Its 2050 AD
India refuses to vote in favor of a resolution brought by America in the UN. The resolution is about carrying out a military action on some country X for allegedly proliferating Nuclear technology. India argues that there is not enough evidence to support the American claims.
America gets angry and imposes sanctions on India! The american agricultural biotech companies like Monsanto implement the sanctions and refuse to sell seeds for crop cultivation in India! Indian farmers are left with no seeds! All these years they had been growing crops using GM (genetically modified) seeds patented by these american companies. They need permission from these companies to grow these crops, since these are patented seeds! Since the farmers had been growing GM crops for the past 4-5 decades now they don’t have stock of natural seeds either!!
The government of India is forced to vote in favor of the American resolution in UN in order to avoid a food scarcity in India!
American agricultural biotech companies announce a 20% increase in their annual license fee for GM crop cultivation. The cost of all food items in India increases proportionately !
Reason? Indian farmers have been growing GM crops and they need to pay for the annual license in order to continue to grow these crops!
The Genetic Story
Well, Dont think that the above scenarios are from some science fiction novel. This is a truth which I realised few days back!
There are about 5 major agricultural biotech companies in US that control about 85% of the food, like Monsanto, DOW, Dupont etc ! They grow and sell Genetically Modified crops and related food.
Did I say Grow?
Well, yes. These companies modify or insert genetic sections (genes, slices of DNA) from other species into natural crops. Say for instance Firefly genes are introduced into Corn! Now this becomes a genetically modified corn. This is a patented corn by the agro-biotech company which did the modification!
Firstly, farmers need to pay to this company to buy these genetically modified corn seeds to grow it.
Secondly and more importantly, since these are patented seeds, the farmers also need to pay annual license fees to grow this corn! You cannot simply grow this corn this year and then use the seeds that you got from this year’s yield and continue growing the same corn next year! You need to have valid license to grow the corn, without which it is illegal to grow this GM corn!
Farmers go for GM crops for various reasons. Increased yield, resistance to different crop diseases etc. At the same time they fall into the traps of these biotech companies! Slowly every where it will be only these GM crops that will be grown. The natural seeds of that crop are no longer available! Imagine what would happen if every farmer on this planet starts growing a GM tomato!
Or let us assume that for practical purposes, about 70% of farmers are growing GM tomato and 30% (since they have some common sense left and are not greedy) are growing natural tomato. Now the biotech companies increase the rate of GM seeds, or say cancel the licenses for some reason. Now, even if GM farmers want to switch to natural seeds, where is the supply for the 70% farmers? Can 30% of the farmers supply seeds of natural crops to 70% of them?
Well, this is even more dangerous. Agro biotech companies are using gene terminator technology to ensure that the poor farmers cant grow their patented GM crops illegally(?).
The gene terminator technology used in producing GM seeds ensures that the second generation plants of these self destruct! In other words, if you buy a GM seed from these companies and then grow a GM crop and then use the seeds of this crop to generate more second generation crops, then, lo, they commit suicide!
This is a crime against nature and against life on this planet. To quote Mike Adams To deny farmers the ability to propagate seeds from one generation to the next is to enslave humanity in a system of corporate control that violates the laws of nature and God. Care to take a guess which U.S. corporation is engaged in this activity? If you guessed Monsanto, youre right. . Read more here.. .
Like all other technological advantages, this can also be used as a political tool by American government. Since these are patented by american companies, just imagine what will be the scenario if most of India is growing GM crops! We have to pay whatever license fee these companies demand! We cannot grow these crops if these companies refuse to renew the license!
By further fine tuning the genetic modifications, these companies can even sell comparatively low yield seeds to Indian farmers and sell relatively high yield seeds in US! This will give the US crops a competitive edge over Indian ones!
The agro biotech companies will be controlling the entire food chain from growing of crops, providing seeds to the final end product used by the consumers!
If nature has a specific genetic design for a crop, then there will be some reason to it. Genes are not independent stand alone units where you change one gene or add one and nothing else in that crop will be affected! 97% of human genome was thought to be junk and only recently researchers have realiszd that it is not junk and has its own role in making other 3% work. Changing or inserting a gene might add some new functionality, but at the same time what is the guarantee that it has not screwed up some existing feature of the crop? How can we guarantee that a GM banana has the same benefits of a natural banana?
For those in India relying on the benefits and cure of herbal medicinal systems like Ayurveda, can we consider the GM banana to have the same ayurvedic features of a natural banana? Imagine the implications when we start substituting GM crops for natural ones in Ayurveda! Then if it doesnt work, you will find people saying Ayurveda is wrong! Without even knowing the actual truth.
Seedless grapes! Have you ate it? Well, now they are useless grapes! Seedless grapes are GM grapes, the benefit? well they are seedless. But is that all? Well, as I said, they are useless too. If you have heard that grapes are good for heart and so, are eating grapes, then seedless grapes are useless for you! Because the best natural cardio vascular medicine good for your heart muscles is found in the seeds of grapes! I hope food is not a fancy item, to say you want seedless, skinless, etc
God knows what other food benefits you are missing by consuming GM food with missing parts in it!
