Mr. Seed wants you to take a stand against the agrichemical industry

Mr. Seed campaign
© SeedMatters

He has a potty mouth, but he's on a mission to stop things from getting even worse.

A new campaign is underway to prevent the further consolidation of the seed industry. Its poster boy in a new animated video clip is Mr. Seed, an organic seed who explains why farming does not have to be done the way Big Agriculture says, and that organic seeds are better for the world for countless reasons. Mr. Seed fills his rant with swear words, so be forewarned: this clip is not suitable for kids (and it “may be offensive to agrichemical execs”)!

Mr. Seed takes the viewer through a normal day, starting with his breakfast smoothie, made from soil, beetle dung, and dry-aged manure (“I shouldn’t,” he says, “but I’ve earned it”). From there he heads to the gym, doing pull-ups on a set of gymnastics rings while the genetically modified seeds around him struggle to lift barbells:

“We’re also bred to produce stronger, tougher roots, not like these GMO bros. And without the performance-enhancing chemicals.”

The next moment he walks into the change room to discover more of those GMO bros snorting white powder from a box of “Pound Up.” Mr. Seed’s day wraps up with a glass of wine on a blanket in front of the fireplace, reading aloud his favorite breeding tips from the Kama Seedra.

The video clip is surprisingly edgy and a bit shocking, not your typical cute, animated description of a challenging issue. The creators from Seed Matters have two specific goals in mind:

(1) To get people talking about plant breeding and seed ownership, primarily “the consequences of a seed industry largely controlled by agrichemical companies”

(2) To encourage viewers to sign a petition letter to the Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to block pending and future mergers within the seed industry

Civil Eats reports:

“Currently, the so-called ‘Big Six’ agrichemical seed companies control 63 percent of the commercial seed market and 75 percent of the global agrochemical market. The R&D budgets of these companies is 15 times higher than all U.S. public spending on agricultural research. If the mergers and acquisitions that are currently on the table—such as Bayer’s recent $63 billion offer to buy Monsanto—take place, the number of major seed companies would be reduced to just three.”

The consolidation is frightening. Seed prices will continue to rise, as they already have in recent years; the number of choices that farmers have will decrease even further; and the absurd lack of oversight within the seed industry will only get worse. To put things into perspective, Matthew Dillon, the director of Seed Matters, told Civil Eats:

“No other industry has concentrated so much power so quickly. It took 500 years of global banking systems to concentrate to the point where they are today—and they are not even as concentrated as the seed industry. Yet no other industry is as necessary for our sustenance and survival.”

Seed Matters is hoping that Mr. Seed gets the conversation started, that his cheeky video will go viral, and that people will sign the petition in this crucial presidential campaign year.

Tags: Agriculture | Chemicals | Farming | Food Safety | Food Security | Fruits & Vegetables

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