Friday, September 14, 2012

Occupy goes after Monsanto, GMOs

Yesterday a dozen activists calling themselves the Genetic Crimes Unit (GCU) shut down shipping and receiving access points at Monsanto’s Oxnard, California seed distribution center. Although nine members of the group were arrested in the non-violent protest, the protesters effectively shut down the distribution of genetically engineered (GMO) seeds for a day.

The group blocked all three shipping and receiving entrances to the Monsanto facility, using flashy theatrics including a car with a giant “fish-corn” on top of it and a 6-foot high jail cell holding an individual dressed as Monsanto CEO Hugh Grant.

Monsanto is the largest producer of GMO seeds and is being called out for their genetic crimes by a network called Occupy Monsanto. Wednesday’s protest, according to a statement released by the group, is the beginning of a series of over 65 different autonomous actions that officially start on September 17, commemorating the anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Supporters of Proposition 37, led by Women of Occupy San Diego, have announced a rally and demonstration in support of the initiative, which would require that labeling of foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMO’s). The group will meet up at the offices of Canvass for a Cause, located at 3705 10th Avenue, at 4 pm on Monday, September 17th.

Speakers will include the San Diego/Imperial Labor Council’s Lorena Gonzales, professor Norrie Robbins and poet Jeeni Criscenzo del Rio.  The women’s Occupella group will also perform. Starting at 5 pm, the group intendeds to line the overpass bridge on Robinson Avenue in Hillcrest overlooking State Route 163 to display signs and banners visible to rush hour traffic headed through Balboa Park.

Actions are planned throughout the world including the US, Germany, Canada, India, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Argentina, Australia, Spain, Russia, and Japan. More information about the group and their plans can be found at

The Occupy Monsanto group is not affiliated with “Yes on 37,” the group urging voters to pass the measure.

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