As the West tries to bully Third World governments into using GM crops, peasant farmers around the world are denouncing products that would increase economic dependency, destroy the livelihoods of all but a privileged few farmers, and replace locally controlled food production with corporate-controlled monoculture for export.

On 29th November 2000 Filipino farmers held massive demonstrations at Monsanto’s offices in Mindanao at the end of the Continental Caravan 2000 – a series of protests across India and Bangladesh.

They were joined by farmers from Indonesia, Thailand, Japan and Korea. Habibur Rahman, a farmer representing Nayakrishi Andolon (New Agriculture Movement), stated: “the Bangladeshi farmers reject genetically engineered rice and I am pleased to learn about the strong resistance here in the Philippines.”

On 3rd January 2001 Indian farmers relaunched their ‘Cremate Monsanto’ campaign as 300 volunteers of the newly formed ‘Hasiru Sene’ (Green Brigade), part of the Karnataka State Farmers Association, pulled up and burned Monsanto’s trial of GM cotton.

On 26th January over 1200 Brazilian farmers stormed a Monsanto research station and pulled up GM corn and soya trials. The occupation was timed to coincide with the international protests against globalisation at the meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

“We’re staying here indefinitely,” said Solet Campolete from the Landless Workers Movement, “these seeds trick farmers and create dependency on seeds produced by a big multinational.” They scrawled on the walls, ‘Monsanto is the end of farmers!’ but perhaps they got that the wrong way round!