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Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Weed defeats Monsanto

Monsanto, the monopolistic monster that is behind most transgenic crops and related herbicides, notably Roundup, is facing an unexpected enemy: evolution.

After some time of preeminence of genetically modified crops in the USA, crops immune to Roundup, unlike any other plant (in principle), some weeds are taking advantage of the unnatural situation and adapting faster than the mega-corporation can research and react: Amaranthus palmeri, also known as pigweed, has developed immunity to Roundup and is rapidly expanding by the US crop fields, having already caused abandonment of more than 5,000 hectareas, as farmers just don't have any easy solution against it.

The massive use of Roundup in transgenic crop fields has simply exterminated all other plants and weeds, but those who have been able to adapt, in this case this species of amaranth, thrive without competition (as crops are never efficient competitors). The only option would be to supress the weeds manually but that's not any realistic option in the industrialized conditions of US agriculture.

It is suspected that amaranth may have obtained the resistence gene from the very genetically modified crops it is now killing, maybe by crossing or maybe by viral transmission. The massive use of Roundup has only created the perfect conditions in which this weed can now thrive without rivals.

Nature 1 - Capitalism 0 (or did anyone ever believed we could defeat Nature?)

Sources: Rebelión, Wikipedia.


fjb said...

Round-Up has been banned where I come from which, btw, is dairy farm country. More and more districts in B.C. are banning. Sucks to be Monsanto, and stuck with all that Round-Up resistent, genetically engineered corn seed they can't sell here anymore.:) Boohoo.

Maju said...

Sucks to be Monsanto...I hope it does. But so far they have made a lot of money scamming agriculturists around the world. But hopefully the party is over for them - I just wish I'm not crying victory too early.

Now let's see if we can get rid of the patent/copyright mafia.