G.M.O. Seed Company Monsanto Invests in Biofuels

 

[social_buttons]

Monsanto, one of the worlds largest Genetically Modified Organism (G.M.O.) agribusiness seed companies, is slated to acquire Aly Participacoes Ltda., which operates the Brazilian sugarcane breeding and technology companies, CanaVialis S.A. and Alellyx S.A.

Incidentally, as sugar cane expands in southern Brazil, soy production is heading northward, encroaching on the Amazon and causing mass deforestation.”

“Global demands for raw sugar and biofuels are beginning to rise at a faster pace than the current production levels in sugarcane, a crop that is essential to meeting these demands,” said Carl Casale, executive vice president of global strategy and operations for Monsanto. “Similar to our work with technology collaborators, we expect the additions of CanaVialis and Alellyx will allow us to combine our breeding expertise with key large-acre crops with their breeding expertise in sugarcane.”

“Our goal with this approach is to increase yields in sugarcane while reducing the amount of resources needed for this crop’s cultivation, just as we’re doing now for corn, soybeans and cotton. We view this as a significant opportunity over the longer term to supplement our ongoing commitment to corn as an ethanol feedstock, diversify our crop technology portfolio and provide innovations to such a vital crop as sugarcane.”

The global demand for sugar has intensified in recent years. The International Sugar Organization estimated earlier this year that the world will consume 3.9 million tons more sugar than it will produce in 2008-2009. This news comes one day after reports indicate that U.S. Diabetes rates nearly doubled in the last 10 years.

Both the United Nations’ Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and the Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI) see sugar consumption increasing faster than production over the next decade.

So what is Monsanto’s core business model? Monsanto sells seeds to farmers.  But these aren’t just any seeds. The Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON) is a multinational agricultural biotechnology corporation. It is the world’s leading producer of the herbicide glyphosate, marketed as “Roundup“. Monsanto is also by far the leading producer of genetically engineered (GE) seed, holding 70%–100% market share for various crops.

What this means is that genetically Engineered seeds self destruct after planting. Farmers in third world countries must then continue to depend of Foreign companies like Monsanto for their seeds.  Yes that right, Monsanto owns the patents to the food or fuel that the world eats or drives on.

While I am all for alternative fuels, I am not a big fan of food for fuel or fuel acres. Especially when those crops are going to lead to deforestation, forced relocation of food acres, widespread use of contaminants and poisons, genetically modified and patented seeds or one company who has controlling interest in how much fuel it decides to hold or put on the market next year.

Source: Biofuel Review

Photo Credit: Artolog on Flickr under Creative Commons license.





About the Author

Adam Shake works in Washington D.C. and spends most of his recreational time hiking and kayaking in Virginia and West Virginia with his wife Laura and their 6 year old Rhodesian Ridgeback, Katahdin. Adam is dedicated to the Environment and maintains a website at www.twilightearth.com
  • Mark in Texas

    So Amazon rain forests are being cut down to grow soy beans? Tofu from soy beans is destroying this precious and fragile ecosystem?

    Heartless vegetarians are complicit in the vandalism of mankind’s common legacy. The next time you see some vegan shoving tofu into his/her mouth, make sure to point out to them the species that are facing extinction because of their lifestyle choices. I am not sure what substances go into a MacDonald’s double cheesburger but I am pretty sure that soy beans grown on land raped from Amazon rain forest are not on the ingredients list.

  • Mark in Texas

    So Amazon rain forests are being cut down to grow soy beans? Tofu from soy beans is destroying this precious and fragile ecosystem?

    Heartless vegetarians are complicit in the vandalism of mankind’s common legacy. The next time you see some vegan shoving tofu into his/her mouth, make sure to point out to them the species that are facing extinction because of their lifestyle choices. I am not sure what substances go into a MacDonald’s double cheesburger but I am pretty sure that soy beans grown on land raped from Amazon rain forest are not on the ingredients list.

  • Iris

    I heard a few years ago that one of the companies that supply Mac Donalds with its ‘beef’ in actual fact manufacture soya patties. This soy is genetically modified but the company’s name however is ‘100% beef’…..

  • Iris

    I heard a few years ago that one of the companies that supply Mac Donalds with its ‘beef’ in actual fact manufacture soya patties. This soy is genetically modified but the company’s name however is ‘100% beef’…..

  • LonnieB

    I recently read an article by a Brazilian agriculture expert. In the article, he pointed out that it was the LUMBER INDUSTRY & CATTLE BARONS who were at the heart of the deforestation problem, not grain or cane farmers.

    He also pointed out that Brazil doesn’t currently produce enough ethanol for export to have a significant impact on American farmers, as the fans of ethanol tariffs would have us believe.

    If I can find the article, I will post a link. It was extremely informative.

