Saturday marked the third global annual March Against Monsanto (MAM). According to the organizers, 48 countries were scheduled to participate in a massive global turnout. Click here to see a map that shows where the protests are taking place around the globe. A total of 452 rallies have been registered with the MAM organization.
Activists accuse the agricultural corporation of selling toxic chemicals, which are bad for people’s health, water supplies, vital crop pollinators and environment in general. The giant is also criticized for its attitude towards food safety regulations and a staunch opposition to GMO labeling. Meanwhile, small farmers blame Monsanto for monopolizing the seed market.
One of the first protests of the day took place in Sydney, Australia, with the demonstrators holding up placards saying: “Sick of lies” and “GMO is killing our children slowly.”
An activist at the rally told RT’s video agency Ruptly that corporations like Monsanto must be held accountable for the damage done to the planet. “This company has repeatedly committed, I would say, crimes against the Earth and what we are trying to show is accountability for corporations,” the action’s organizer said. “Also we want to promote clean food. Food that’s free of pesticides, which our grandparents just called food.”
There were also great turnouts at rallies in Asia, Africa, and Europe.
Demonstrators in Bangladesh formed a human chain around the faculty of fine arts at Dhaka University in the country’s capital. In India, thousands of farmers suffering the monopolistic push of the biotech giant have been protesting against Monsanto.
Meanwhile, crowds of activists in South Africa braved the rainy weather in Cape Town during their march against genetically engineered products. In France over 20 cities participated, with some central Parisian streets coming to a complete standstill. France is one of the biggest markets for Monsanto.
Germany’s capital Berlin saw a big turnout even though Germany does not use Monsanto’s seeds. However, activists say local farmers still use Monsanto’s pesticides and herbicides, which end up leaving traces in breast milk of feeding mothers, the water supply and even urine of people who have not eaten GMO products.