CALL TO ACTION!
Join AGRA Watch Friday June 4, 2010, as we march in solidarity with Haitian farmers, who have committed to burning Monsanto’s incoming donation of hybrid maize and vegetable seeds, which have been treated with highly toxic pesticides. The Peasant Movement of Papay (MPP) has condemned the shipment, and has insisted that Haiti’s future depends on food sovereignty – join us in saying YES! to food sovereignty, and NO! to Monsanto!
June 4, 2010—Meet at 4:00pm at Grand Central Bakery: 1616 Eastlake Ave. E, Seattle
4:30pm Creative action at Gates Foundation
March at 5:00pm to University Bridge
“A New Earthquake for Haiti”–Chavannes Jean-Baptiste
Monsanto recently announced that it will donate 60,000 sacks (475 tons) of hybrid corn and vegetable seeds to Haitian farmers, some of them treated with toxic pesticides. The shipment is scheduled to arrive this week in Haiti. However, Haitian farmers are rejecting this “donation,” and rejecting Monsanto’s profit-driven strategy of creating dependency on their products by offering free seeds to poor farmers. The Peasant Movement of Papay (MPP), a member of the international peasant movement La Via Campesina, called this dumping of seeds “a very strong attack on small agriculture, on farmers, on biodiversity, on Creole seeds … and on what is left of our environment in Haiti.” The MPP has called upon the farmers of Haiti to march in opposition, and burn the seeds of this foreign transnational. Haitian social movements have stressed that keeping chemicals and imported GMO seeds out of Haitian fields are not their only concern. The future of Haiti depends on establishingfood sovereignty: the right of small farmers to make meaningful decisions about their food system and their agricultural practices — decisions that will allow them to produce abundant, healthy food for the local population.
Why AGRA Watch?
AGRA Watch has spent the past two years challenging the Gates Foundation’s plans for imposing an unjust and unsustainable model of agriculture on countries in Africa. Both in their direct grants to GMO agricultural research, and through their participation in the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) they are paving the way for the widespread use of GMOs in African nations where they are heartily contested. We criticize the Foundation’s strong connections to Monsanto—from their staff and board member choices, the projects they fund in Africa, to the solutions they envision. The dumping of toxic seeds on Haiti, is only the latest in a long line of acts that Monsanto has done to push unsustainable “solutions” on farmers around the world. If the Gates Foundation wants to support a sustainable agriculture system in Africa or elsewhere, they must divorce themselves from Monsanto.
Beverly Bell: “Haitian Farmers Commit to Burning Monsanto Hybrid Seeds”