Cargill is a processor/trader, not a producer, in the words of their own CEO. They buy produce from farmers and render that produce into other products which they sell. They do indeed have massive influence over foodstuffs, but that influence usually doesn't begin until those foodstuffs have left the farm. Cargill will buy your grain, Cargill will sell you crop insurance, and they'll even sell you Canola seed 'manufactured' by DOW, but that's the limit of their influence over agriculture itself. They do indeed have extreme influence over food the world over, but they are beholden to the prices of the produce they buy, and the prices other companies will pay for their additives/ingredients/products. If they pay too little for the produce they need, farmers will sell elsewhere and the business fails. If they charge too much for the products/ingredients they make, companies like Kraft will go elsewhere. In other words, its a more traditional business model with a real potential for failure. Competition can actually keep them 'in check' to an extent.
Monsanto is different. Their influence over the developments in patent-law has given them a considerable advantage in the field of GMO's over their competitors, and has allowed them to use the science to develop monopolies on several key crops in North America, monopolies which allow them to manipulate pricing and choke out competition. This is the insidious brilliance of their business model, as it does what companies like Cargill can't do, which is grab agriculture itself by the balls and squeeze. Whereas rising prices and poor conditions lead companies like Cargill to suffer, Monsanto's business model is a brilliant profit-machine, basically printing more money the more tenuous the global food situation becomes.

Cargill and the other 'ABCD's aren't innocents by any stretch of the imagination, and do also have inordinate influence over food. They are, however, intrinsically beholden to the agricultural process, and its the agricultural process itself around which Monsanto is gaining a hold, right at the very earliest stage. This is what makes Monsanto rather unique comparatively, and gives them far more influence over agriculture itself if not all aspects of the business that surrounds it.
 

SR1419

Senior Member.
You're right. In the broader context of Agribusiness beyond food production itself, Cargill is the bigger name. Once again though, Cargill is a processor/trader, not a producer, in the words of their own CEO. They buy produce from farmers and render that produce into other products which they sell. They do indeed have massive influence over foodstuffs, but that influence usually doesn't begin until those foodstuffs have left the farm. Cargill will buy your grain, Cargill will sell you crop insurance, and they'll even sell you Canola seed 'manufactured' by DOW, but that's the limit of their influence over agriculture itself.

Thanks...but its not true to say Cargill is not a producer- They produce a lot of food- mostly livestock. They also DO have influence on farmers prior to the crop leaving the farm as farmers make production decisions based on the price they expect to receive from Cargill.

But they are big enough that they can dictate (to some extent) prices they pay.

http://www.scribd.com/doc/7470879/Cargill-A-Threat-to-Food-and-Farming

Monsanto is different. Their influence over the developments in patent-law has given them a considerable advantage in the field of GMO's over their competitors, and has allowed them to use the science to develop monopolies on several key crops in North America, monopolies which allow them to manipulate pricing and choke out competition. This is the insidious brilliance of their business model, as it does what companies like Cargill can't do, which is grab agriculture itself by the balls and squeeze. Whereas rising prices and poor conditions lead companies like Cargill to suffer, Monsanto's business model is a brilliant profit-machine, basically printing more money the more tenuous the global food situation becomes.

What?? I do not think you seem to understand how global food trade works....rising prices -in general- means greater profits for Cargill- see any correlation(click to enlarge):

Cargill profits.jpg


Their profits dropped last year because of increased feed costs for their livestock production:

http://tcbmag.com/News/Recent-News/2013/April/Cargills-Profits-Plunge-42-Due-to-Drought

Cargill and the other 'ABCD's aren't innocents by any stretch of the imagination, and do also have inordinate influence over food. They are, however, intrinsically beholden to the agricultural process, and its the agricultural process itself around which Monsanto is gaining a hold, right at the very earliest stage.

Given that Cargill is the largest buyer and processor of wheat...and wheat is the single largest source of vegetable protein for humans in the World....and there is currently no GMO wheat being grown anywhere in the World...I think Cargill's influence is greater than Monsanto's.
 

scombrid

Senior Member.
Jay, you an employee or something?
You seem inordinately defensive where Monsanto is concerned.

I could echo a lot of what Jay has said and Monsanto is on my top ten list of shitty multinational corporations.

I know I'm tired of a lot of the mythology around glyphosphate and now GM crops. Seems like half my friends have bought into the idea that their tomatoes have no nutrients or flavor and that bread is nutrient poor carbohydrate loaded poison because of GMOs from Monsanto. I actually have real life friends that think that GM Wheat from Monsanto gave them a metabolic disorder and made them fat. Then there are the people out on the St. Johns River that think that the Corps of Engineers is using Agent Orange to control water hyacynth. I'm really just tired of having to correct such bullshit when there are important real issues that need addressing.
 

