New reports indicate that a coalition of family farmers and others in Chile has successfully put a stop, at least temporarily, to efforts by Monsanto to gain more patent rights. Truth-Out.org reports that grassroots opposition by indigenous farmers and rural communities was enough to block a bill known as the “Monsanto Law,” which would have allowed agribusiness companies the right to patent any seed they develop, modify or even just discover.
Colombian Supreme Court declares seed bio-piracy unconstitutional
Similar reports have emerged out of Colombia, where biotech companies had previously outlawed the use of non-certified seeds, or seeds that are not patented and owned by a corporation. Following the confiscation and destruction of some 70 tons of non-certified rice seeds by the government, local farmers banded together to contest the unjust law, resulting in its eventual scrapping by the nation’s Supreme Court.
All throughout Central and South America, in fact, resistance to transgenic technology and bio-piracy is growing, and governments are being forced to address the issue. Despite the fact that nearly three-quarters of global GMO production currently takes place in Latin America, the tides appear to be turning as awareness grows about this monumental threat to food sovereignty.
“From Mexico’s Rio Grande in the north to Argentina’s fertile pampas in the south, indigenous and peasant communities are rising up against government legislation that would apply brutally rigid intellectual copyright laws to the crop seeds they are able to grow,” writes Don Quijones for Testosterone Pit.
“The reason why this should be of vital interest — not only to GMO producers and Latin American growers, but also food growers and consumers around the world — is that Latin America is currently the epicentre of the GMO movement, accounting for anywhere between 60 and 70 percent of total global GMO production.”
Mexican president calls for ban on GM corn
Mexico is partaking in this resistance as well, where traditional maize varieties are increasingly threatened with elimination by genetically modified imposters. Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto recently issued a call for a complete ban on transgenic corn, according to reports, which would cripple the efforts of companies like Monsanto in expanding south of the U.S. border.
Even with countries like Argentina and Brazil already onboard — Argentina grows most of the world’s GM soybeans, raking in more than $30 billion annually in revenues — the biotechnology industry is discovering that a silent majority is rising up against it in surprising numbers. And if momentum continues to build, it very well could spell an end to this reckless imperialism that is destroying both humanity and the planet.
“In Latin America, the epicentre not only of the GMO markets but also of the fair trade movement, the rural resistance has begun,” added Quijones. “And the stakes could not be higher: for the continent’s millions of small holders and peasant farmers, what they are fighting for is nothing short of basic self-sufficiency and survival.”
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