Addis Ethiopia Weblog

Ethiopia's World / የኢትዮጵያ ዓለም

Posts Tagged ‘Genetically Modiefied Foods’

Embedding Transnational Agribusiness and GMO’s into African Agriculture*

Posted by addisethiopia / አዲስ ኢትዮጵያ on October 9, 2017

The African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) has just released the report For your own good!, which outlines the GMO industry’s expansion across Africa. The report focuses on non-commercial traditional crops, such as cassava, sorghum, sweet potato, pigeon pea, cowpea, banana and rice, which corporations are attempting to genetically modify and roll out under the guise of philanthropy.

The report reveals that a great deal of research and development is currently underway into the genetic modification (GM) of these crops. Most of the on-going trials concentrate on drought and salt tolerance, nitrogen use efficiency, resistance to tropical pests and diseases and nutritional enhancement (bio-fortification). The key countries that have been targeted include:

The genesis of GM research into these crops can be found in royalty-free donations of various patented GM traits by several transnational companies to experimental programmes undertaken by African scientists employed by government ministries. These companies include Monsanto, Dupont and Pioneer Hi-bred.

Mariam Mayet, Director of the ACB, says:

This indicates that the GM industry, under the veil of technology donations and public financing, is effectively managing to make further inroads into imposing GM on the African continent. By focusing the research on traits meant to ‘benefit’ farmers and malnourished populations, through inter alia, bio-fortification, the industry is intent on giving a humanitarian face to the real involvement, vested interests and expanding influence of these MNCs in African agriculture”.

The main players involved include the African Agriculture Technology Foundation (AATF), which is on the receiving end of many of the technological property rights donations, the Agricultural Biotechnology Support Program (ABSP) and the Program for Biosafety Systems (PBS). The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and USAID fund the latter organisations.

U.S-based research institutions such as the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center (DDPSC) (for cassava) and universities (notably Michigan State University and Kansas State University) play a major role in this ‘philanthropic’ research.

The ACB report notes there is a dearth of literature that critically addresses bio-safety issues and socio-economic aspects relating to the bio-fortification of indigenous crops through GM. According to the authors, this is especially important given the need to move away from an over-emphasis on food fortification strategies towards a permanent solution: diet diversification through locally available foods, which was recognised as early as 1992 by the U.N. International Conference on Nutrition.

As is the case with the controversial Golden Rice research and development project, the report argues these GM projects are diverting financial and human resources and policies and practices away from implementing the real solutions that can be found within the diversity of natural foods and farming.

Zakiyya Ismail, Consumer Campaigner with the ACB argues:

The real solutions to address vitamin and mineral deficiencies can be found in ecological farming systems, and traditional kitchen and home gardens, which can better contribute to healthy and diverse diets and empower people to access and produce their own healthy and varied food.”

ACB stresses that smallholder farmers must be given the right to choose their means of production and survival. It adds even if gene sequences and constructs are donated, the accompanying requisite GM inputs will be expensive for farmers. GM crops are highly likely to increase the costs of production for farmers and lead them into indebtedness and dependency.

The report by ACB follows a Global Justice Now report that outlines the role of BMFG in spearheading a drive into Africa on behalf of ‘corporate America’ to facilitate a GMO/green revolution.

With assets of $43.5 billion, BMGF is the largest charitable foundation in the world and distributes more aid for global health than any government. Its strategy is intended to deepen the role of multinational companies, even though these corporations are responsible for much of the poverty and injustice that already plagues the Global South. The foundation’s programmes have a specific ideological strategy that promotes neo-liberal economic policies, corporate globalisation, GMOs and an outdated (colonialist) view of role of aid in ‘helping’ the poor.

Global Justice Now shows that the senior staff of BMGF’s programmes are overwhelmingly drawn from ‘corporate America’. As a result, the question is: whose interests are being promoted – those of corporate America or those of ordinary people who seek social and economic justice rather than charity?

Continue reading…

______

Posted in Conspiracies, Ethiopia, Health, Infos | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Genetics Are The New Eugenics: How Gmo’s Reduce The Human Population

Posted by addisethiopia / አዲስ ኢትዮጵያ on February 27, 2017

Last year, we had a series of mergers in the agribusiness’ GMO-corporations worldwide. This has created an alarming concentration of corporate power in the hands of basically three corporate groups.

The first one is Bayer AG of Germany, which made a friendly takeover of Monsanto. The reason for this was that Monsanto became identified in the public mind as pure evil and everything bad about GMO’s, which was accurate. This became a burden on the whole GMO project. So, Bayer stepped in, which has a friendly image of an aspirin, harmless, nice company, but in fact is the company that invented heroin in the 1880’s and made gas for the ovens of Auschwitz during WWII. It’s one of the dirtiest agribusiness companies in the world with a series of homicides and pesticides that killed off bee colonies and many other things that are essential to life and to nature.

