2019 Update Report about Collective Action Protecting Native Mexican Corn From Genetic Modification

Published 31 July 2019

We have litigated for five year in 19 federal courts to defend, through this class action lawsuit, Mexican native maize and its wild relatives against the depredation of transnational corporations Monsanto, Syngenta, Dow Agrosciences, and PHI Mexico (better known around the world as DuPont), and against complicity of two Ministry of State (agriculture and environment). This would end the genetic biodiversity of corn in the environment.

The lawsuit seeks of the federal courts a judgment where they declare that the release or sowing of transgenic maize will damage the human right to biological diversity of native maize, of current and future generations; as well as the human rights to food, health and native peoples. The ultimate purpose is to deny all permits for the release or planting of GMOs for maize.

The complainants of this class action lawsuit have succeeded in suspending the sowing of transgenic corn throughout the entire country from September 2013 to date, thanks to a precautionary measure ordered by the judicial branch. Since 2016, only planting permits can be granted for scientific purposes, but if the biosecurity measures are not effective the judge is authorized to suspend all types of permits, as well as the scientist of the class action lawsuit can know, comment and challenge the vigilance that the judge performs on the glyphosate herbicide, the unauthorized presence of transgenics and scientific research. However, the Agriculture Ministry has not issued any permits.

In addition, Agriculture Ministry and Environmental Ministry since 2016 must submit monthly reports to the judge where they must report that NO permission to plant corn transgenic has been granted or processed. The transnational defendants have tried 15 amparo trials to withdraw the injunction, so far we have won 11 trial, 4 are pending resolution by the Supreme Court.

In these five years, the main trial has passed the stages of preliminary admission, certification of the lawsuit (at this stage it passed 11 lawsuits of amparo that promoted the federal government and transnationals), offer and preparation of evidence.

We are currently processing challenges on the preparation of the evidence, because the defendants in the trial try to justify their technology by mutilating scientific articles financed by themselves with incomplete translations. The stages that remain pending in the first instance are the final hearing and the judgment.

Call to Action

Do you wish to contribute your art work or time to help this important legal injunction to keep stopping Monsanto and others from selling their GM corn? We will amplify your submission over all our social media channels!

Check this link or donate below: together we stand strong! Thank you.

The Crowd vs. GM Corn in Mexico

Stop Monsanto and other multinationals from growing genetically modified (GM) corn that will force all farmers to grow GM corn, will harm biodiversity, and ultimately puts Mexican cultural heritage and way of life at risk. Read more…

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Monsanto’s reasons for fighting GMO labelling? It loves you.


#GMO #Monsanto #organic #food #foodsafety

Fed up with Monsanto meddling in our food chain?

Then help stop them and the other large multinationals (Bayer, DuPont, etc.) from establishing their farming practices and seed control in Mexico, the country of origin for corn.

The Crowd vs. GM Corn in Mexico

Stop Monsanto and other multinationals from growing genetically modified (GM) corn that will force all farmers to grow GM corn, will harm biodiversity, and ultimately puts Mexican cultural heritage and way of life at risk. Read more…

The current exchange rate is 1 EUR equals 1.08 USD.
Select Payment Method
Personal Info


Donation Total: $10.83 One Time

{amount} donation plus {fee_amount} to help cover fees.

Re-published with permission; 17 July 2019

Glyphosate Herbicides Now Banned or Restricted in 17 Countries Worldwide – Sustainable Pulse Research

Posted on  May 28 2019 – 4:00pm  by  Sustainable Pulse, original article here

Following the recent bans on the use of glyphosate-based herbicides by cities and institutions in the U.S., including Key West, Los Angeles, the University of California and Miami, Sustainable Pulse decided to research which countries around the world have banned or restricted the use of the world’s most used herbicide.

This research has led to the discovery that there is a growing swell of government level support worldwide for bans on glyphosate-based herbicides for both health and environmental reasons.

17 countries have now banned or restricted the use of this carcinogenic herbicide.

Previous research by Sustainable Pulse on the number of countries that have banned GM Crops has reached millions of people and we look forward to our latest research reaching an even wider audience. Sustainable Pulse welcomes additions or edits to the list below from readers and experts from around the Globe.


Malawi: Malawi’s Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development announced the suspension of import permits for glyphosate in April 2019.


