Monsanto Announces Major Losses After Settling Environmental Lawsuit

Monsanto lost money this past quarter, but only part of that was due to environmental lawsuits. Do you think Monsanto will continue to lose money, as people reject GMOs in growing numbers or was this just a bad quarter? -LW

AFP Photo / Juliette Michel

AFP Photo / Juliette Michel

Biotech giant Monsanto announced major losses for their fourth quarter last week well below analysts’ expectations after spending millions settling an environmental suit.

The St. Louis, Missouri-headquartered company announced a loss of $156 million, or 31 cents per share, on Wednesday, 7 cents per share beyond what analysts surveyed by both Bloomberg and Zacks Investment Research had expected.

According to the Associated Press, Monsanto managed to take the biggest blow during the last quarter due to a one-time payment made to settle an environmental legal case and, had it not occurred, the company would have lost only 27 cents per share. As RT reported at the time, residents of a West Virginia town where Monsanto formerly operated a chemical plant have since July been able to receive free medical monitoring or have their property cleaned-up thanks to a settlement agreement valued at over $90 million.

Despite ongoing and international legal issues, however, Monsanto managed to see sales of its GMO products go up during the last four months, with company execs and analysts alike saying they’re optimistic about the coming year. Monsanto representatives said during a conference call that they’re confident earnings-per-share will double by 2019, and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that lackluster results during the last quarter failed to raise alarm bells for analysts.

“We’re confident in our ability to deliver the targets we’ve set in both the near term and over the longer term,” Monsanto CEO Hugh Grant said in a statement. “In an industry that’s particularly near-term focused right now, there are few companies as well positioned to deliver strong growth today while significantly increasing investments to enable the continued delivery of a broad range of innovative solutions for tomorrow.”

“We think it is reasonable for management to be conservative at this early juncture in light of uncertainty within the agriculture industry with crop prices under pressure and farmer planting intentions unsure,” Edward Jones analyst Matt Arnold told the Post-Dispatch.

Absent more multi-million dollar settlements — and coupled with high expectations concerning new technology platforms, including a farm data business unit, the company said — Monsanto expects positive figures in the coming quarters. According to the Market Business News, net sales for Monsanto’s full year reached $15.9 billion, or 7 percent higher than the year prior: sales for GMO corn and GMO soybean were up by $ 12 million and $112 million, respectively, and net sales of the company’s Roundup herbicide totaled $1.25 billion, compared to $1 billion last year.

Monsanto executives are prepared for first quarter earnings in 2015 to be well below what they saw a year earlier, the AP reported, and expect a slump due to “reduced seed planting in key markets and other seasonal factors.” Otherwise, the company said it expects “strong double-digit to mid-teens earnings growth in fiscal year 2015 despite continued industry headwinds.”

Nevertheless, Monsanto might not sail through the coming quarters with ease given a mounting anti-GMO backlash across the world: three lawsuits were filed last week against competing agribusiness firm Syngenta over a genetically-modified seed variant it markets, and residents of Colorado are slated to vote next month on a measure that could impose new GMO-labeling laws in stores across the state.

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Mexico’s judge turns Monsanto’s dream into nightmare

Last year I was told that Microsoft’s Bill Gates and Carlos Slim went to Mexico with $20 million in hand to bribe Mexico’s lawmakers into allowing Monsanto to bring GMO seeds to Mexico. Then the president of Mexico discovered that a major university in Mexico had been developing a much better way to feed the world with old-world seeds, including corn that would produce up to 13 ears of corn per stalk. (Normal production is just 2 ears.)

I have seen the pictures of this super-corn having 10 ears on one stalk. DNA tests show that under the right conditions, God created it to produce up to 13 ears of corn. They are using frequency technology to energize the water and seeds so that it will outproduce anything on earth today. The University plans to make Mexico the breadbasket of the world–that is, unless the GMO’s spoil the environment and the big seed companies succeed in their plan to take control of the world’s food supply.

By the way, 44 of the top experts on corn seeds are in Mexico and are grads from this university. None of them want GMO seed corn in their country.

It was reported to me by a faculty member of this same major university that after the distribution of the bribe money, the Mexican president could not stop the lawmakers from passing the law to allow GMO’s, but he instructed his good friend, the judge, to block the law on constitutional grounds. Monsanto now has to conduct years of tests to prove that it’s GMO’s are safe to the environment. It is doubtful that they will be able to prove this.

That is the story as I heard it from my faculty friend from the agricultural department of the university.

