GMO news related to Mexico

29.01.2013 |

Mexican peasant leaders start hunger strike against GM maize

This Wednesday, January 23rd, we will start a new phase in our struggle against the planting of GMO maize here in Mexico, consisting of a collective hunger strike held in front of the Angel of Independence monument in Mexico City. National peasant leaders from our organization from more than 20 states of our republic will begin a sit-in at this very symbolic location. This act of voluntarily using our own bodies for civic protest will remind us of our almost 30 million fellow Mexicans who cannot find enough food to fill their stomachs on a daily basis. We want to reach the hearts and minds of the people of Mexico and the World to share our grave concern for the health, culture and economy of our nation, eroded by a development model that only benefits a tiny minority

17.12.2012 |

Will Monsanto destroy Mexico’s corn?

Despite institutional protections against GE corn, neoliberal policies have already enabled certain strains of GE corn to intermingle with Mexican maize, a fact that was discovered in 2001 by UC Berkeley Professor, Ignacio Chapela. Thousands of tonnes of corn that began inundating Mexico from, primarily, the US (mostly for non-human consumption) after the signing of NAFTA in 1994 ensured that the promiscuous plant's pollen blew onto the pristine fields of small farms. As of today, it is estimated that at least one per cent of Mexico's corn has traces of GE. But perhaps of more immediate threat to the magnificent biodiversity of Mexico's maize is the country's politicians' willingness to succumb to the pressure of big biotech companies.

23.11.2012 |

Mexican Bt researches punished based on ”clear evidence of inappropriate manipulations” of results

Alejandra Bravo, Mario Soberon, researchers from the Institute of Biotechnology, National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), were disciplined for “inappropriate and categorically reprehensible manipulations” of images on studies of BT-bacteria used in products such as GM maize-to seeking to emphasize the results obtained in at least 11 articles published in scientific journals. Among the punishments meted out are the “resignations” of Soberon as head of the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Bravo as the presidency of the Committee on Bioethics. The process started from the Canadian team of experts composed by Vincent Vachon, Raynald Laprade and Jean Louis Schwartz who published the study “Current models of the mode of action of Bacillus thuringiensis insecticidal crystal proteins: A critical review” in May this year, in the Journal of Invertebrate Pathology (Elsevier), which had indicated that models used by the Mexicans cannot be uphold, it was impossible to replicate.

16.11.2012 |

The great Mexican maize massacre

Agribusiness giants Monsanto, DuPont and Dow are plotting the boldest coup of a global food crop in history. If their requests to allow a massive commercial planting of genetically modified maize are approved in the next two weeks by the government of outgoing president Felipe Calderón, this parting gift to the gene giants will amount to a knife in the heart of the center of origin and diversity for maize. The consequences will be grave – and global. With the approvals and December planting deadlines looming, social movements and civil society organizations have called for an end to all GM maize in Mexico. Mexico’s Union of Concerned Scientists (UCCS) has called on the Mexican government to stop the processing of any application for open-field release of GM maize in Mexico.

09.11.2012 |

First District Court of Yucatán (Mexico) gave green light for GE soy planting

Monsanto’s bitter seeds have given another blow to Mexico’s honey producers that had previously succeeded in stopping short the transnational corporation’s plan to plant 253,000 acres of transgenic soybeans in the Yucatan Peninsula that would have jeopardized beekeeping in the region, the main livelihood of more than 25,000 families. [...] But the power of the transnational corporation again showed its effects. Last week, the First District Court of Yucatán denied federal protection to Mexico’s honey producers and gave the green light to the planting of Monsanto’s GM soybeans in the state.

29.10.2012 |

Campaign against transgenic crops in Mexico

The environmental organization Greenpeace launched on Oct. 16 — World Food Day — a campaign aimed to cancel solicitations made by transnational biotechnology companies to cultivate and sell transgenic corn. Greenpeace called upon citizens to sign a letter to outgoing President Felipe Calderón demanding the annulment of the recent requests made by US-based companies Monsanto, DuPont Pioneer and Dow Agrosciences to commercially cultivate transgenic corn on 1.7 million hectares (4.25 million acres) in the states of Tamaulipas (northeast) and Sinaloa (northwest).

16.08.2012 |

En maya, inglés o español, NO es NO a los transgénicos

Blocking transgenic soy sowing in Mexico

Greenpeace Mexico made another step forward blocking transgenic soy sowing. In addition to the two suspensions handed down by the Courts of Yucatan and Campeche, on August 08 lawmakers of the Third Committee of Finance, Agriculture and Development, Communications and Public Works decided to call Juan Rafael Elvira Quesada, head of the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT), to submit a report - in a set time of 10 days - that supports with full, technical and scientific explanations his decision to adopt a favorable opinion for commercial cultivation of GM soy. The background to this decision was threefold:

- Greenpeace Mexico started a process for administrative responsibility to the Internal Control Body of the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) against Alfonso Flores Ramirez, head of the Directorate General of Environmental Impact and Risk (DGIRA) and Mauricio Limón Aguirre, Secretary of Management for Environmental Protection, because they granted to Monsanto the permission for commercial cultivation of 253 500 hectares of GM soy -tolerant to the herbicide glyphosate- in the states of Yucatan, Campeche, Quintana Roo, Tamaulipas, San Luis Potosi, Veracruz and Chiapas despite of suspension by the First District Court of Merida (Yucatan) to plant 30 000 hectares of GM soy, requested by Monsanto in 2011, motived by of the irreparable damage that can cause to the environment and risks to human health.

- At the Session of July 4, 2012, Deputies urged Secretary of Agriculture (SAGARPA) to apply the “precautionary principle”, based on UNESCO’s international values and on national Biodiversity Law of Genetically Modified Organisms (LBOG, art. 90), because of the risks inherent in beekeeping and honey trade.

- At the Session of July 11, 2012, Deputies urged the Federal Executive Branch to report on the purpose for granting authorizations for the cultivation of 253 500 hectares of GM soy and suspend and / or revoke, as appropriate, these authorizations.

06.08.2012 |

Monsanto loses to beekepers of Yucatan Peninsula (Mexico)

Beekeepers have succeeded in preventing, through two suspensions obtained in amparo (specialized protection), the seeding of transgenic soy for 253,500 hectares in Campeche, Quintana Roo, Yucatan, Tamaulipas, San Luis Potosi, Veracruz, and Chiapas. 59 organizations of beekeepers, environmentalists, and NGO´s have maintained that the amparos (or protections) granted by the second district court of Campeche, are setting a precedent to continue demanding the definitive suspension of permits that have been issued by SAGARPA to Monsanto. The organizations added in their press release communication that they will not cease in their fight for production that is free of transgenic interference.

31.05.2012 |

Mexican farmers block new seed variety law to privatize plants

Progressive small farmer organizations in Mexico scored a victory over transnational corporations that seek to monopolize seed and food patents. When the corporations pushed their bill to modify the Federal Law on Plant Varieties through the Committee on Agriculture and Livestock of the Mexican Chamber of Deputies on March 14, organizations of farmers from across the country sounded the alarm. By organizing quickly, they joined together to pressure legislators and achieved an agreement with the legislative committee to remove the bill from the floor.

08.05.2012 |

State of Yucatan (Mexico) works on a GM-free decree

Yesterday the state beekeepers met with state officials to express their disagreements concerning the use of transgenic seeds in the field of Yucatan. They are seeking a way to stop the use of this gene that affects livestock and thus the entire food chain, as they claim. Dr. Eduardo Batllori Sampedro, Secretary of Urban Development and Environment [...] said that the state is taking action on this matter; it is working in a decree where the government will declare Yucatan as GM-free state.