Take the example of Mexico. The Mexican farmers are alleging that their natural corn crops have been contaminated by American Genetic corn. Biotech companies might have patented these crops. But how will the pollinating bees know about it. They dont differentiate between natural and GM crops, do they?
Now corn is also being genetically modified to be used as a source of ethanol, to produce alternate fuel for petroleum. But lo, this is not that corn which can be consumed. You cannot eat this corn, because it is NOT meant for that. The mexican farmers allege that their corn might also be contaminated by this non-consumable variety of corn! Imagine eating corn which is actually meant to run your car!
See this news report on washington post and also this letter from the president of the american corn growers association. Finding a difficult time in Europe and to some extent in US too, these companies are pushing their GM crops into a relatively unaware India. Remember the Monsanto – BT cotton row and farmers protest a few years back in India?
The GM products are NOT tested for their long term implications on consumer health. By testing I mean the effects on human health on consuming these products over a period of years!
Some of these GM companies were also sued by vietnam victims for war crime! See this report . The victims alleged that the defoliant chemical used by American army against the vietnam, called the agent Orange was produced by these companies. Agent orange was a herbicide sprayed by the US military planes on Vietnam forests to cause trees to shred off their leaves so that the US forces can see the vietnam soldiers and kill them! Only later it was found that agent Orange was indeed highly carcinogenic – it causes cancer. Poor innocent vietnamese people who are even today paying a price for this blunder.
Let me give you an example. The milk sold in USA is the milk obtained by giving hormonal injections to the cows for higher yield. At the same time as a side effect of this unnatural production, this milk also contains a larger content of growth hormone protein! This is the same growth hormone protein in humans too! This is NOT supposed to be given to the body unnaturally, It has to be produced inside the body naturally. But this is the milk that they drink in America! The result, most girls in American today have puberty even before they reach the natural age for it!
For those in India, the next time you get milk make sure it is from a natural source. Better buy it directly from a milk vendor nearby who owns cows. They don’t give hormonal injections to their cows. The milk you get in Indian villages where the milk vendor milks the cow early morning and supplies the milk at your door step, is the milk in its true natural form. These cows are worshiped and there is no unnatural treatment of any kind given to these cows.
Ever since I came to know about the story of genetically modified products I have even stopped eating American Corn!! Next time you buy a food product, make sure there is no GM content in it.
Else while you think you are eating corn, it might actually have a bit of firefly in it! What you think to be Potato might have a bit of Moth in it! See images/video below
And who knows! There have been no long term studies of the effects of GM products on humans! What happens if you eat GM food for 5-10 years? Well, nobody has tested that! Probably you might be offering yourself as an experimental sheep for this testing! You eat GM food at your own risk! Beware next time you see very fat and long banana, huge tomatoes etc. In UK GM food is always marked as Genetically Modified. In US as of today, GM food is not separately marked as GM food. I don’t think that in India it is marked as GM food either!
Below are two videos posted on youtube related to the GM controversy. The first one is about Genetically Modified food. The second one is about the effects of consuming milk produced by giving hormonal injections to cows!
well said :)
They themselves shouldn’t be aloud to eat food unless it’s genetically engineered. They should eat what they make, save the rest for us :)
Or Probably its the other way round
The people who work in these companies are aware of the fact that the GM food they manufacture is not safe, hence they visit your blog to get a list of truly non GM food which they can safely buy and eat ;)
Research Institute in Genetic Eng., Tehran, Iran are hanging out here too.
They enjoyed the Shopping List of foods to avoid, and to enjoy – funny. These corporate sites spend way more time on blogs than we do on theirs. They know we speak of truth!
Now that’s good news! At least people are being informed about it.
If somebody asks my advice, I suggest that ‘at least pregnant women and kids should avoid any and every kind of genetically modified food’ :)
The site http://www.nrcsoya.com/ belongs to NRCS which comes under Indian Council of Agricultural Research which is always headed by the agricultural minister of India.
It looks like we’re being watched my friend! I’ve had a few visitors from your country. Of the corporate kind. Surely they’ve been watching our comments here :) These folks http://www.nrcsoya.com/ in India had a look-see at this article Pregnant Women Should Avoid Soy Like The Plague I’ve had several visitors from these agrochemical companies recently. From Iran as well.
So, Chemical companies, while you are reading this, what is the status on providing LABELS on our GENETICALLY MODIFIED FOOD and proper, independent research on the safety of the genetically engineered food we are currently consuming, created by YOU ???
Yes….. same here. It’s the same here in America. The farmers initially did not know what they were getting into. I have a video – it’s called the “”Future of Food”” by Debra Garcia on my site. It’s long, it’s an hour and a half. It’s a MUST SEE. Very famous video. People get together in auditoriums to view it. It talks about much, including what you and I are now. Our farmers. Monsanto even sues our farmers if their (Monsanto) seed gets onto other farms, via the wind. One farmer I read about- he had this small patch of Monsanto seed show up uninvited that had drifted over from a farm further away. This farmer did not want a thing to do with Genetic Engineering. Well, this small patch of Monsanto seed had made it next to a pole on the side of the road, but it was on this guy’s farm/property. Monsanto sued him. License infringement. The farmer never planted the crap, it blew over onto his property!
