December 7, 2012
With the exception of about 1,000 acres of land that have been devoted to the cultivation of transgenic crops for research purposes — these include cotton, soy beans, bananas, and pineapples — the Central American nation of Costa Rica, which is known for its bio-diverse agricultural heritage and stunning landscape, is essentially free of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in its native food supply. But the world’s most evil company, Monsanto, is once again trying to destroy this by quietly ushering in a variety of GM corn that Costa Ricans have been working feverishly in recent days to block from being approved.
As reported by El Financiero and relayed by the Costa Rica Star, massive public outcry against Monsanto’s GM corn has thus far been successful in preventing the nation’s regulatory bodies from officially approving Monsanto’s request to allow between two and five acres of its GM corn to be planted on Costa Rican soil. D & PL Seeds Ltd., a subsidiary of Monsanto International, had reportedly first requested permits for the plantings back in November, and the National Biosafety Technical Commission (CTNBio), along with the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, was set to make a final decision on the matter before the end of the year.
Initially, it appeared as though Monsanto might eventually have its request granted, that is until citizens from across the country, in conjunction with various environmental and health groups, showed up in droves to protest this corporate affront to their food supply (http://news.co.cr). Several week after successfully delivering thousands of public signatures opposing Monsanto’s GM corn to the State Phytosanitary Service, health freedom activists were pleased to learn that the CTNBio was not prepared to accept Monsanto’s position, at least not at this point in time.
“The National Biosafety Technical Commission (CTNBio) requested further studies on the impacts of transgenic corn planting in Costa Rica by the Monsanto company, meaning that it is still unable to define whether or not the permit will be granted,” reported El Financiero. (http://www.elfinancierocr.com)
Monsanto has already been kicked out of Costa Rica at least once
Back in 2004, the citizens of Costa Rica successfully banded together to kick Monsanto out of the country altogether. As reported by the Organic Consumers Association (OCA) back at that time, public pressure was so intense against Monsanto’s emerging presence that the biotech giant voluntarily withdrew its business efforts from Costa Rica entirely, and instead preyed on nearby countries that were less opposed to GMOs. (http://www.organicconsumers.org/monsanto/costarica092804.cfm)
But now it appears that Monsanto is back, which means Costa Ricans will have to double up their efforts to keep Monsanto out, or else face the consequences of an eventual agricultural takeover, much like what has already taken place in the U.S., Canada, and elsewhere. With its rich agricultural heritage, Costa Rica has a whole lot to protect, and we hope its citizens will continue to fight for their right to clean, untainted food.
Sources for this article include: