Has Bell Pottinger been commissioned to renew the campaign for GM crops to boost Monsanto’s falling profits?

12 Aug

On a sister site in 2010 we quoted Colin Tudge’s description of  New Labour’s agricultural strategy, “if such it can be called”, as “an open invitation to Monsanto, Cargill, and Tesco, to fill their boots.”

A few events were listed:

  • The recently exposed Bell Pottinger, the lobbying firm acting for Monsanto, was paying up to £10,000 a year to MP Peter Luff, the Tory chairman of the Agriculture Select Committee which policed Government food policy.
  • Monsanto met government minister Jack Cunningham when he was chair of the cabinet committee on GM. His special adviser, Cathy McGlynn, went on to join Bell Pottinger.
  • David Hill, Tony Blair’s chief media spokesperson, was a senior executive at Bell-Pottinger and managing director of its subsidiary Good Relations Ltd, where he was public relations advisor to Monsanto.
  • During 1997-1999 GM food firms met government officials or ministers 81 times and Monsanto reps visited into the agriculture and environment departments 22 times. (They couldn’t be closer to Blair, Daily Mail, February 13, 1999)

The same tactics are used world-wide: corporate vested interest embedded in government advisory committees influences the decision-making process. Read more here. The post ended:

Short-lived lifting of spirits when news of Monsanto’s dramatically falling profits on Round-Up sales was arrested by the explanation that this was due to China manufacturing a cheaper substitute – as well as problems with weed resistance.

In 2010 we asked. “Will the drive to extend production of GM crops in Europe intensify to recover ground after Monsanto’s quarterly profits fell by 45%?”

 

Two years later we can see that it has.

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