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While there have been plenty of documentaries about GMOs and even feature films about GMOs, I can’t remember seeing a cartoon that went directly after genetically-modifies seeds themselves. Until now.
Thanks to the Clif Bar Family Foundation, we are introduced to a trash-talking organic seed named Mr. Seed.
And, like many of us, Mr. Seed has some serious disdain for GMOs. While destroying the notion that GMOs are the only way to feed the world and accurately portraying GMOs as “unnatural” science experiments gone wrong, the end-goal of Mr. Seed is to raise awareness about the massive consolidation taking place in the seed industry.
From the Seed Matters website, worrisome facts include the following:
- Six chemical companies (The Big Six) control 63% of the seed market. If proposed mergers go through, that number could shrink to 3.
- The Big Six fund most of the seed research used to determine our food future. The combined R&D budgets of just these six companies is 15 times higher than all U.S. public spending on agricultural research.
- The Big Six have bought up hundreds of independent seed companies and used patents to take ownership of seed, a resource that historically had been an “open source” public commons.
- The chemical-seed industry has not improved our food. Rather, it’s a major factor in the nutrient decline of 43 food crops.
- In 2005 alone, the human health costs of agricultural pesticide exposure in the U.S. were more than $15 billion.
On the other hand, organic plant breeding creates crops that adapt to their environments, which has been proven to increase yields by as much as 31%. Furthermore, organic seeds are now being bred to create crops that can thrive in drought conditions and even overcome weeds.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
If you’re as worried about seed consolidation as I am, there are two immediate steps that you can take.
1) Share this post with your network.
2) Sign the e-petition on the Seed Matters website, which, among other things, urges the U.S. Department of Justice to block the Dow/DuPont and Monsanto/Bayer mergers from happening.
These mergers would result in greater consolidation in the seed industry, leaving just a handful of companies controlling a majority of the world’s food supply. A very, very scary thought.
Thank you so much for your concern!