Thursday, June 3, 2010

Haitian Farmers Pledge to Burn Monsanto’s Seeds

Jean-Yves Urfie is a member of the Holy Spirit Order and former chemistry teacher at Collège Saint Martial, Port-au-Prince. He writes in a recent article that Monsanto is s offering the country's farmers a deadly gift of 475 tonnes of genetically-modified (GM) seeds to the impoverished and earthquake-devastated nation.

Writing in the Huffington Post, Beverly Bell reported that Haitian peasant farmer leader Chavannes Jean-Baptiste of the Peasant Movement of Papay (MPP) called Monsanto’s “gift” of seeds “a new earthquake” and has committed to burning them.

Bell writes:

“In an open letter sent of May 14, Chavannes Jean-Baptiste, the Executive Director of MPP and the spokesperson for the National Peasant Movement of the Congress of Papay (MPNKP), called the entry of Monsanto seeds into Haiti "a very strong attack on small agriculture, on farmers, on biodiversity, on Creole seeds..., and on what is left our environment in Haiti."

Haitian social movements have been vocal in their opposition to agribusiness imports of seeds and food, which undermines local production with local seed stocks. They have expressed special concern about the import of genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

Read more about how the company Monsanto is a major threat to small farmers and sustainable agriculture at

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