Monsanto

Monsanto
St. Louis Public Radio

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.

Monsanto
St. Louis Public Radio

Monsanto launched a new national advertising campaign Wednesday that focuses on something everyone can relate to: food.

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.

Ed Spevak / Saint Louis Zoo

Monsanto will continue selling soybean seeds coated with pesticides that have been linked to honey bee deaths, even though the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency found the seeds do not improve yields.

The seeds in question are treated with a class of chemicals called neonicotinoids, which are chemically similar to nicotine.

(courtesy Monsanto)

Monsanto is committing $1 million to support Ferguson and surrounding north St. Louis County communities.

Chairman and CEO Hugh Grant said Monsanto took its time and tried to strike the right balance between donating to short-term and long-term initiatives.

"[The non-profits] are also a balance of agencies we’ve worked with for many, many years and also some new initiatives that I think have tremendous potential to make change in the long-term," Grant said.

(Flickr)

Monsanto Corporation has reported a security breach in its Precision Planting unit, putting some farmers’ credit card and tax information at risk.

The world’s largest seed company sent a letter to the attorney general of Maryland, according a report by Bloomberg News. Monsanto said personal information of 14 residents may have been accessed.

GMO Critics Protest At Monsanto Headquarters

May 25, 2014
Monsanto protest
St. Louis Public Radio

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.

big data
Via Monsanto

Farmers have been collecting data about their farms for decades.

Now all those data are going high tech. Major agricultural companies like Monsanto, John Deere and DuPont have been developing more ways to mine that than ever before – all in the name of helping farmers make better decisions about when to plant, what to plant and how much.

(Flickr)

The American Farm Bureau Federation met Thursday with Monsanto and several other agribusiness companies, such as DuPont and John Deere, to talk about the use of big data in agriculture.

The meeting comes as farmers grapple with whether to share information with major agricultural businesses.

The Farm Bureau had been warning farmers to be cautious as Monsanto and DuPont rolled out new data services. Those services use farmers’ information, including crop yields, to determine the best seeds to use and how much to plant.

(Credit: Flickr/Sean McMenemy)

Monsanto is giving a $2.5 million grant to BioSTL, the non-profit organization that advocates for bioscience in St. Louis.

The announcement came Thursday during InvestMidwest, the venture capital conference that’s showcasing more than 40 innovative companies.

BioSTL’s mission includes growing the St. Louis area's economy through the bioscience industry.

President and CEO Donn Rubin said the grant will help the non-profit continue its work.

(via Flickr/jasonippolito)

Is there any aspect of life that technology hasn’t touched?

While I’m sure people can cite examples in the non-digital sphere, agriculture is not one of them. It hasn’t been for some time – farmers are adept at using all kinds of technology to monitor weather, pricing, soil content. But a new development is taking the idea to a new level. And St. Louis's own Monsanto seems to be leading the way.

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