SR1419

Senior Member.
I actually have real life friends that think that GM Wheat from Monsanto gave them a metabolic disorder and made them fat.

According to this there is no GM wheat- is it inaccurate??:

http://www.gmo-compass.org/eng/grocery_shopping/crops/22.genetically_modified_wheat.html

 

lee h oswald

Banned
Banned
The poison ivy is gone, thanks to generic glyphosate.

Guess you never had to deal with hundreds of poison ivy plants among the trees? Silly me for asking someone who hasn't a clue.

Let's just recap on what you've said previously.

PS, on my organic farm I did try out the GMO corn which carried the bacillus thurigiensis gene

Hm. BT corn, organic? And, when it's pointed out, your answer:

Genes are organic, well, so is gasoline, and few organic farmers use "horse"power anymore.

Interesting angle. But a hopeless defence for your bad practice. When pointed out, you [...] say:

I could go on and on..... like saying that people who have different genetic skin color are not human!

Which is [irrelevant]


It becomes clearer to me when you then say:

In my area, the only way to escape corn worms is to plant extremely early to beat the worm season, still, even using bt organic permtted spray I always got some worms. It was useless to plant again because later in the summer more generations had passed so that the worm pressure was so great that 1/2 the ear was infested.

Because it's obvious to me that you're trying to grow the wrong crop. If you're fighting with input after input against what nature's up to, then you're going to lose. Or resort to further detrimental inputs, just like you did. It's a no-brainer. The best way to avoid corn worms -would be to not grow corn, but something else. Obvious innit! When you think about it.

You then stated your use of glyphosate on your 'organic' farm, which prompted my reply:



do you work for Monsanto?
Blimey. What a lot of nonsense. Matey, if you're chucking Glyphosate all over your farm, I think you need to check out the real meaning of organic. In fact - How dare you call yourself an organic farmer? You're nothing more than an apologist for a corrupt corporation. You should learn some facts about the herbicide you use on your 'organic' enterprise:

Glyphosate is a non-selective systemic herbicide. It kills all plant types including grasses, perennials and woody plants. It works by being absorbed into the plant mainly though its leaves but also through soft stalk tissue. It is transported throughout the plant where it acts on various enzyme systems inhibiting amino acid metabolism. This pathway exists in higher plants and microorganisms but not in animals. Plants treated with glyphosate slowly die over a period of days or weeks, and no part survives.
Glyphosate itself may be relatively harmless, some of the products with which it is formulated have a rather less benign reputation. Marketed formulations of glyphosate generally contain a surfactant. Some of these are serious irritants, toxic to fish, and can themselves contain contaminants which are carcinogenic to humans.
In glyphosate formulations are ethylated amines. Polyoxy-ethyleneamine refers to a group of ethylated amine products used in glyphosate formulations. These are significantly more toxic than glyphosate. They are serious irritants of eyes, the respiratory tract and skin, and have been found to contain dioxane (not dioxin) contaminants which are suspected of being carcinogenic.

In California, glyphosate is one of the most commonly reported causes of illness or injury to workers from pesticides. The most common complaints are eye and skin irritation. The US authorities have recommended a no re-entry period of 12 hours where glyphosate is used in agricultural or industrial situations

The Forestry Commission (UK) believes - and they should know - that glyphosate and other herbicides commonly affect hedgerow trees causing die-back. In the US it has been suggested that herbicides, including glyphosate reduce winter hardiness in trees and their resistance to fungal disease. It has been suggested that damage to maple trees increases during the second year following treatment with glyphosate, and that clover planted 120 days following treatment showed reduced nitrogen fixation and growth. This implies that glyphosate which is bound to soil particles can remain active and may be released from soil and taken up by plants.
The US-EPA stated that many endangered plants may be at risk from glyphosate use

Glyphosate is sprayed indiscriminately over vast areas and will inevitably kill non-target vegetation

The toxicity of glyphosate to mammals and birds is generally relatively low. However, its broad spectrum of herbicidal activity has led to the destruction of habitats and food sources for some birds and amphibians leading to population reductions.
Fish and aquatic invertebrates are more sensitive to glyphosate and its formulations. Its toxicity is increased with higher water temperatures and pH. Some soil invertebrates including springtails, mites and isopods are also adversely affected by glyphosate. Of nine herbicides tested for their toxicity to soil microorganisms, glyphosate was found to be the second most toxic to a range of bacteria, fungi, actinomycetes and yeasts.

