Bad Seed Danger of Genetically Modified Food
This documentary exposes a vast conspiracy to contaminate and control the world’s food supply through genetic engineering of food crops. Leading scientists, researchers and activists present the facts that you need to know about genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
The methods used to genetically engineer plants are imprecise and extremely dangerous. Eighty percent of food sold in North America already has ingredients made of GMOs that have not been adequately tested for safety. This program presents all the facts about this alarming controversy and features the best-known, most credible bio tech / agriculture authorities in the world today.
The Future of Food
There is a food revolution happening in America today. People are seeking out farmers’ markets, organic produce and good restaurants. At the same time, our food supply is increasingly controlled by multi-national corporations. Over the past 10 years, with the advent of genetic engineering and the massive expansion of pesticide companies, like Monsanto, into the seed business, the very nature of our food system has radically changed with potentially disastrous effects on our food security. Patenting of life is now permitted, no labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMO’s) in food is required, research is conducted on these issues by universities beholden to the “agri-corps” who fund them, and the major regulatory agencies are run by former execs from these very companies. All the while, the average citizens remain blissfully unaware that they are eating GMO food and supporting the aggressive “corporatization’ of their food sources. In fascinating and accessible terms, ‘The Future of Food’ illuminates the major issues ultimately affecting us all — some surreal, some futuristic, many frightening. Yet, ‘The Future of Food’ is a hopeful film, featuring insightful and moving interviews with farmers, agriculture and business experts and policymakers. It sees a future in which an informed consumer can join the revolution by demanding natural, healthy food sources that insure environmental integrity.
Bad Seed: The Truth About Our Food (Part 1 of 5)
This bold and convincing documentary grabs you in the guts and doesn’t let go. When Adam Curry and Timo Nadudvari first learned about the hidden consequences of the genetic engineering of food crops they were shocked and appalled – then they decided they had to tell others what they had learned. The video examines the issue of genetic engineering of food from the real-world perspectives of leading scientists, farmers, food safety advocates and the victims of genetically engineered products. It exposes a heinous scheme by large corporations with long criminal histories to gain control over the world’s food supply by infecting food crops with patented DNA. It also exposes Agro-Tech lies, the corruption within the US FDA and the all-too-real risks to human health.
Monsanto is known for producing the dioxin-containing defoliant Agent Orange, which was used extensively in the Vietnam
War; for forcing the evacuation of the community of Times
Beach, Missouri, by contaminating it with dioxin; and for
refusing to accept full responsibility for the PCB contamination
of an Alabama town. Monsanto has also gained notoriety for
suing a Canadian farmer who unintentionally grew genetically
engineered (GE) Roundup Ready canola after pollen from GE
seeds drifted into his fields and contaminated his crop.
Monsanto’s disregard for corporate social responsibility is
summed up in a quote from Phil Angell, Monsanto’s director
of corporate communications, to the New York Times, October
25, 1998: “Monsanto should not have to vouchsafe the safety
of biotech food. Our interest is in selling as much of it as possible. Assuring its safety is [the U.S. Food and Drug
1 Information and media manipulation
Monsanto funded and published numerous studies during the
1980s arguing that dioxin was harmless. Dr. Cate Jenkins of
the EPA testified that “there are numerous…flaws in the
Monsanto health studies. Each of these misrepresentations and
falsifications served to negate any conclusions of adverse health
effects from dioxins.” In 1991, a National Institute for
Occupational Safety and Health study refuted Monsanto’s
claims, proving that dioxin exposure can lead to cancer.
2 In 1991, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration stated that
Monsanto’s promotional materials on recombinant bovine
growth hormone (rBGH) went “beyond the legitimate
exchange of scientific information,” ordering Monsanto to stop
making unsubstantiated claims through advertisements and
promotional videos. Monsanto also threatened to file lawsuits
against any companies that advertised “no rBGH” on their
3 Canadian government officials, speaking on camera, have said
that they believe Monsanto tried to bribe them with offers of
US$1 to $2 million to gain approval for rBGH in Canada.
Monsanto officials say the Canadians misunderstood their offer
of “research” funds.
4 Environmental contamination
Dioxin from a Monsanto plant contaminated the community
of Times Beach, Missouri. In 1982, 2,000 people were permanently relocated by the state government and the U.S. EPA—
11 years after the contamination was first discovered, and eight
years after the cause was identified as dioxin. Mental dysfunctions and immune system disorders have been found in children from the area.
