Indian opposition to Cargill 1993-2005

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INDRANET JOURNAL (Mumbai) Issue Nos 21-23, August 1997

“Exporting food reduces the quantity available for local consumption and so causes the price to rise.

Indranet cover“The freedom of the market to export essential cereals is connected with the freedom of the market to import cereals when the export itself causes shortages. But they are imported at higher prices than what they were exported at, because that is the way the market operates – the market being mainly controlled by TNCs like Cargill and Hindustan Lever.

“The net result is less food and more starvation, and dependency on TNCs to provide our basic food. The human right to life is replaced by free market rights.

“Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha (KRRS) is an Indian peasant farmers’ movement, created in 1980 to address the growing problems facing farmers caused by the globalisation of world trade.

“In 1993 about 1000 KRRS activists occupied the Cargill office in Bangalore and made a large bonfire with equipment from the office; activists also dismantled a Cargill seed unit that was being built in Karnataka.”

Vandana Shiva wrote in The Suicide Economy of Corporate Globalisation (2005)

vandana shiva“In 1998, the World Bank’s structural adjustment policies forced India to open up its seed sector to global corporations like Cargill, Monsanto, Syngenta. The global corporations changed the input economy overnight. Farm saved seeds were replaced by corporate seeds, which needed fertilizers and pesticides and could not be saved.

Trade Liberalisation in Agriculture: Lessons from the first 10 years of the WTO – was written by Devinder Sharma for APRODEV and NGO Forum Environment and Development in December 2005.

He listed relevant facts, including:

  • Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), Barry Callebaut and Cargill dominate Côte d’Ivoire’s cocoa processing industry, where 95% of processing capacity is controlled by TNCs.
  • Three companies – ADM, Cargill and Zen Noh – handle over 80% of US corn exports.
  • 4 companies, including Cargill and Tyson, control 81% of the US beef packing industry.

Source: Action Aid (2005) Power Hungry: six reasons to regulate global food corporations. Action Aid International, Johannesburg. January 2005. p13; * FAO (2004)

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