Whatcha gonna do when you’re a horrible corporation that has paved the way for the deaths of hundreds of thousands…? Well, if you were a unscrupulous guns-for-hire company, you’d change your name from Blackwater to Academi (and pray that people don’t remember that you’re essentially the same mass-murdering suppressor-of-the-people). Last week, it was reported that Monsanto had recently attempted to change their name too, taking a page out of the book of murderous corporations everywhere.
This is because they have now become one of the most hated organizations on the face of the planet. In a recent merger agreement with Swiss biotech rival Syngenta, Monsanto allegedly tried to propose creating a new company entirely. The proposals aim was to wipe their slate clean and deceive the public about the true nature of the company that has probably caused hundreds of thousands of Indian farmer suicides, as well as produced a proven cancer-causing herbicide that even the WHO has come out against. A herbicide that the company was fully aware of being cancer-causing.
Last week, Syngenta made a letter public—which was sent from Monsanto CEO-Hugh Grant, back in April 18th—during the negotiations of the merger. In the letter, Grant suggested that as a part of their agreement, Monsanto would “also propose a new name for the combined company to reflect its unique global nature.”
A company’s brand often generates this thing called “goodwill”. It is an accounting device that explains why a company is worth more than the buildings, machines and products it owns. Monsanto is a globally-known name, and renaming itself suggests that its goodwill is in fact… worth less than nothing.
Gary Ruskin, of the consumer organization U.S. Right to Know, pointed out that “Monsanto wants to escape its ugly history by ditching its name. This shows how desperate Monsanto is to escape criticism: of its products, which raise environmental and health concerns, as well as concerns about corporate control of agriculture and our food system.”
As consumers become more health conscious, companies that manufacture junk food are being forced to get creative with how they sell their products. High fructose corn syrup is but one of the health-destroying ingredients that are being forced to rebrand, because people are learning more and more about how damaging it is.
For those of you who have been living under a rock, Monsanto is one of the wealthiest multinational corporations in the world. It is also one of the most ruthless. It has created a smoke-screen image of innocence with the aid of its lawyers and public relations peons. However, this company is as evil as they come: thousands of lawsuits have been filed against this corporate giant worldwide, but by using their incredible wealth they are usually able to settle out of court for large sums, and pay off the media so their crimes are not exposed to the public. Yes, they often pay for favorable news coverage.
Monsanto has a truly horrible history: before they were in the food industry, they were responsible for the manufacturing of various toxic chemicals. Ranging from relatively benign caffeine, to Agent Orange, along with other dangerous pesticides and herbicides. Monsanto even helped develop uranium for the atomic bomb in the Manhattan Project.
Their Roundup chemical has been known to cause dozens of different plant diseases and does unknown damage to the ecosystem. Monsanto has done its fair share of destruction to our environment and our food supply; but their genetically modified food programs take the cake. Through tampering with the genetics of various plants and animals, they hope to have a complete monopoly over the world’s food and agriculture industries. Although these GMOs provide higher yields, their long-term health impacts are still untested, with independent scientists stating that they can cause tumors in lab animals. Also, these GMOs can be created with terminator genes, forcing farmers to return time and time again for their daily dose of Monsanto… Or whatever they choose to call themselves today.
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