Monsanto rep meeting with president of Peru

Illustrating access at the highest levels of government, a representative from Monsanto meets with Alan García, president of Peru:

García is the large man sitting in front of the flag. The Monsanto rep. is the short man sitting to García’s left.

It’s not clear when this meeting took place, but it may have been the one referred to in this 11 Oct 2007 story, which says:

The company’s Governmental Affairs Manager for Latin America, Rafael Aramendi, stated that he had expressed the interest the multinational giant had in producing seeds in Peru to President Alan Garcia.

“We consider that Peru has adequate zones for the production of seeds, that’s what we want to invest in,” stated Aramendi to Peru’s press.

In addition, the Manager for Latin America explained that Monsanto had carried out studies in Peru’s highlands to determine the feasibility of the project. He reported that Peru’s agricultural potential was very big. “The potential the Peruvian agricultural sector has is very big,” said Aramendi.

According to Peru’s RPP News, Monsanto has already largely invested in a vegetable plant in Ica, Peru. In addition, the company has investments in Chile and Colombia. Monsanto is also the world’s leading producer of the herbicide glyphosate, marketed as “Roundup”.

Monsanto is the leading producer of genetically engineered seed and also the largest conventional seed company in the world. The company owns Agracetus, the producer of Roundup Ready soybean, which is the first successful genetically engineered crop produced for the commercial market.

This blog entry says the meeting occured 11 Oct 2007. It quotes Andina as saying he asked García to arrange for production of corn (maíz) and cotton (algodón) from Monsanto’s seeds. Which of course would also entail use of Roundup. It also mentions that in addition to agrochemicals and seeds designed to withstand them, Monsanto created genetically modified bovine growth hormone (BGH), aka Bovine somatotropin (bST), which is prohibited in the EU, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand due to health effects on animals and on people who drink their milk.

In case you’re not familiar with the health problems produced by Glysophate, aka Roundup, here are a few articles on the subject.