Contact l Sitemap

home industries issues reasearch weblog press

Home  » Industries » Food and Agriculture

CorpWatch Exclusives

Papua New Guinea Landowners Win Lands Back From Malaysian Palm Oil Plantation
by Fatima HansiaCorpWatch Blog
June 16th, 2014
A Papua New Guinea (PNG) court revoked two 99 year land titles awarded to Kuala Lumpur Kepong (KLK) of Malaysia to develop palm oil plantations on 38,350 hectares of land in Collingwood Bay in Oro province following complaints of land grabbing by customary landowners.

World Bank Agrees to Investigate Labor Conditions at Indian Tea Company
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
February 21st, 2014
The World Bank has agreed to investigate Amalgamated Plantations Private Limited (APPL) in India for abusive working conditions on tea plantations in the north-eastern Indian state of Assam, following a formal complaint by workers. A Columbia Law School team has confirmed the workers allegations.

Mauritanian Villagers Protest Saudi National Prawn Company Investment
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
February 5th, 2014
Villagers in Boghé, a community 190 miles south west of the Mauritanian capital of Nouakchott, are protesting a proposed $1 billion investment by the Saudi National Prawn Company (NPC) in an aquaculture project in the Senegal river valley that will cover 31,000 hectares.

World Bank Slammed for Dinant Loan Linked to Honduran Killings
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
January 14th, 2014
An independent ombudsman has confirmed that World Bank officials should have raised serious questions before the International Finance Corporation (IFC) – the private sector arm of the World Bank – approved a $30 million loan to Corporación Dinant in Honduras in 2009 for palm oil plantation projects.

Chocolate Slavery Case Against Nestlé Allowed to Proceed
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
December 24th, 2013
Eight years after they sued Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), Cargill and Nestlé for allegedly forcing them to work as child labor on a Côte d'Ivoire cocoa plantation, three young men from Mali have won a small victory – the ability to be heard in a California court.

Police Attack Palm Oil Protestors in Sierra Leone
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
December 10th, 2013
Sierra Leone police opened fire on a group of protestors who were demonstrating against a palm oil plantation in the southern province of Pujehun. The project is being developed by Societe Financiere des Caoutchoucs (Socfin), a French agri-business giant.

Canada Approves Genetically Modified Salmon Exports to Panama
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
November 25th, 2013
AquaBounty, a U.S. biotechnology company based in Maryland, has secured approval from the Canadian government to export 100,000 AquAdvantage salmon eggs from Prince Edward Island in eastern Canada to Chiriquí province in western Panama.

Potash Cartel Causes Friction Between Russia and Belarus
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
November 21st, 2013
A clash between Belaruskali and Uralkali – the global potash exporters from Belarus and Russia respectively – almost destroyed a global cartel that has artificially kept prices of fertilizer as high as $400 a ton in international markets.

Del Monte Plantation Workers Win Settlement in Global Horizons Case
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
November 18th, 2013
Some 150 Thai workers on a Del Monte pineapple plantation in Hawaii will get $1.2 million to settle allegations of sub-standard working conditions. The lawsuit was filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against seven companies including Global Horizons, a labor recruiter from Los Angeles.

Flower Growers in Kenya Strike Against Karuturi Global
by Pratap Chatterjee
October 10th, 2013
Flower growers in Kenya have gone on strike to protest unpaid wages from Karuturi Global, the Indian flower export multinational. The strike is the latest in a series of problems that have caused the company share price to plummet from over Rs39 in 2008 to Rs0.63 in mid-September 2013.

New Zealand Dairy Exporter Admits Third Contamination Scandal
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
August 5th, 2013
Fonterra, a New Zealand company and the world’s largest dairy exporter, has apologized for exporting a milk formula ingredient contaminated with potentially toxic bacteria. The incident comes six years after a company subsidiary in China sold contaminated baby milk formula that killed six infants and made thousands more ill.

Ethiopian Sugar Alleged to Destroy Pastoral Communities of Lower Omo
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
July 18th, 2013
Ethiopian Sugar Corporation is benefiting from forced resettlement of pastoral people in the Lower Omo Valley - a United Nations cultural heritage site - to make way for new sugar plantations and factories, according to a new report from the Oakland Institute.

