back to co-globalize | rat haus | Index | Search | tree

(ASCII text format)

What many farmers have found about genetic engineering
Genetically engineered agricultural products were released on the market without a fair and open process to assess the risks on human health and the environment or the social and economic risks to farmers and rural communities.

Family farmers' livelihoods and independence will be further compromised by genetic engineering. Genetic engineering empowers corporate agribusiness to accelerate capital and chemical intensive agriculture at the expense of family farmers and rural communities around the world, increases corporate concentration in agriculture, and poses unknown risks to the safety and security of the food supply.

Genetic engineering disrupts traditional agricultural practices creating social upheaval in rural communities and threatening agrarian cultures throughout the world.

Consumers worldwide are rejecting genetically engineered foods, driving down farm prices. This will force significant numbers of family farmers out of business.

Family farmers have been unfairly forced to assume liability for genetically engineered products that were not adequately tested before being released into the environment and food supply.

The corporate ownership of genetic resources and the corporate use of genetic engineering in agriculture is not designed to solve the problems farmers face in agriculture such as increased weed resistance, growing staple crops on marginal land, or making traditionally bred crops available to farmers worldwide, but rather to enrich corporations.

Genetically engineered seeds increase costs to farmers, have failed to perform as promised by corporate agribusiness, and, in some cases, yields have been lower and crops engineered to be herbicide tolerant have required increased use of herbicides manufactured by the corporations that market the seeds.

The "terminator" gene, which renders corporate seeds sterile and was developed with USDA resources, is an unconscionable technology because it destroys life and destroys the right of farmers worldwide to save seeds, a basic step necessary to protect food security and biodiversity.

Genetic engineering defined*:
Genetic engineering involves taking a gene from one species and splicing it into another to transfer a desired trait. This could not occur in nature where the transfer of genetic traits is limited by the natural barriers that exist between different species and in this way genetic engineering is completely new and incomparable to traditional animal and plant breeding techniques. Genetic engineering is also called biotechnology. Another name for genetically engineered crops is genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

(*Reference: Genetic Engineering, Food and our Environment by Luke Anderson, Chelsea Green Publishing Co., White River Junction, Vermont).


Fact Sheet on Genetic Engineering in Agriculture

Rapid rate of consolidation in the seed industry

Support of genetic engineering technology by taxpayers

Monsanto does not want to give farmers choices

Questionable markets

Rewards for Farmers?

For more information contact the National Family Farm Coalition at (202) 543-5675

back to co-globalize | rat haus | Index | Search | tree