17 November 2006

The Seed Gestapo

For millennia there has been a seeds commons - a shared store of seeds produced by farmers from this year's crop for the following year.

In my wife’s dialect of kari-ya, which is spoken on the island of Panay, in the Philippines, there is a word binhi, which refers to the grains of rice that are set aside and used as seeds in the next planting season. There is a knack to choosing these. You want plump grains with no blemishes. Every farmer knows how to do it, and usually their families too.

And then:

It seems clear the government is working with the seed companies to strong-arm farmers into buying seeds instead of producing them themselves. So doing, it is paving the way for GMO seeds and the jackboot legal regime that comes with them. (In the U.S., Monsanto has sicced its lawyers on hundreds of farmers for “patent infringement”, often when the patented seeds in question simply blew into their fields.)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

do your bit for Green.grow mustard and cress on you windowcill.