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Last Updated:[25-10-2010 01:28:20 EDT] Zoom in Zoom out Back to Tradenews

Oil out GM Crops In - In a Bid to Control World

tradenews A big ticket inter-governmental project on a genetically modified (GM) crop trials are about to begin in five African countries amidst promises of higher yield out of crops grown under below par conditions. Organizations against GM crops have already alerted that the program is a plan to hook African farmers and governments who would be forced to buy GM products (which is initially free) later at top prices when traditional seed saving practices vanished.

The Monsanto-backed project has been severely criticized since such projects produced adverse results in both Latin American countries and India as well in the form of crop failure and dismantling traditional agricultural processes. An estimated 125,000 farmers have committed suicide as a result of the ruthless drive to use India as a testing ground for GM crops in the past decade. Similarly, while displacing small farmers and varieties of food crops in Latin America, GM crops made a disastrous start in the region about the same period they took off in India.

In view of stiff challenges in India and Latin American countries, the GM conglomerate has shifted focus on the vast African region which has been often exploited for clinical trials to natural resources. Even untrained eyes can sense the monster of clouds forming over Africa to once again push the continent to unending misery as most African nations comprise of small farmers who could be perennially enslaved by the new agricultural system.

Gene Ethics, a GM-free campaign organization believes the African GM mission focuses exclusively on higher yields with GM crops dependent on increasingly expensive and scarce inputs, such as oil-based fertilizers, pesticides and machinery fuels. In contrast, a socially, economically and eco-friendly sustainable agricultural system which prevails in the region has been blown to the wind to accommodate GM crop expansions in the continent.

Bob Phelps of Gene Ethics when enquired about the "free' strategy encased by the GM project from seed distribution to other agro-processes, he told IPS News "Nothing comes free in the long run and African farmers will pay year after year for GM seed that they do not save for replanting. Monsanto offers its GM seed products free at first, as it did in South America with soy and corn."

Besides it should be noted, an excerpt from the upcoming book "It's Not Your Fault - Weight Gain, Obesity and Food Addiction" states after reviewing more than 600 scientific journals, world renowned biologist Pushpa M Bhargava concluded that GM organisms were a major contributor to the sharply deteriorating health of the Americans. In the first nine years after the large scale introduction of GM crops in 1996, the incidence of people with three or more chronic diseases nearly doubled, from 7 to 13 percent.

Globally, in 2009, 134mn hectares of GM crops were planted in 26 countries representing an 80-fold increase since 1996 when GM crops were first commercialized, and in last year 2mn hectares are added to those figures despite stiff opposition across boards.

All these developments in Africa and elsewhere indicate, like that of tobacco industry up to late 1980's and fossil fuel till date with controlling stake in world governance, GM crops led by Monsanto vying for that place goes grossly un-noticed.

By Jose Roy

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