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Monsanto Protesters Arrested, GMO Shareholder Resolutions Fail

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA's Genetic Engineering page, Millions Against Monsanto page and our Missouri News page.

The latest effort by activists targeting Monsanto's genetic seed work resulted Tuesday in a pair of defeated shareholder resolutions and nearly a dozen arrests outside the company's Creve Coeur headquarters.

Around 40 protesters, bundled up against frigid temperatures, spent more than three hours at Monsanto's entrance during the company's annual shareholder meeting.

They sang, danced and waved signs at passing traffic. And they talked about their hopes for a new resolution that would have required the company to work with the Food and Drug Administration to label food containing genetically modified ingredients.

The resolution was offered up by shareholder Adam Eidinger, who said he saw little hope of passage. But he was hoping to gain at least 7 percent support.

"We continually raise the issue. And we're not going to go away," said Eidinger, who would later be among a group of protesters led away in handcuffs.

In the end, the measure received just over 4 percent support from shareholders, the company said. Another resolution, sponsored by activist investor John Harrington, dealt with Monsanto's potential liability to organic farmers. It received 6.5 percent support.

The board of Monsanto, the largest biotech seed producer in the world, recommended that both be opposed.

The protest took on a decidedly more confrontational tone at 2 p.m. when activists used five brightly decorated cars to block traffic at Monsanto's main entrance at Olive, between Lindbergh Boulevard and Warson Road.

A large Creve Coeur police contingent spent the next hour clearing the entrance and arresting protesters, some of whom locked themselves in or chained themselves to the cars. Among those arrested were an unidentified man wearing a giant rat suit and a musician from Los Angeles, Rafi Loiederman, who said he came to the protest to keep pressure on Monsanto.

"If we don't deal with GMOs now, everything is going to be contaminated," Loiederman said.