It seems that the growing trend in growing has been using genetically modified seeds that have specific traits bred into them rather than the natural selection methods of the past. Now while some may say this is great because of potentially increased crops of such things as corn, cotton, and soybean, it's quickly been used in many fruits and vegetables we consume. Some studies show even as many as 7 out of 10 foods we eat have actually been genetically modified in some way. There have even been discussions of modifying animals in the same way. This hasn't been done yet, or so they tell us. Personally, I think it's rather obvious that the growth hormones that food providing animals have been fed over the years shows rather evidently in our society and culture, but I digress.
What I'm really here to talk about today is these genetically modified seeds that are circulating, and how large agricultural corporations are luring farmers into using their products, but not disclosing all the negative connotations that may come along with them. India has been a large testing ground for this, and the results from the failed crops have been staggering. Actually, downright appalling.
Some blame can of course be put on weather and droughts, but those are problems that arise every year. Nothing new. However, when you filter in pests, and weeds that are becoming pesticide resistant you have even more problems on your hands. None of these facts can be helped, but just you wait. Genetically modified seeds usually contain what is called, for lack of a better term, "suicide genes". What this means is that whatever seeds would come from the crops that DO actually thrive are completely, and utterly useless as they will absolutely not grow the following season.
Are you still with me? Because we're about to get to this long, drawn out point that I'm trying to make, and why it angers me so. These farmers are forced to buy other fertilizers and pesticides from the same people who sold them the seeds, and still facing crops that just can't do anything besides EPIC FAIL. These farmers, who were poor to begin with and looking for a way to increase their production are left with nothing but increasing debt. So much so, that many of them are turning to suicide.
It's been no mystery over time that things like rising debts, and failing careers have driven people to suicide. Sad as it may be, it's true. However, in a 2006 interview Vandana Shiva, a renowned anti-globalization activist talked about how these farmers were being bullied and many resorted to suicide. At that time, she recounted nearly 3,000 families that had been affected by suicides related to debts in farming with genetically modified seeds.
My question is that if this was in 2006, WHY HAS IT TAKEN 3 YEARS TO BECOME NEWSWORTHY?
Anywhere in the US, if 3,000 people had committed suicide for the same reason in any set amount of time it would be on every front page for weeks, if not months. Rightfully so. The entire industry has become so concerned with profits that they're not even considering the long term effects of this. Imagine a day where we've modified our foods so much, that nothing will grow anymore. It's a scary thought, and one that should see more coverage than it currently does.