PCB contamination from a Monsanto factory in Anniston,
Alabama has produced widespread health and environmental
consequences. The results of studies showing potential impacts
of PCBs were disregarded by Monsanto, leading to multi-million dollar negligence settlements in recent years. After the first
lawsuit was filed by a local church, Monsanto attempted to
purchase the church building; eventually the Alabama Supreme
Court forced the company to pay US$2.5 million to the
6 In February 2002, a jury found that the Anniston plant was
responsible for polluting the community with PCBs, although
the amount to be paid in damages has yet to be determined.
The PCBs are believed to be responsible for causing multiple
types of skin ailments, reproductive disorders, liver disease, cancers, cerebral palsy and other diseases. One of the findings
against Solutia (Monsanto’s chemical spinoff ) is called a “tort
of outrage.” According to the defense attorney, “This is
reserved for conduct that is so reprehensible that it shocks any
civilized person.” He said that this charge is very difficult to
prove, and demonstrates a high level of liability on Solutia that
is likely to result in a large damage claim.
In 2000, Monsanto merged with Pharmacia & Upjohn to
become one of the “life science” industry’s largest companies,
the Pharmacia Corporation. By the end of that year, however,
Monsanto had become an independent subsidiary focusing
solely on agricultural products-genetically engineered seeds,
pesticides and recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH-a
genetically engineered hormone designed to increase milk
production when injected into dairy cows). Monsanto, a
U.S.-based multinational corporation with over 14,700
employees worldwide, is now one of the largest pesticide
companies in the world.
1 In 2000, Monsanto’s total sales, including seeds, pesticides
and rBGH, were US$3.9 billion, more than 8% higher than
the previous year.
1 PANUPS, Top Seven Agrochemical Companies in 2000, May 23, 2001.
2 Agrow: World Crop Protection News, March 2, 2001.Pesticide Action Network North America
49 Powell St., Suite 500 • San Francisco, CA 94102
Tel 415.981.1771 • Fax 415.981.1991 • email@example.com • www.panna.org
Pesticide Action Network North America World Bank Accountab
Monsanto tracks down farmers who replant seed
from Monsanto’s genetically engineered crops. In
the company’s own words, “Monsanto is vigorously
pursuing growers who pirate any brand or variety
of its genetically engineered seed, such as Roundup
Ready soybeans and cotton and Bollgard cotton.”
The company has hired full-time investigators to
follow up on seed saving leads it receives.
Monsanto has pursued over 500 cases in the U.S.
in at least 20 states. Monsanto maintains that seed
saving is illegal even if a farmer did not sign an
invoice statement for the seed at time of purchase.
8 A Canadian federal judge ruled that Saskatchewan
farmer Percy Schmeiser had infringed the patent
on Monsanto’s Roundup Ready canola because the
crop was found on his land. Even information that
Monsanto divulged before the trial—that a neighbor had planted Monsanto’s transgenic canola next
to land that Schmeiser seeded the following year—
made no difference. Once conventional seed that
Schmeiser had been developing for 50 years was
found to contain Roundup Ready genes, it became
property of Monsanto. The judge ordered
Schmeiser to pay all profits from his 1998 crop to
9 March 2002
1 Pollan, M., “Playing God in the Garden,” New York Times, October 25, 1998.
2 Testimony before EPA dioxin reassassment panel, December 1994, by L. C. Casten,
Environmental Task Force Chair, Chicago Media Watch, http://www.greens.org/s-r/078/07-
47.html; memorandum to the EPA from W. Sanjour (policy analyst), July 1994,
http://pwp.lincs.net/sanjour/monsanto.htm; “Monsanto: A Checkered History,” the Institute
for Social Ecology, http://www.social-ecology.org/learn/library/tokar/monsanto_2.html;
Fagin, D. and M. Lavelle., 1999, Toxic Decption: How the Chemical Industry Manipulates
Science, Bends the Law and Endangers your Health, Common Courage Press, Monroe, Maine.
3 Fagin and Lavelle, op. cit., p. 190; ”Monsanto: Greenpeace Corporate Criminal Report,”
4 “Milk, rBGH, and Cancer,” Rachel’s Environment & Health Weekly #593, April 9, 1998.
