Tell Missouri Not to Favor Large Biotech Companies Over Small Farmers

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Target: Missouri State Senate Speaker, Tom Dempsey

Goal: Ensure the rights of small farmers are protected

Agriculture laws have recently been proposed in Missouri that would allow Monsanto and other biotech giants to gain total control of the farming industry. The proposed laws severely restrict small farmers from reusing organic seeds and preserving livestock lines in favor of Monsanto’s genetically modified property. Small farmers are taking yet another blow from biotech companies in the struggle to grow non-GMO, organic foods. It is necessary to take action to protect small farmers, particularly in light of the recent signing of the Monsanto Protection Act by President Obama.

House Joint Resolution 11 (HJR 11) is proposing an amendment to the Missouri Constitution to protect “agricultural technology.”  The bill currently proposes to add a new section to the Missouri Constitution which guarantees the right of farmers and ranchers to engage in modern farming and ranching practices and prohibits any law that limits employment of agricultural technology. There are no definitions provided in the language of the bills; modern farming and agricultural technology generally refer to genetically modified seeds and animals.

Proposals to change the wording of the amendment to make the resolution more protective of small farmers’ rights have been rejected. Individuals and organizations must demands these dangerous proposals be stopped. The proposed constitutional amendment, HJR 11, needs to either be abandoned or be changed to protect the rights of small farmers to choose what they grow and truly protect the health, economic viability and freedom of farmers in Missouri.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Tom Dempsey,

The proposed amendments to the Missouri Constitution to protect “agricultural technology” guarantees the right of farmers and ranchers to engage in modern farming and ranching practices. They do not, however, offer sufficient protections for small farmers who have the right to reject modern practices and grow food in a way they agree with. There are no definitions provided in the language of the bills to define agricultural technology and these are easily seen as generally referring to genetically modified seeds and animals.

The proposed legislation forces small farmers to yet again become subject to the tyranny of biotech companies and it is necessary to take action to protect small farmers in your state. The proposed constitutional amendment, HJR 11, needs to either be abandoned or be changed to protect the rights of small farmers to choose what they grow and truly protect the health, economic viability and freedom of farmers in Missouri.

Sincerely,
[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: tlindenbaum via Flickr

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One Comment

  1. J Davidson says:

    The constitutional rights of small farmers and all citizens must be preserved, as well as our environment and ecology.

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