Monsanto: Achieving Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility

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Introduction Monsanto Company is a Fortune 500 company founded in 1901 by John Francis Queeny. Headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, Monsanto focuses on the production of agricultural seeds, biotechnology traits in plants, and crop protection chemicals. Monsanto originated with the production of saccharin. Over time, however, they expanded their products to include plastics, industrial fluids, herbicides, and pesticides. Monsanto’s shift from the chemical world to biotechnology came from their 1983 breakthrough as one of the first to genetically modify a plant cell. In 1987, they were first to conduct field trials of genetically modified (GM) crops. Currently, Monsanto is a leading producer of glyphosphate herbicide, manufactured as Roundup, and genetically engineered agricultural seeds designed to produce bigger yields while carrying on the best characteristics to the next generation. (Monsanto, 2014) In 2013, Corporate Responsibility Magazine listed Monsanto Company as number 36 on their list of 100 Best Corporate Citizens (Corporate Responsibility Magazine, 2014). Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainable Agriculture Monsanto’s primary commitment is to sustainable agriculture; they have been successful in creating genetically modified seeds to help farmers double their yields by 2030 from year 2000 levels (Monsanto 2012 Sustainability Report, 2014). The effects of the seeds have been thought by the public to have harmful effects on the environment, the effects however have been the opposite. The seeds were created to be resistant to Roundup, enabling farmers to easily kill off weeds while not harming the plant; this reduces soil erosion, making low-till farming a practical option. (Forbes, 2009) At the current rate of... ... middle of paper ... ...lityReport_070913.pdf>. Monsanto Company. "Improving Agriculture." Monsanto. Monsanto Company, n.d. Web. 21 Mar. 2014. . "Monsanto's 'healthier Environment' Ads Banned in South Africa." RT, 21 Mar. 2014. Web. 22 Mar. 2014. . Phillips, Theresa, Ph.D. "Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs): Transgenic Crops and Recombinant DNA Technology." Nature Publishing Group, 2008. Web. 20 Mar. 2014. . Pomroy, Ross. "RealClearScience - Monsanto: More Saint than Sinner." Real Clear Science. Real Clear Science, 15 May 2013. Web. 22 Mar. 2014. .

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