Government Officials Urged to Block Mega-Mergers of Seed/Agro-Chemical Corporations

Pending mega-mergers between (1) Monsanto-Bayer, (2) Dow-DuPont & (3) Syngenta-ChemChina represent “shocking consolidation in the biotech seed and agrochemical industry” in the words of Wenonah Hauter, the Executive Director of the Food and Water Watch. Along with eight other groups (Sierra Club, SumofUs, Pesticide Action Network, Friends of the Earth, Center for Food Safety, Organic Seed Alliance, Rural Advancement Foundation International and Clif Bar Family Foundation/Seed Matters, Food and Water Watch has submitted petitions signed by 708,000 people urging the U.S. Department of Justice and elected officials to block these mergers which would further consolidate the market for seed and agricultural chemicals.

In the words of Alexander Rony of the Sierra Club, the Monsanto-Bayer merger would result in one corporation controlling “both the seed and pesticide markets- it’s the fox guarding the hen house.”  Andrew Kimbrell, Executive Director of Center for Food Safety sums up the danger: “The continuing consolidation of seed and pesticide companies essentially creates a monopoly of toxicity in control of the world’s seed market and food supply.”

A hearing has been held before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee on the Consolidation and Competition in the U.S. Seed and Agrochemical Industry. Five of the nine witnesses who testified before the Committee are representatives of these mega corporations seeking further consolidation of the market for seeds and agricultural chemicals: James C. Collins, Jr., Executive Vice President, Agriculture Division of DuPont; Tim Hassinger, President and CEO of Dow Agro Sciences, Erik Fyrwald of Syngenta International, Jim Blome, President & CEO of  of Bayer CropScience North America, Robb Fraley, Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of Monsanto.

Click here to obtain contact information for your Senator and voice your opinion. The 18 members of the Senate Judiciary Committee: (Republican majority) Orrin G. Hatch (UT), Jeff Sessions (AL), Lindsey Graham (SC), John Cornyn (TX), Michael Lee (UT), Ted Cruz (TX), Jeff Flake (AZ), David Vitter (LA), David Perdue (GA), Thom Tillis (NC); (Democratic minority) Dianne Feinstein (CA), Charles Schumer (NY), Dick Durbin (IL), Sheldon Whitehouse (RI), Amy Klobuchar (MN), Al Franken (MN), Christopher A. Coons (DE), Richard Blumenthal (CT).

(Frank W. Barrie 9/20/16, post updated on 9/21/16 with testimony downloadable from the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee’s website by clicking on the link)

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