This is from Monsanto's web site
Is Monsanto Going to Develop or Sell "Terminator" Seeds?
Through modern biotechnology, it may be possible to develop crops that will not produce viable offspring seeds or that will produce viable seeds with specific genes switched-off. Gene Use Restriction Technology (GURT) includes a range of technologies employed at the genetic level, designed to limit the use or spread of specific genetic material in agriculture.
Sterile seed technology is a type of GURT in which seed produced by a crop will not grow. Dubbed “terminator technology” in the popular press, many have expressed concerns that sterile seed technology might pose a threat to the livelihood and way of life of small landholder farmers in developing countries. These farmers have saved seeds to plant the next crop for centuries.
Monsanto has never developed or commercialized a sterile seed product. Sharing many of the concerns of small landholder farmers, Monsanto made a commitment in 1999 not to commercialize sterile seed technology in food crops. We stand firmly by this commitment. We have no plans or research that would violate this commitment in any way.
It’s true that GURTs offer certain benefits. GURTs can be used to limit the use or spread of specific genetic material in agriculture. For example, technology developers can invest in beneficial traits and utilize GURT to ensure specific traits are available only to farmers wanting to pay for and use the traits. GURTs also help with the stewardship of biotech crops by offering a means to ensure that biotech genetic material is present only in intended agricultural settings.
Monsanto sees both the positive and negative aspects of GURT and understands there are some uses which would not involve sterile seeds but which would be beneficial for small landholder farmers. For instance, it may be possible to create varieties where farmers can save and plant seeds, but the offspring seed does not carry the biotech trait.
If Monsanto should decide to move forward in the area of GURTs, we would do so in consultation with experts and stakeholders, including NGOs. Our commitment to protecting smallholder farmers and our promise not to commercialize sterile seed technology will carry forward with these developments, should they occur.
BY THE WAY YOU CAN'T COMPLAIN ABOUT MONSANTO SEED AND POLLEN AND SPREADING EVERYWHERE AND THEN COMPLAIN THAT THEY MIGHT USE TERMINATOR TECHNOLOGY. IF THEY HAD TERMINATOR TECHNOLOGY IN THEIR SEED YOU SHOULD BE PLEASED. TRY NOT TO TALK OUT OF BOTH SIDES OF YOUR FACE IT DOESN'T LOOK PLEASANT. EITHER GM IS BAD AND YOU SHOULD ENCOURAGE TERMINATOR TECH TO AVOID SPREAD OR IT IS GOOD AND NOT WANT TERMINATOR TECHNOLOGY. HOW CAN IT BE BAD AND TERMINATOR TECHNOLOGY ALSO BE BAD....THINK FOR A MOMENT
Open Letter From Monsanto CEO Robert B. Shapiro To Rockefeller Foundation President Gordon Conway and Others
October 4, 1999
Dr. Gordon Conway
President Rockefeller Foundation
420 5th Avenue
New York, NY 10018-2702
I am writing to let you know that we are making a public commitment not to commercialize sterile seed technologies, such as the one dubbed "Terminator." We are doing this based on input from you and a wide range of other experts and stakeholders, including our very important grower constituency.
As you know, sterile seed technology is one of a class of so called "gene protection systems." This is a group of technologies, all still in the conceptual or developmental stage, that could potentially be used to protect the investment companies make in developing genetically-improved crops, as well as possibly providing other agronomic benefits. Some would work by rendering seeds from such crops sterile, while others would work by other means, such as deactivating only the value-added biotech trait. One of the sterile seed technologies was developed and patented jointly by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Delta & Pine Land, with which we announced our intent to merge in the spring of 1998.
Last April, after hearing concerns about the potential impact of gene protection systems in developing countries and consulting with a number of international experts and development leaders, we called for a thorough, independent review of gene protection systems. We also pledged not to commercialize any of them until that review was completed and we had responded to the issues raised.
Since then, however, we have continued to listen to people who have a particular interest in sterile seed technologies, including the concerns you expressed to our Board in June. Though we do not yet own any sterile seed technology, we think it is important to respond to those concerns at this time by making clear our commitment not to commercialize gene protection systems that render seed sterile.
It is also important to understand that the technical and business utility of sterile seed technology is speculative. The specific technology over which Monsanto would gain ownership through its pending merger with Delta & Pine Land is developmental, at least five years away from any possible commercialization, and may or may not prove workable in a commercial setting. The need for companies to protect and gain a return on their investments in agricultural innovation is real. Without this return, we would no longer be able to continue developing new products growers have said they want.
Monsanto holds patents on technological approaches to gene protection that do not render seeds sterile and has studied one that would inactivate only the specific gene(s) responsible for the value-added biotech trait. We are not currently investing resources to develop these technologies, but we do not rule out their future development and use for gene protection or their possible agronomic benefits.
For this reason, we continue to support the open, independent airing of all of the issues raised by the use of gene protection systems to protect the investment companies make in agricultural innovation. We understand, for example, that the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences is planning an international study of these issues. We renew the pledge we made in April that we will not make any decision to commercialize a gene protection technology until a full airing of the issues is complete and we have responded publicly to the concerns that are raised.
We are fully committed to modern biotechnology as a safe, sustainable tool for farmers and an important contributor to the future success of agriculture in meeting the world's needs for food and fiber. The technology has already brought important benefits to growers and the environment after just a few years of commercial application. We are working hard to build on this success.
We also recognize that biotechnology, like any new technology,raises issues that must be addressed. We appreciate your involvement with these important issues and the perspective and expertise you contributed at our June Board meeting. We find significant value in engaging stakeholders and the expert community in active dialogue on issues surrounding biotechnology and the future success of agriculture. I look forward to continuing our dialogue with you on the many issues and challenges that lie ahead.
Robert B. Shapiro
Chairman and CEO
Why don't you concentrate on the good aspects of natural foods rather than the perceived bad aspects of other sources or a specific company. Its like bitching about your friends to make yourself look good - its not very compelling - it suggests you have weak arguments for the benefits of natural foods--which is probably true....the best thing going for the in favor argument is BETTER FLAVOR because you have no evidence for it being safer.
why is 70% food gm - actually it all is and it is still there because it doesn't do any harm. You just keep quoting stories about GM food but no real data that it is actually harmful to people - dont you think that i it was harmful someone anyone would have brought a lawsuit to stop it. Th e only lawsuits against Monsanto on this are against the USDA about their process of approval and a weird pre lawsuit by the organics trying to encourage their sales. You can't actually win a sue unless you have been injured and far from being injured or damaged organic growers own their very existence to GM crops. They use GM crops as an excuse for people to pay more for organic food -the organics should be paying companies like Monsanto advertising fees
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My Buddah... Does no one know how to use Google?
And that's the first three.
Of course it's not for sale. Who would sell it? Silly rabbit. In development? Yes... with who? Hmm.... the U.S. government. Gee. That doesn't make any sense at all (excluding the pandering whoring going on between the food industry and the FDA and Monsanto judges sitting on the Supreme Court)...
Well Billy, that would be one fine weapon wouldn't it? If you controlled the world's food supply, and no food could grow without buying it from you?.
Yes it is scary... (See, "The Road" movie).
Likely... probably not. They may eventually succeed with a few species of plants but there is so much diversity and variability in genetics and epigenetics etc that I don't see it happening.
1.) You're using MONSANTO to defend.... Monsanto? Yes, judge, I believe the murderer... he says he did not kill the woman, so it must be true.
2.) You propose a catch 22 in saying we can't hate GMO and the terminator technology together. Um... no. Silly rabbit. GMO sucks ass at all levels. If Monsanto didn't own Congress and the Supreme court, it would likely not be as prevalent as in the EU. As it is now, the bought politicians routinely buy into the "American's aren't prepared to know" presentation from the companies. Yes. We can say that both GMO sucks ass and spreads to non-desired species (see NON-MONSANTO links above), and that Terminator technology sucks as well...
If your lover Monsanto can't control the spread of Roundup1 gene and has to create Roundup2... they likely will not be able to control terminator technology.
3.) Your argument would have at least some validity if you 1.) Would spit out Monsato's reproductive organ, and 2.) Would use sources other than Monsanto to defend... Monsanto.
It may be a small amount but for Monsanto it means that farmers could be entitled to reimbursement when their fields become contaminated with unwanted Roundup Ready canola or any other unwanted GMO plants. This could be a big deal and could also drive investors away.
Expert Jeffrey M. Smith, author of Seeds of Deception and Genetic Roulette, reveals shocking facts about genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Studies have produced thousands of sick, sterile and dead laboratory animals; thousands of people linking toxic and allergic type reactions to these foods and damage to virtually every system in the laboratory animals studied. Despite this alarming evidence 70% of the foods in our supermarkets have genetically modified organisms in them.
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