International agreement takes aim at farm-saved seed

© AgMedia Inc.

Terms under negotiation in the Canada-EU free trade agreement could affect local food initiatives too, activist warns

photo: Gerry Ritz


If Europe was actually short in pork or beef they would already be importing it from Canada or U.S.Farmers should boycott any company that
uses a terminator gene.Obviously this technology is in the wrong hands.
Once again shareholder profits are driving the agenda of these companies & government.

It's seed companies protecting themselves and who cares about
the farmer.
In another farm paper it said that Canada will not be able to question which European country the seeds or produce are from.
Inspections would only be done if problems are present not on
a regular basis.
This is not good for farmers or consumers.

India has the highest suicide rate among farmers,they had the gm seeds imposed on them .and they now can,t afford them.

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But then again, this warning comes from the ultra-alarmist National Farmers Union which sees corporate conspiracies everywhere.

A good rule of thumb is that if the NFU is opposed to something, it has to be a good idea, and this proposed agreement is no exception.

Their perpetually-obstructionist attitude is undoubtably why the NFU has been excluded from any sort of discussion, while the Grain Growers of Canada claims to have been "closely consulted at every step"

Oh really now... there is always a grain of truth in every story this being no exception. Ritz's opinion polls are always rather skued. Ritz's numbers in favor of and satisfaction for support programs were and are in serious question. He claims we must have programs national in scope continually dolling out more money to Quebec in regional program while denying Ont.

His claim of consultation sounds like another porky as either he or Canadian Grain Growers and Grain Growers of Ont are not being very transparent (that means truthful). GFO says they are working on research and now with this story one has to ask for who's benefit? It would also be curious as to how many members of the GFO board and maybe the CGG board are seed dealers or connected to seed companies without declaring a conflict in this matter. A conflict must be declared in advance of any (financial) gain. Do you suppose this is why the discussion is not well known to those in the field and on the side roads? Was there any discussion or poll in the GFO magazine?

Ritz also claimed 80% of farmers were happy with agri-stability.

He would never provide proof for his statements and agri-stability is still a really bad program.

But the public relies on statements in the media. Ritz knows farmers never get the same level of attention as his words do in the media so he gets away with unproven claims.

These seed security concerns are genuine.

Thse GMO seeds are polluting the genetic traits of regular seeds and the companies are going after them. They have also found these "genes" polluting the US waterways.

For the first poster, remember the Monsanto vs Western Canadian Farmer??

And latest studies are showing that these one trick pony seeds are being under pest pressure. They reccommend having varieties to stop total crop losts.

India's BT cotton is a total failure as well. Many farmers are being tricked slowly into cashing their equities to the big boys!

Just look at the Farm debt rate from 1950 vs 2010.

The NFU is closer to the truth than most.

One just has to ask why Monsanto hired the services of the mercenary firm Blackwater.

Monsanto is deadly serious about controlling seed. Control the seed and you control the land.

Give it a rest about control, already - the only control of any importance is the economic control that Roundup Ready seeds gives to we farmers. If the fear-mongers at the NFU don't like Monsanto, fine, but don't hinder the ability of the rest of us to run our businesses the way we see fit.

eventually you wont mkae any money because everything will be cheaper to import, so save your profits for your soon trip to the poor house.

I hoped in this day and age we still had the value our fathers and grandfathers tried to instill on us... Either half these replies are from insiders, propaganda spin doctors. this is dangerous after doing very little research on the subject..... but that seems to interfere with everyone counting dollars.. shame

Why does Ritz think he has any say when he has not contributed to any part of his obligation for a 60% federal support program? Farm debit had escalated to ten times what it was 7 years ago. Having access to more foreign markets with a price less than cost will not reverse this present trend of rising debit, and multinational monopoly control, verses age.

Grain Growers of Canada, with their 80,000 members claim to have been closely consulted at every step of negotiations. While this may be true it is mesleading: Grain Growers of Canada have no Ontario or Quebec commodity representation or membership. Does this explain why the feds aren't contributing their 60% to RMP? Has Grain Growers of Canada told the feds that they don't have to?

