Help wanted: Monsanto spent nearly nearly $1.3M in 1st quarter lobbying
June 16, 2008
It’s a well kept secret that over 70 percent of the foods in grocery stores in the U.S. and Canada contain genetically engineered ingredients. Most are not safety tested and none are labelled. How is this happening? According to a disclosure report, agricultural technology company Monsanto Co. spent nearly $1.3 million in the first quarter to lobby on farm bill provisions, biotechnology and other issues.The company also lobbied the federal government on organic standards, patent reform, theft of agricultural seeds, endangered species, timber and greenhouse gas emissions legislation, international trade, ethanol production, and other matters.
Monsanto’s second-quarter earnings doubled on corn demand and pricing, which has surged due to strong global food demand, the ethanol industry and a weak dollar.
In the January-to-March period, the St. Louis-based company lobbied Congress, White House, U.S. Trade Representative’s office, Federal Trade Commission, Agriculture Department and other agencies, according to the report filed April 21 with the House clerk’s office.
Agribusiness giant Syngenta spent about $400,000 lobbying the federal government on pesticide legislation, biofuels, patent laws and other issues, according to regulatory filings.
The Swiss company, which has the North American headquarters of its crop protection unit based in Greensboro, had a particular interest in the recently passed Farm Bill, which had a number of provisions related to the use the kinds of pesticides the company sells.
For all of 2007, Syngenta spent $1.2 million on federal government lobbying on all issues. Monsanto spent $4.5 million on lobbying in 2007.
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See also: The World According to Monsanto video