GM crops have been shown to cause cancer in rats

GM crops have been shown to cause cancer in rats

Monsanto has been made immune from the law after legislation was passed which effectively removes the food giant from any corporate responsibility.

Section 735 of the HR 933 legislation has been dubbed the ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ after the government effectively banned federal courts from being able to halt the sale of genetically modified (GM) or genetically engineered (GE) foods, even if they are discovered to have caused illness.

The way the law will work is even if studies definitively prove a link between a GM crop and disease, the courts will be powerless to stop it.

It also emerged that the legislation was written in collusion with the corporation. Senator Roy Blunt, republican candidate of Missouri, was found to have actually worked with Monsanto on the clause which in effect allows them to keep selling seeds, which can then go on to be planted, even if it is proven to have been harmful.

The Act has caused an explosion of anger not just among health campaigners but even some lawmakers who signed the legislation and stated that they were not aware of the clause at the time of voting.

Andrew Kimbrell, executive director of the Center for Food Safety said: “In this hidden back room deal, Sen. [Barbara] Mikulski turned her back on consumer, environmental and farmer protection in favor of corporate welfare for biotech companies such as Monsanto.”

Over 250,000 people signed a petition opposing the provision and some even took to protesting in front of the White House against Section 735 of the bill, which was later passed by Congress.

Campaigners claim that the bill will set a dangerous precedent and could pave the way for corporations to achieve immunity from legal accountability if their products are later found to be dangerous.

Obama signed the  HR 933 legislation into law which gives Monsanto legal accountability

Obama signed the HR 933 legislation into law which gives Monsanto legal accountability

A campaign group called Food Democracy Now later stated on its website: “This dangerous provision, the Monsanto Protection Act, strips judges of their constitutional mandate to protect consumer and farmer rights and the environment, while opening up the floodgates for the planting of new untested GE crops, endangering farmers, citizens and the environment.”

On the other hand, Monsanto unsurprisingly welcomed the development and said it was pleased with the outcome.

Kelly J. Clauss, spokesperson for Monsanto has said to New Europe that as a member of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) and the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA), Monsanto was pleased to join major grower groups in supporting the law including the American Soybean Association, the American Sugarbeet Growers Association and the National Corn Growers Association, among others.

Ms Clauss said: “The point of the Farmer Assurance Provision is to strike a careful balance allowing farmers to continue to plant and cultivate their crops subject to appropriate environmental safeguards, while USDA conducts any necessary further environmental reviews.”

Earlier this year, a French study showed that rats which were fed a lifelong diet of one of the bestselling strains of genetically modified corn suffered tumours and multiple organ damage.

Genetically modified food has also been linked to infertility and thyroid malfunction.

On May 25th, over 286 countries across the world will be taking part in protests against the corporation with marches organised in London, Glasgow, as well further afield in countries such as Israel, Germany, North America and on the continent of Africa.

 To find a march near you, please click here.

The official Facebook page of the March is here. Information on how to organise a march can be found here.

Protesters attending the march are advised to keep it peaceful and not to be sucked in by troublemakers who attempt to disrupt the protest in order to damage its credibility.

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