info4action archive

[Index][Thread]

GE - TERMINATOR ALERT



PLEASE COPY AND DISTRIBUTE TO YOUR NETWORKS 

URGENT ACTION NEEDED 

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE IS AT IT AGAIN!! 
AGENCY CONTINUES TO FUND TERMINATOR TECHNOLOGY 

TELL USDA TO STOP ITS ONGOING SUPPORT OF NEW RESEARCH ON 
TERMINATOR/TRAITOR TECHNOLOGIES. 
USE PUBLIC DOLLARS FOR PUBLIC SECTOR RESEARCH 

Despite widespread opposition to USDA's involvement with Terminator
technology,
the agency continues to use taxpayer dollars to support genetic seed
sterilization.  Controversy over the Terminator technology has generated an
avalanche of public opposition. USDA is blatantly ignoring the public
outcry. A
new patent reveals that USDA funding supports additional Terminator
research at
Purdue University (Indiana).  

WRITE, PHONE, OR FAX  SECRETARY DAN GLICKMAN 
USDA, 200A Whitten Bldg., 1400 Independence Ave., SW. Washington, DC 20250 
Phone: 202-720-3631; Fax: 202-720-2166 

Tell him to stop using USDA’s scarce public research dollars to pursue a
dangerous, antifarmer technology that threatens biodiversity.  Tell him that
USDA must: 

**  Abandon all research on genetic seed sterilization. 
**  Develop a policy prohibiting the use of public research dollars on
Terminator technologies 
**  Use public research dollars to support plant breeding for sustainable
agriculture 


        Terminator is a controversial technology that has generated worldwide
protest and debate because it renders farm saved seed sterile  forcing farmers
to return to the commercial seed market every year.   If commercialized, it
will threaten global food security and endanger biodiversity. The original
Terminator patent is jointly owned by the US Department of Agriculture and a
Monsanto subsidiary, Delta & Pine Land Co. 

        The notorious Terminator patent is just the tip of the iceberg. There
are dozens of new patents describing a wide range of techniques that can be
used for the genetic sterilization of plants and seeds. Every major seed and
agrochemical enterprise is developing its own version of suicide seeds.  These
technologies are extremely dangerous because they will erode farmer control
and
decision making in agriculture and increase dependence on a handful of giant
agrochemical corporations. Over 1.4 billion people, primarily poor farmers in
Africa, Asia, and Latin America depend on farmsaved seed as their primary seed
source. If they can't save seed, they can't continue to adapt crops to their
unique farming environment.  The new generation of patents goes beyond the
genetic neutering of crops.  The patents reveal that multinational
agrochemical
and seed corporations are developing suicide seeds whose genetic traits can be
turned on and off by an external chemical inducer triggered by the company's
patented agrochemicals. In the notsodistant future, we may see farmers
planting
seeds that will develop into productive crops only if sprayed with a carefully
prescribed regimen that includes the company's proprietary pesticide,
fertilizer, or herbicide -- the TRAITOR technologies. 

        With  Traitor technologies,  farmers will be forced to surrender
control of their seed supply and the Gene Giants will ultimately dictate what
the farmer grows, how to grow it, and where to sell it. Seed sterility is not
about insuring quality of productivity, it's a power grab pure and simple, and
tax dollars should not go to support the development of these technologies. 

For detailed analyses of Terminator and Traitor technologies, see websites:
<<http://www.rafi.org/>http://www.rafi.org/>www.rafi.org &
<<http://www.ucsusa.org/>http://www.ucsusa.org/>www.ucsusa.org 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------
----------------------------------------------------- 
Sample letter to protest the Terminator Technology: 

Please copy this letter to your representatives in Congress. 

Secretary Dan Glickman 
USDA 
200-A Whitten Bldg. 
1400 Independence Ave., SW 
Washington, DC 20250 
Email: agsec@usda.gov 
Fax: (202) 720-3631 

Dear Secretary Glickman: 

I oppose the use of taxpayer money to develop Terminator technology  a genetic
technology that renders farm-saved seed sterile. I urgently call on USDA to
adopt a policy that will prevent the use of public funds (either through
grants
or in-house research) to support genetic seed sterilization. 

I am writing to ask that the USDA immediately cease negotiations to 
license the Terminator technology to a Monsanto subsidiary (Delta and 
Pine Land Co.).  I urge the USDA to abandon its worldwide patent 
applications on this immoral and dangerous technology. 

The Terminator technology is a dead-end for farmers and a threat to 
food security worldwide. I respectfully urge you to stop funding Terminator
technology and cease negotiations for its commercial development. 

Sincerely, 


Your Name 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------
---- 
RAFI-USA 
Rural Advancement Foundation International 
P.O. Box 640, 21 Hillsboro St. 
Pittsboro, NC 27312 USA 
Ph: 919-542-1396; Fax: 919-542-0069 
<<http://www.rafiusa.org/>http://www.rafiusa.org/>www.rafiusa.org 

PLEASE CONTACT THE NATIONAL CAMPAIGN FOR FORMATTED OR HARD COPY 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Liana Hoodes 
National Campaign for Sustainable Agriculture 
P.O. Box 396 
Pine Bush, New York  12566 
Phone: 914-744-8448 
Fax:  914-744-8477 
emamil:  campaign@magiccarpet.com 
<<http://www.sustainableagriculture.net/>http://www.sustainableagriculture.
net/>www.SustainableAgriculture.net 
If you would like to join our (free) Action Alert Network, please email us
your
name, address, phone, fax, and email. 
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~