ChemChina – China State Chemical giant – for some reason took over Swiss Syngenta, which makes weed-killers.

Then, Dow Chemicals and DuPont merged their GMO businesses together.

So, we have three gigantic corporate groups worldwide controlling the genetically-modified part of the human food chain. As dangerous as the GMO crops are and the more they sell, it is becoming more and more obvious that they are the chemicals that by contract must be applied to those GMO seeds by the corporations. They demand that if you buy roundup ready soybeans or corn, you must use Monsanto (now Bayer) roundup.

Therefore, this is giving more corporate power to the GMO industry than ever before and that’s an alarming trend. They are putting pressure on the bureaucracy in Brussels. One example: there was a massive public campaign against the renewal of the license of the European Commission for Glyphosate. Glyphosate is the most widely used weed-killer in the world. Glyphosate is the main ingredient in Monsanto’s roundup. The other ingredients are Monsanto’s corporate secret, but the combination of them is one of the most deadly weed-killers.

The World Health Organization’s body responsible for assessing genetic dangers made a ruling the last year that Glyphosate was a probable cancer-causing agent.

The license came up for automatic renewal last year – a 15-year license. The EU commission for health was prepared to automatically renew it for 15 years. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which is responsible allegedly for the health and safety of European citizens, recommended approval based on a German study by the German Food Safety Agency that was simply lifted 100% from studies given by the private corporation Monsanto! So, the whole chain was corrupt from the beginning and all the information was rigged. In reality tests have shown that in minuscule concentrations, lower than in recommended levels in Europe and in the US, Glyphosate causes kidney disease, liver disease, and other illnesses that are potentially fatal.

Now, Glyphosate has shown up in urine tests, in urban drinking water, in gardens, in ground water and so forth. And that gets into the system of childbearing women, for example, with embryo. It’s all in this!

The EU commission, despite a million petitions – this is a record setting – and despite recommendations from leading scientists around the world to not renew the license, made a compromise under huge industry pressure and renewed it for 18 months. Why did they renew it for that time? Because at the end of 18 months, they were told by Bayer and Monsanto that the takeover of those two giant corporations will be completed and Bayer is going to replace Glyphosate with another, likely more deadly toxin, but not so well-known as Glyphosate. So, they simply bought time. And that is just one example.

This agenda of GMO is not about the health and safety; it’s not about increasing crop yields – that’s a lie that has been proven in repeated tests in North America and all around the world. Crop yields for farmers, using GMO plants, may increase slightly for the first 1-2 harvest years, but ultimately decline after 3-4 years. And not only that! We’ve been promised by Monsanto and other GMO giants that the use of chemicals will be less, because of these “wonderful” traits that GMO plants resist. In fact, the weeds become resistant and you have super weeds, which are 5-6 feet in a height and choke out everything. It’s a catastrophe. So, farmers end up using added weed killers to kill the super weeds. This whole mad playing around with the genetic makeup of nature is a disaster from the beginning.

The real agenda of GMO, which I have documented in great detail in my book “Seeds of Destruction”, comes from the Rockefeller Foundation. It comes out of the 1920s-1930s Eugenics movement. The Rockefeller Foundation during the 1930’s, right up to the outbreak of World War II when it became politically embracing too, financed the Nazi Eugenics experiments of Kaiser Wilhelm Institute in Berlin and in Munich. Why did they do this? Their goal was the elimination of what they called “undesirable eaters”. That is called population reduction.

After the war, the head of the American Eugenic Society, who was a good friend of John D. Rockefeller, at the annual conference of the American Eugenic Society said: “From today, the new name of eugenics is genetics”. Moreover, if you keep that in mind – genetic engineering, the Human Genome Project and so forth – they all are scientific frauds. Russian scientists have proven that the entire Genome Project utterly disregarded 98% of the scientifically valuable data in favor of 2% that was completely nonsense and a waste of billions of dollars.

Therefore, they have been obsessed with the idea of how to reduce human population in a way that would not be so obvious as simply going out and carrying out mass-sterilization.

Actually, they have done that in Central America together with the World Health Organization by giving certain vaccines that they cooked-up to have abortive effects. Therefore, the women of child-bearing age in Central America were given these vaccines against tetanus. The organization of the Catholic Church became suspicious because the shots were given only to women, not to men. And they found that there was buried in the vaccine an abortive effect that made it impossible for women to conceive and bear children. This is all covert population reduction.

