.... all that seemed such a long way from issues like FOOD SECURITY and FOOD SOVEREIGNTY and the even more obscure SEED COPYRIGHT.
|Dr Vandana Shiva - Indian Seed activist - winner of the 2010 Sydney Peace Prize.|
Times have changed... and the issues that some were trying to get our focus on years ago have now mushroomed into far greater challenges in 2011. The cook books still fill the shelves... although the book stores are closing, the TV plays endless cooking shows, celebrity chefs are the new movie stars it would seem ... and many talk FOOD like there's not a whimper of change afoot!
Like so many other topics debate around food gets very polarised these days... its hard to get people's attention so the more sensational arguments surface and the effort to discover what is fact and fiction is often not made.... and to be truthful...its a hard task to get to the bottom of it!
This Saturday's rally in the US: "Millions against Monsanto" is something I wanted to bring to your attention... it will take place in a number of regions as well as Washington DC ... and will be the forerunner to a bigger event planned for WORLD FOOD DAY 16th October 2011.
I'm glad to see this kind of people's lobby growing ... most importantly I believe people need to come to terms with their region's Food Sovereignty whether they live in India, Chili, Northern America or anywhere else .... whilst understanding how it all works as a whole.
"Food sovereignty" is a term coined by members of Via Campesina in 1996  to refer to a policy framework advocated by a number of farmers, peasants, pastoralists, fisherfolk, indigenous peoples,women, rural youth and environmental organizations, namely the claimed "right" of peoples to define their own food, agriculture, livestock and fisheries systems, in contrast to having food largely subject to international market forces
I would argue that people NEED TO KNOW more than the slogans, more than the sensationalist claims from either side... to see more clearly what is at stake when 6 or so transnationals own most of the worlds traded seeds, and are winning copyrights on more seeds all the time.
The movement against the few corporations swallowing up a significant percentage of the world's seed heritage and working against our global right to grow what we need as we wish would be far greater if people had access to better information and read more widely. The organic debate is part of the story.... but its actually only one part of it!
You'll find quite a lot on this blog that covers this ... there are reputable sources of information and watchdogs.... do the homework... its worth it.
|image found at Canadian Farmers Market website - testing carried out by Prairie Diagnostic Seed Testing|
I realised whilst on residency last year that some people were lumping the Plant Science carried out by the Millennium Seed Bank Project (set up by Kew Gardens: Royal Botanic Gardens, London) with that of companies like Monsanto. In 2011 such a serious lack of information from those wishing to support Eco-sustainability is problematic and can work against the cause. There's much material to post on to get this message across... tonight is not the time.
This rally signifies people not being happy to sit by and watch Govts ignore their questions. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT that people step up and demand answers. But I would urge anyone to keep in mind that in my effort to research things I hear about seeds and such at this blog Ive been caught out once or twice by serious misinformation generated by organisations that have a strong eco-future orientation but are using sensationalised or false info to "win" over their audience.
Read about the rally on facebook or at this website.
it basically describes how Monsanto and Co are realising the need to get onto Social Media ... It comes out of St Louis, Missouri which is the headquarters of Monsanto... so this newspaper would be most unlikely to rock the boat ... how many from this area work for this corporation I wonder.
The article is worth a read if you are curious like me and wish to peek into how this company might be positioning itself and its attempt to find its "voice" in the world of social media. There are quite arange of views provided.
Read here if you want to see Monsanto's website pledge.