Monsanto : The Condition Of The Operatives Essay

Monsanto : The Condition Of The Operatives Essay

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Everyone has likely already heard the name Monsanto, the largest seed distributor in the world. Nearly fifty percent of all seeds in the world are owned by only three corporations. These companies account for trillions in fertilizer, pesticide, seed patents and herbicide sales annually. These companies have been building a seed empire within the food industry for over thirty years now and they have plans to patent every seed with biotechnology. Thoreau wrote in his book, “The condition of the operatives is becoming every day more like that of the English; and it cannot be wondered at, since, as far as I have heard or observed, the principal object is, not that mankind may be well and honestly clad, but, unquestionably, that the corporations may be enriched”. The largest seed company in the world is Monsanto. Monsanto is one of the oldest seed manufacturing companies and also was one of nine wartime government contractors who manufactured Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. Monsanto brings in more than $11.8 billion annually and own approximately twenty-seven percent of all seeds currently used in mono-crop, modern agricultural farming. Based on industry statistics, ETC Group estimates that Monsanto 's biotech seeds and traits accounted for 87 percent of the total world area devoted to genetically engineered seeds in 2007(Sarich). Monsanto has also set a goal of converting 100 percent of all U.S. soy crops to Roundup Ready strains. Monsanto has also laid out similar strategies for corn, wheat, cotton, and rice (Lacey). The second largest corporation in the business is Dupont. This United States based company makes more than $4.2 billion annually on seed and own 17 percent of the market. Finally the third largest company is Synge...

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... released in 2013 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, food allergies among children increased approximately fifty percent between 1997 and 2011("Facts and Statistics - Food Allergy Research & Education"). However, FDA officials who are entrusted to protect the health of the general public have gone against the advice of their own scientist to test for allergies and have declared genetically modified foods are essentially equivalent to regular foods. Many research studies have positively confirmed this kind of overall risk for genetically modified foods. Two research studies showed that farm workers who were exposed to genetically modified Bt corn sprays exhibited extensive allergic reactions. Another study that lasted over a decade showed that genetically modified peas caused allergic lung damage in mice, the study was abandoned shortly after (Lacey).

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