Indians and Americans, we have the same problems on this subject. Many, many countries are having these exact problems. It’s B.S. !
Oh Yes of course, I never denied the existence of these agro chemical companies in India either :)
They are of a greater concern too.. the soil pollution due to these chemicals has to be rooted out of our agricultural systems..
Some of the Indian farmers are really innovative, like the one I had once mentioned in the post below
The issue here in India is not about having or not having a choice in terms of seeds for the farmers. The issue is about being informed about the differences between the GM and natural seeds. Until recently, there was a real lack of information on this for the Indian farmers, and many simply looked at GM seeds like some magic wand which would simply increase their yields n fold!!
Thanks to the information campaign by a lot of NGOs in the country, the situation is quite promising today.
Nice to hear that you know Indians and our culture here :)
And the agrochemical companies whose life began in India? “”who”” do you blame? Do your “”innocent Indian farmers”” not have a choice in the seed they choose to plant? How long have you been researching Genetic Engineering?
I am not, nor could I ever be, blessed with the vast knowledge that you have of your country. You and I DO have the same concerns. That said, many, many, MANY of my friends here in America are Indian. I’ve learned of your country and culture. A tad of the language as well, I brag! :)
There are protests here as well on the same concern. Farms and the fields themselves have been completely burned down in protest.
Yes Sure, will let you know once I blog it..
Yes, Monstanto and many other such companies do business in India, because they can cheat the innocent Indian farmers quite easily.. Infact when the Monsanto entered here with BT cotton there were a lot of protests against it..
FYI – There are many GM, as well as crop saver manufacturing companies in India. These companies exists all over the world. Monsanto unfortunately is only one. Monsanto is not only located in the United States, they are also located in India.
Excellent – please let me know once it’s up, I’ll shed some light on it :)
Thanks a lot for that list in the links, and also for the information on ‘8’. That looks really helpful.
Based on your list I will try to come up with a sub-list from the perspective of the Indian consumers, and post it so that the consumers here are aware of the GM products, to help them make a better choice when they buy here in India.
Thanks once again for all the information and the great efforts in your blog.
You are correct, labeling exists in UK but not in the US.
You can avoid genetically engineered products by buying organic. By definition, organic cannot be genetically engineered. I’ve posted some cheat sheets, one for humans, SHOPPING List – Healthy Food Choices (GM Free) and Those to Avoid , another for pets Organic Feeding For Pets and a little insider tip regarding the stickers on produce ?8? Is The Snake – How to Read Produce Labels .
I write primarily from a United States perspective, however I do at times include info for other countries.
Unfortunately in India they dont mark food a GM or not..
we need to have strict laws to enforce these kinds of markings on all agro and food products that we buy.. It is our right to know and choose what we want to eat..
Scientists are also researching on making it easy to identify GM products using simple lab tests by making it mandatory to add a specific gene sequence to all Genetically modified crops.
In the mean time, in India and all across the globe, we need to force the government to mark food as GM or non GM. I think this law already exists in UK but not in US.
Somebody correct me if I am wrong.
How one should recognise if a particular food/product they are buying is GM or not, if the ingredients dont tell anything related to that or nothing is printed on it.? Do you have any idea on this?
It’s basically up to the conumer at this point bachodi. Know what food has been genetically modified and do not buy it. It’s easiest to just buy organic to steer clear of this crap.
Bayer is one of these companies; they knowingly infected families with the AIDS virus, and were never punished. This is one of the companies that is being trusted with our food. Monsanto is a creator of Agent Orange. They too ‘create’ our food.
Write to your major super market chains, demand food without these ingredients. Demand it to be labeled. This is what worked with milk.
These companies are clearly ‘in bed’ with the FDA. We are left to fend for ourselves. It’s difficult to believe that all of this is going on, largely because we do not hear it on the media, I suspect. Then, we do not hear much about Ron Paul on the media, either. Most people do not know he is even running for President. The media, the government, controls so much. But not our dollar.
scenarios are Horrible.. Is anyone doing anything about it
Great list.. good info about the ones that are to be avoided..
By the way you have a great blog and a lot of useful information posted about the dangers of GM lifestyle !!
I research this subject as well! There’s a lot of companies at this now.
Here is my list so far!-
American Cyanamid Company
Cyanamid Crop Protection
Aventis CropScience (AgrEvo)- formerly Plant Genetic Systems
Horizon Ag, LLC
Syngenta Seeds, Inc- (formerly Zeneca Seeds)
DOW AgroSciences LLC
Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc
Forage Genetics International
Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada
Bejo Zaden BV
Florigene Pty Ltd
Vector Tobacco Inc.
DNA Plant Technology Corporation
Seminis Vegetable Inc.
John Innes Institute (now John Innes Centre)