By Jameson Spivack
Food & Water Watch recently launched a campaign to stop Walmart from selling Monsanto’s new breed of genetically engineered (GE) sweet corn. Monsanto has developed sweet corn that produces its own pesticides and resists herbicides.
Monsanto’s genetically engineered corn, which may be sold at Walmart, has never been tested for human safety, and would not require labels distinguishing it as GE. (Image credit: Food & Water Watch)
This is the first time Monsanto has marketed a genetically engineered crop for direct human consumption. There have been no studies about the potential health risks of the genetically engineered traits used in the corn. It also does not require labeling, so there is no way for shoppers to know if the corn they are buying is genetically engineered.
Food & Water Watch hopes to convince Walmart to prevent this harmful crop from appearing on its shelves through extensive campaigning. It has already collected over 70,000 petition signatures, made over 3,300 calls to Walmart customer service, and mobilized community support for the initiative. It has even created a social media project titled “Walsanto Watch” that chronicles the fictional romance between Walmart and Monsanto.
The group’s efforts will culminate in a national day of action in March, just before the April 1st deadline it has given Walmart to commit to not selling Monsanto’s corn. Walmart is the largest food retailer in the U.S., making its selling practices influential to farmers, sellers, and consumers alike.
To sign and share the petition, click here.
Jameson Spivack is a research intern with the Nourishing the Planet Project.
To read more about genetically engineered food see: Why GMOs Won’t Feed the World, Labels Matter, The GMO Debate Continues, The Debate Continues: The Economist Hosts Debate on the Compatibility of Biotechnology and Organic Agriculture, Understanding Consumers’ Responses to Genetic Engineering, and Food & Water Watch Wants You to Know Your Fish.