Quick Reads

Biodiversity Convention's Terminator Decision Fails Biodiversity and Fails Farmers

SBSTTA Decision sticks out as a lonely defense of Terminator against a global background of rejections.

While momentum to ban Terminator Technology builds across the world, the UN's Convention on Biological Diversity has taken a large step backwards in its recent decision on Terminator and related technologies it calls GURTs" (Genetic Use Restriction Technologies). Rather than banning them - or even calling for a moratorium - the Biodiversity Convention's scientific body (called SBSTTA) adopted a decision that gives a green light to their commercialization. The SBSTTA decision even restricts the rights of countries to impose national bans on Terminator by linking moratoria to trade sanctions. Says RAFI's Executive Director Pat Mooney, "The CBD isn't regulating GMOs - Genetically Modified Organisms, it is becoming a GMO - a Governmentally Modified Organism."

Traitor Resolutions?

The CBD as a GMO (Governmentally-modified Organism) Interminable Terminator talks at the Biodiversity Convention fail to exercise precautionary principle on threat to security and sovereignty. If the Convention can't take a stand on Terminator what can it do?

It's 'The Real Thing' in Paraguay

The folks that brought you Terminator are now dumping Originator toxic seeds on farmers' fields.

When the Biodiversity Convention's call last year for an investigation of Terminator Technology was followed by a repudiation of the Terminator by the world's largest public sector plant breeding network (CGIAR), the technology's numerous inventors began to back peddle. After all, commercial introduction of the seed sterilization technique was at least three years off. If governments and civil society critics could be pacified now, there would be time to position an effective lobby and PR strategy that would keep the Terminator 'on course' as the platform for all GMO plant breeding in the future.


El Convenio de Biodiversidad debe parar la amenaza de las tecnologias

El Organo Subsidiario de Asesoramiento Científico, Técnico y Tecnológico (OSACTT) del Convenio de Biodiversidad se reúne en Montreal del 21 al 25 de junio. En la agenda de discusión están las tecnologías"Terminator" (exterminadora) y "Traitor" (traidora). Denominadas Tecnologías de Restricción del Uso Genético (TRUG) por Naciones Unidas, estas tecnologías fueron analizadas por un panel independiente de científicos de OSACTT que presentarán su informe a los gobiernos.

Call for "Seed Sovereignty" ban on Terminator patents

Letters to 140 national governments call for direct action as campaign to ban Terminator The technology enters new phase. Are patent-holders waving a white flag?

Launching a new phase in the campaign to 'Terminate Terminator (seed sterilization) Technology', RAFI is sending personal letters to more than 550 ministers and senior officials responsible for agriculture, environment, and patent offices in 140 countries. The letters ask cabinet officers to assert national sovereignty over their seed supply and to ban the seed sterilization technology outright. The letters also ask ministers to reject each individual Terminator-type patent pending within their jurisdiction. Ministers are receiving a status report on key Terminator patents in their countries. Many governments are unaware that the World Trade Organization allows countries to reject individual patents on the grounds that they are contrary to ordre public (public morality and/or a threat to health or the environment)," Pat Mooney, RAFI's Executive Director says, "The WTO also allows governments to ban the entire technology. Both steps should be taken."

Terminator Technology Selected as one of Project Censored’s Top Under-Reported News Stories

Terminator Technology has been selected by Project Censored (California, USA) as one of the most important, under-reported news stories in the mainstream media in 1998. Terminator refers to a controversial genetic technology that renders farm-saved seed sterile, forcing farmers to purchase crop seed annually.

Monsanto - Handled with CARE?

... or, CARE - Handled by MONSANTO? Major US Relief Agency holds talks with troubled agbiotech multinational-- Who's helping Who?

CARE, the high-profile U.S. food aid non-profit, is holding talks today with Monsanto Corporation at the company's world headquarters in St. Louis, Missouri (US). According to information received by RAFI, Monsanto's CEO Robert Shapiro contacted CARE's President, Peter Bell, inviting CARE officials to discuss ways in which Monsanto may be able to use its technologies for the benefit of food security in the South. Whether this is an attempt to resurrect Monsanto's scheme to provide micro-credit (soft") loans to Third World farmers in order to market its proprietary pesticides and genetically-modified seeds remains to be seen.

Un "Terminator" juridique menace les cultivateurs franco-africains

Quinze pays francophones de l'Afrique, dont certains comptent parmi les pays les plus pauvres de la planète, subissent des pressions pour céder le droit de plus de vingt millions de petits cultivateurs à conserver et à échanger les semences. La décision d'abandonner la tradition africaine vieille de 12 000 ans de conservation des semences sera entérinée à une rencontre qui se déroulera du 22 au 25 février prochain en République centrafricaine. Les quinze gouvernements auraient reçu la directive d'adopter une loi draconienne sur la propriété intellectuelle touchant les espèces végétales afin de se conformer à une disposition de l'Organisation mondiale du commerce (OMC) qui oblige les signataires à "protéger" les obtentions végétales. La loi (dite de type "Terminator", car elle interdit aux agriculteurs de semer des graines "protégées") est également connue, par euphémisme, sous le nom de "Droits de protection des obtentions végétales". Si elle est adoptée, cette loi emporteraient certains des pays les plus pauvres de l'Afrique dans un cartel de propriété intellectuelle dominé par une poignée d'États de l'OCDE menés par les États-Unis, le Japon et le Royaume-Uni.

Monsanto Behind Anti-Farmer Law

Ohio Bill Descriminates Against Seed-Saving Farmers

A bill has been introduced in the Ohio state legislature (United States) that would require registration and state-level regulation of anyone who cleans or conditions self-pollinated seed. According to the Rural Advancement Foundation International (RAFI), the proposed legislation is part of Monsanto's aggressive corporate strategy to police rural communities and intimidate seed-saving farmers.