I recently posted an article related to GMO, highlighting the book Tomorrow's Table: Organic Farming, Genetics, and the Future of Food by Pamela Ronald, Raoul Admachak published in april 2008.

I have come across an article in swedish with the same controversial outlook as the one which I was focusing on. This stance creates a new perspective and critiques the methodological approach within the eco community and its scepticism against GMO. The article is written by Maria Hagberg from the political party Feminist Initiative (EDIT: AND Jimmy Sand).

Even though the argumentation and rhetoric is based on binary oppositions and choices, one still gets to confront the idea that GMO isn't 'bad' or 'evil' per se. She mentions the problem with large corporations and their profitable market approach through investment in chemicals - they are deliberatly blocking positive advancements of the eco community and even GMO. Other problems that are mentioned includes: the issues of patents, 'third-world countries' with their needs, as well as ethics & trading. Be sure to read the criticism from Kathleen McCaughey, GMO-spoke sperson @ Greenpeace and Lars Igeland of Miljöförbundet Jordens Vänner. The chemical market and the GMO market seem to be intertwined:

The Monsanto Company is an American multinational agricultural biotechnology corporation. It is the world's leading producer of the herbicide glyphosate, marketed as "Roundup". Monsanto is also by far the leading producer of genetically engineered (GE) seed, holding 70%–100% market share for various crops. Agracetus, owned by Monsanto, exclusively produces Roundup Ready soybean seed for the commercial market. In March 2005, it finalized the purchase of Seminis Inc, making it also the largest conventional seed company in the world. It has over 18,800 employees worldwide, and an annual revenue of USD$8.563 billion reported for 2007

Oh the problem of patents... haven't we heard this before?. This problem has to be addressed and not looked down upon! Have a look at this Pirate Party related text on the patent system:

An abolished patent system

Pharmaceutical patents kill people in third world countries every day. They hamper possibly life saving research by forcing scientists to lock up their findings pending patent application, instead of sharing them with the rest of the scientific community. The latest example of this is the bird flu virus, where not even the threat of a global pandemic can make research institutions forgo their chance to make a killing on patents.

The Pirate Party has a constructive and reasoned proposal for an alternative to pharmaceutical patents. It would not only solve these problems, but also give more money to pharmaceutical research, while still cutting public spending on medicines in half. This is something we would like to discuss on a European level.

Patents in other areas range from the morally repulsive (like patents on living organisms) through the seriously harmful (patents on software and business methods) to the merely pointless (patents in the mature manufacturing industries).

Europe has all to gain and nothing to lose by abolishing patents outright. If we lead, the rest of the world will eventually follow.

Moreover, Later on in the article Greenpeace seems to be positive about the technology of genetics but still criticizing the 'unnatural' GMO.

"The debate on GMO" was published in Göteborgs Fria Tidning (which aims to be non-profitable and free from ads) and can be read (Swedish) at Jimpan's blog.

Göteborgs Fria Tidning

1 comment:

jimpan said...

Thank you for the recommendation. My only remark is that Maria Hagberg and I wrote the article together. Nothing to fuss about, of course, but still...