In Australia most formulations of glyphosate have been banned from use in or near water because of their toxic effects on tadpoles and to a lesser extent on adult frogs. There is also concern about non-lethal effects of the herbicide on frogs. New non-irritant formulations such as Roundup Biactive are excluded from the ban.

Resistance
Crops with genetically engineered resistance to glyphosate have been developed so that weeds can be controlled in fields where the crops are growing without harming the crop plants themselves. This strategy will make farmers more dependent on particular pesticidal products and will probably lead to increased use. There is also concern that the genes which display glyphosate resistance may be transferred to non-crop species including weeds.

Reports in professional journals indicate that resistance to glyphosate has developed in annual ryegrass in Australia. Anecdotal evidence from users in the UK suggests that similar signs of resistance in annual ryegrass and knotgrass have existed for some time.

Conclusion
Glyphosate can be an effective tool in weed control programmes, there is nevertheless evidence of toxic effects on humans as well as environmental toxicity, indirect environmental damage and resistance in some target weed species. Since glyphosate is being marketed as a safe and environmentally friendly product and its use is so extensive, there is a danger that damage to non-target plants including endangered species will increase. Habitat damage and destruction will occur more frequently and more instances of weed resistance will appear. Cultivation of glyphosate resistant crops will potentially exacerbate these problems.

Instead of putting words in my mouth and lying to yourself and anyone else - why don't you change your bad practices and be honest with yourself and everyone else who might be unfortunate enough to believe what you're selling them is in any way 'organic'?
 

Grieves

Senior Member
Their profits dropped last year because of increased feed costs for their livestock production
precisely. An increase in the cost of livestock feed due to natural pressures, which these days typically refers to corn or soy, had a major negative impact on their business, resulting in almost half the earnings. Monsanto adversely experienced increased profits as a result of the exact same issue, that being the greater cost of corn/soy due to scarcity. Whereas scarcity of the produce through which they make their products impacts Cargill negatively, increased scarcity of produce has a positive influence on Monsanto's profits. Yes, Cargill's profits correlate well with increasing food prices, but as has been emphatically pointed out to me in the past, correlation doesn't equal causation. An increase in the price of food at the end of the production line, once its been processed and packaged, may well be damn good for Cargill, but scarcity of the basics with which they produce their ingredients/additives/feeds/ect. effects them negatively. Monsanto, the leading name in the technology that's supposedly going to solve world hunger, benefits from scarcity of the basics. As you pointed out:
In the Pacific Northwest, the Justice Department estimated that Cargill would have been in control of 53 per-cent of corn purchases and 94 percent of soybean purchases.
Given that Monsanto has a monopoly on the production of both of these crops in America, isn't it fair to say that Monsanto seed pricing has more of an impact on Cargill's bottom line that Cargill's buying price has on Monsanto's bottom line?
 

Oxymoron

Banned
Banned
Let's just recap on what you've said previously.
Hm. BT corn, organic? And, when it's pointed out, your answer:
Interesting angle. But a hopeless defence for your bad practice. When pointed out, you get a bit tetchy, and say:
Which is a particularly facile chunk of shit covered straw.
It becomes clearer to me when you then say:
Because it's obvious to me that you're trying to grow the wrong crop. If you're fighting with input after input against what nature's up to, then you're going to lose. Or resort to further detrimental inputs, just like you did. It's a no-brainer. The best way to avoid corn worms -would be to not grow corn, but something else. Obvious innit! When you think about it.
You then stated your use of glyphosate on your 'organic' farm, which prompted my reply:
You've no idea what my knowledge is on this subject, but I must say, when someone like you says
I take it as a compliment. Though of all your comments - from denying that Nasa was populated with former nazis - to gasoline is organic - my favourite is
Still makes me chuckle.

I am appalled that someone can use these products and still claim to be 'organic'... What do you have to do to not be organic? It makes a mockery of everything. There should be a law against it... in fact I'd be surprised if there wasn't even in the U.S

Get your brainless-feetless steroidal, irradiated, four legged organically grown, glow in the dark chickens here!
 

SR1419

Senior Member.
Given that Monsanto has a monopoly on the production of both of these crops in America, isn't it fair to say that Monsanto seed pricing has more of an impact on Cargill's bottom line that Cargill's buying price has on Monsanto's bottom line?

Why do you persist with this myth of Monsanto's "monopoly" ?

DuPont has a larger market share of BOTH corn and soybean seeds in the US.

Neither has a monopoly.

market_share_shifts.jpg


http://www.agweb.com/article/behind_the_seed_scene/
 
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