When I read the blog prompt about American food supply, I instantly thought about the publicized scandals regarding Monsanto’s use of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) in the agricultural system spread across the US. The movie Food Inc.(2009) made these scandals known to Americans and the reactions were ones of surprise and shock. Unfortunately, the amount of action such as boycotts resulted to almost nothing as Monsanto still continues operations today with a company slogan “A sustainable Agriculture Company”.
Recently, Monsanto is under fire for the discovery of Genetically Engineered Wheat on a farm in Oregon. Paul Klein of Forbes writes,
“Monsanto’s own commitment to corporate responsibility may also be working against it. On the one hand, the company’s mission of ‘producing more, conserving more, improving lives’ encourages a strong sense of social purpose. On the other hand, during a crisis like this it’s not hard to see why customers, investors, and the public would regard the company’s commitment to sustainable agriculture as opportunistic.”
The company’s stance on corporate responsibility relies on the idea of sustainable growth for America’s future for agriculture. I read that the reasoning behind condemning Monsanto was that American farmers were afraid they would lose their foreign exports because of bans on genetically engineered products. This came as a surprise to me since the movie Food Inc was trying to rally support against Monsanto from the perspective of the consumers, rather than the farmers.
At this point, I feel Monsanto is caught in circumstances in which their initially positive company slogan is working against them. At what point will the public stop criticizing Monsanto’s every move? It seems that in today’s society anything short of perfect is horrifyingly terrible.