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Thursday, February 14, 2008

Spin Doctors Explain Big Monsanto Estimated Profits

Monsanto recently released updated reports of expected earnings in 2008 with a conclusion the both its genetically modified seed (to which it hold the patent) and its herbicide, Roundup, appear to be exceeding previous expectations in sales. Monsanto is happy. Environmental and consumer groups are not happy.

The widening adoption of genetically engineered crops by farmers around the world is reducing global pesticide use, increasing agricultural yields and bringing unprecedented prosperity and food security to millions of the world's poorest citizens.

Or, it is fueling greater use of pesticides, putting crop yields at risk, driving small farmers out of business and decreasing global food security by giving a single company control over much of the world's seed supply.

Dueling reports released yesterday -- one by a consortium largely funded by the biotech industry and the other by a pair of environmental and consumer groups -- came to those diametrically different conclusions.

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I live on the Pacific slopes of the Talamanca mountain range in southern Costa Rica. My adult children live in the United States. I have a Masters Degree in Gerontology but have worked as a migrant laborer, chicken egg collector, radio broadcaster, secretary, social worker, research director, bureaucrat, writer, editor, political organizer, publicist, telephone operator, and more. My hobby of photography has garnered some awards.

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