It appears that the following news article is about this situation.

http://wolfstreet.com/2014/09/01/mexican-judge-departs-from-script-turns-monsantos-mexican-dream-into-legal-nightmare/

The latest country to put a spanner in the works is Mexico. This past week the country’s Federal Court voted to uphold Judge Marroquín Zaleta’s 2013 ruling to suspend the granting of licenses for GMO field trials sought by Monsanto, Syngenta, Dow, Pionner-Dupont and Mexico’s SEMARNAT (Environment and Natural Resources Ministry). Zaleta’s ruling was in response to a suit brought by a collective of 53 scientists and 22 civil rights organizations and NGOs.

In defending his ruling, Zaleta cited the potential risks to the environment posed by GMO corn. If the biotech industry got its way, he argued, more than 7000 years of indigenous maize cultivation in Mexico would be endangered, with the country’s 60 varieties of corn directly threatened by cross-pollination from transgenic strands. Monsanto’s response was as swift as it was brutal: not only did it – and its lackeys in the Mexican government – appeal Zaleta’s ruling, it also demanded his removal from the bench on the grounds that he had already stated his opinion on the case before sentencing.

However, Monsanto’s bullying tactics failed to impress the Mexican judges. On August 15, the court convened to review Zaleta’s alleged bias ruled against the U.S. corporation’s legal suit. Also spurned by the Mexican courts was the world’s third largest GMO seed manufacturer, Syngenta, whose reapplication for a license to run test trials of its maize crops was rejected this week by the Federal Court.

The full article is worth reading. Perhaps we might have a mystery guest speaker at our conference in October to tell you more about what is going in Mexico’s fight against GMO’s.

Source.

Monsanto’s Seed Imperialism Halted in Canada Thanks to Massive Protests

Well, Canada banned Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide years ago, and now Monsanto is finding it even more difficult to pull off their little depopulation plan north of the 49th with GMO seeds.

Preventing cross-contamination is impossible?—of course it is! That’s why Hungary ploughed under and then burned their fields of Monsanto’s GMO corn!

Yet Monsanto takes farmers to court when they find “their” licensed seed growing in the farmers’ fields. These criminals are going to be stopped—very soon.

So… America… what’s holding YOU back?  ~ BP

alfalfa

 

(NaturalNews) Grassroots activism against transgenic encroachment has paid off in Canada, where licenses for genetically modified (GM) alfalfa have been put on hold, according to new reports. Massive protests in Montreal, Levis, Quebec City, Toronto and as many as 35 other towns and cities across Canada caused U.S.-based Monsanto and Forage Genetics International, the company responsible for creating GM alfalfa using Monsanto’s technology, to have the issuance of their growing licenses delayed in accordance with the will of the people.

The Montreal Gazette explains that, besides widespread farmer resistance to the crop — which is completely unnecessary, as natural alfalfa already grows heartily and steadily without the need for pesticides — tens of thousands of Canadians have repeatedly expressed their disapproval of it. Even Quebec’s union of agricultural producers, known as the Union des producteurs agricoles (UPA) of Quebec, has expressed strong disapproval of the crop.

“The UPA isn’t against genetically modified seeds in general, but we voted unanimously — for two years in a row — that commercialization of GM alfalfa should be prohibited,” stated Marcel Groleau, a UPA member and farmer who, along with his brother, raises 100 dairy cows in Quebec. Like many other farmers throughout the region, Groleau is concerned that GM alfalfa will contaminate conventional and organic alfalfa, as alfalfa is a perennial crop pollinated by bees that spreads easily.

“Organic farms are very much against it, because GM alfalfa might spread, and it’s a perennial, too,” admitted Victor Lefebvre, director of Quebec-based Pickseed, a company that had planned to sell GM alfalfa.

Organic dairy, meat to be forever lost as a result of GM alfalfa

Dairy and livestock farmers in particular rely on alfalfa to feed their animals year-round. In fact, it is probably the most important staple crop currently grown in Quebec, which is why many farmers are speaking their mind about this potentially irreversible change to the agricultural process. Canada’s organic market has tripled since 2006, topping $3.7 billion annually, but this entire market is threatened with elimination by GM alfalfa.

“We’ve developed this niche here. That’s why the issue is more important here than in other provinces,” explained Groleau to The Montreal Gazette. “Organic farmers will suffer significant commercial losses because GM contamination means they won’t comply with Canadian Organic Standards.”

