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Author Topic:   Monsanto - Bad Food, Good Capitalism
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 16 of 46 (686029)
12-28-2012 3:07 PM
Reply to: Message 15 by Stile
12-28-2012 2:59 PM


Re: Seed Breeding
So... these seed breeders, how fast can they supply a demand?

Well, they generally supply most of the farmers in their area with seed for every season. Seeds can be stored for years so they have stock enough for whatever they perceive their business need to be. If suddenly they had to produce all new seeds for the regions farmers, it would take them a season to do it, because they produce the seed by planting it, rearing the crop, and then harvesting it.

So, how do seed breeders produce seeds?

Well, they buy P1 seeds from trait producers, or they have their own P1 generations they keep going. P1 generations breed true - they're not hybrids, that's the point - so you can keep those going generation after generation without much issue. Then, to produce hybrids, they cross P1 with another P1, to produce hybrid F1 seeds. These are what they sell to farmers, sometimes after "treatment" where the seed is coated in some pre-emergence pesticide to discourage loss from soil-dwelling insects.

It's just breeding. The purpose of hybridization is to exploit heterosis, or "hybrid vigor", the phenomenon of organisms crossed from two pure-bred lines to be "better" than either parent.

If you're just breeding seeds, is the cycle reduced to, like... a month? a week?

Well, it depends where you live and what crop we're talking about. Getting in two seasons of wheat or corn in a year isn't unheard of throughout much of the midwest. Depends on the weather, basically. Water is usually the limiting factor.

I tried to google these questions... but just ended up with a bunch of marijuana seed breeding hits...

Visit your local university extension office. That's what they're for. They'll have a ton of literature about farm practices. Farmers aren't born knowing all this, that's what the extension office is for.


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crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 17 of 46 (686784)
01-03-2013 10:09 PM


Somewhat apropos
quote:
If you fear genetically modified food, you may have Mark Lynas to thank. By his own reckoning, British environmentalist helped spur the anti-GMO movement in the mid-90s, arguing as recently at 2008 that big corporations selfish greed would threaten the health of both people and the Earth. Thanks to the efforts of Lynas and people like him, governments around the worldespecially in Western Europe, Asia, and Africahave hobbled GM research, and NGOs like Greenpeace have spurned donations of genetically modified foods.

But Lynas has changed his mindand hes not being quiet about it. On Thursday at the Oxford Farming Conference, Lynas delivered a blunt address: He got GMOs wrong.


http://www.slate.com/...pposed_gmos_admits_he_was_wrong.html


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foreveryoung
Member
Posts: 887
Joined: 12-26-2011


Message 18 of 46 (686793)
01-04-2013 1:20 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Stile
12-28-2012 10:25 AM


Through ownership of patents on 90 percent of all GE (Genetically Engineered) seeds, Monsanto effectively owns most of the U.S. food supply, and not just processed foods.

Aside from the dirty tricks used in obtaining seed patents you mention, if they put in the time and effort to obtain those patents, then its their competitions fault for not putting in more time and effort themselves in order to obtain a similar share of patents.


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ramoss
Member
Posts: 3043
Joined: 08-11-2004
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 19 of 46 (686794)
01-04-2013 1:36 AM
Reply to: Message 17 by crashfrog
01-03-2013 10:09 PM


Re: Somewhat apropos
Which is ironic, since THIS article just came out about GMO cucumbers they were testing out.

Monsanto Cucumbers Cause Genital Baldness -- Immediately Banned in Nova Scotia

http://www.thelapine.ca/...ss-immediately-banned-nova-scotia


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Panda
Member (Idle past 1269 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 20 of 46 (686797)
01-04-2013 5:38 AM
Reply to: Message 19 by ramoss
01-04-2013 1:36 AM


Re: Somewhat apropos
I feel I am in 'Poe' territory, but you do realise that The Lapine is a satirical web-site?

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

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xongsmith
Member
Posts: 1812
From: massachusetts US
Joined: 01-01-2009
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 21 of 46 (686849)
01-04-2013 3:40 PM
Reply to: Message 3 by nwr
12-28-2012 11:10 AM


nwr writes:
If the alternative were to live on wild berries and roots, and the wild animals that we could catch, then the planet could only support a tiny fraction of its current human population.

