The Great Seed Robbery

By Vandana Shiva

The seed, the source of life, the embodiment of our biological and cultural diversity, the link between the past and the future of evolution, the common property of past, present and future generations of farming communities who have been seed breeders is today being stolen from the farmers and being sold back to us as “propriety” seed, owned by corporations like Monsanto.

Under pressure of India’s Prime Minister’s Office (which in turn is under the pressure of the White House because of signing the U.S–India Agriculture Agreement) the States are signing MOU’s with seed corporations to privatise our rich and diverse genetic heritage. The Government of Rajasthan has signed seven MOU’s with Monsanto, Advanta, DCM-Sriram, Kanchan Jyoti Agro Industries, PHI Seeds Pvt. Ltd, Krishidhan Seeds and J.K. Agri Genetics.

While what is being undertaken is a great seed robbery under the supervision of the State, it is being called PPP – Private Public Partnership.

The MOU with Monsanto focuses on Maize, Cotton, and vegetables (hot pepper, tomato, cabbage, cucumber, cauliflower, water melon). It will in effect hand over to Monsanto millennia of breeding by farmers. The State will subsidize Monsanto’s breeding. It will allow Monsanto’s propaganda to replace extension by promoting “awareness building activities under Monsanto’s “gurukulam” training package with recommended package of practices for Rajasthan”. The State infrastructure will thus function for promotional activities of the companies. The private companies seed distribution will be based on “seed supply and distribution arrangements involving leverage of extensive government – owned network”.

Thus farmers’ varieties will be replaced by increasing “Seed Replacement Rate” – which in effect erases in one season million of years of evolution and thousands of years of farmers breeding. Instead of breeding and distributing public varieties, the state agriculture universities are acting against their public mandate and violating the public interst by facilitating the privatization of the seed supply.

Brainwashing by Monsanto based on “guest lectures by Monsanto’s global experts and scientists” is being labeled as “knowledge transfer”. Selling hybrids and then GMOs is being subsidized by using public land for “Technology demonstration farms to showcase products technology and agronomic practices on land made available by the Government of Rajasthan”.

Besides the handing over of seed and land, “Monsanto will be helped in the establishment of infrastructure towards the fulfillment of the collaboration objectives specified above through access to relevant capital subsidy and other schemes of the Government of Rajasthan”.

Read more at ZNet

16 responses to “The Great Seed Robbery

  1. Agents of Fortune~

    People should be aware of what happened to the Seed Saver’s Exchange and to Organic Valley and Rodale Institute and to similar good sounding (and appearing), seemingly good intent, organizations.

    Virtually all sizeable organizations with history, have been penetrated and co-opted by monied interests, the monied elite. Policies are being set by these ‘types’, in the interest of further propaganda and perception management that direct and manage all movements of people toward the ‘globalization principle’, that of technologically enhanced, centralized control by the wealth-holders, the money changers.

    It is extremely dangerous out there, right now. Do not trust any large organization or group. They are infiltrated, backed and controlled by big money interests. There are really no exceptions, I am sorry to say.


  2. I guess we’ll still be discussing this when Monsatan owns 100% of the seeds on the planet. It just keeps getting worse and the masses refuse to wake up. Ninety percent of people I talk to (at least) don’t see any problem with the food – even after I explain it to them.

  3. Whole Foods~

    This ‘expose’ of Whole Foods will give the reader of Food Freedom a better idea of the other organizations I listed. It apples to all and especially applies to the organizations that seem, to the casual eye, the most ‘worthy’ (appealing to to so-called public awareness and consumer trends, so-to-speak):

    • John Mackey, the founder of Whole Foods, is a Libertarian (Read: Republican) activist who couldn’t give a flying falafel about the economic structures that are altering the planet. You can look up his remarks about health care reform from a while back. No one I know shops at Whole Foods any more.

      • But they did, right?

        They did shop there.

        Fools rush in, it’s the American way.

        Only later, do the tattered remnants climb out. Had again. And still not much the wiser.


      • this libertarian is in no way a republican, btw. the two ideologies are quite distinct. I’m what has been called “left libertarian” and he may be more “right libertarian”

  4. Nedlud I sadly have to agree with you. We must now deal with our local farmers and one another in a seed saving effort to keep it OUT of the hands of the Monsanto’s of this world. Sadly, seeds will have their OWN Underground Railroad. Shiite.

  5. More reasons why Monsanto needs to be held accountable for their actions and only through a ground swell of prayer, protests, and grassroots efforts can they be stopped.

  6. Margaret Bartley

    Back during the Clinton administration, I looked at who was staffing the US trade delegation – who the US trade representatives were. They were almost ALL either executives of agribiz, or they were lobbyists and lawyers, for companies like Monsanto, Continental Grains, Cargill, etc. I was looking at this because I was trying to figure out why the US was spending billions of dollars to move the high-tech sector to India.

    It looks like, at the highest level, a deal was made to divide the world such that North America controls the world’s food, and Asia controls technology.

    By the way, what happened at Seed Savers and rodale?

  7. Kent Whealy and Seed Savers:

    Check out also the ‘Svalbard Seed Vault’.

    Rodale began to go ‘south’ about the same time Mother Earth News. Anybody remember the old Mother Earth News?

    Hostile corporate takeover and global elite heavy handed bureaucratic control of ALL earth’s resources with complete taxable and punishable (imprisonment, torture, death, you-name-it) dominance over the common people of the earth, masquerading as a continuation of ‘down-home goodness’, albeit with modern, necessary and improved updates.

    Oh yeah sure.

    • Three (real) cheers for Food Freedom!

      Don’t get fooled by bureaucrats.


    • My analogy for SSE and Kent Whealy is just like the farmer that loses his/her farm because he/she didn’t do what the bureaucrats and university specialists ordered him/her to do. This (the decimation of small farms) has happened to thousands and thousands (millions) of farmers and we now have very little hope of getting back what was ours. Ever. It truly has become a prison planet, ruled by a scientific aristocracy, preaching and imprisoning with a false and elitist view of the world.

  8. More on the ‘new and improved’ (not) SSE and Kent Whealy and Svalbard Seed Vault.

  9. WELL, heres someone whos trying to help with the GMO contamination anyhows..

  10. Pingback: The Seed Vault at the End of the Earth (pt. II) | The Turquoise Bee

What do YOU think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s