Vietnam: Vietnam announced that it banned the import of all glyphosate-based herbicides with in March 2019 following a cancer trial verdict from San Francisco

Sri Lanka: In 2015 a full import ban on all glyphosate-based herbicides was put in place by the then newly elected President Maithripala Sirisena. This ban was partly lifted in July 2018 but only for use on tea and rubber plantations.

Six Middle Eastern countries banned the import and use of glyphosate-based herbicides in coordination with each other in 2015 and 2016:

  • Oman
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Kuwait
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Bahrain
  • Qatar

Central America:

Bermuda: Bermuda’s Environment Minister Cole Simons confirmed the ban on glyphosate-based herbicides at a public meeting in January 2017.

St Vincent and the Grenadines: In August 2018 Agriculture Minister Saboto Caesar called on all stakeholders to be understanding of the new suspension on glyphosate-based herbicides “in light of the nation’s quest to promote a safe working environment and good agricultural health and food safety practices.”


Belgium: In October 2018 the ban on the sale of broad-spectrum herbicides (including glyphosate) to non-professional users entered in to force across Belgium.

Czech Republic: In 2018 the Czech Republic put strict restrictions on the use of glyphosate and banned pre-harvest spraying; “These substances (glyphosate-based herbicides) will only be employed in cases when no other efficient method can be used,” Agriculture Minister Miroslav Toman said.

Denmark: In July 2018, the Danish government implemented new rules banning the use of glyphosate on all post-emergent crops to avoid residues on foods.

France: In 2017 France banned the use of glyphosate and all other pesticides in public green spaces. In November 2018 President Macron said he would take all measures necessary to ensure that glyphosate-based herbicides are banned in France as soon as an alternative is available and at the latest within three years. However, he has since stated that this deadline may only be 80% met.

Italy: In August 2016 Italy’s Ministry of Health banned the use of glyphosate in public areas and also as a pre-harvest spray.

The Netherlands: From the end of 2015 the sale of glyphosate-based herbicides has been banned to all non-business entities.

Call to Action:

Want to help keep Mexico’s ban on corn (maize) in place? You can make a difference, by adding your voice to Be the Difference or, just as important, donating so that the nonprofit organization Alternativas can continue its legal battles against GMO in Mexico.

Buzzfeed: Monsanto Ordered To Pay $2 Billion To Couple With Cancer

The jury award marked the latest and most devastating blow to the agrochemical giant over its popular Roundup brand weed killer.

Published by www.BuzzFeedNews.com 13 May 2019 at 18.42 GMT-5

Written by:

Salvador Hernandez BuzzFeed News Reporter

Stephanie K. Baer BuzzFeed News Reporter

A California jury awarded $2 billion on Monday to an elderly couple that developed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma after years of using Monsanto’s popular weed killer Roundup, delivering a major blow to the agrochemical giant.

The jury found the company failed to warn consumers that Roundup could cause cancer, attorneys said, dealing the company its third major loss in court in a series of lawsuits claiming the herbicide was behind the development of cancer.

“Two billion dollars in punitive damages is as clear a statement as you can get that they [Monsanto] have to change what they’re doing,” Brent Wisner, who represented Alva and Alberta Pilliod, said in at a press conference. “Monsanto needs to change its conduct.”

Haven Daley / AP

A spokesperson for Bayer, the parent company for Monsanto, told BuzzFeed News the company believed the $2 billion punitive judgment was “excessive and unjustifiable” and it planned to appeal the decision.

“Bayer is disappointed with the jury’s decision and will appeal the verdict in this case,” the company said.

“We have a great sympathy for Mr. and Mrs. Pilliod, but evidence in this case was clear that both have long histories of illnesses known to be substantial risk factors for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL),” it said.

In response, Bayer pointed to a recent statement from US Environmental Protection Agency released April 30, which found that glyphosate posed “no risk to public health.”

“EPA has found no risks to public health from the current registered uses of glyphosate,” EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said in a statement.

The chemical is the most commonly used herbicide in the US, according to the agency, and it’s used on more than 100 food crops.

“If we are going to feed 10 billion people by 2050, we are going to need all the tools at our disposal, which includes the use the [sic] glyphosate,” Agriculture Secretary Sonny Purdue said in April.

The EPA’s findings would contradict a 2015 report from the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer, which found glyphosate was probably carcinogenic to humans.