These are the Western patriarchs who believe they are the gods, sitting on the throne with great dignity, controlling mankind. I think they are a bunch of fools, but they have this agenda of genetic manipulation. It’s against nature, it’s chemically unstable. And I have to congratulate the Russian Federation that they had the courage and the moral concern for their own population to ban GMO cultivation across Russia. That was a step forward for mankind. I would hope that Russia will use its influence to get China to do the similar thing, because their agriculture is in dire need of some healthy Russian input. But this step by Russia to make a GMO-free agriculture is a great step for mankind.

Source

__

Posted in Conspiracies, Health, Infos | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Seven GMO Loaded Brands You Should Avoid Buying – Gross

Posted by addisethiopia / አዲስ ኢትዮጵያ on November 29, 2014

Ever wonder which companies you should totally avoid, whether it’s because they create low-quality food or because they infringe on our food rights? Below you will see 6 huge players in the food industry to avoid and boycott. You can boycott their products for the best effect or you can petition them and ask them to stop throwing money at the anti-labeling campaigns. 

Here are 6 huge conglomerates aiming to ruin your right to know what is in your food.

1. Pepsi-Co

800px-Ethiopian_Pepsi_(5065648832)This behemoth has hardly been touched by consumer frustration with GMOs, even it is just as guilty as many other companies when it comes to food secrets. This is also the company who had to settle a $9 million class-action lawsuit over Naked Juice false advertising – claiming the products were ‘all natural’ and ‘100% juice’ when they are actually full of GMOs. Pepsi-Co was also revealed as one of the big spenders behind the anti-labeling campaigns illegally filtered through the Grocery Manufacturer’s Association. The company topped the list with a $1,620,899 donation to keep you in the dark about GMOs.

2. Kellogg’s

Kellogg-chomps_crpo-e1416442461834This company is downright shady. Kellogg’s company recently paid $5 million to settle a class-action lawsuit for falsely labeling Kashi products as “All Natural” or “Nothing Artificial.” They have also contributed a total of $1.6 million to defeat GMO labeling initiatives. In a consumer lab test, it was also found that Kellogg’s uses 100% GMO corn in several of their breakfast cereals and other products. Kashi products even made it onto the Non-GMO project’s list of safe foods, but they aren’t safe at all.

3. General Mills

general-mills_cereal-e1416442450168GM says: “We don’t use genetically modified ingredients in original Cheerios. Our principal ingredient has always been whole grain oats – and there are no GMO oats. We use a small amount of corn starch in cooking, and just one gram of sugar per serving for taste. But our corn starch comes from non-GMO corn, and we use only non-GMO pure cane sugar.” This is only in one type of cereal they sell, though. Only two percent of the company’s shareholders favor a complete GMO ban. GM’s CEO says, he “sees no reason within the United States to bar ingredients grown from biotech crops.”

4. Nestle/Gerber Co

nestle_alphaThis company puts GMOs in baby food. Need I say more? The company removed GMOs from baby formulas in South Africa after public pressure forced them to, but it continues to put them in American-sold versions. Formulas like Good Start and others contain GM soybean oil, GM soy lecithin, and GM maltodextrin, as well as corn syrup derived from GM crops. Along with Pepsi-Co and Coca-Cola, the company spent over $1 million to defeat GMO labeling in Washington, and more to defeat labeling in Oregon.

5. Hershey’s

hershey-bars_crop-e1416440403619Just how much will you like that chocolate bar after finding out that Hershey’s donated $800,000 to defeat California’s Prop 37 and Washington’s I-522, and another $500,000 to defeat this year’s initiatives in Oregon and Colorado? The company has only one organic brand—Dagoba. Time for a boycott? After all, there are hundreds of non-GMO fair-trade chocolate makers out there. Try some of these non-GMO sweets instead.

6. Coca-Cola

This soda empire has contributed more than $1.5 million to keep your teeth rotting from consuming their GMO-filled sodas. They also utilize high fructose corn syrup that is almost entirely GMO-corn derived. Here are other sodasthat contain GMOs, too.

__

7. Kraft

Kraft-logoKraft is also a big GMA supporter. Its website says: “The use of genetically modified (GM) ingredients is not only safe for people and our planet, but also has a number of important benefits.”

Source

__

Posted in Curiosity, Ethiopia, Ethnicity, Genetics & Anthropology, Infos | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Behind the Mask of Altruism: Monsanto and The Gates Foundation in Africa

Posted by addisethiopia / አዲስ ኢትዮጵያ on November 8, 2014

MonGMSince 2006, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has funded the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) to the tune of almost $420 million. Activists from Zimbabwe,Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda, and Ethiopia recently attended the US-Africa Food Sovereignty Strategy Summit in Seattle to argue that the Foundation’s strategy for agriculture in Africa is a flawed attempt to impose industrial agriculture at the expense of more ecologically sound approaches.

