NDP Parliamentarians Work To Protect Farmers’ Right To Save Seeds

(Note: Category is Information/Mental process patents as patents on "gene sequences" are based on similar odd legal theories that "software program sequences" are based on).

HALIFAX AND TIMMINS – NDP Foreign Affairs Critic Alexa McDonough and NDP Agriculture Critic Charlie Angus are fighting back against a Liberal attempt to obliterate farmers’ traditional right to save seeds.

For generations, the world’s farmers have harvested seeds from their crops to replant for the next season. This practice must be preserved in Canada, and is crucial to farmers in developing countries, yet it is threatened by multi-national corporations who seek to control the world’s food supply.

McDonough has tabled a motion at the Foreign Affairs Committee to bring together Foreign Affairs, International Trade, International Development and Agriculture Committee members for a special meeting with members of The Working Group on Canada's Policy with Regards to Agricultural Biotechnology and Developing Countries.

“It is critical that Canadian parliamentarians hear first hand from farmers, non-governmental organizations, agricultural scientists and policy specialists from developing countries in order to effectively study the implications of biotechnology on world trade and development,” said McDonough.

NDP Agriculture Critic Angus has steadfastly rallied against the Liberal agenda to end the international moratorium on so-called terminator seeds. The federal government recently attempted to undermine consensus on the international ban on terminator seed technology at a UN conference on bio-diversity in Bangkok. These terminator seeds are genetically modified to produce plants with infertile seeds, thereby “terminating” the opportunity to harvest seeds for the next crop.

“The Liberals are pushing a plan that would turn Canadian and Third World farmers into tenant croppers for Monsanto. Even more worrisome is the frightening scenario of these suicide genes cross-pollinating with other plants,” Angus warns.

Alexa McDonough’s motion is available upon request.