This is already true. There are already way too many people on the planet. Even 1 billion is too many.


- xongsmith, 5.7d

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nwr
Member
Posts: 5537
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005
Member Rating: 4.3


(1)
Message 22 of 46 (686850)
01-04-2013 3:45 PM
Reply to: Message 21 by xongsmith
01-04-2013 3:40 PM


There are already way too many people on the planet. Even 1 billion is too many.

I agree with that.

If we could cut the world's population to 1 billion or less, that would solve many of the problems of pollution and global warming.

I would want to see this done gradually, by reducing birth rates, rather than with a program of mass slaughter.

Unfortunately, most politicians are unwilling to even discuss this issue.


Fundamentalism - the anti-American, anti-Christian branch of American Christianity

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NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9992
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.3


(5)
Message 23 of 46 (686852)
01-04-2013 4:00 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Stile
12-28-2012 10:25 AM


but also so that the crops are extremely aggressive. Then they'll "accidentally" lose some seeds in a farmer's land, then when their seeds take over, they'll take the farmer to court for "breaking the patent" and end up controlling the farm.

It is not a matter of being aggressive. If pollen from your neighbor's roundup resistant crop drifts into your field and you save seeds from your own crop for next year's planting, then your next years crop may violate a Monsanto patent through no fault of your own. Nothing overly aggressive is going on here, and there is no bad intent to "accidentally" lose seeds. It's just plants being plants and farmers being farmers. What's screwed up is when Monsanto then sues you for patent infringement and you lose your crop.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal and hasten the resurrection of the dead. William Lloyd Garrison.

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass


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Panda
Member (Idle past 1269 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 24 of 46 (686855)
01-04-2013 7:37 PM
Reply to: Message 22 by nwr
01-04-2013 3:45 PM


nwr writes:

Unfortunately, most politicians are unwilling to even discuss this issue.


It is one of the biggest taboos in politics it seems.

People view having children as a right and not a privilege.


"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

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Genomicus
Member
Posts: 846
Joined: 02-15-2012


Message 25 of 46 (687179)
01-08-2013 11:37 AM
Reply to: Message 22 by nwr
01-04-2013 3:45 PM


If we could cut the world's population to 1 billion or less, that would solve many of the problems of pollution and global warming.

I would want to see this done gradually, by reducing birth rates, rather than with a program of mass slaughter.

Yes, I think we would all prefer a reduction in birth rates over mass slaughter. But these are not the only choices, are they? The space frontier has incredible potential, so instead of trying to stem human growth (after all, from an evolutionary perspective, the more replicators we have, the better), why not colonize space?

Edited by Genomicus, : No reason given.


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Genomicus
Member
Posts: 846
Joined: 02-15-2012


Message 26 of 46 (687181)
01-08-2013 11:49 AM


More on topic, in some circles there has been concern over rice that is being engineered with human genes.

See, here, for example:
http://www.naturalnews.com/...O_rice_human_genes_Kansas.html

What a lot people do not realize, however, is that plant genomes contain what are basically "human genes." E.g., there are quite a few plant genes that share close identity (some that are nearly 100% identical) with human genes. So eating plants that have "human genes" is not something new, and so there is no need to say things like:
"Unless the rice you buy is certified organic, or comes specifically from a farm that tests its rice crops for genetically modified (GM) traits, you could be eating rice tainted with actual human genes."

OMGZ they are making rice with actual human genes


  
nwr
Member
Posts: 5537
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005
Member Rating: 4.3


(1)
Message 27 of 46 (687255)
01-08-2013 9:06 PM
Reply to: Message 25 by Genomicus
01-08-2013 11:37 AM


..., why not colonize space?

I don't have any problem with that. However, it will be very difficult and very expensive. I don't see it happening in time to relieve the pressures of increasing population.

