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Monsanto Will Continue the Fight against GMO Labeling

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

At a January 2014 Monsanto shareholders' meeting, two rather disturbing trends took place (though, admittedly, neither was entirely surprising).

First, it was readily apparent that the company has no intention of taking steps to label genetically modified (GM) foods, and any such proposals by shareholders do not stand a chance of being voted through.

Second, Monsanto's power doesn't end outside of their boardroom  at least two dozen on-duty police were on hand to "control" the 30-40 peaceful protestors in favor of mandatory GM labeling. As Daily RFT reported:

" two things were clear: mandatory GMO labels aren't happening any time soon, and the police have Monsanto's back."

Monsanto Shareholder Proposes GMO Labeling: 95 Percent Vote No

Farmer and food activist David Murphy spoke on behalf of GM labeling at the Monsanto shareholder meeting. He was there speaking for Adam Eidinger, an activist shareholder who bought into the company to encourage GMO labels.

Murphy spoke for three minutes in an unreceptive room (where half of the shareholders did not bother to turn around and face him as he spoke), pointing out the facts:

  • People deserve to know what's in their food
  • GM ingredients are already labeled in 64 other countries
  • Monsanto spends millions to defeat GMO labeling initiatives

  • When it came time for the vote, more than 95 percent of the shareholders voted against mandatory GMO labels. Even a proposal for a report about the cost of GMO labels is rejected by more than 93 percent of the shareholders.

    That Monsanto shareholders voted down the GMO labeling proposal is not at all surprising. But the fact that police officers followed Murphy as he left the building and drove to speak to activists outside is...

    Why Are Police Arresting Peaceful Protestors?

    Police dressed in military fatigue uniforms were on hand at the shareholder meeting displaying their power, or rather Monsanto's. In all, 10 protestors were arrested, including a woman in her 60s who was pulled over for holding a sign out her car window and arrested for "impeding traffic."

    When Daily RFT questioned the Creve Coeur police chief about the officers' presence, they were told the officers were all "on duty being paid by the City of Creve Coeur."

    Interestingly, rather than simply being on hand in case the protestors got out of control (which they did not), they appeared to be playing intimidation games, particularly with Murphy. Daily RFT reported:

    "'He has just entered a blue Ford F-150,' a Creve Coeur cop says into a walkie talkie as Dave Murphy, a farmer and food activist who had just given a speech to about 50 protesters near the Monsanto entrance on Olive Avenue, gets into his truck.

    As Murphy drives to another part of the biotech giant's sprawling campus to address shareholders about a proposal to make GMO-labeling mandatory, several of Creve Coeur's finest keep their eyes on him.

    Murphy had done nothing suspicious. Nonetheless, one of the patrol cars follows Murphy as another appears to write down his license-plate number."