End Corporate Influence
Corporations have historically unprecedented power over our food system, enabling them to control the agricultural research agenda, subvert market competition, and heavily influence regulation, federal spending, trade and agricultural agreements.
Large food and agrichemical corporations also dominate the public conversation about food and farming. Taking their cues from the tobacco industry, they use stealth public relations tactics to preserve their markets and advance policy agendas.
Agrichemical corporations spend tens of millions of dollars a year to spread misleading messages about the safety and necessity of chemical-intensive industrial agriculture and to undermine public confidence in the benefits of organic and ecological farming. These myths bolster a food system that delivers billions of dollars a year in profits to agribusinesses from fossil-fuel-intensive production and costly inputs — including pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, antibiotics, growth hormones and genetically engineered crops.
Friends of the Earth fights to reclaim democratic control of our food system, publishes investigative reports that reveal industry’s covert communications strategies and disseminates the science that debunks Big Ag’s myths.
Feed the World
One of the most destructive myths spread by corporate public relations is that we need industrial agriculture to feed the world.
The science is clear:
- Feeding the world sustainably requires that we rapidly transition to ecological farming methods that protect the soil, water, biodiversity and other essential resources to grow food now and in the future.
- Decades of scientific evidence show that organic and agroecological farming yield enough to feed a growing world population.
- Data also show that ecological farming is the most effective agricultural response to the environmental challenges that threaten our future food security, such as climate change, soil erosion, water scarcity and loss of biodiversity.
The Solution to Hunger
While many people equate “feeding the world” with the need to produce more food, research consistently shows that world hunger is not primarily a problem of overall supply of food, but rather of poverty, lack of democracy and unequal access to land, water and other resources. The solution to hunger hinges on creating a more sustainable, democratic and fair food system for all, rather than producing more food under unequal and ecologically destructive conditions.
Shut the Revolving Door
For far too long, individuals with ties to agribusiness, agrichemical and pharmaceutical companies have been appointed to senior government positions with the power regulate food and farming.
Decisions to allow routine antibiotic use in agriculture, harmful pesticides in food production, and weaken worker safety regulations throughout the food chain protect corporate bottom lines at the expense of public health, rural communities, animal welfare, and the environment.
Keeping agribusiness leaders out of government agencies is key to reclaiming our democracy and protecting public health and the environment.
A coalition of more than 160 environmental, food justice, sustainable agriculture, workers’ rights, animal welfare, social justice, public health, and anti-hunger organizations sent a letter today to President-Elect Biden, Vice President-Elect Harris, and their transition team opposing Heidi Heitkamp as a potential nominee for USDA Secretary.
The approval of the Bayer Monsanto merger is a disaster for American farmers and families. This toxic mega-merger will only further entrench the failing model of chemical intensive agriculture, which is poisoning people and the planet. The Department of Justice failed to protect Americans from yet another toxic agricultural monopoly.
A coalition of farming, consumer, and environmental groups delivered 97,325 public comments to the Department of Justice today, urging the agency to reject the Bayer (BAYN) and Monsanto (MON) merger. The agency closes its comment period today regarding its conditional approval of the merger.
The Growing Climate Solutions Act is a false promise to farmers and a failure on climate; companies like Bayer are showing exactly how they would make money off these schemes.
Based on a recent poll, 91.7 percent of farmers surveyed are concerned that Bayer-Monsanto will control data about farm practices.
Compared with industrial agriculture, organic farming is less energy intensive, helps pollinators and other beneficial insects flourish and promotes biodiversity.