info4action archive


GE - Related Events at the WTO

From:           "Renske van Staveren" <>
Subject:        Biotechnology Related Events at the WTO

Dear Colleagues,

We are sending out this list of biotechnology-related events that are
currently being scheduled for the WTO Ministerial week in Seattle this
November/December.  No doubt this list will grow and expand in ways we
can't predict at this point, so we'll do our best to keep you up to speed
on events we find out about (and if you know if any, please send them along!).

If you are planning on being in Seattle, let us know!  We are compiling a
comprehensive speakers list that we want to make available to media,
activists, etc. that lists names, organizations/affiliations, primary work
areas, and contact information for on-the-ground in Seattle.  Also, some of
the events listed below still need speakers -- so please contact Gabriela
Flora at, or 1-612-870-3417 (ph), 1-612-870-4846 (fax).
Biotechnology  & The WTO: Events for Seattle, USA, November/December 1999

Biotechnology is sure to be a big issue this fall in Seattle when trade
ministers from around the world meet.  Trade wars loom over genetically
modified organisms (GMOs); farmers are questioning the benefits of planting
GMO seeds, as food companies are eyeing the premium in non-GMO products;
and seed companies are demanding segregation of GMO/non-GMO products;
consumers are questioning the safety of GMO products, as well as the
increasing corporate control of the food system…

Many events have already been planned in conjunction with the Third
Ministerial Meeting, and many will include discussions of biotechnology,
biodiversity, intellectual property rights, patenting of life, the SPS
Agreement and other related issues.

On Friday & Saturday, November 26 & 27, the International Forum on
Globalization is sponsoring a two-day Teach-In on Economic Globalization
and the Role of the World Trade Organization (WTO).  The Teach-In will take
place at Seattle's Benaroya Symphony Hall.  The Teach-In will include
panels, debates and discussions on agriculture, food safety, the
environment, human rights, biotechnology, national sovereignty, labor
rights, culture, public health, and the increasingly dominant role of
global corporations.  For more information, contact the IFG at (1)
415-771-3394, <>,

On the afternoon of Sunday, November 28, there will be a gathering of
biotech activists from around the world who are planning on being in
Seattle.  This will be a time for activists who have been working on
various issues related to biotechnology to meet and exchange information
about their work.  For more information, contact Gabriela Flora at the
Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy at (1) 612-870-3417,

On Monday, November 29, NGOs working on environment and health issues have
organized a day of press briefings, speakers, strategy sessions and
actions.  These events will take place at Seattle's United Methodist
Church.  For more information, contact Mark Vallianatos
( or Dan Seligman (

On Wednesday, December 1, the Council for Responsible Genetics and the
Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy are convening a session on "No
Patents on Life: Biotech in the Global Economy."  This event will take
place at Seattle's Plymouth Congregational Church.  For more information,
contact Phil Bereano at (1) 206-543-9037,

On Wednesday, December 1, the Global Environment & Trade Study will host a
press breakfast on resolving the tensions between trade and the
environment, including a discussion of GMOs.  This breakfast will take
place from 7:30-9:00am in the East Room of the Renaissance Hotel.  For more
information, contact Susan Wueste at

On Wednesday, December 1, the European Union Trade Forum will be hosting a
session on "Genetically Modified Products, National Sanctions, British
Beef, & American Hormones" at the Space Needle from 11:30am-1:30pm.  For
more information, contact David Hughes, President of the Hungarian Chamber
of Commerce at (1) 425-481-3669, or

Also on Wednesday, December 1, the Consumer Project on Technology will be
sponsoring an NGO discussion on TRIPS from 10:00am-12:00pm, at the Madison
Hotel.  For more information, contact James Love at,
<>, (1) 202-387-8030.

On Thursday, December 2 the Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy and
the International Forum on Food & Agriculture, in conjunction with
ActionAid, Public Citizen and the regional host committee are sponsoring
Food & Agriculture Day.  An afternoon strategy-sharing workshop will be
devoted to GMOs and agriculture, and the SPS Agreement.  The morning
sessions will take place beginning at 10:00am at the United Methodist
Church, afternoon locations TBA.  For more information, contact Renske van
Staveren at (1) 612-870-3423,

Ms. Renske van Staveren, Coordinator
International Forum on Food & Agriculture (IFA)
c/o Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP) 
2105 First Avenue South 
Minneapolis, MN, USA  55404-2505 
ph: 612-870-3423       fax: 612-870-4846 

To find out the latest information about the WTO Ministerial Conference in
Seattle, US this November -- subscribe to WTO News: The Road to Seattle.
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