US, Canada, Australia the only countries that won’t endorse international hunger project

Auto Date Wednesday, June 11th, 2008


I mentioned in a previous blog post that Monsanto, Syngenta, and BASF withdrew from a major international project to plan the future of agriculture because the initiative failed to endorse GE crops as a means to reduce poverty and hunger.   


That project is the United Nations’ International Assessment of Agricultural Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD), which focused on the problem of how to feed the world’s growing population.  It was a four-year, $10-million project based on the work of 400 scientists and experts from around the world.


In April 2008, governments and scientists from around the world gathered in Johannesburg, South Africa to debate this project and the final report. 


Adopted by more than 60 countries, the final report calls for a fundamental change in the way we do farming to address rising food prices, hunger, social inequities, and environmental disasters.  

The final IAASTD report acknowledges that GE crops will not play a substantial role in addressing the key problems of climate change, biodiversity loss, hunger and poverty. 

According to Jan van Aken, Greenpeace International sustainable agriculture campaigner who attended the UN’s IAASTD meeting, in Taking stock of agriculture,

The agriculture of the future is one that works with nature and the people—not against them.  Millions of farms on all continents already prove that ecological and sustainable agriculture can provide sufficient food, increase food security, replenish natural resources and provide a better livelihood for farmers and local communities.

Today’s chemical-intensive agriculture is more like mining than farming. While it may provide short-term gains in production, it is not sustainable in the long term and compromises the dwindling agricultural area upon which our future food supply depends.


It also fails to meet the needs of local communities for livelihoods, food security and a healthy, diverse diet.…This means [we need to divert] funding away from GE crops and industrial farming towards more sustainable farming techniques.

Conspicuously, the only three countries at the meeting that refused to endorse the report were the U.S. (home of the biotech industry), Canada, and Australia.


Chris Gupta, Canadian health researcher and educator had this to say:

…We have today and have had for many years, not some time in the future, known how to literarily double our food growth in half the foot print—to do it organically, produce clean free energy as a byproduct, do it sustainably, and clean up the environment to boot!


All this and more using tried and true time proven permaculture and biodynamic methods already in public domain—so who is stopping us? 

Australia, the US, Canada and their cronies…. Could it be stealing markets from fossil fuels, cleaning environment and an abundance of nutrient rich foods that keep us healthy are a little too threatening for the predatory corporations? They have usurped our tax dollars to deliberately create unconscionable wars and scarcity and environmental damage for personal gain…

GE crops have never been about feeding the world, helping consumers, reducing pesticides, and sustainability.  As I go into detail in Shedding Light on Genetically Engineered Food, the U.S. government and the biotechnology industry expend questionable efforts to “educate” consumers, the media, and politicians with propaganda championing GE food as safe and necessary. 


Yet, in 2006, the USDA acknowledged that GE crop yields are not greater than those of conventional crops.  In addition, a compelling number of studies by independent scientists demonstrate that GE crop yields are lower than, or at best equivalent to, yields from non-GE varieties.


In the meantime, your health has been unnecessarily risked by this unproven technology.  GE food has NEVER been proven safe for human consumption.  According to independent scientists, human health effects of consuming GE foods can include toxic and allergic reactions, antibiotic resistance, immune suppression, and other serious illnesses.


It’s no wonder the report representing more than 400 scientists from around the world does not endorse GE crops as a means to reduce hunger and poverty.  Even less surprising is that the U.S. government does not agree with IAASTD’s report.


You will not hear about this in the mainstream media.

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