As multiple cases make their way to court, documents released in legal proceedings have also raised questions regarding the research of glyphosate. Internal emails and suggest Monsanto had ghostwritten research involving the chemical and that an EPA official had possibly moved to influence reviews by the government agency.

The EPA’s office of inspector general is reportedly looking into the allegations.

Meanwhile, environmental groups applauded the jury’s decision Monday.

The Pilliods bought their first home in 1982, attorneys said, and later bought four more properties. From then on, the couple used Roundup about once a week for about nine months a year until they were diagnosed with cancer. Attorneys said the couple sprayed their properties with the weed killler regularly thinking it was safe.

“Nobody ever told them it was dangerous,” Michael Miller, another attorney who represented the couple, said. “They saw ads on TV. They thought they could trust the company. They were wrong.”

Alberta Pilliod continues to need about $20,000 a month in medication, including chemotherapy, to fight a brain tumor that has been detected twice, her attorney said.

“We wish that Monsanto had warned us ahead of time of the dangers of using Monsanto and that there was something in the front of their label that said ‘Danger, may cause cancer,'” Alberta Pilliod said at the press conference. “It’s changed our lives forever. We can’t do the things that we used to be able to do, and we really resent Monsanto for that fact.”

Embedded video

Monday’s decision is the latest and most devastating blow to the company, which is facing thousands of similar cases.

In August, a San Francisco jury handed an unanimous decision to award $290 million to Dewayne Johnson, who claimed the active ingredient in Roundup — glyphosate — caused him to develop non-Hodgkin’s lymphona.

Monsanto said it planned to appeal that decision, with its vice president declaring “the jury got it wrong.”

In March, a federal jury again found that the herbicide played a significant role in causing Edwin Hardeman, 70, to develop cancer.

In the most recent case, Alva and Alberta Pilliod, of Livermore, California, claimed that after using Roundup for more than 30 years to landscape their home and other properties, they were both diagnosed with the same type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Alva was diagnosed in 2011, while Alberta Pilliod was diagnosed in 2015.

On Monday, a jury handed down a $2.055 billion decision in favor of the Pilliods, including $1 billion each in punitive damages against Monsanto.

Brent Wisner, one of the attorneys who represented the Pilliods, said this most recent case not only sent a message to Monsanto, but to the EPA, which he accused of helping hide the effects of glyphosate.

“For 45 years the EPA has been saying it doesn’t cause cancer,” Wisner said. “They’d have to come to grips that they have blood in their hands.”


The Fight to Save the Traditional Tortilla in Mexico – New York Times

Posted on December 27, 2018

In Mexico, the classic staple – made with heirloom corn – is under pressure from mass production and modernity, but small torilla producers are pushing back. 

TLAXIACO, Mexico — Petra Cruz González wakes at 6 every morning to make some 400 tortillas by hand. Despite a few modern advancements, like an electric flour mill and a metal hand press, she still cooks them over a wood fire as she learned to do when she was 8 years old.

Handmade tortilla

Ms. González, 49, sells tortillas on the street and from her home. As the president of the Union de Palmeadoras in Tlaxiaco, which started in 1990 to organize this Oaxacan city’s handmade tortilla producers, she believes this is important work. The union’s 89 members (all but one a woman) are fighting to keep this millenniums-old tradition alive in the face of cheaper competitors.

Quality is suffering

Quality has suffered in the race for the cheapest tortilla; nearly half the supply is now made with industrially produced masa harina, or corn flour, like Maseca, but small producers are pushing back. 

Read full article on nytimes.com.

Why Government South Africa Rejects GMO Maize

Posted on December 17, 2018

GMO free corn

In October, 2018, the government of South Africa refused to authorize the GM Triple Stacked maize from Monsanto. They wanted to implement this for commercial growing. 

The Executive Council through the GMO Act stated that the data provided by Monsanto were not convincing. The data did not demonstrate the significant claim that GM maize was drought-tolerant, insect-resistant, and would lead to better yields than conventional maize.

The African Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) is elated with the decision of the South African bio-safety authorities. They consistently disputed the accuracy of Monsanto’s claims of increased yield performance. ACB and more than 25 000 people, from South Africa and around the world, signed a petition to reject Monsanto’s application.