As you may recall, Australian wheat and oat farmer Steve Marsh had his organic farm contaminated by nearby GM canola crops, the contaminated pollen of which blew over onto his land. Marsh lost his organic certification as a result and is now in the process of suing the farmer responsible for the contamination, which led to major financial losses.

Preventing GM cross-contamination is impossible, experts agree

Industry officials have repeatedly tried to coddle regulatory bodies into approving the crop on the basis that a mitigatory plan can be put in place to prevent cross-contamination. But those in the organic industry, not to mention the millions of consumers that rely on organic food for health and sustenance, recognize this as an empty lobbying ploy that simply won’t work.

“The industry is pretending it can stop GM alfalfa from contaminating our fields but that’s pure fiction,” stated Gilbert Halde, President of the Union of Organic Milk Producers of Quebec, last year at a protest. “GM alfalfa cannot be contained by any type of ‘plan.’ Will the bees read the industry’s plan?”

Groleau agrees, having told reporters that, no matter what Monsanto says, GM alfalfa will spread if it is eventually planted commercially. Canada has already suffered the consequences of GM flax, which spread to non-GM fields back in 2009, causing millions of dollars in losses for both farmers and taxpayers.

“What I’ve heard from specialists is that it will spread because of bees and water,” opined Groleau. “Also, in Quebec, we have small farms, which means you can’t easily isolate one farm from another. It would be almost impossible to prevent any cross-contamination and cross-pollination.”

For more information and breaking news on GMOs, visit GMOs.NaturalNews.com.

Sources for this article include:

http://www.montrealgazette.com

http://www.naturalnews.com

http://www.naturalnews.com

http://www.reuters.com

http://www.cban.ca

http://science.naturalnews.com

Victory! Kroger and Safeway Say NO to GM Salmon: Will Costco Be Next?

I don’t know about you, but this makes me very happy. I rarely buy fish any more because I’m afraid it’s farmed and dangerous. (sorry—that just came out, and I liked it!).

I occasionally buy fish labeled “wild-caught”, but not as often as I’d like to eat fish as so much of it is loaded with heavy metals and other toxins. Cold-water fish from the deep south or northern waters is my preference.

If you feel strongly about the salmon issue, you can sign the petition below to encourage Costco to follow suit. If you choose not to sign the petition, you could do yourself a favour and cast your vote by refusing to buy Costco salmon. ~ BP

Kroger (Fry’s) and Safeway–the #1 and #2 U.S. conventional grocery chains–have just joined other major retailers like Target, Meijer, Aldi, Giant Eagle, Whole Foods and many others in protecting consumers, wild salmon and the environment by rejecting GE salmon, but there are many companies who still haven’t responded.

So, who’s next?

Costco is one of the largest retailers of salmon and seafood in the U.S. and is one of the last large retailers that hasn’t made a commitment not to sell GE salmon.

Sign the petition here, urging Costco to join its competitors and commit to keeping GE salmon off its shelves.

 

U.S. Supreme Court Hands Monsanto Victory Over Farmers on GMO Seed Patents, Ability to Sue [video]

Monsanto lied.  They have already sued farmers in Canada for having crops in their fields that could only have got there from cross-pollination from neighbouring fields and they’ll do it again.  The gall of this monster is off the scale. ~ BP

The US Supreme Court upheld biotech giant Monsanto’s claims on genetically-engineered seed patents and the company’s ability to sue farmers whose fields are inadvertently contaminated with Monsanto materials.

The high court left intact Monday a federal appeals court decision that threw out a 2011 lawsuit from the Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association and over 80 other plaintiffs against Monsanto that sought to challenge the agrochemical company’s aggressive claims on patents of genetically-modified seeds. The suit also aimed to curb Monsanto from suing anyone whose field is contaminated by such seeds.

The group of plaintiffs, which included many individual American and Canadian family farmers, independent seed companies and agricultural organizations, were seeking preemptive protections against Monsanto’s patents. The biotech leviathan has filed over 140 lawsuits against farmers for planting the company’s genetically-engineered seeds without permission, while settling around 700 other cases without suing.

None of the plaintiffs are customers of Monsanto and none have licensing agreements with the company. The group argued that they do not want Monsanto’s genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) and want legal protection in case of inadvertent contact with the company’s products.

The appeals court decision was based on Monsanto’s supposed promise not to sue farmers whose crops – including corn, soybeans, cotton, canola and others – contained traces of the company’s biotechnology products.

