This petition has been signed by over 300.000 citizens of the European Community and more than 300 organisations with a membership of over 25 million people.  ...more

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Welcome to "Save Our Seeds"

„Save Our Seeds“ (SOS) is a European initiative in favor of the purity of seeds against genetically modified organisms (GMO).Conventional and organic seeds should continue to be free of genetically modified organisms. Genetically modified organisms should not be imposed on farmers and consumers. Over 300,000 citizens and 300 organizations with more than 25 million members in all of Europe support the SOS  petition for seed purity.

Apart from this main concern, Save Our Seeds coordinates more  projects dealing with the discussion of genetic engineering, sustainable agriculture and food sovereignty – coupled with an international perspective. With its campaigns and initiatives, SOS links companies, politicians, scientists, farmers, and interested citizens; and wishes to lead a productive debate towards sustainable change.

Colourful variety not standardized uniformity!

On the 25th of April, Save our Seeds and Campact have launched  a petition on the upcoming new EU regulation of seed marketing. The new regulation will de facto ban old and rare varieties and farmers varieties and threaten the exchange and selling of seeds of diversity.

The current draft regulation was written by DG SANCO. Before it becomes an official proposal of the EU-Commission, DG AGRI (Directorate General of Agriculture and Rural Development) and the DG ENVI (Directorate General for the Environment) have to agree to it‘s contents. At the moment there are several points of disagreement. The regulation will not be passed if 14 Commissioners vote against (ie no majority is reached). Each country of the EU has one commissioner in Brussels. The commissioners of DG AGRI and DG ENVI should vote against, so we need 12 more. Find the list of commissioners here:

 http://ec.europa.eu/commission_2010-2014/index_en.htm

The petition is demanding that proposed EU seed legislation must allow more diversity in our fields and on our plates, rather than destroying it. Traditional and local varieties must remain exempt from licensing or certification requirements. Strict rules, controls, inspections and costly permits should only apply to seeds and seed materials which are traded commercially, in large quantities. The free exchange of seeds and seedlings between farmers, gardeners and seed initiatives must be guaranteed and supported.

Only by growing a wide selection of fruits, vegetables and grains, can we ensure that our agriculture adapts to climate change, new diseases and pests. We want colorful variety not standardized uniformity!#

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 Sign the Petition here!

International News

2014-11-24 |

Rising suicide rate for Indian farmers blamed on GMO seeds

Corporate cotton Corporate cotton

Monsanto, which has just paid out $2.4 million to US farmers, settling one of many lawsuits it’s been involved in worldwide, is also facing accusations that its seeds are to blame for a spike in suicides by India farmers.

The accusations have not transformed into legal action so far, but criticism of Monsanto has been mounting, blaming the giant company for contributing to over 290,000 suicides by Indian farmers over the last 20 years.

The author of a documentary on Indian farmers’ suicides, Alakananda Nag, who has interviewed dozens of the relatives of those who have taken their lives, links the rise in the suicide rate to the use of GMO seeds. She believes small farms are particularly vulnerable.

“The large farms certainly have the funds to support themselves and get on, but the smaller ones are really ones that suffer the most,” Nag told RT. “Monsanto definitely has a very big hand to play. A few years ago it was illegal to grow GMO crops in India. It’s not like the suicide did not exist back then. It did, but I think there was definitely a sharp rise in the [suicide] numbers once [GMOs] were allowed.”

The Center for Human Rights and Global Justice has estimated that in 2009 alone 17,638 Indian farmers committed suicide, or one suicide every 30 minutes.

Farmers’ widows, such as Savithri Devi from India’s southern state of Telangana, explain just how tough things can get for those trying to grow enough crops to earn a living.

“[My husband] initially put a bore well, then started cultivation, but we didn’t get enough water from the bore well and there were no rains, too,” Devi told RT. “So he again tried to deepen the bore well, but it didn’t work. So he borrowed money. His depression eventually led him to committing suicide. He drank pesticide and died.”

The legalization of GMO in 2002 has only added to the stress experienced by Indian farmers, according to the head of the Council for Responsible Genetics, Sheldon Krimsky.

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