|This document is also available in PDF format (comparable to original document formatting). To view the PDF you will need Acrobat Reader, which may be downloaded from the Adobe site.|
Comment Number: AGW-14028
|Sent:||Wednesday, December 30, 2009 6:37 AM|
134 Hall Hill Road
Somers, CT 06071-1446
December 30, 2009
US Department of Justice
Dear US Department of Justice:
Thank you for the opportunity to submit comments in advance of the
Department of Justice's workshops on "Agriculture and Antitrust
Enforcement Issues in Our 21st Century Economy."
As an organic consumer, I am particularly concerned about Monsanto's
control over the seed supply.
By buying seed companies and aggressively patenting life, Monsanto has
gained control over as much as 90 percent of seed genetics. This is
anti-competitive behavior that skews markets and subjects farmers and
consumers to the unchecked power of a company that can raise prices at
But, my main concern is that, while Monsanto has acquired a diverse store
of seed genetics, they are only making available a few seeds that are
genetically modified to be dependent on their chemicals.
The vast bounty of food crops that farmers have cultivated and improved
upon over the last 10,000 or so years should not be allowed to be bought
up and put out of commission by a company bent on whittling down food
varieties to a few pesticide-dependent genetically modified crops.
The most devious part of Monsanto's business model is that their
Frankenseeds can cross-pollinate with organic and traditional varieties,
destroying their unique characteristics and infecting them with
genetically engineered chemical dependence or even "Terminator" or
"Traitor" technology that renders seeds sterile, a literal death sentence
for seeds maintained through conventional breeding.
The same way we protect animal species from extinction, we should protect
plant species, especially the tens of thousands of food varieties, from
companies like Monsanto that are consciously eliminating them.
In my own life I take great pains to grow heirloom vegetable and flower
varieties because they have survived the test of time and are genetically
suited for human consumption. I do not want my child or grandchildren left
with food that causes sickness.
I have worked in the healthcare field for over 30 years and have
personally witnessed the degradation of our country's health. Bad food is
cheap and we are encouraged everyday by the mass media to indulge. It is
time to change if we are to continue to excel and set examples for our
nation and the world. I work in Springfield MA a hotbed for sickness that
Monsanto brought on it's workforce. The entire industry is poisoning our
I urge you to please include in your investigation a consideration of the
importance keeping seeds, the foundation of human life, at least in the
marketplace, if not in the public domain where they truly belong.
Cheryl A. Chiasson