Cargill Flouts Law to Secretly Build Land Bank in Colombia
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
July 13th, 2013
Cargill, the world’s largest food company, has been secretly amassing land from small farmers in eastern Colombia, despite a law prohibiting the practice. When the two countries signed a free trade agreement last year, Cargill emerged as the owner of 52,574 hectares where it grows corn and soybeans.

Monsanto Refuses to Testify at Seed Hearing in Puerto Rico
by Carmelo Ruiz-MarreroCorpWatch Blog
June 20th, 2013
Monsanto has refused to testify at a major government hearing about the development and sale of seeds in Puerto Rico. At stake is the research that the company conducts into genetic engineering on the island that critics say threaten the environment and can cause serious human health problems.

Ukraine Egg King Global Plans Fail North Carolina Farmers
by Puck LoCorpWatch Blog
May 10th, 2013
Farmers in North Carolina are regretting the day that they put their trust in the Egg King - Oleg Bakhmatyuk – a billionaire agricultural investor from the Ukraine. Over 100 farmers are suing a subsidiary of his global empire for almost $10 million for reneging on chicken sales contracts.

Mehadrin "Jaffa" Oranges May Come from Occupied Palestinian Land
by Puck LoCorpWatch Blog
April 4th, 2013
Jaffa oranges sold in European supermarkets labeled "Made in Israel" may have been grown and packaged in the occupied Palestinian West Bank, according to a report from the Boycott Divest Sanction (BDS) movement, an international coalition of Palestinian NGOs and activists.

Monsanto Bullies Small Farmers Over Planting Harvested GMO Seeds
by Puck LoCorpWatch Blog
March 24th, 2013
Does Monsanto own all future generations of genetically modified seeds that it sells? The Missouri-based agribusiness giant wants farmers to pay a royalty to plant any seed that descended from a patented original. The legal decision has ramifications for other patented "inventions" that reproduce themselves like strands of DNA.

Sierra Leone Farmers Evicted for Sugarcane Biofuel Plantations
by Jennifer KennedyCorpWatch Blog
March 5th, 2013
Addax Bioenergy, a Swiss energy company, is jeopardizing the livelihoods of thousands of subsistence farmers in order to export ethanol made from sugarcane grown in Sierra Leone, according to the Sierra Leone Network on the Right to Food and Brot Für Alle, an NGO based in Switzerland.

Sweet Nothing: UK Food Giant Avoids Taxes on Zambia Sugar
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
February 15th, 2013
Associated British Foods (ABF), a UK company that makes Silver Spoon sugar, pays almost no taxes on its profitable Zambian sugar subsidiary, according to a new ActionAid report. The authors allege ABF has avoided estimated taxes of $27 million since 2007, enough to put 48,000 Zambian children in school.

Nestlé Found Guilty of Spying on Swiss Activists
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
January 30th, 2013
Nestlé, the world’s largest food company, has been found guilty of spying on Swiss activists in 2003 with the help of Securitas, a private security company. Jean-Luc Genillard, president of the Lausanne civil court, told the two companies to pay $3,267.55 to each of nine victims.

Argentine Farm Sales Raise Questions of Land Speculation By Soros
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
January 15th, 2013
Hedge fund billionaire George Soros is making a killing buying and selling farmland in South America after converting them to biofuel production. While this has caused the land prices to increase dramatically, the ecological impact is questionable.

Agribusiness Buys California Votes
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
November 6th, 2012
Big corporations bankrolled candidates for the 2012 elections in both the Democratic and Republican parties and bought their votes lock, stock and barrel, contributing over $2 billion out of the $6 billion spent this year. The biggest impact was on a California battle to require labeling of genetically altered products.

Starbucks: Espresso for Investors, Watery Americano in UK Taxes
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
October 26th, 2012
Starbucks, the Seattle-based international coffee chain, has been accused of tax avoidance in the UK. Between 1998 and 2011 the company has made £3 billion in sales but paid out just £8.6 million in taxes on sales from its 735 stores in the country.

Cambodian Activists Call for International Sugar Boycott
by Puck LoCorpWatch Blog
September 11th, 2012
Human rights monitoring groups and Cambodian activists are calling for an international boycott of Tate & Lyle and Domino Sugar, who do business with sugar suppliers accused of participating in government-sanctioned land grabs and illegal evictions throughout rural Cambodia.