    What continues to amaze me is how both proponents and opponents of etahnol on this site, continually overlook such (in my mind, obvious) alternatives as sugar cane from the Dominican Republic and Jerusalem Artichokes as a feedstock for production. I have seen zero, nada, zip discussion about these alternatives here, even though both have huge potential to alleviate a significant amount of the negatives about ethanol.

    To me, it amounts to nothing more than arguement for arguement’s sake. No real solution seeking, just bickering.

    It seems as though fear-mongering is all the media trains itself in, these days. Good news? What’s that?

    We used to be a society of solutions. We are now a society of blame and fear.

    We loudly decry deforestation…as we buy our furniture made from the trees and consume the other products resulting from that deforestation.

    We rant against Big Oil….as we drive our gas-guzzling urban assault vehicles.

    Our individual partisanship forbids us seeing the blantant flaws in our choice of politicians, while at the same time blaming ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING on the other party.

    We insist that unless it’s a magic bullet that cures all our woes…it’s not worth doing. All or nothing!

    We are mere sheep being lead by our collective noses by an agenda-driven media intent on reshaping America into their image (i.e. George Soros and Ted Turner). That image doesn’t appear to include independence of any sort (energy or from government).

    Keeping us under OPEC’s thumb is a way to force us into their Euro-like image ($7 per gallon fuel), so actual support (not just talking points) of energy independence is not in their best interests.

    Ergo, yes oil is evil, but alternatives are simply unworkable pie-in-the-sky dreams and we should just roll over and accept whatever our elected crooks shove up our orifice!

    Until this sit-on-your-own-shoulders mentality is abandoned, the discussions here will remain just that…discussions. Not solutions.

  • LonnieB

    I recently read an article by a Brazilian agriculture expert. In the article, he pointed out that it was the LUMBER INDUSTRY & CATTLE BARONS who were at the heart of the deforestation problem, not grain or cane farmers.

    He also pointed out that Brazil doesn’t currently produce enough ethanol for export to have a significant impact on American farmers, as the fans of ethanol tariffs would have us believe.

    If I can find the article, I will post a link. It was extremely informative.

    What continues to amaze me is how both proponents and opponents of etahnol on this site, continually overlook such (in my mind, obvious) alternatives as sugar cane from the Dominican Republic and Jerusalem Artichokes as a feedstock for production. I have seen zero, nada, zip discussion about these alternatives here, even though both have huge potential to alleviate a significant amount of the negatives about ethanol.

    To me, it amounts to nothing more than arguement for arguement’s sake. No real solution seeking, just bickering.

    It seems as though fear-mongering is all the media trains itself in, these days. Good news? What’s that?

    We used to be a society of solutions. We are now a society of blame and fear.

    We loudly decry deforestation…as we buy our furniture made from the trees and consume the other products resulting from that deforestation.

    We rant against Big Oil….as we drive our gas-guzzling urban assault vehicles.

    Our individual partisanship forbids us seeing the blantant flaws in our choice of politicians, while at the same time blaming ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING on the other party.

    We insist that unless it’s a magic bullet that cures all our woes…it’s not worth doing. All or nothing!

    We are mere sheep being lead by our collective noses by an agenda-driven media intent on reshaping America into their image (i.e. George Soros and Ted Turner). That image doesn’t appear to include independence of any sort (energy or from government).

    Keeping us under OPEC’s thumb is a way to force us into their Euro-like image ($7 per gallon fuel), so actual support (not just talking points) of energy independence is not in their best interests.

    Ergo, yes oil is evil, but alternatives are simply unworkable pie-in-the-sky dreams and we should just roll over and accept whatever our elected crooks shove up our orifice!

    Until this sit-on-your-own-shoulders mentality is abandoned, the discussions here will remain just that…discussions. Not solutions.

  • google ( wikipedia photosynthesis efficiency ) and you will find photosynthesis is only about 6 % efficient. A roof wth solar panels at 10-12% efficiency does not require land needed for other uses. Light in a desert area is much more intense that crop land. Wind energy requires only a foot print. With photosynthesis you start with 6%, for only part of the year and when temperatures are right. You harvest only part of the 6%, the lose a good fraction of that in coversion to ethanol, then burn it in an engine that averages about 20%. Electric motor run about 90% efficiency, which is why we will be moving toward electrical energy.

  • google ( wikipedia photosynthesis efficiency ) and you will find photosynthesis is only about 6 % efficient. A roof wth solar panels at 10-12% efficiency does not require land needed for other uses. Light in a desert area is much more intense that crop land. Wind energy requires only a foot print. With photosynthesis you start with 6%, for only part of the year and when temperatures are right. You harvest only part of the 6%, the lose a good fraction of that in coversion to ethanol, then burn it in an engine that averages about 20%. Electric motor run about 90% efficiency, which is why we will be moving toward electrical energy.

  • Pingback: Tweets that mention G.M.O. Seed Company Monsanto Invests in Biofuels – Gas 2.0 -- Topsy.com()