The individual will lose all his rights when it comes to choice of seed.Big business has always won and always will,they are too big and powerful.I wouldn t be surprised if one company already produces the majority of varieties for the other brands.I recall watching the documentary showing the lengths one multinational went to in the midwest to stop individuals from saving their own seed.They went as far as sueing the guy with a portable seed cleaner,claiming he was aiding farmers in infringing on their patents.The lawyers just ran him out of business, and yes, they did employ a security company to gather the information.

If this agreement is ratified by the end of next year it will in effect give the internationally owned seed companies the control over the Canadian Wheat Board that they have failed to access through honest front door discussions. With the Harper Government blessing the only winners will be the corporate welfare giants who use Canadian farmers to extract billions of taxpayer dollars from the Canadian people. Virtually every dollar Canadian Farmers have received, over the last few years, have been used to pay their bills to the owners of Seed, Chemical, Freight, Elevation, and Fertilizer companies. The Canadian Corporate Welfare Corporation (The Harper Government) is the envy of the International Corporate world.

As far as I'm concerned, Monsanto products give me higher, and more consistent yields, with less herbicide and pesticide expense. That means I can consistently, and reliably, make more money, and better do my part to feed the rest of the world.

In addition, I can't understand all the fuss and ado about being able to save my own seed, when for the last number of years, I have consistently made more money by growing soybeans for the IP (Identity Preserved) market than I ever could by using my own seed and growing soybeans for the crush market. The extra money I make from the IP premium more than offsets the extra costs of having to buy the appropriate seed.

Ironically, in my experience, those who are most adamant about saving their own seed, tend to not be very good farmers in the first place, and we could probably be far better off without allowing them to use what is often sub-normal seed, thereby dragging down average yields and shortchanging global food supplies.

The reason your regular seed doesn't work is because YOU'RE the one who can't farm.

High yeild is easily achievable with regular seed that wasn't purchased, if you know what you're doing.

Forcing farmers to buy seed will only jack operating costs for those of us who do know how to run a farm. On top of that, land seizure, equipment seizure, lawsuits, frozen bank accounts... These are the kinds of people you support. You agree that this treatment of farmers is fair, but I beg to differ.

When these markets are opened up a bit more, who do you think will benefit most? The elevators who have access to these markets and can offer below-market prices when buying grain off farmers, or the farmers themselves who have no access to this market? Do you seriously think they'll give farmers some kind of deal? Of course they won't. They can make more money that way. Whenever you access a market through someone, then you're guaranteed to be given a bad deal.

Think about it.

The farmer should still have a choice. Are we going back to
the lord and servant system where everyone has to grow what
they are told???

we also have the choice to build our own tractor, our own combine, and our own pickup truck, or buy them from a company that makes them. Seed is absolutely no different, and given a choice, most people will prefer to buy their seed, in the same way they choose to buy a tractor.

I prefer to buy my seed, and I prefer to buy a ready-made tractor, simply because, even though I might have the choice to use something I saved, or built myself, it is cost-effective to buy both.

Farmers need to give their heads a shake!!!!!!
Name the last good agr minister that got legislation for good economic programs. Do you really think Mitchell has the knowledge and experiance to be a good minister. Honesty and politics dont go together. These Ministers sell their souls to get the position only to be advised by their civil servants , the real minister is the PM and Premier at this time.

Capitalism is the only system that works and best for the world but it too has set backs and rigging. The checks and balances are all about politics and getting re-elected with acheap food policy. Policy is put together for the betterment of the governing government party of the day.

WE need Agriculure Ministers FOR Agriculure that benefits farmers survival that is compatable with Canadian society and the world needs.
Look around at all the retired agr ministes and civil servants with good pensions because these people learned to take orders and not rock the boat to do the needed correct policy and legislation that would give results of real economic value and not servatude to non supply management farmers

We have entered a very dangerous time I am saddened to say... Greed has taken president over your childrens future , safety and health. For shame. Corporations in bed with Government. Farmers are jealous and want more at who,s cost?

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