The following video presents “Seeds Biopiracy” (duration is 14 minutes:53 seconds):

  • Biopiracy and the Patenting of Life
    • Another IP issue threatens an even more fundamental part of our daily lives:  Monsanto-Round up Ready Patents

  • The most aggressive biotech company in the world is Monsanto- the leader in genetic engineering, and one of the largest seed companies in the world
    • Monsanto has been a major source of bio-piracy on a worldwide scale, and has had a deep impact on many farmers in the United States and elsewhere

    • Monsanto, the largest proponent of genetically engineered plants, controls the patents on those plants and requires farmers to sign “technology agreements” for the use of Monsanto seeds

  • In effect, genetic engineering and patenting issues have turned many traditional farming ethics of seed saving and horticulture into a nightmare of legal entanglements and added new insecurities to the markets
  • Monsanto’s lawsuits have created additional hardship in communities
    • One of the most significant cases was that of Percy Schmeiser of Bruno, Saskatchewan, Canada:

      • In this case, the drift (a.k.a.contamination) of Schmeisers field with Monsanto’s Roundup Ready canola pollen, was the basis for the litigation in Canadian courts by Monsanto

      • The final court decision after many years, went in favor of Monsanto, costing Schmeiser a great deal in legal fees and much of his 50 years worth of seed saving wealth

  • Our food supply – backed by legal precedent and armed with seemingly inexhaustible lobbying funds, a handful of multinationals are attempting to use patents on life itself to monopolize the biosphere

Avaaz's image: Monsanto vs. Mother Earth

Avaaz’s image: Monsanto vs. Mother Earth

In the following Avaaz letter, the Avaaz team is asking us to:

  • urge the governments of Germany, France and the Netherlands and all contracting states of the European Patent to fix European patent law by calling on the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation to close the loopholes that allow corporations to patent plant varieties and conventional breeding methods
    • up to 800 patents are in the pipeline waiting to be approved

      • Monsanto alone owns 36% of all tomato, 32% of sweet pepper and 49% of cauliflower varieties registered in the EU (European Union)

    • in coming months, the European Patent Office are due to release 11 new food patents that violate the European Parliament’s recommendation

  • get Germany, France and the Netherlands — where opposition is strong — to stand with us now
    • and European countries can vote to stop the patent office from granting these patents

  • please click below to sign the petition in the Avaaz Team’s letter, forward this message to everyone, share this campaign on Facebook and help “build the biggest food defense call ever:”
    • Please sign this urgent petition now and forward to everyone:
      • At the time of this blog posting,  593,997 people have signed

      • Please help us reach 1 million signers

Our vegetables and fruit are about to be patented to grow Monsanto’s profits — making food more expensive and strangling the farmers we rely on everyday. But we can pressure European countries to step in and stop the corporate food attack. We have no time to lose — up to 800 patents are in the pipeline waiting to be approved! Help build the biggest food defense call ever by clicking here:

Avaaz Team’s Letter:

“Monsanto and Co. are quietly trying to take control over the everyday fruit and vegetables we eat — making food more expensive and strangling farmers. In just weeks, they’re set to get exclusive patents on plants like cucumber, broccoli, and onion because of a crafty interpretation of Europe’s patent law. But if we act fast we can stop these greedy biotech companies from buying up Mother Earth.

When common vegetables like cucumber get patented by corporations in Europe, it sets a global precedent. But European countries can vote to stop the patent office from granting these patents, and if we get Germany, France and the Netherlands — where opposition is strong — to stand with us now, we can stop Monsanto in its tracks.

We have no time to lose — up to 800 patents are in the pipeline waiting to be approved! Click below to sign the petition, forward this email to everyone, share this campaign on Facebook and help build the biggest food defense call ever:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/monsanto_vs_mother_earth_loc/?bkyeWbb&v=23891

The European Patent Office is controlled by 38 country representatives who, with one vote, can end dangerous patents on food that is bred using conventional methods. Even the European Parliament has issued a statement objecting to these kinds of destructive patents. For a few years, the patent office backed off, but in coming months, they’re due to release 11 new food patents that violate the Parliament’s recommendation.

These patents change everything about how our food chain works: for thousands of years, farmers could choose which seeds they’d use without worrying about getting sued for violating intellectual property rights. But now, companies launch expensive legal campaigns to buy patents on conventional plants and force farmers to pay exorbitant royalty fees. Monsanto and Co. claim that patents drive innovation — but in fact they create a corporate monopoly of our food.

The situation is dire already — Monsanto alone owns 36% of all tomato, 32% of sweet pepper and 49% of cauliflower varieties registered in the EU. But a simple regulatory change could protect our food, our farmers and our planet from corporate control — and it’s up to us to make it happen:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/monsanto_vs_mother_earth_loc/?bkyeWbb&v=23891

The Avaaz community has never been afraid to stand up to corporate capture of our institutions, from beating the Rupert Murdoch mafia, to ensuring that telecoms keep their hands off our Internet, to pushing to put bankers behind bars. Now it’s time to defend our food supply from this corporate takeover.

With hope and determination,

Jeremy, Michelle, Oli, Dalia, Pascal, Ricken, Diego and the whole Avaaz team

SOURCES:

Conventionally-bred plants or animals should be exempt from patents, say MEPs (EU Parliament)
http://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/pressroom/content/20120509IPR44733/html/Conventionally-bred-plants-or-animals-should-be-exempt-from-patents-say-MEPs

President of the European Patent Office gives green light for patents on plants and animals (No Patents on Seeds)
http://www.no-patents-on-seeds.org/en/information/background/green-light-for-patents-on-plants-and-animals

Monsanto: All Your Seeds Belong to Us (Mother Jones)
http://www.motherjones.com/blue-marble/2013/02/scotus-hears-monsanto-soybean-case

Plant Patentability Questions Deepen In EPO Tomato Patent Case (IP Watch)
http://www.ip-watch.org/2012/06/13/plant-patentability-questions-deepen-in-epo-tomato-patent-case/

Tomato patent back before EPO’s Enlarged Board of Appeal (Europolitics)
http://europolitics.eis-vt-prod-web01.cyberadm.net/business-competitiveness/tomato-patent-back-before-epo-s-enlarged-board-of-appeal-art336003-7.html 

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