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article imageOp-Ed: Monsanto rat study under fire, biz as usual for a hated company

By Paul Wallis     Sep 22, 2012 in Environment
Sydney - Apparently rats covered in tumours aren’t scientific enough. The world’s most hated company has a lot of cartoon characters on its side to attack a recent negative study in Europe.
News Daily:
...But experts not involved with the study were skeptical, describing the French team's statistical methods as unconventional and accusing them of going "on a statistical fishing trip".
Speaking at a news conference in Brussels on Thursday, Seralini defended the peer-reviewed study, which was published in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology.
"This study has been evaluated by the world's best food toxicology magazine, which took much more time than people who reacted within 24 hours without reading the study," he told Reuters Television.
"I'm waiting for criticism from scientists who have already published material in journals... on the effects of GMOs and pesticides on health, in order to debate fairly with peers who are real scientists, and not lobbyists."
There you have the issues. Monsanto’s defenders simply aren’t trusted any more. The trouble with the “fishing trip” analogy is that when you go fishing, you tend to catch real fish.
The pitifully sick collection of lab rats are the smoking gun to two major Monsanto products: GMO corn and its global cash cow, Round Up. This report also flies directly in the face of a 2003 EU finding that the GM corn strain NK603 was “as safe as non-GM corn”.
Seralini has taken by far the most difficult course in dealing with a Monsanto study. This company routinely attacks any critic and any negative information regarding its products. It prosecutes farmers if the wind blows GM pollen to an adjoining property.
Business as usual, publicity as usual?
Monsanto has earned its hatred from so many people, in my opinion. Any normal company would simply market products that weren’t lawsuits in waiting. With this company, it's standard procedure, but Monsanto sees things differently.
According to Monsanto:
Since 1997, we have only filed suit against farmers 145 times in the United States. This may sound like a lot, but when you consider that we sell seed to more than 250,000 American farmers a year, it’s really a small number. Of these, we’ve proceeded through trial with only eleven farmers. All eleven cases were found in Monsanto’s favor.
A very small number of farmers involved in patent infringement cases with Monsanto have sought publicity around their cases, and have characterized the company’s actions in a negative light. In some other situations, outside parties have portrayed particular cases negatively. We take exception to any misleading allegation of wrong-doing. Our employees and contractors respect our customers and their property.
Uh-huh. And the company’s appalling reputation is therefore a media fabrication? There are now whole nations taking legal action against Monsanto.
These are a small number of the stories we’ve run on DJ regarding Monsanto in the last three months
Op-Ed: 5 million Brazilian farmers sue Monsanto in huge class action
Op-Ed: WikiLeaks exposes corruption as France bans Monsanto’s GMO maize
Monsanto's Bt corn — breeding superbugs & harming human health
Op-Ed: New Bill for Monsanto is a U.S. & Canadian Food Nightmare?
New bill could make biotech companies immune to federal courts
There are 5 pages of articles if you do a search of Monsanto on Digital Journal. Good news? Community interaction? Not a word.
What are we supposed to do, ignore this information? Should the world’s press simply see the word “Monsanto” and assume that it’s some sort of offshoot of Disneyland? Snow White and the Seven Products, perhaps? After the apple gets out of testing, it’d make a good movie.
No other company on Earth has mobilized so many opponents simply by doing business. No other company is so utterly loathed by so many groups. If you’d like some light reading, this is a search on Google of “Monsanto lawsuits”. See if you can find something to love about this company. Nobody else can.
For current news, this is Google’s Monsanto news. If you like a good chuckle, see what’s so amusing about the company and do a Google News Alert.
For Monsanto’s views, this is the Monsanto home page.
What are my qualifications for speaking on this subject? I’m a qualified horticulturalist. I wouldn’t touch any Monsanto product, even if they didn’t have that track record. Well, Monsanto, what can anyone say about that? I can think of one thing- If it's all that safe, you eat it. The rest of us reserve the right to eat food we trust.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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