A Monsanto protest in Mexico City. A Monsanto protest in Mexico City.

Agency invalidates Monsanto GM permit

GM soybeans detected outside areas authorized for sowing

Agriculture sanitation authority Senasica has revoked a permit held by Monsanto to commercialize genetically modified soy in seven Mexican states.

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The agency said the company had not complied with biosecurity controls and failed to prevent risks that the genetically modified organisms (GMO) pose to the environment.

The decision came after transgenic soybeans cultivated by Monsanto were detected outside areas authorized for sowing of the genetically-modified seeds, causing what Senasica described as “serious or irreversible damage to the environment.”

Environmental organizations, indigenous collectives and other activist groups had alerted authorities to the presence of the crops in unauthorized areas. A beekeepers’ collective from Campeche described the revocation as “official recognition of the danger caused by the release of any GMO into the environment.”

The ruling applies to Tamaulipas, San Luis Potosí, Veracruz, Chiapas, Campeche, Yucatán and Quintana Roo, where the company had been authorized to operate since 2012.

In a prepared statement, Monsanto said that the permit had been revoked on unwarranted legal and technical grounds and called the decision unjustified.

The company’s regional legal director also questioned why the decision was made before a consultation process with indigenous communities on the Yucatán peninsula had been completed, a measure ordered by the Supreme Court after it suspended the permit in June last year.

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Mexican authorities and the Missouri-based agrochemical and agri-tech corporation have been involved in a legal tug-of-war since 2015 and while Monsanto largely won back its right to continue its activities after last year’s suspension, the injunction remained in force across 15 municipalities in two states while community consultation took place.

Several groups have long argued that the company’s genetically-modified seeds and herbicide use present a serious risk to the natural biodiversity in the states where it has a presence.

Honey producers have been particularly vocal in their opposition and beekeepers on the Yucatán peninsula previously obtained an injunction against Monsanto in 2015, suspending its activities there.

In August, the Autonomous University of Campeche confirmed the presence of glyphosate — the active ingredient in the Monsanto herbicide Roundup — in groundwater and urine samples of residents in the municipality of Hopelchén, Campeche.

The cultivation of soybeans in Mexico has increased by 290% in the last six years but according to the Agriculture Secretariat (Sagarpa), around 90% of the soya consumed in Mexico is imported from the United States.

That figure could well grow further as Monsanto said that around 6,000 soybean producers, some of whom have been cultivating the legumes for more than two decades, will be affected by the loss of its operational permit.

Courts have also blocked Monsanto from growing corn in Mexico due to fears surrounding the effect genetically modified maize would have on the environment and local producers. Nevertheless, a recent study by the National Autonomous University (UNAM) found that 90% of tortillas in Mexico contain traces of genetically modified corn.

Source: Animal Político (sp)

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  • Kānāwai Māmalahoe

    Congratulations, on having a government able to stand against the corruption of the chemical/GMO corporations.

    In Maui, where Monsanto-Bayer and Dow-DuPont create the majority of the globe’s transgenic corn/soy traits we voted for a moratorium on new GMO until Longterm Independent Environmental and Health Impact Studies.

    After the chemical corps failed to buy our vote, despite spending the most in the history of state’s elections they just sued…A federal judge with connections to the chemical corps just said it was a case of “national security”. They like the experiments here in the most isolated US state. Hawaii is the extinction capital of the globe.

    • DreadFool

      until the $4 billion bite hits Malta, no dice with this beacon of righteousness

    • Gmo Roberts

      More of your lies. It was simply struck down because it was illegal. GMOs are regulated already at the State and Federal levels, but I never tire of pointing out your lies.

      • DreadFool

        gracias mammal hoe, for being a truth monger!

    • AutismDadd

      Its how they impose vaccination too, “national security”

  • Garry Montgomery

    At last! A government that’ll stand up to the big, corrupt corporations.

  • Lillian Sepulveda

    Never let this crap end up in your land! This garbage they say that they are {GMOs are regulated already at the State and Federal levels} who care this is killing people by the million with cancer in the US alone, regulated or not it is plain Garbage, you can never grow anything else only there Junk of lab created seedless garbage. Thank you y que VIVA MEXICO!

  • Mike S

    Felicitaciones!! How much Roudup can people consume before cancer rates and birth defects rise? This whole poisonous closed loop seed monopoly & herbicide/pesticide use that Monsanto pushes on farmers and consumers needs to be stopped.

    • Hailey Mannering

      Mold experts say that Roundup encourages growth of harmful mold which makes some people very ill.

  • Diane Dutton

    It is one ray of hope. Could it possibly be true that Monsanto couldn’t make a big enough payoff or is the government just holding out for more. Elections are coming you know. It would be wonderful to believe that someone higher up actually had the best interests of the people in mind. But then that would also be bad news for the industrial pig farms intent on polluting all the water supply in the Yucatan, wouldn’t it?

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