Monsanto Faces $7.5 Billion Payout to Brazilian Farmers
by Carmelo Ruiz-MarreroCorpWatch Blog
June 28th, 2012
Monsanto, the largest seed corporation in the world, has long dealt out severe legal sanctions against farmers it suspects of "pirating" its seed. Now farmers in Brazil have turned the tables on the company which may have to pay out $7.5 billion.

Coffee Colonialism: Olam Plantation Displaces Lao Farmers
by Beaumont SmithSpecial to CorpWatch
June 4th, 2012
Olam International, a Singapore based multinational, is growing coffee for export in Paksong, southern Laos. The land for the plantation was seized by Sonesay Siphandone, the district governor, from the upland Nha Huen/Yahern community who have been left without food to eat.

Chiquita Banana To Face Colombia Torture Claim
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
March 30th, 2012
Chiquita, the global banana producer, was ordered to face a federal court over their role in paying off right wing death squads in Colombia that are alleged to have used “random and targeted violence” against villagers in exchange for financial assistance and access to Chiquita’s private port.

Thorny Business: Ethiopian Rose Exports To Europe
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
March 5th, 2012
Karuturi Global and Saudi Star have leased thousands of hectares of land from the Ethiopian government for agricultural development. Critics says these projects have displaced traditional farmers and subsistence crops.

ADM's New Frontiers: Palm Oil Deforestation and Child Labor
by Charlie CraySpecial to CorpWatch
May 18th, 2010
ADM has moved beyond the days of blatant price-fixing that landed its top execs behind bars. But the company's forays into new global agricultural markets bring charges of complicity in forced child labor and rampant deforestation. Critics assert that the conglomerate's embrace of self- regulation and voluntary guidelines is but a cynical ploy to deter effective reform.

Titanium or Water? Trouble brews in Southern India
by Nityanand JayaramanSpecial to CorpWatch
October 24th, 2007
Tata, India's largest conglomerate, wants to take 10,000 acres of land to mine ilmenite in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. The plan has sparked protests by local villagers who say the project will destroy their traditional way of life and the environment.

Trademarking Coffee: Starbucks cuts Ethiopia deal
by Anton FoekSpecial to CorpWatch
May 8th, 2007
Starbucks, the world's largest coffee shop chain, and the Ethiopian government are on the verge of unveiling a deal that the company hopes will end attacks on the company's carefully constructed ethical image.

US: Swift sued over hiring
by Christine TatumDenver Post
December 12th, 2006
Eighteen former Swift & Co. employees who worked at the meatpacker's Cactus, Texas, plant have filed a $23 million lawsuit alleging that Swift hired illegal workers to depress employee wages.

Guest Workers Seek Global Horizons: U.S. Company Profits From Migrant Labor
by Kari LydersenSpecial to CorpWatch
November 3rd, 2006
Global Horizons is one of the biggest companies in the business of importing temporary foreign workers to do jobs in the U.S. ranging from agriculture to nursing. Their workers endure similar working conditions to undocumented workers, prompting government investigations. Global Horizon Responds

Green Fuel's Dirty Secret
by Sasha LilleySpecial to CorpWatch
June 1st, 2006
Ethanol made from corn has been touted as the "green fuel" of the future. Archer Daniels Midland, the largest U.S. producer of ethanol, stands to make a fortune from environmentally conscious car drivers. But is ethanol really as environmentally clean as it is hyped to be? Listen to an interview with Sasha Lilley on CorpWatch Radio. 

Australia Reaps Iraqi Harvest
by Marc MoncriefSpecial to CorpWatch
April 4th, 2006
United Nations sanctions against Saddam Hussein may have failed to end his regime but they succeeded in enriching both the Iraqi dictator and corporations able to manipulate the scandal-ridden world body's Oil-for-Food program. Among the profiteers was the Australian Wheat Board, a former state-owned monopoly, which funneled over $200 million into Saddam's coffers even as the “Coalition of the Willing” was preparing for invasion.

Some Strings Attached: Cotton, Farm subsidies tie up global trade talks
by Pratap ChatterjeeSpecial to CorpWatch
December 13th, 2005
West African cotton farmers are among those hardest hit by government subsidized corporate agriculture. This week in Hong Kong, trade ministers from the 148 members of the World Trade Organization meet to discusss this and other global free trade issues.

