The Monsanto Company, the leading agricultural biotechnology company, spends millions each year on advertising aimed at convincing policy-makers and the public that their so-called “better seeds” are feeding a growing population, protecting natural resources, and promoting biodiversity. But the reality of Monsanto’s products is somewhat less idyllic. In a post on the Union of Concerned Scientists’ (UCS) blog, The Equation, Senior Analyst Karen Perry Stillerman unveils a new series of UCS ads showing that Monsanto is not improving agriculture, but rather undermining progress toward greater sustainability.
UCS just completed a trilogy of reports assessing the biotechnology industry’s claims about the potential of genetic engineering to increase crop yields, reduce nitrogen fertilizer pollution, and make crops drought-tolerant and water-efficient. The reports found that genetic engineering has failed to significantly increase U.S. corn and soybean yields, that it has yet to produce any commercial crop engineered for nitrogen efficiency, and that Monsanto’s recently-introduced DroughtGard corn won’t help farmers withstand extreme droughts or reduce water use.
If you’d like to interview Stillerman or hear more about the ad campaign, call Sarah Goldberg at 215-370-2110.