Forty-six farmers spraying Monsanto’s GM Bt cotton died after inhaling the pesticide

Pradip Maitra, Hindustan Times, reports that in Vidharba, 46 farmers growing Monsanto’s Bt cotton died after inhaling poisonous pesticide whilst spraying the crop.. As pests had become resistant to pesticides formerly used, stronger formulations were being used with little or no protection

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GM Crops Won't Feed the Hungry, But Agroecology Will

Dear Friends and Colleagues
GM Crops Won't Feed the Hungry, But Agroecology Will

A recent journal paper entitled "A Risky Solution for the Wrong Problem: Why GMOs won't Feed the Hungry of the World" concludes that the basic problem with a supply-side solution to global hunger, involving the use of genetically modified (GM) crops, is that it does not address the issue of food access for the poorest of the poor.

The principal GM crops in the world today are soybeans, maize, cotton, and canola. Most of these GM crops are not consumed directly, but are used as animal feed (soybeans, maize, and cotton byproducts), a sugar substitute (high-fructose corn syrup), vegetable oil (canola), or fiber (cotton). In wealthier countries, farmers are finding that GM insect-resistant Bt crops do not resolve the problem of pest populations developing pesticide resistance. They also do not avoid the broad-spectrum pesticide problem, wherein Bt not only harms the targeted pest population, but other non-target organisms. Finally, there are growing concerns about gene escape from herbicide-resistant crops to other crops and weeds.

Read more: GM Crops Won't Feed the Hungry, But Agroecology Will

Legal opinion: Monsanto’s activities have negative impact on basic human rights

On Tuesday April 18th the five international judges of the Monsanto Tribunal presented their legal opinion. They have come to important conclusions, both on the conduct of Monsanto and on necessary developments in international law.

The judges conclude that Monsanto has engaged in practices which have negatively impacted the right to a healthy environment, the right to food and the right to health. On top of that Monsanto's conduct is negatively affecting the right to freedom indispensable for scientific research. These are very important and well-funded legal conclusions that can be of great help to the victims of Monsanto worldwide.

The judges also conclude that despite the development of many instruments to protect the environment, a gap remains between commitments and the reality of environmental protection. International law should be improved for better protection of the environment and include the crime of ecocide. The Tribunal concludes that if such a crime of ecocide were recognized in international criminal law, the activities of Monsanto could possibly constitute a crime of ecocide.

Finally, in the third and last part of the advisory opinion, the Tribunal focusses on the widening gap between international human rights law and corporate accountability. It strongly advises the United Nations to take action to make sure that human and environmental rights are protected by (international) laws and are not overruled by trade agreements. It should be made possible to prosecute multinational corporations in the International Criminal Court.

Find here on the "Results" page of our website the full text and the summary of the advisory legal opinion delivered by the Monsanto Tribunal judges in The Hague.

DNA damage and methylation induced by glyphosate in peripheral blood mononuclear cells

Please cite this article as: Kwiatkowska, M., Reszka, E., Woźniak, K., Jabłońska, E., Michałowicz, J., Bukowska, B., DNA damage and methylation induced by glyphosate in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (in vitro study), Food and Chemical Toxicology (2017), doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2017.03.051.

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Glyphosate Exposure and Increased Frequency of Cancer in Argentina

Glyphosate Exposure and Increased Frequency of Cancer in Argentina

In 1996, Argentina began to grow genetically modified (GM) crops, which currently cover 25 million hectares on which 12 million people live. These crops have generated a substantial increase in pesticide use. In 2013, Argentina sprayed 240,000 tons of glyphosate.

The town of Monte Maiz lies at the heart of Argentina’s agricultural area, where soy, maize, and wheat are grown. In recent years, local governmental authorities along with local residents and doctors have been worried about an apparent increase in the number of people suffering from cancer, in particular since the introduction of GM herbicide-resistant crops and the massive use of glyphosate in conjunction. The Mayor and residents of Monte Maiz requested an environmental health study.

Read more: Glyphosate Exposure and Increased Frequency of Cancer in Argentina

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