Agriculture Workshop Comment Number: AGW-14431

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Comment Number: AGW-14431

From: Claudia Kuhns
Sent: Thursday, December 31, 2009 2:42 PM
To: ATR-Agricultural Workshops
Subject: Consolidation of corporate power in food and agriculture


I am a gardner, community leader.  The concentration of coporate control of our food supplies is dangerous and unsustainable.  Coporate control of agriculture has created a system of industrialized agriculture that degrades the soil and forces family farms out of business.  The high level of external inputs now required for farming takes human and financial resources out of local communities.
 
Industrialized agriculture relies on mono-cropping.  This type of growing is contrary to sustainablility and jepardizes national security.  Mono-cropping is subject to crop failures and weather related crop damage on a large scale; whereas, a holistic approach to agriculture spreads the risk so that a loss of one crop is not a total loss for the farm or the food supply. 
 
Currently less than half of the food consumed in the United States is grown here.  This makes our food supply even more insecure.  The massive importing of food is another instance of coporate control of our food.
 
Monsanto is one of the largest problems of corporate control in agriculture today.  They have produced genetically modified seeds that threaten the diversity need to a healthy planet.  One of the problems is that Monsanto viciously protects its patents.  If a farmer has his non-Monsanto crops growing near a Monsanto cropped field and the wind cross polinates into his field, courts have held that the farmer with the non-Monsanto crops is liable to Monsanto for patent infringement.  This is simply unfair as in reality, the Monsanto genetics have trespassed onto the non-Monsanto crops.
 
At least three varieties of Monsanto genetically modified corn have recently been shown to cause liver and kidney damage.  Monsanto's testing of these varieties was for only 90 days.  This is hardly adequate for investigating long term harm.  The following link is to the study published by the International Journal of Biological Sciences.  http://www.biolsci.org/v05p0706.htmMonsanto has also destroyed farmers' crops without due process when they have suspected that their seeds have been used unlawfully. 
 
It is time for the rule of law to apply to coprorations of all stripes.  When the safety and availability of our food supply is threatened by these dishonest corporations the Department of Justice in cooperation with the Department of Agriculture must act to protect the American citizens.
 
Respectfully,
Claudia Kuhns
(303) 349-7583
Updated April 7, 2016

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