Blog

The blog is a place where GRAIN staff and others post their comments, suggestions, hints and assessments of documents, places or events. Or just share information that we think is interesting.

Corporate capture of seed is jeopardising farmers

Africa’s agriculture along with its millions of small-scale food producers is up for sale - to the highest bidders

Africa’s agriculture along with its millions of small-scale food producers is up for sale - to the highest bidders

Citizens of the world oppose intellectual property over seeds, reclaim and restore local food systems and agricultural biodiversity

Civil society organisations from across the world collectively called for a celebration of International Seed Day, and not World Intellectual Property Day. 348 organisations , from 46 countries united to condemn the unashamed greenwashing of the WIPO and their expedient promotion of UPOV draconian plant variety protection (PVP) and patents, as a driver for a green future, when the opposite is the case.

Civil society organisations from across the world collectively called for a celebration of International Seed Day, and not World Intellectual Property Day. 348 organisations , from 46 countries united to condemn the unashamed greenwashing of the WIPO and their expedient promotion of UPOV draconian plant variety protection (PVP) and patents, as a driver for a green future, when the opposite is the case.

An urgent look at the food system - A collective research effort from below

Grassroots research and a lot of documentation work, has yielded an exhaustive systematisation, a detailed profile of the agro-industrial system in the Southern Cone of South America. It is the Atlas of Transgenic Agribusiness in the Southern Cone.

Grassroots research and a lot of documentation work, has yielded an exhaustive systematisation, a detailed profile of the agro-industrial system in the Southern Cone of South America. It is the Atlas of Transgenic Agribusiness in the Southern Cone.

Time to turn the tide on industrial animal farming: path towards post-pandemic sustainable food systems

The implications of COVID-19 for indigenous peoples, pastoralists, women, and peasant farmers come on top of the struggles that they already face. The following stories from communities in Asia reflect the stark changes that the world is facing as the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly expands. At the same time, they serve as a basis for alternative models of sustainable livestock farming and generally healthier food systems.

The implications of COVID-19 for indigenous peoples, pastoralists, women, and peasant farmers come on top of the struggles that they already face. The following stories from communities in Asia reflect the stark changes that the world is facing as the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly expands. At the same time, they serve as a basis for alternative models of sustainable livestock farming and generally healthier food systems.

"Business as usual" at Socfin and Bolloré...

Ahead of the Socfin and Bolloré groups upcoming annual general meetings, civil society organisations and NGOs are calling to an urgent resolution and end to the conflicts and lawsuits instigated by Socfin/Bolloré. Foreign companies like Socfin extract immense profits from the lands and labour of communities in Africa and Asia. The time for "business as usual" is over, and the enrichment of directors and shareholders can no longer come before human and environmental rights.

Ahead of the Socfin and Bolloré groups upcoming annual general meetings, civil society organisations and NGOs are calling to an urgent resolution and end to the conflicts and lawsuits instigated by Socfin/Bolloré. Foreign companies like Socfin extract immense profits from the lands and labour of communities in Africa and Asia. The time for "business as usual" is over, and the enrichment of directors and shareholders can no longer come before human and environmental rights.

Agribusiness must be quarantined!

Since the beginning of the nearly global quarantine, however, not only has agribusiness in Latin America not been in quarantine but it has actually continued functioning with total impunity, deepening its impact and harm on communities and ecosystems. In almost all the countries in the region, agro-industrial activities were exempted from quarantine, as they are considered “essential” within the measures taken.

Since the beginning of the nearly global quarantine, however, not only has agribusiness in Latin America not been in quarantine but it has actually continued functioning with total impunity, deepening its impact and harm on communities and ecosystems. In almost all the countries in the region, agro-industrial activities were exempted from quarantine, as they are considered “essential” within the measures taken.

Launch of the book Atlas of GM Agribusiness in the Southern Cone

On 18 May, the web site Biodiversidad en América Latina y el Caribe will publish the book (in Spanish) Transgenic Agribusiness in the Southern Cone: Monocultures, Resistance, and Peoples’ Proposals. The objective of the book is to analyse the impacts of the model of genetically modified (GM) crops installed in the Southern region of South America during the second half of the 1990s.

On 18 May, the web site Biodiversidad en América Latina y el Caribe will publish the book (in Spanish) Transgenic Agribusiness in the Southern Cone: Monocultures, Resistance, and Peoples’ Proposals. The objective of the book is to analyse the impacts of the model of genetically modified (GM) crops installed in the Southern region of South America during the second half of the 1990s.

The dangers of legalising public land theft in Brazil : agribusiness, deforestation, and the melting pot of future pandemics

The type of land use, the concentration of land and natural resources, the massive destruction of ecosystems, and the increased homogenization of landscapes, should all be key elements considered in the debate on the current health crisis and human resilience.

The type of land use, the concentration of land and natural resources, the massive destruction of ecosystems, and the increased homogenization of landscapes, should all be key elements considered in the debate on the current health crisis and human resilience.

Monopolies on seed: How free trade agreements threaten food security and biodiversity.

A great little video that explains in a concise way how vital agricultural seed systems are, why strict plant variety protection systems threaten them and what this has to do with free trade agreements and biodiversity.

A great little video that explains in a concise way how vital agricultural seed systems are, why strict plant variety protection systems threaten them and what this has to do with free trade agreements and biodiversity.

Cargill knew! The world’s largest agribusiness company knowingly risked the health of its workers during the Covid-19 pandemic to maximise profits

Cargill has now joined the WH Group/Smithfield in having a meat processing plant that is a top national hotspot for Covid-19 infections. As of April 25, its beef processing plant in High River, Alberta had confirmed 558 cases of Covid-19 among its workers, making it one of the worst Covid-19 clusters in Canada. Two weeks earlier, Smithfield’s pork processing plant in South Dakota became the largest cluster for Covid-19 in the US, after more than 800 cases were connected to the plant.

Cargill has now joined the WH Group/Smithfield in having a meat processing plant that is a top national hotspot for Covid-19 infections. As of April 25, its beef processing plant in High River, Alberta had confirmed 558 cases of Covid-19 among its workers, making it one of the worst Covid-19 clusters in Canada. Two weeks earlier, Smithfield’s pork processing plant in South Dakota became the largest cluster for Covid-19 in the US, after more than 800 cases were connected to the plant.

Unravelling the Socfin/Bolloré plantations, thanks to Profundo

In February 2020, the independent Dutch research outfit Profundo published a guide to the corporate structure behind Socfin's oil palm and rubber plantation activities in Africa and Asia. Socfin is a holding company based in Luxembourg. Its main shareholders are Hubert Fabri (Belgium) and Vincent Bolloré (France) and their families, who are bound together in numerous business partnerships.

In February 2020, the independent Dutch research outfit Profundo published a guide to the corporate structure behind Socfin's oil palm and rubber plantation activities in Africa and Asia. Socfin is a holding company based in Luxembourg. Its main shareholders are Hubert Fabri (Belgium) and Vincent Bolloré (France) and their families, who are bound together in numerous business partnerships.

Capitalist agriculture and Covid-19: A deadly combination

A socialist biologist explains the tight links between new viruses, industrial food production, and the profitability of multinational corporations.

A socialist biologist explains the tight links between new viruses, industrial food production, and the profitability of multinational corporations.

GRAIN: 30 years supporting the struggle for food sovereignty

Thirty years ago, on 16 March 1990, an idea became an organisation. It was the day that co-founders Henk Hobbelink and Renée Vellvé, flanked by six committed seed activists who became the organisation’s first Board of directors, officially signed GRAIN into existence in front of a notary in Barcelona, Spain.​​

Thirty years ago, on 16 March 1990, an idea became an organisation. It was the day that co-founders Henk Hobbelink and Renée Vellvé, flanked by six committed seed activists who became the organisation’s first Board of directors, officially signed GRAIN into existence in front of a notary in Barcelona, Spain.​​

Fish farming corporations make a lame attempt to solve their big deforestation problem

In December, three big players in the global seafood industry - Tesco, Nutreco and Grieg Seafood – announced a plan to source sustainable soybeans from a Brazilian region south of the Amazon that is notorious for deforestation and land grabs. Will it make any difference?

In December, three big players in the global seafood industry - Tesco, Nutreco and Grieg Seafood – announced a plan to source sustainable soybeans from a Brazilian region south of the Amazon that is notorious for deforestation and land grabs. Will it make any difference?