Monsanto, who manufacture the herbicide Roundup, is one of my favourite Evil Corporations, since their track record in their disregard for people’s lives and the environment is comically bad. Here’s the latest on what they’ve been up to:
Industry and EU regulators knew as long ago as the 1980s-1990s that Roundup, the world’s best selling herbicide, causes birth defects but they failed to inform the public. This is the conclusion of our new report, ‘Roundup and birth defects: Is the public being kept in the dark?’, authored by a group of international scientists and researchers.
The report reveals that industry’s own studies (including one commissioned by Monsanto itself) showed as long ago as the 1980s that Roundup’s active ingredient glyphosate causes birth defects in laboratory animals. Industry submitted these studies to the European Commission in support of its application for glyphosate’s approval for use in Europe. As the ‘rapporteur’ member state for glyphosate, liaising between industry and the Commission, Germany took an active role in minimising the problems with glyphosate and must shoulder a chunk of the responsibility for allowing it onto the market.
Shocking, though not really surprising given the lengths Monsanto will go to in ensuring its products hit the market.
I’m not surprised at all. I’ve come to accept that there are little to no consequences for suppressing facts, lying, cooking up fake facts, and so forth in this culture. Short of shooting ten million babies right as they are born, I doubt anything significant will happen to Monsanto, even though I would consider what they did, and what anyone who helped them did, as a crime against humanity not far from the tree of evil where the Nazis stood. They’re not Nazis, but they are still responsible for great evil.
But…nothing will happen to them. Humanity is fickle and weak and people like this will get away with things like this because they have money, which means they have power…when you have lots of money, you can buy your way out of almost anything.
I’ll stop being pessimistic now…
I’ll probably have to share your pessimism. Though, worth saying, nearly 15 years ago now, the Ecologist magazine did take them on head to head in a rather spectacular battle: the Ecologist exposing many of their sins, Monsanto threatening to take them to court. The publicity surrounding it meant it was the Ecologist’s biggest selling issue. Suffice to say, it was a significant battle against them…