Why is Australia allowing Monsanto to patent screening its biodiversity?

Monsanto has a problem, just six types of soybean provide most of the genes for 136 soy cultivars(1). Crop failures result when the gene pool of crops are too narrow, for example the Irish potato famine and the 1970 US southern leaf corn blight epidemic(2).

Most of the relatives of the soybean (glycine) are native to Australia (3). This isn't preventing Monsanto being granted a patent today by the European Patent Office in Munich (EPO) on screening and selecting for wild and cultivated soybean plants adapted to various climates.

Can mums sue over GM genes in their children's bodies?

We should accept that all food, including organic, will be contaminated with Genetically Modified (GM) genes, according to the defence in the Steve Marsh case.1
“It is outrageous that ordinary food is being contaminated by GM and we are supposed to just swallow it.” Said Fran Murrell of MADGE. “We found out last year that complete plant genes (GM and non-GM) can pass from food into human blood. This was thought to be impossible"2

Madge Digest No #138 November 2013

Submitted by Development on Wed, 11/13/2013 - 19:54

Global Scientists: No scientific consensus on GM food safety

MADGE Australia welcomes a statement by global scientists declaring that there is no scientific consensus on GM food safety.  The scientists “strongly reject claims by GM seed developers and some scientists, commentators, and journalists that there is a “scientific consensus” on GMO safety”.

Some of the objections to the claim of scientific consensus are as follows:

1. There is no consensus on GM food safety

2. There are no epidemiological studies investigating potential effects of GM food consumption on human health 

Madge Digest No #136 August 2013

Fran's picture
Submitted by Fran on Tue, 09/03/2013 - 09:26

1) 7th September – will you vote for the ‘brand’ or the policies?
2) All you need to know about voting
3) TPPA – The mother of all Trade agreements and why you should care
4) Home Economics and how it can protect our kids from dying from Non-Communicable Diseases (stroke, diabetes, heart disease etc).
5) Fair Food Week
6) What MADGE is up to

1) 7th September – will you vote for the ‘brand’ or the policies?

If you eat, you may like to consider the food and farming policies of the various parties. At the time of writing:

  • The Coalition has no overall food or farming policy
  • The ALP policy on Regional Australia includes the rollout of the NBN and the National Food Plan. While the NFP does have some good initiatives around local food the main aim is increasing exports to Asia. It ignores the large and growing negative health effects of our food systems. It also ignores farm sustainability and the undercutting of local produce by cheap imports.
  • The Greens food policy is in four main sections for easy reading here. The overall 49 page document from which these sections are drawn is “Our Food Future”. It is a comprehensive report on food and farming with practical and inspiring solutions. The policy includes scaling back supermarket power, food hubs to link farmers to eaters more directly, better food labelling (including GM and country of origin), research into sustainable agriculture, increasing Newstart so that people can afford better food, 800 new school kitchen gardens and much, much more.


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