When you ask people what they think of Monsanto, it doesn’t take long for the four-letter word to come out.
"I hate Monsanto," Jackie King said emphatically, while shopping at the farmer’s market in Tower Grove Park.
King said she doesn’t like GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, that Monsanto helped pioneer in the 1980s. The subject of GMOs came up a lot, but shoppers at the market looking over locally-grown vegetables voiced a lot of concerns about the company, from patented seeds to its impacts on small farmers.
It’s part of an effort at Monsanto to improve the St. Louis-based company’s image. Earlier this year the Harris Poll on corporate reputations ranked Monsanto third worst in the country, just behind BP.
Hundreds of demonstrators protested outside Monsanto’s corporate headquarters in Creve Coeur Saturday.
They called for the agriculture biotech company to end practices they say are harmful to the environment and abusive of the rights of farmers. That includes Monsanto’s development and control of genetically modified, or GMO, crops.
Ten protesters were arrested outside Monsanto’s headquarters during its annual shareholder meeting Tuesday. The arrests happened shortly after the shareholders failed to pass two resolutions that would have changed Monsanto's policies on its Genetically Modified Organism products.
Adam Eidinger, one of the protesters, is also a Monsanto shareholder.
He proposed one of the resolutions. It asked that Monsanto work with the Federal Drug Administration to label genetically modified food.
Monsanto is no stranger to battling the controversy over Genetically Modified Organisms, or GMOs. Some of that controversy will come to Monsanto’s doorstep Tuesday afternoon during the company’s annual shareholder meeting.
Several groups have promised to protest outside the meeting, where two resolutions dealing with GMOs are likely to be introduced.
One resolution asks that the company work with the federal government to develop GMO labeling on food.
Originally published on Wed October 16, 2013 7:09 pm
I have a story on All Things Considered Wednesday (click on the audio link above to hear it) about the campaign to put labels on food containing genetically modified organisms, or GMOs. The idea is gaining ground in the Northeast — Maine and Connecticut passed labeling laws this summer, though they won't take effect unless more states do the same. And GMO labeling is on the ballot this November in Washington state.