It’s clear to the rest of the world that Monsanto and Dupont-Pioneer, the two giant corporations responsible for the future apocalypse of our modern age (let’s not forget Dow Chemical, the cheeky bastards), have ruined American farming with their genetically altered crops, and have spread that same putrescence to many corners of the world. Europe, though, has been pretty good over the years about what kinda chemicals go into the food, but this week the EU disappointed tons of folks with a GMO decision. A colleague of mine, who will be known here as The Cyprus Experiment (thanks Aldous Huxley), brought to my attention an article in Sustainable Pulse talking about how the EU is about to approve Maize 1507, a GM Dupont product, for cultivation.
Other news sites have jumped on this story, which is turning a lot of heads and stoking the fires of controversy everywhere. The last GM crop to be approved was MON810, Monsanto’s pesticide-hurling super corn monstrosity. Since then, a majority of EU countries have opposed GM products in agriculture, and for good reason. Monsanto and other companies’ genetically altered crops and animal feeds have been linked to cancer and many other health catastrophes. And because agriculture is not 100% controllable (it’s still nature, kinda), seeds and chemicals tend to get mixed; even the organic farmer is in danger of GM infections in their products (not to fear, Monsanto will just sue you!).
In short, GM crops are bad for the environment, bad for health, but none of that seems to matter all that much when Monsanto is either persuading folks with piles of money or using an elite team of lawyers to hunt down anyone infringing on their seed patents.
According to Sustainable Pulse and other sites, countries such as the Netherlands, Austria, and Poland have fought and continue to oppose Pioneer 1507 (the new GMO). France, in particular, is extremely against GMOs in general; in total, 19 countries opposed the approval of Pioneer 1507. However, the UK, in contrast, is starkly in favor of 1507’s cultivation, supposedly in an effort to reinvigorate their agricultural output. The decision to approve the GMO is made more difficult because of Germany abstaining (those guys have a lot of decision weight in the EU) from the vote. Overall, a disappointment, as 1507, which packs a wallop as a weed killing genetic monster, can only be dangerous for public health and agricultural policy in Europe. It’s especially weird because in general Europe looks to the states, the homeland of Monsanto, Dupont, and Dow Chemical, as anything but a viable influence on policy.
Hopefully, the official decision, says Sustainable Pulse, will come on March 3, when the EU meets to chat about safe practices in health and agriculture. I say hopefully because by then they may have all come to their senses.
Already, GMOs have invaded Europe, which means even Europeans have to nervously read food labels and lose trust in their gastronomic cultures. The BBC reported that Spain is the largest market for GMOs, cultivating a pretty large amount of MON810. However, the situation is nowhere near as dire as the states in any way, but this new inclusion of Pioneer 1507 could change the landscape of food and farming in Europe. And not in a positive way. Industrial farm practices, one of them being genetically altered food products (still scary that life has been patented), are extremely dangerous for the environment and for the health of its most ignorant inhabitants (we seriously don’t know what we’re doing).
So, yeah, Europe, I really hope you listen to the 19 states that were vehemently opposed to this, and decide against following through. Also, Jamie Oliver, get your country out of Monsanto’s money grip, please.