A friend pointed me to this interesting article about a group of indigenous farmers in South America who are taking the multinational corporation Syngenta to task against terminator potato technology that they fear will cause extensive harm to “their region’s biodiversity, culture and food sovereignty.”
“Peru and its Andean neighbours are the potato’s centre of diversity Ã¢â‚¬â€ with nearly 4,000 unique varieties that farmers have developed over generations. Before reaching its position, the coalition undertook a lengthy discussion with farmers across the region.
Farmers are concerned that terminator potatoes will enter the Andean production system and destroy their traditions of storing and exchanging potato tubers for future planting. This is central to the farmers’ culture and has contributed to the region’s immense diversity of potato varieties. They also fear that pollen from the modified potatoes could contaminate local varieties and prevent their tubers from sprouting.”