I remember when my father and I put these things there,
around forty years ago.
They’re still intact, and if you look closely you can still read the labels.
We prefer taking things to the dump these days.
Metal can John S. Quarterman, Gretchen Quarterman, Brown Dog, Yellow Dog, Pictures by John S. Quarterman for Okra Paradise Farms, Lowndes County, Georgia, 22 July 2012.
The film documents the beginnings of the company as a chemical start-up in the early 1900s, producing saccharin, caffeine and vanillin. As we watch Robin Google up unclassified documents and interview a bevy of officials, scientists and farmers, we see that today’s Monsanto is a giant multinational wielding its considerable financial, political and marketing clout to influence government officials, ruthlessly sue farmers using patent laws – all the while surreptitiously lobbying to keep their potentially toxic products unlabelled or falsely advertised.
Monsanto claims that their genetically modified seeds will solve the food crisis, especially in developing countries, where it will provide significant economic benefits, higher quality and better yield. Nevertheless, the film compellingly shows the unsettling possibilities of genetic contamination of conventional or local varieties of seeds by their genetically-engineered cousins, pointing to a horrific future where global plant biodiversity is nil and farmers are not able to grow anything but genetically contaminated food.
Surely the company that brought us DDT (banned by U.S. Congress 1972), Agent Orange (Agent Orange Act of 1991 makes U.S. veterans exposed to it eligible for treatment and compenstation), and PCBs (“CONFIDENTIAL: Read and Destroy”) wouldn’t soak the world in anything toxic?