Daniel Maingi works with small farmers in Kenya and belongs to the organization Growth Partners for Africa. The Seattle Times reported him as saying that while the goal of helping African farmers is laudable, the ‘green revolution’ approach is based on Western-style agriculture, with its reliance on fertilizer, weed killers and single crops, such as corn [1].

Maingi was born on a farm in eastern Kenya and studied agriculture from a young age. He remembers a time when his family would grow and eat a diversity of crops, such as mung beans, green grams, pigeon peas, and a variety of fruits now considered ‘wild’.

The Seattle Globalist reported him as saying:

In the morning, you make porridge from maize and send the kids to school. For lunch, boiled maize and a few green beans. In the evening, ugali, [a staple dough-like maize dish, served with meat]… [today] it’s a monoculture diet, being driven by the food system – it’s an injustice.” [2]

As much of Africa is so dry, it’s not suited for thirsty crops, and heavy use of fertilizer kills worms and microbes important for soil health. Maingi argued that the model of farming in the West is not appropriate for farming in most ofAfrica and that the West should invest in indigenous knowledge and agro-ecology.

Growth Partners Africa works with farmers to enrich the soil with manure and other organic material, to use less water and to grow a variety of crops, including some that would be considered weeds on an industrial farm. For Maingi, food sovereignty in Africa means reverting back to a way of farming and eating that pre-dates major investment from the West.

Mariam Mayet of the African Centre for Biosafety in South Africa says that many countries are subsidizing farmers to buy fertilizer as part of the chemical-industrial model of agriculture, but that takes money away from public crop-breeding programmes that provide improved seeds to farmers at low cost.

Seattle Times quoted her:

It’s a system designed to benefit agribusinesses and not small-scale farmers.”

She added that so many institutions, from African governments to the World Bank, have ‘embraced’ the ‘green revolution’ that alternative farming methods are getting short shrift.

Elizabeth Mpofu, of La Via Campesina, grows a variety of crops in Zimbabwe. During a recent drought, neighbours who relied on chemical fertilizer lost most of their crops. She reaped a bounty of sorghum, corn, and millet using what are called agro-ecological methods: natural pest control, organic fertilizer, and locally adapted crops.

Anna Goren of The Seattle Globalist reported that panelists at the Summit discussed the loss of traditional diets and ways of life and were also concerned about the increased reliance on expensive inputs and the dramatic drop in price of crops. This has resulted in poverty for the small farmer.

Goren quoted Daniel Maingi:

What the World Bank has done, the International Monetary fund, what AGRA and Bill Gates are doing, it’s actually pretty wrong. The farmer himself should not be starving”.

He added that what AGRA is doing is “out of sync with the natural process” by bringing in imported seeds, which are not adapted to the land and require excessive fertilizer and pesticides.

Maingi has every right to be concerned. While small farms produce most of the world’s food, recent reports show they face being displaced from their land and are experiencing unnecessary hardship [3,4].

AGRA is part of a global trend that is being driven by big agritech that seeks to eradicate the small farmer and undermine local economies and food sovereignty by subjecting countries to the vagaries of rigged global markets [5,6].

Giant agritech corporations like Monsanto with their patented seeds and associated chemical inputs are working to ensure a shift away from diversified agriculture that guarantees balanced local food production, the protection of people’s livelihoods and environmental sustainability.

Small farmers are being displaced and are struggling to preserve their indigenous seeds and traditional knowledge of farming systems. Agritech corporations are being allowed to shape government policy by being granted a strategic role in trade negotiations [7].

They are increasingly setting the policy/knowledge framework by being allowed to fund and determine the nature of research carried out in public universities and institutes [8]. They continue to propagate the myth that they have the answer to global hunger and poverty, despite evidence that they do not [9,10].

The Gates Foundation, Monsanto and Western governments are placing African agriculture it in the hands of big agritech for private profit and strategic control under the pretext of helping the poor [11].

Of course there is another major concern pertaining to the motives of the Gates Foundation and Monsanto in Africa and elsewhere; that of depopulation via vaccines and/or genetically modified organisms [12,13].

These two entities are not just linked together through their involvement in AGRA. Bill Gates has substantial shares in Monsanto [14]. With Monsanto’s active backing from the US State Department [15] and the Gates Foundation’s links with USAID [16], together they comprise a formidable geopolitical strategic force.

Given that the Gates Foundation is about to be hauled through the Indian legal system for its vaccination programme in that country [17] and Monsanto has a decades’ long track record of deception and criminality [18], it is important for everyone (not least the mainstream corporate media) to question why agriculture is being handed over to such entities.

“… take capitalism and business out of farming in Africa. The West should invest in indigenous knowledge and agro-ecology, education and infrastructure and stand in solidarity with the food sovereignty movement.” Daniel Maingi, Growth Partners for Africa.

Source

__

Posted in Curiosity, Ethiopia, Infos | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
%d bloggers like this: