Can the planet feed itself in the future as the number of humans multiplies? Food security sounds like a fair enough goal. But not, some say, if it involves the company Monsanto.
According to Monsanto’s web site, it was “one of nine wartime government contractors who manufactured Agent Orange” between 1965 and 1969.
Chuck Palazzo, a founding member of the Vietnam chapter of Veterans for Peace, accused Monsanto of trying to “brainwash” locals, especially young people. The company is on a public relations push to align itself with the positives of food security, he said, instead of its controversial products, Agent Orange and genetically modified seeds.
Even if Monsanto has pure intentions, it should wait to get involved in sustainable agriculture and first compensate Vietnamese who suffer birth defects like missing limbs and distended bodies, Palazzo said.
“The first thing they need to do is benefit, somehow, the victims of Agent Orange, they need to show some good faith,” he said. “Doing the right thing, in my mind, is giving financial benefits, medical benefits, and social benefits.”