Fundamentalism - the anti-American, anti-Christian branch of American Christianity

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xongsmith
Member
Posts: 1812
From: massachusetts US
Joined: 01-01-2009
Member Rating: 2.7


(1)
Message 28 of 46 (687259)
01-08-2013 10:12 PM
Reply to: Message 25 by Genomicus
01-08-2013 11:37 AM


Genomicus writes:
Yes, I think we would all prefer a reduction in birth rates over mass slaughter. But these are not the only choices, are they? The space frontier has incredible potential, so instead of trying to stem human growth (after all, from an evolutionary perspective, the more replicators we have, the better), why not colonize space?

Problem is that population increases GEOMETRICALLY. Even the exploration and colonization of space is basically a change from close to a 2-dimensional world (the surface of the earth) to a 3-dimensional world (surfaces of terraformed planets and lots and lots of space station artificial worlds). Sure - it would relieve much today. But over the long haul (say billions & billions & billions of years, told in a Carl Sagan voice), eventually the fuck-like-bunnies behavior will run into a problem again. Perhaps the recent findings that the universe is increasing it's rate of expansion may assuage this. I dunno.

The argument for colonizing space is so that an earth-destroying asteroid won't wipe us out. Apropos that point, set your calendars for February 15th when a sizeable asteroid comes inside of the geosynchronous satellite belt, visible over the Atlantic ocean's geosync dish reception, rising from the south and rapidly moving off to the north, dipping under 7th magnitude at the peak.

Here is a quote from the site here:

On February 15, 2013, the asteroid will travel rapidly from the southern evening sky into the northern morning sky with its closest Earth approach occurring about 19:26 UTC when it will achieve a magnitude of less than seven, which is somewhat fainter than naked eye visibility. About 4 minutes after its Earth close approach, there is a good chance it will pass into the Earths shadow for about 18 minutes or so before reappearing from the eclipse. When traveling rapidly into the northern morning sky, 2012 DA14 will quickly fade in brightness.

As Winston Churchill was believed to have said, "There is nothing as exhilarating as having been shot at and missed!"


- xongsmith, 5.7d

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Genomicus
Member
Posts: 846
Joined: 02-15-2012


Message 29 of 46 (687446)
01-10-2013 5:45 PM


I don't have any problem with that. However, it will be very difficult and very expensive. I don't see it happening in time to relieve the pressures of increasing population.

Given the rate that nanotechnology and similar lines of tech are developing, I don't think space colonization is too far in the future. Vast regions of the world are uninhabited, so currently the population problem is not one of space but of resources (e.g., food). This is where technology like genetic engineering comes into play.

Re:

I would want to see this done gradually, by reducing birth rates, rather than with a program of mass slaughter.

But given that the human species is not unified under one government, how are we going to regulate the population in places where we are not in control (whoever "we" might be)? Actually, I think the biggest population problems do stem from those areas of the world in which we have but little control.

Xongsmith mounts a more formidable case for birth rate reduction:

Problem is that population increases GEOMETRICALLY. Even the exploration and colonization of space is basically a change from close to a 2-dimensional world (the surface of the earth) to a 3-dimensional world (surfaces of terraformed planets and lots and lots of space station artificial worlds).

In light of this consideration, I think it is necessary to take measures to gradually reduce the exponential growth of the human population.

The argument for colonizing space is so that an earth-destroying asteroid won't wipe us out.

That has never been my main interest in colonizing space. The conquest of space opens up a whole new world (a whole new space) of opportunity for advancement. Surely, the interest in space colonization isn't merely because of the threat of an earth-destroying asteroid?


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AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 3428
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006


(2)
Message 30 of 46 (687459)
01-10-2013 6:58 PM
Reply to: Message 29 by Genomicus
01-10-2013 5:45 PM


Surely, the interest in space colonization isn't merely because of the threat of an earth-destroying asteroid?

And comets and gamma-ray bursts and a half dozen other big bad boogeymen hanging out there. Some extinction level event on this planet is not a matter of if but when. When you look at the timing of such events in the past we are overdue.

We gotta get off this rock like quick if this species, and a whole bunch more we can take with us, are going to survive.

"merely because of a threat"? It damn well is the most important reason.


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