In a June 2013 ruling, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, DC said it was inevitable, as the farmers’ argued, that contamination from Monsanto’s products would occur. Yet the appeals panel also said the plaintiffs do not have standing to prohibit Monsanto from suing them should the company’s genetic traits end up on their holdings “because Monsanto has made binding assurances that it will not ‘take legal action against growers whose crops might inadvertently contain traces of Monsanto biotech genes (because, for example, some transgenic seed or pollen blew onto the grower’s land).’”

The panel’s reference to “traces” of Monsanto’s patented genes means farms that are affected by less than 1 percent.

The plaintiffs asked Monsanto to pledge not to sue, but the company rebuffed the request, saying, “A blanket covenant not to sue any present or future member of petitioners’ organizations would enable virtually anyone to commit intentional infringement.”

Monsanto’s GMO seeds are designed to withstand the company’s own ubiquitous herbicide, Roundup. Recently, questions have begun to arise from the bioengineered seed’s resistance to pestilence, which has caused some farmers to increase their use of traditional pesticides.

“Monsanto never has and has committed it never will sue if our patented seed or traits are found in a farmer’s field as a result of inadvertent means,” said Kyle McClain, the Monsanto’s chief litigation counsel, according to Reuters.

“The lower courts agreed there was no controversy between the parties,” McClain added, “and the Supreme Court’s decision not to review the case brings closure on this matter.”

Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association President Jim Gerritsen expressed disappointment that the Supreme Court reaffirmed the previous ruling, refusing to hear the case.

“The Supreme Court failed to grasp the extreme predicament family farmers find themselves in,” said Gerritsen, an organic seed farmer in Maine. “The Court of Appeals agreed our case had merit. However … safeguards they ordered are insufficient to protect our farms and our families.”

In addition to Monday’s news and the appeals court decision against them, the plaintiffs – many of them non-GMO farmers and who make up over 25 percent of North America’s certified organic farmers – also lost a district court case.

“If Monsanto can patent seeds for financial gain, they should be forced to pay for contaminating a farmer’s field, not be allowed to sue them,” said Dave Murphy, founder and executive director of Food Democracy Now!, in a statement “Once again, America’s farmers have been denied justice, while Monsanto’s reign of intimidation is allowed to continue in rural America.”

“Monsanto has effectively gotten away with stealing the world’s seed heritage and abusing farmers for the flawed nature of their patented seed technology,” said Murphy. “This is an outrage of historic proportions and will not stand.”

The case is Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association, et al., v. Monsanto Company, et al. Supreme Court Case No. 13-303.

Source

New York Times Rejects Monsanto Science

Thanks, Patrick!

Now we’re getting somewhere!  I wonder if this had anything to do with the 9/11 billboard We, the People,  put in Times Square right in front of the NY Times building, asking them why they didn’t report the truth… 

Sometimes what we want comes in a different way than we expect.  ~ BP

This isn’t a leak. It isn’t a timid flow. It’s a flood.

I’m talking about about the criticism of Monsanto’s so-called science of genetically-engineered food.

For the past 20 years, independent researchers have been attacking Monsanto science in various ways, and finally the NY Times has joined the crowd.

But it’s the way Mark Bittman, lead food columnist for the Times magazine, does it that really crashes the whole GMO delusion. Writing in his April 2 column, “Why Do G.M.O.’s Need Protection?”, Bittman leads with this:

“Genetic engineering in agriculture has disappointed many people who once had hopes for it.”

As in: the party’s over, turn out the lights.

Bittman explains:

“…genetic engineering, or, more properly, transgenic engineering – in which a gene, usually from another species of plant, bacterium or animal, is inserted into a plant in the hope of positively changing its nature – has been disappointing.”

As if this weren’t enough, Bittman spells it out more specifically:

“In the nearly 20 years of applied use of G.E. in agriculture there have been two notable ‘successes,’ along with a few less notable ones. These are crops resistant to Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide (Monsanto develops both the seeds and the herbicide to which they’re resistant) and crops that contain their own insecticide. The first have already failed, as so-called superweeds have developed resistance to Roundup, and the second are showing signs of failing, as insects are able to develop resistance to the inserted Bt toxin — originally a bacterial toxin — faster than new crop variations can be generated.”

Bittman goes on to write that superweed resistance was a foregone conclusion; scientists understood, from the earliest days of GMOs, that spraying generations of these weeds with Roundup would give us exactly what we have today: failure of the technology to prevent what it was designed to prevent. The weeds wouldn’t die out. They would retool and thrive.