The Cows Have Come Home
by Diane FarsettaSpecial to CorpWatch
September 1st, 2005
After fighting mad cow safeguards, the US beef industry complains about the consequences - a multi-billion dollar decline in exports - and a shortage of imported beef because of inadequate domestic testing and labeling.

Playing Chicken: Ghana vs. the IMF
by Linus AtarahSpecial to CorpWatch
June 14th, 2005
Thanks to the IMF and the World Bank, chicken and other local agriculture staples in Ghana are being replaced by subsidized foreign imports.

Meat Packer's Union on the Chopping Block
by Sasha LilleySpecial to CorpWatch
April 18th, 2005
Today's meat packing industry relies increasingly on high-speed, treacherous disassembly lines. Perhaps that's why Tyson Foods, Inc. -- a giant in a flourishing industry -- is working to take apart a union that prioritizes safety over speed.

Food Giants on the Run
by Michele SimonSpecial to CorpWatch
March 21st, 2005
The food industry is working with politicians across the United States to rewrite laws in order to shield themselves from lawsuits based on obesity and related health problems.

Paving the Amazon with Soy
by Sasha LilleySpecial to CorpWatch
December 16th, 2004
Soy rules the central Brazilian state of Mato Grosso and it's not the soy that much of the world associates with the ostensibly eco-friendly, vegetarian diet, either. With help from the World Bank, André Maggi (the Soy King) is bankrolling the destruction of one of the world's most biodiverse ecosystems: the savanna.

Dynamite in the Center of Town
by Joshua KarlinerSpecial to CorpWatch
December 2nd, 2004
In 1984 the world's largest industrial disaster killed 8,000 people over night in Bhopal, India. Two decades later, some sort of closure might seem called for. But today survivors groups continue to struggle for justice, while the chemical industry promotes volunteer initiatives.

Clouds on the Organic Horizon
by Carmelo Ruiz-MarreroSpecial to CorpWatch
November 25th, 2004
Until a decade ago, organic foods were available only through tiny farmers markets, health and natural food stores, but today their growing popularity means that more organic food is now sold by chain stores like Whole Foods. Often, the food itself is grown on corporate-owned farms, no longer synonymous with small farms, rural communities, social justice and humane treatment of animals.

Sweet and Sour
by Jim LobeSpecial to CorpWatch
June 23rd, 2004
A new report from Human Rights Watch reveals that American corporations such as Coca-Cola may be getting sugar from plantations in El Salvador that employ child labor.

Barren Justice
by Sasha LilleySpecial to CorpWatch
May 13th, 2004
Nicaraguan banana workers have been struggling for compensation from Dole Fruit, Shell, and Dow Chemical for exposure to the pesticide DBCP. The obstacles to justice are many, including the US courts, powerful lobbies, and free trade agreements.

Coke with Yet Another New Twist: Toxic Cola
by Amit SrivastavaSpecial to CorpWatch
January 17th, 2004
As the World Social Forum opens in Mumbai, India, the spotlight has been turned on Coca-Cola and Pepsi, whose products have been found to be laden with pesticides and insecticides.

An Unreasonable Woman
by Helene VostersSpecial to CorpWatch
May 15th, 2003
Diane Wilson, a fourth-generation shrimper, is a long time environmental justice activist and adversary to corporate polluters like Union Carbide and Dow Chemical. In the early 1980's after witnessing dolphin die-offs, decreased fish catches, and increased health problems in her home-town of Seadrift, Texas, Wilson discovered that she lived in the most polluted county (Calhoun) in the U.S.

Farmers Fight to Keep Monsanto's Genetically Modified Wheat Out of Canada
by Tom PriceSpecial to CorpWatch
March 5th, 2003
A coaliton of farmers is fighting to keep Monsanto's "Roundup Ready Wheat" out of Canada. They say GM contamination would threaten exports.

Precision Farming: The Marriage Between Agribusiness and Spy Technology
by Carmelo Ruiz-MarreroSpecial to CorpWatch
October 2nd, 2002
Precision farming: high tech corporate responsibility or agribusiness expansion? We look at the use of satellites and new technology in farming.

