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Last night I watched a documentary-style film about a Canadian farmer and the dispute he had with Monsanto, which is basically about "who owns the seed that you choose to save for next season, if it has become accidently contaminated from a neighbouring GMO crop". You'd have thought that there would have been a legal case against Monsanto for that contamination - but no - in the event of contamination, Monsanto then claims ownership of all the seed in the immediate area, regardless of the degree of contamination. By this method, Monsanto are gradually appropriating non-GMO seed and thus beginning to control the supply of the World's seed-stock, which will increasingly become GMO, and - of course - of their own manufacture.

In countries such as India, thousands of small farmers have committed suicide, subsequent to losing their land which has resulted from the inability to save their own seed, as has been done there for countless generations.

It is a disturbing film, but one I think needs to be seen. There's a copy available at: http://188.165.216.160/downloads/Percy.Vs.Goliath.2020.007.BR.mp4

FWIW, I have a preferred alternative ending to the film which I think would have solved the problem much better than the one which resulted. But - the film is based on a true story, and so had to stay true to facts. I can't voice my idea without spoiling the film for those who haven't seen it yet, but I'll write again in around a week's time.
LJ
 

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This is very scary. Most people don't understand the power a company has when they control the seed. I am sure the beekeeper types here do get it though. There are fewer and fewer people in the world who know where their food comes from, and even less who understand how concentrated the ownership of seed supply. Control the food control the people.
 

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Oh boy, Monsanto Canada v. Shmeiser, one of the most misrepresented court cases in history. 🤦‍♂️
 

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Bear in mind that each country makes their own laws. I am not familiar with Canadian law, but in many countries, Monsanto would not be able to claim ownership of another mans seed crop.

This was discussed on a bee chat site in my country, and a hobby beekeeper who is also a lawyer said that if such a situation arose here, the persons seed would be their own not Monsanto's.

A little moot though, we do not allow GM crops here in the first place.
 

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Hmm... I did a little investigating, and it would seem there are 2 sides to this story, so here is the other side.

First off, Monsanto have never sued a farmer for accidental contamination. This belief has sprung from Monsanto sueing people who deliberately grew their seeds, which are patented.

A quote from the article - "
Myth 2: Monsanto will sue you for growing their patented GMOs if traces of those GMOs entered your fields through wind-blown pollen.

This is the idea that I see most often. A group of organic farmers, in fact, recently sued Monsanto, asserting that GMOs might contaminate their crops and then Monsanto might accuse them of patent infringement. The farmers couldn't cite a single instance in which this had happened, though, and the judge dismissed the case.


The idea, however, is inspired by a real-world event. Back in 1999, Monsanto sued a Canadian canola farmer, Percy Schmeiser, for growing the company's Roundup-tolerant canola without paying any royalty or "technology fee." Schmeiser had never bought seeds from Monsanto, so those canola plants clearly came from somewhere else. But where?

Canola pollen can move for miles, carried by insects or the wind. Schmeiser testified that this must have been the cause, or GMO canola might have blown into his field from a passing truck. Monsanto said that this was implausible, because their tests showed that about 95 percent of Schmeiser's canola contained Monsanto's Roundup resistance gene, and it's impossible to get such high levels through stray pollen or scattered seeds. However, there's lots of confusion about these tests. Other samples, tested by other people, showed lower concentrations of Roundup resistance — but still over 50 percent of the crop.

Schmeiser had an explanation. As an experiment, he'd actually sprayed Roundup on about three acres of the field that was closest to a neighbor's Roundup Ready canola. Many plants survived the spraying, showing that they contained Monsanto's resistance gene — and when Schmeiser's hired hand harvested the field, months later, he kept seed from that part of the field and used it for planting the next year.


This convinced the judge that Schmeiser intentionally planted Roundup Ready canola. Schmeiser appealed. The Canadian Supreme Court ruled that Schmeiser had violated Monsanto's patent, but had obtained no benefit by doing so, so he didn't owe Monsanto any money. (For more details on all this, you can read the judge's decision. Schmeiser's site contains other documents.)

So why is this a myth? It's certainly true that Monsanto has been going after farmers whom the company suspects of using GMO seeds without paying royalties. And there are plenty of cases — including Schmeiser's — in which the company has overreached, engaged in raw intimidation, and made accusations that turned out not to be backed up by evidence.

But as far as I can tell, Monsanto has never sued anybody over trace amounts of GMOs that were introduced into fields simply through cross-pollination. (The company asserts, in fact, that it will pay to remove any of its GMOs from fields where they don't belong.) If you know of any case where this actually happened, please let me know".

Top Five Myths Of Genetically Modified Seeds, Busted : The Salt : NPR
 
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