“The result is that the biggest crisis in monocrop agriculture – something like 90 percent of all soybeans and 70 percent of corn is grown using Roundup Ready seed – lies in glyphosate’s inability to any longer provide total or even predictable control, because around a dozen weed species have developed resistance to it.” Glyphosate is the active ingredient in Roundup.

Just as the weeds developed resistance and immunity to the herbicide, insects that were supposed to be killed by the toxin engineered into Monsanto’s BT crops are also surviving.

Five years ago, it would have been unthinkable that the NY Times would print such a complete rejection of GMO plant technology. Now, it’s “well, everybody knows.”

The Times sees no point in holding back any longer.

Of course, if it were a newspaper with any real courage, it would launch a whole series of front-page pieces on this enormous failure, and the gigantic fraud that lies behind it. Then the Times might actually see its readership improve.

The revelations will indict the corporation (Monsanto), its government partners, and the scientists who falsified and hid data.

Momentum is something its editors understand well enough. You set your hounds loose on a story, you send them out with a mandate to expose failure, fraud, and crime down to their roots, and you know that, in the ensuing months, formerly reticent researchers and corporate employees and government officials will appear out of the woodwork confessing their insider knowledge.

The story will deepen. It will take on new branches. The revelations will indict the corporation (Monsanto), its government partners, and the scientists who falsified and hid data.

FDA and USDA may take some fire

In this case, the FDA and the USDA will come in for major hits. They will backtrack and lie and mis-explain, for a while, and then, like buds in the spring, agency employees will emerge and admit the truth. These agencies were co-conspirators.

And once the story unravels far enough, the human health hazards and destruction wreaked by GMOs will take center stage. All the bland pronouncements about “nobody has gotten sick from GMOs” will evaporate in the wind.

It won’t simply be, “Well, we never tested health dangers adequately,” it’ll be, “We knew there was trouble from the get-go.”

Yes, the Times could make all this happen. But it won’t. There are two basic reasons. First, it considers Big Ag too big to fail. There is now so much acreage in America tied up in GMO crops that to reject the whole show would cause titanic eruptions on many levels.

And second, the Times is part of the very establishment that views the GMO industry as a way of bringing Globalism to fruition for the whole planet.

Source

 

Watch the Video “Demon Weeds” to Learn What Monsanto Tries to Hide

How You and ANH-USA Stood Up to Broken Laws, Three Big Lies, and $22 Million in Biotech Lobbying

November 5, 2013

Washington State’s GMO labeling initiative goes to the vote TODAY. Show your support by sharing our new video on GMOs and increased herbicide use.  Action Alert!

Over the past month, you and ANH-USA have worked hard to educate the people and fight Big Food and Big Biotech misinformation campaigns.

“No on 522,” the industry backed group leading the anti-GMO labeling push in Washington State, raised nearly $22 million to defeat the initiative, smashing Washington State’s previous fundraising record for any state-wide initiative campaign. Monsanto gave nearly $5.4 million to keep consumers from knowing what’s in the food they feed their families, while the Grocery Manufacturers Association gave $11 million (and got sued by the Washington State Attorney General for illegally collecting and spending $7 million of it—whoops!).

Washington State wasn’t our first battle of this kind: we were actively involved in California’s Prop 37 campaign, and knew from the start that Big Business would be slinging millions, as well as their three big, favorite lies. This is why we proactively launched a comprehensive, multi-platform public education campaign based on three separate independent studies:

  • Lie #1: “GMO labeling is bad for the economy!” Dr. Joanna Shepherd-Bailey’s report detailed how NOT labeling GMOs actually hurts the economy; makes the food industry less competitive worldwide; has a negative impact on food exports, imports, and jobs; diminishes tax revenue; and has a ripple affect on other associated industries.
  • Lie #2: “GMO labeling will raise grocery prices!” Another report by Dr. Shepherd-Bailey showed how GMO labeling will NOT increase food prices.
  • Lie #3: “GMOs are better for farmers!” ANH-USA’s newest report, with research support and herbicide use data provided Dr. Chuck Benbrook of Washington State University debunked the myth that GMOs help farmers produce more and healthier crops—and uncovered the shocking agricultural, economic, environmental, and human health consequences of increased glyphosate (a major ingredient in GMO herbicide) use.

The report’s findings were so compelling that ANH-USA has released this excusive informative video on how glyphosate and glyphosate-resistant weeds can affect your family.

Source