Haitian Peasants vs. Monsanto

June 22 2010 - 10:49 PM

On June 4th 10,000 Haitian peasants burned corn donated by Monsanto. Ana Jones at the Huffington Post has an article about it. They cite Farmer Leader Chavannes Jean-Baptiste of the Peasant Movement of Papay first hand. Right or wrong, here are his reasons why they chose to do this.

  • Hybrid seeds are a poison gift. They don't reproduce,
    and therefore cannot be shared among a community. Haiti does not yet
    view seeds as a commodity like the US does. These hybrid seeds threaten
    the cultural fabric in Haiti because they break the cycle of food
  • Jean-Baptiste believes that Monsanto has taken
    the opportunity of the recent earthquake in Haiti to intentionally
    introduce the seeds and destroy Haitian agriculture, creating a
    dependency on Monsanto each season for new seeds.
  • If the
    Haitian government accepts Monsanto's seeds, rather than trying to
    build a system of food sovereignty, the Haitian farmer will become a
    day laborer, working for industrial farms. This would completely
    transform the economy to an industrial system instead of working to
    support farmers through a local economic system.