Biotechnology's Third Generation
by Carmelo Ruiz-MarreroSpecial to CorpWatch
April 5th, 2002
From golden rice to anti-viral tomatoes, is the biotech industry's third generation good medicine or good marketing? And, activists ask, what are the environmental consequences?

Genetic Pollution: Biotech Corn Invades Mexico
by Carmelo Ruiz-MarreroSpecial to CorpWatch
March 20th, 2002
Mexican farmers say their crops are contaminated by GM corn. At stake: their harvest, native seeds and very livelihood.

Seeds of Resistance: Grassroots Activism vs. Biotech Agriculture
by Julie LightSpecial to CorpWatch
May 25th, 2000
SAN RAMON, CA -- About a dozen demonstrators dressed in mock biohazard suits dump food products from Safeway supermarket shelves into a plastic bin in front of the Marriott Hotel in this quiet suburban town East of San Francisco.

Stolen Harvest
CorpWatch
March 17th, 2000
Stolen Harvest is the story of how those who labor, those who grow foods, nature and her amazing creatures, are all literally being stolen by tremendously clever mechanisms being put in place by global corporations trying to find new markets.

Pete Wilson (Honorary Baron)
Political Ecology Group
March 31st, 1997
Wilson's support for methyl bromide has certainly helped make him a powerful economic force in the political arena.

Trical Inc.
Political Ecology Group
March 31st, 1997
A largely mysterious entity, TriCal is owned and operated by its President, Dean Storkan. Together with some of his top lieutenants, Roger Hruby, Hank Maze and Tom Duafala, Storkan operates a series of thirteen related corporations in which he has significant, if not controlling financial interests.

Assorted and Sundry Barons
Political Ecology Group
March 31st, 1997
Various other corporations and industry associations participate in the transnational effort to perpetuate the use of the Class I Toxin and Class I ozone depleter, methyl bromide.

Sun-Diamond Growers of California
Political Ecology Group
March 31st, 1997
The most blatent case of the Bromide Barons attempting to underine the democratic process with their financial influence is that of Sun-Diamond Growers of California. A large agricultural concern that uses methyl bromide to grow young fruit trees and to fumigate stored fruit and nuts.

Methyl Bromide Working Group
Political Ecology Group
March 31st, 1997
Led by the Methyl Bromide Working Group (MBWG) and its chief lobbyist Peter G. Sparber, the Barons of Bromide are working on a number of fronts to undermine the U.S. Clean Air Act and thus to perpetuate the use of methyl bromide indefinitely.

Methyl Bromide Global Coalition
Political Ecology Group
March 31st, 1997
The Methyl Bromide Global Coalition (MBGC) has exerted significant influence on all aspects of the methyl bromide debate, inserting itself as a central player in international scientific panels, diplomatic negotiations and public pronouncements on the issue.

Dead Sea Bromine Group
Political Ecology Group
March 31st, 1997
Dead Sea Bromine produces as much as 30 percent of world output of methyl bromide, which it exports to Europe, Africa, the United States and China. However, very little information is available on this Israeli transnational corporation.

The Bromide Barons
Political Ecology Group
March 31st, 1997
A handful of corporations control the methyl bromide industry. Enter the realm of the Bromide Barons.

Albemarle Corporation
Political Ecology Group
March 31st, 1997
Today the Albemarle Corporation is one of the top three producers of methyl bromide in the world. Founded in 1887 to produce blotting papers for fountain pens, Albemarle stayed a paper products company for many years.

First Hand Experience
by Alba MoralesPolitical Ecology Group
March 31st, 1997
Photos and words from farm workers and communities neighboring methyl bromide injected fields.

Push Back the Poison: Ban Methyl Bromide
by Joshua KarlinerCorpWatch
March 31st, 1997
Methyl bromide is a silent killer. Colorless and odorless, it is highly toxic to a wide spectrum of organisms, including human beings. It would be fast on its way out today if it weren't for a small handful of corporations, industry associations and elected officials which have worked stealthily and assiduously to keep this deadly product on the market and in the field.

Farm Workers on the Front Lines
CorpWatch
March 31st, 1997
CorpWatch talks with Dolores Huerta of the United Farm Workers about their long history of working to ban dangerous pesticides.