Transnational corporations seek to dominate the food

With the goal of increasing food production and ending hunger in the world, the corporations that produce seeds for sale gained strength in the decade of the 50’s. However, the seeds they created do not present regularity in production and depend on a large use of agro-toxins. Conclusion: despite all the technological development in agriculture, around 800 million people in the world suffer from hunger.

Besides this, in various places in the world the peasants remain hostages to the seeds and inputs from the large corporations that increasingly seek to control the market. Twenty-five years ago, 7,000 industries produced seeds on the planet. Currently, ten businesses dominate half the market. Monsanto, Syngenta, and Dupont control 30% of sales. Besides hegemony in agriculture, this type of production demands specific inputs, monopolizing the market of agro-toxins and herbicides as well. "They create seeds that can tolerate herbicides and agrotoxins from other corporations", stated Silvia Ribeiro, an activist from the ETC Group of Mexico. According to her, the corporations want to profit from the dependence of agricultural workers.

The expansion of the use of transgenics is going to increase the control of corporations over farmers. Monsanto alone, the major producer of seeds since 2005, sells 88% of transgenics. "They are seeking the monopoly of industrialized and transgenic seeds", warned Silvia.

One of the mechanisms to ensure a monopoly is to de-stimulate and prevent the use of organic seeds by farmers and to charge royalties by means of patents. "It is robbing the patrimony of humanity created by the farmers", she added.

Besides controlling seeds, the processing corporations are also monopolies which work together and control the production chain. For example, Monsanto owns part of Cargill. The transnational corporations also make partnerships with the large supermarket chains such as Carrefour (France) and Wal-Mart (United States), the group with the world’s biggest profits.

In this way, the monopolistic groups dominate everything from the production of seeds to the inputs and processing until it arrives at the consumer. Currently the power of the transnational corporations is such that of the 100 major economies in the world, 51 are corporations and 49 are countries. Coca-Cola, for example, owns 80% of the world’s bottled water. "The transnational corporations are going to decide what we are going to eat", Silvia predicted.

Igor Felippe Santos – Minga Infomativa

This article is available in