5 “Another accidental release of dioxin at Times Beach heats up the debate over the incinerator’s safety,” Riverfront Times (St. Louis), May 15, 1996, http://lists.essential.org/1996/
dioxin-l/msg00249.html; “Monsanto: A Checkered History,” the Institute for Social Ecology,
http://www.social-ecology.org/learn/library/tokar/monsanto_2.html; “A Corporate Giant,”
News in Review, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, http://www.cbc.ca/insidecbc/newsinreview/mar99/milk/corp.htm; “Times Beach Deleted From National Priorities List,” EPA—
OECA, Fall 2001, http://es.epa.gov/oeca/osre/cleanupnews.html#times.
6 “In Dirt, Water and Hogs, Town Got Its Fill of PCBs,” Washington Post, January 1, 2002;
“PCBs Drenched Ala. Town, But No One Was Ever Told,” Washington Post, January 1, 2002;
“Environmental Justice Case Study: The People of Anniston, Alabama v. Monsanto,”
7 “Judge in PCB case presses for settlements,” St. Louis Post Dispatch, February 26, 2002.
“Jury decides against Monsanto, Solutia in PCB case, “ Reuters, February 25, 2002.
8 “Monsanto Prosecutes U.S. Seed Violators,” PANUPS, December 14, 1998.
9 “Monsanto engineers the road to serfdom,” Cropchoice, May 29, 2001
Monsanto’s Notorious Pesticides
Roundup—Roundup (active ingredient glyphosate) is Monsanto’s flagship
weed killer (or herbicide), accounting for 67% of the company’s total sales
or about $2.6 billion annually.
1 The amount of Roundup sold has grown
by around 20% each year over the past five years.
2 Monsanto has expanded its capacity to produce Roundup nearly five-fold since 1992.
3 While Monsanto maintains that Roundup is safe, many others disagree,
including the New York State Attorney General. Based on its investigation,
the Attorney General’s office filed a lawsuit arguing that the company’s
advertising inaccurately portrayed Monsanto’s glyphosate-containing products as safe and as not causing any harmful effects to people or the environment. As part of an out-of-court settlement, Monsanto agreed to discontinue use of terms such as “biodegradable” and “environmentally
friendly” in all advertising of glyphosate-containing products in New York
state and paid US$50,000 toward the state’s costs of pursuing the case.
4 There are a number of environmental and human health problems associated with glyphosate. For example, in studies of people (mostly farmers)
exposed to glyphosate, exposure is associated with an increased risk of miscarriages, premature birth and the cancer, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
5 In one case, Monsanto paid a US$225,000 fine for having mislabeled
Roundup containers on 75 separate occasions. It was the largest settlement
ever paid for violation of U.S. Worker Protection Standards. The labels
had claimed that the restricted entry period after application of Roundup
was four, rather than the actual 12 hours.
6 Agent Orange (2,4,5-T and 2,4-D)—Monsanto was one of the primary
producers of Agent Orange, a defoliant used by the U.S. in the Vietnam
War. Monsanto resisted compensating U.S. veterans for health problems
caused by exposure to Agent Orange until it was forced to pay by a judge
in 1984. In Vietnam, the impacts of Agent Orange and dioxin, present as
a contaminant in Agent Orange, are overwhelming. Some estimates have
put the number of dioxin-related deformities of Vietnamese children at
1 Agrow: World Crop Protection News, March 2, 2001.
2 Agrow: World Crop Protection News, January 1, 2000.
3 Monsanto, “A Single Focus,” 2000 Annual Report, http://www.monsanto.com.
4 “Monsanto Agrees to Change Ads and EPA Fines Northrup King,” PANUPS, January 10, 1997; “Monsanto Strategies,” The
Guardian (UK), September 17, 1997.
5 Herbicide Factsheet: Glyphosate (Roundup), Journal of Pesticide Reform, Fall 1998, updated November 1998.
6 “EPA reaches settlement with Monsanto over labeling violations,” EPA press release, March 24, 1998.
7 “A Corporate Giant,” News in Review, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation,
http://www.cbc.ca/insidecbc/newsinreview/mar99/milk/corp.htm; testimony before EPA dioxin reassessment panel,
December 1994, by Liane C. Casten, Environmental Task Force Chair, Chicago Media Watch, http://www.greens.org/sr/078/07-47.html; memorandum to the EPA from William Sanjour, July 1994, http://pwp.lincs.net/sanjour/monsanto.htm.