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SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE  March 2000

SCIENCE-FOR-THE-PEOPLE March 2000

Subject:

Suicide Seeds on the Fast Track

From:

"S. E. Anderson" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Science for the People Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Mon, 27 Mar 2000 07:10:38 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (154 lines)

Date: 3/26/00 1:48:06 AM Pacific Standard Time
      From: [log in to unmask]
      Reply-to: <A
      HREF=3D"mailto:[log in to unmask]">[log in to unmask]</=
      A>
      Subject: GMO Updates #9: Suicide Seeds on the Fast Track
      Date: Sun, 26 Mar 2000 03:12:06 -0500
      From: [log in to unmask] (jean hudon)
      To: undisclosed-recipients: ;
      THIS NEWS INFO BELOW IS REALLY UPSETTING BECAUSE WE ALL THOUGHT
THAT THE
      WOLRDWIDE PROTESTS AGAINST THE TERMINATOR TECHNOLOGY HAD SUCCEEDED
IN       DEFINITLEY PUTTING AN END TO IT. WE HAVE BEEN LIED TO BY
MONSANTO - NOW CHANGING NAME TO "PHARMACIA" - WHICH IS THE WORST HYDRA
THE WORLD HAS EVER SEEN
      Date: Sat, 25 Mar 2000
      From: Mark Graffis <[log in to unmask]>
      Subject: Suicide Seeds on the Fast Track
      EarthVision Reports - 03/24/00
      SAN FRANCISCO, March 24, 2000 - A report released by the Rural
      Advancement Foundation International (RAFI) reveals that
Terminator
      and Traitor technology are riding a fast track to
commercialization.
      Terminator technology, the genetic engineering of plants to
produce
      sterile seeds, is universally considered the most morally
offensive
      application of agricultural biotechnology, since over 1.4 billion
      people depend on farm-saved seeds. Traitor technology, also known
as
      genetic use restriction technology (GURTs), refers to the use of
an
      external chemical to switch on or off a plant's genetic traits.
      "We've continued right on with work on the Technology Protection
      System [Terminator]. We never really slowed down. We're on target,

      moving ahead to commercialize it. We never really backed off."
      Harry Collins, Delta & Pine Land Seed Co., January, 2000
      "After Monsanto and AstraZeneca publicly vowed not to
commercialize
      terminator seeds in 1999, governments and civil society
organizations
      were lulled into thinking that the crisis had passed. Nothing
could be
      further from the truth," said RAFI's Executive Director Pat
Mooney.
      "Despite mounting opposition from national governments and United
      Nations' agencies, research on Terminator and Traitor (genetic
trait
      control) is moving full speed ahead."
      According to RAFI, Delta & Pine Land, the world's largest cotton
seed
      company, is moving aggressively to commercialize Terminator. And
      despite massive protests, the US Department of Agriculture
supports
      and defends its anti-farmer patent and research on suicide seeds.
      Last year, AstraZeneca conducted field trials on genetic trait
control
      technology (Traitor technology) in the UK. According to industry
      sources, it is not the first company to conduct field tests of
this kind.
      RAFI's report concludes that corporate commitments to disavow
      Terminator are virtually meaningless in light of the pace of
corporate
      takeovers. Monsanto and AstraZeneca have each merged with other
      companies since they pledged not to commercialize suicide seeds.
      * On December 2, 1999 Novartis and AstraZeneca announced they
would
      spin-off and merge their agrochemical and seed divisions to create

      the world's biggest agribusiness corporation -- to be named
"Syngenta."
      * On December 19, 1999 Monsanto announced that it will merge with
      drug industry giant Pharmacia & Upjohn to create a new company,
      named Pharmacia, with combined annual sales of $17 billion.
      The Director General of the United Nations Food and Agriculture
      Organization (FAO) Jacques Diouf recently declared his opposition
to
      Terminator. In publicly rejecting Terminator, FAO's Diouf has come
to
      the defense of the 1.4 billion people who depend upon farm-saved
seed
      for their survival.
      Among the national governments that have announced their intention
to
      oppose Terminator technology are Panama, India, Ghana, and Uganda.

      India, one of the first governments to publicly reject Terminator,

      explicitly prohibits Terminator genes in a draft bill now before
the
      Indian Parliament. Ghanaian Minister of Environment, Cletus Avoka,

      says that his government will not tolerate the use of Terminator
      technology. Panama's Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries writes
      that his government "will adopt measures to prohibit the specific
patents
      as well as the technology in general." Ugandan officials have said

      that their government is discussing measures to outlaw Terminator
at
      the highest levels of government.
      Terminator and Traitor technologies are not limited to a single
      patent, nor is the research confined to one or two companies.
Delta &
      Pine Land is currently the high-profile crusader for Terminator,
but
      the goal of genetic trait control is industry-wide. According to
RAFI,
      over 30 patents are collectively held by the multinational
      agrochemical firms that dominate the field of biotechnology.
      According to RAFI, the future of Terminator/Traitor Technology
rests
      with national governments and multinational corporations. The
      pressure points for political action are, first and foremost, with

      national
      governments around the world. Second, pressure should be applied
at
      key international fora such as through the BioSafety Protocol at
the
      Convention on Biological Diversity, and intellectual property
      negotiations at the World Trade Organization.
      Entitled Suicide Seeds on the Fast Track, the new RAFI
Communiqu=C8 is
      available on RAFI's website [1]http://www.rafi.org.
      Source/contact: RAFI International Office, 110 Osborne Street,
Suite
      202, Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3L 1Y5 Canada; phone (204) 453-5259; fax

      (204) 925-8034; email [2][log in to unmask] The above article was
      reprinted with permission from the Pesticide Action Network
Updates
      Service (PANUPS), a product of:
      Pesticide Action Network North America (PANNA) 49 Powell St.,
Suite
      500, San Francisco, CA 94102 USA Phone: (415) 981-1771 Fax: (415)
      981-1991 Email: [3][log in to unmask] Web: [4]www.panna.org
      To subscribe to PANUPS, send a blank message to:
      [5][log in to unmask]
      References
      Visible links:
      1. http://www.rafi.org/
      2. mailto:[log in to unmask]
      3. mailto:[log in to unmask]
      4. http://www.panna.org/
      5. mailto:[log in to unmask]
      6. http://204.255.211.112/ColdFusion/news_top10.cfm?start=3D1
      Hidden links:
      7.

http://204.255.211.112/ColdFusion/News_Page1.cfm?NewsID=3D9657&start=3D1

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