“…food companies have fought mandatory disclosures as long as there have been food labels. Determined legislators and consumer advocates have always had to fight for labels designed to cure consumer confusion, including everything from “orange juice from concentrate” to “imitation crab.” The same goes for state-mandated food label disclosures, which are clearly permitted under the National Labeling and Education Act. In this case, state GMO labeling laws are all virtually identical, so claims of a “patchwork” quilt are a (industry-engineered) red herring.” Scott Faber
Do we want what we grow and what we eat to be determined by a few giant corporations whose first and foremost agenda is profit before people and planetary well-being?
Imagine a world where small farmers are respected as experts in the processes of nature and are honored as stewards of our arable land.
What about a world where farmers are no longer replaced by massive machines force-feeding toxic chemicals into vast monocultures of GMO seeds?
The film is important because Vandana Shiva articulately and scientifically presents the alternative: Ecological agriculture that restores biodiversity, organic seed freedom, healthy soil, fresh water and clean air.
How did the willful daughter of a Himalayan forest conservator become the world’s most powerful opponent of Monsanto? The Seeds of Vandana Shiva, a feature-length documentary, presents the remarkable life story of the Gandhian eco-activist and agro-ecologist, Vandana Shiva. A classic David versus Goliath tale, the film shows how Vandana, a brilliant scientist, became Monsanto’s worst nightmare and a rock star of the international sustainable food movement.
Every day in America, as we consume whatever food we can access and afford, the system that supplies our sustenance is engaged in its own form of consumption. It feasts on human toil, commodifed animals, natural resources, and our own bodies. Food, one of the foundations of life, has become a hub of suffering and struggle.
Surveying the landscape of food, we find a long menu of problems, from farm closures to climate change. Corporate-patented genetically modified organisms (GMOs) threaten farmers, food democracy, and biodiversity. Honeybees, life-giving pollinators central to our food supply, are in mass decline from pesticides and other factors. In the United States and worldwide, hunger and malnutrition remain rampant—affecting nearly one billion people globally, and at least forty-five million Americans—even as United Nations data show we have more than enough food to feed everyone on the planet.
On March 20 2015 the World Health Organisation’s cancer agency IARC declared that glyphosate is a probable human carcinogen. IARC reached its decision based on the view of 17 top cancer experts from 11 countries, who met to assess the carcinogenicity of 5 pesticides.
Over 80% of genetically modified (GM) crops grown worldwide are engineered to tolerate being sprayed with glyphosate herbicides. GM glyphosate-tolerant crops have led to a 239 million kilogram (527 million pound) increase in herbicide use in the US between 1996 and 2011, compared with the amount that would have been used if the same acres had been planted to non-GM crops. People and animals that eat GM glyphosate-tolerant crops are eating potentially high levels of Roundup residues.
Over 80% of genetically modified (GM) crops grown worldwide are engineered to tolerate being sprayed with glyphosate herbicides,1 the best known being Roundup. The herbicide kills all plant life in the field apart from the crop. These crops are known as glyphosate-tolerant or “Roundup Ready” (RR) crops.
The idea behind such crops was to simplify weed control for farmers. The farmer could douse the entire field with glyphosate herbicide, killing all weeds without killing the crop.
But this is not the way things turned out. Weeds have quickly become resistant to glyphosate herbicide through a process called selection pressure, in which only those weeds that tolerate the herbicide survive to pass on their genes. The resulting epidemic of glyphosate-resistant “superweeds” has caused huge problems for farmers in countries where glyphosate-tolerant crops are widely planted.