It all boils down to trust. Can we trust corporations to protect human health, human rights, and our environment more than their profit margins? Brief explanations for each of these points below… from Vandana Shiva and Seed Freedom:
- Reason #1. The biotech industry has already genetically modified, patented and monopolized seed for 8 major commodities. Farmers should not be dependent on agrochemical corporations for their seed. What will happen when there is a war, financial collapse, or natural disaster which disrupts the flow of seeds from the corporations to the farmer? Since GMO farmers are now denied their traditional right to save seed for replanting, they soon will no longer possess the equipment, facilities and the know-how to do so when needed.
- Reason #2. GMO agriculture is an intensive, chemically addicted system. Agrochemicals including Glyphosate (the key ingredient in RoundUp) are building up in our bodies, our water and most of all, in our soil. Farmers must compensate for decreasing soil nutrients by applying chemical nitrate fertilizer which causes further destruction to the soil.
- Reason #3. Because of industrial agriculture we have already lost 75 percent of the seed diversity passed down to us from our ancestors. Biodiversity equals food security. Just like financial security—where you have to diversify your investments, so if one business goes under you’re not broke—the same is true with food security. A highly diversified network of home gardens and small to mid-sized farms, growing a great diversity of open-pollinated fruits and vegetables offers far greater food security than a few giant monocrop operations growing GMOs.
- Reason #4. Terminator seeds have not yet been commercialized, but the technology does exist. Terminator refers to plants that are genetically modified to kill their own seeds. Seeds harvested from terminator crops will not germinate if replanted the following season. Pollen from terminator plants can cross-pollinate with other natural varieties, making otherwise viable seeds infertile. The goal of this technology is crystal clear, it aims to maximize seed industry profits by preventing farmers from reusing seed from their harvest, forcing them to return to the commercial seed market every year. Can we trust Monsanto to not release this technology?
- Reason #5. A network of home gardens, and small to midsize farms offers far greater food security than a centralized, globalized system. Just as diversity of varieties is best, diversity of farms create a more stable food supply.