Agriculture Workshop Comment Number: AGW-14331

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Comment Number: AGW-14331

Sent: Thursday, December 31, 2009 9:17 AM
To: ATR-Agricultural Workshops
Subject: Comment

Mary Vetter
P.O. Box 254
Wallingford, PA 19086-0254

December 31, 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.

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.

On a personal note, we have started our own small gardens at home - both
raised beds and as much as we can fit in our small yard. I've taken
particular interest in learning from Lancaster County, PA farmers, ones
that grow only organic foods, their concerns being how neighboring farms
may be contaminating theirs with the use of chemicals and I respect their
shared knowledge of how everything begins with the love for soil! May
sound funny to some but I get it!

The Findhorn people in Scotland are another group that know the value of
gardening and producing foods.

I hope you see the value of my message by responding to our plea. Groups
and their businesses, like Monsanto (especially) must be watched.  Please
be "for the people".


Mary L. Vetter

Updated April 7, 2016

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