The International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) condemns all violent actions in solving problems related to GMO conflicts. The incidents reported in the press release from Via Campesina about Syngenta’s armed militia that killed a peasant farmer and Via Campesina member in Brazil protesting GMO field trials are shocking.
A group of 150 farmers related to Via Campesina occupied Sygenta’s field trials October 21st with the aim of turning it into a gmo-free center for Agroecology. Syngenta responded with arms, resulting in the death of one farmer, the father of three children, and injuries to six other rural workers.
We extend our heartfelt support to the injured farmers, to the family of farmer Valmir Motta, who’s life was lost so tragically, and to the Brazilian farmer association MST. The goal of the farmer action was to defend an agricultural system that offers life choices and possibilities for small farmers and the environment, the same goals that are pursued by the organic movement with different means. Genetic engineering represents a threat to the entire biosphere, and moreover, poses economic and environmental risks for organic producers. By releasing organisms with genetic constructs that have never before existed in nature and cannot be recalled, genetic engineering in agriculture causes negative and irreversible environmental impacts. Release of GMOs implies denial of free choice, both for farmers and consumers, and a violates farmers’ fundamental rights, thus endangering their economic independence. These are all unacceptable threats to individuals, humanity and our earth.
IFOAM’s Executive Director Angela B. Caudle notes “This tragic incident shows that GMOs represent a culture of violence. Organic and agroecological approaches try to bring peace to this world. IFOAM offers its condolences to the family of Valmir Motta, the fallen farmer.”
SOURCE : www.IFOAM.org