ACB’s Executive Director Mariam Mayet remains hopeful that South Africa may be taking an important lead, as evidence emerges of the failure of GM technology. Today, the ACB calls on all African governments to implement holistic strategies. These strategies already show effectiveness in the field to support small-holder farmers. These include various agro-ecological strategies such as inter-cropping, the ‘push-pull’ system, and integrated pest management strategies.

This approach can provide sustainable solutions. Other positive outcomes are that it will not further involve debt for the farmers. Additionally, it will not compromise their health or that of their surrounding environment.

GMO companies also want to pave their way into Mexico to grow GM corn at a commercial level. They want to force farmers to grow GM corn there. This will harm biodiversity and ultimately puts Mexican cultural heritage and way of life at risk. Maize originated in Mexico.

Change this by helping Mexican citizens stop this.

Source Sustainablepulse.com

Tenth Semestral Report by Maize Collective Demand


5 July 2018

We have completed 5 years of litigation in 19 federal courts. This report complies with the legal requirement to inform the general public, as consumers of corn in Mexico and users of the environment’s genetic biodiversity, as well as the signatories of the class action lawsuit against the planting of transgenic corn, so that they be aware of the actions taken and  the results achieved in the defense of Mexican native maize and its wild relatives.

  1. Precautionary measures to suspend the planting of transgenic corn.

The class action lawsuit has succeeded in suspending the planting of transgenic corn throughout the country from September 2013 to the present.

Pre-commercial and commercial permits are suspended by the court’s order; however, since 2016, GM corn can be planted for scientific purposes. In the latter case, permits can  be suspended again if, upon receiving federal government reports, the courts detect (or are presented with evidence) that biosecurity measures in place are ineffective. However, SAGARPA (Mexico’s Agriculture Agency) has NOT issued any permits of this type.

The defendant transnational companies (Monsanto, Syngenta, Dow Agrosciences and PHI Mexico, known worldwide as Dupont), and SAGARPA have, together, filed fifteen  injunctions (amparo lawsuits) requesting to be allowed to plant  transgenic corn. These injunctions sought the lifting of the suspension that we have obtained. We have won eleven of these amparo lawsuits and there are still four cases pending resolution. Thanks to these court victories, the SUSPENSION of GM corn planting is maintained.

The First Chamber of Mexico’s Supreme Court of Justice decided that it will analyze, within the next six months, the precautionary measures currently in place. However, the court has not yet stated whether it will decide only the constitutionality of the laws on which the measures are based, or if it will also examine the questionings against the judicial order.

PHI Mexico has challenged the constitutionality of article 610, section IV, of the Federal Code of Civil Procedure, because  the precautionary measures have (i) defined what type of transgenic maize crops are judicially suspended and which ones are NOT; and (ii)  ordered the government to submit reports that could lead to the general suspension being reinstated.

On the other hand, between May 2016 and June 2018, SAGARPA and SEMARNAT (Mexico’s Environment Agency) have submitted monthly reports to the court (some of them extemporaneous), in which )they report that they have NOT granted any type of permits for the planting of GM corn.

Had these agencies issued a permit (for scientific purposes) it would be subject to the control and supervision of the federal judge, before, during and after the planting authorization. The scientists of the class action lawsuit have the right to be informed on, express their opinion about, and challenge the judge’s vigilance on the use of the glyphosate herbicide, the unauthorized presence of transgenics, the terms scientific research, etc.

  1. Class Action Lawsuit against transgenic corn

Remedy Sought n

That federal courts declare that the release into the environment or planting of transgenic maize will damage the human right to the biological diversity of native maize of the current and future generations, as well as the rights to food, health and the rights of indigenous peoples. Consequently, the remedy sought is that courts deny all requests to  release or plant GM maize.

Case in Court

In five years we have overcome the following procedural phases: preliminary admission of the lawsuit, certification of the claim (phase in which the decision in our favor was challenged by additional eleven   amparo lawsuits filed by the federal government and the transnational companies), conciliation (in which an agreement was not reached by the parties), and gathering and presentation of evidence. We are  currently presenting motions in relation to evidentiary matters.

For example, we have detected that the defendant multinational corporations intended to justify the use of their technology by mutilating scientific articles through incomplete translations; we have questioned it just after the companies presented these documents and before the court accepted them as evidence. The court was request to verify the correction of these documents.

On the other hand, the defendants have also questioned, long after the court had accepted them, some of the documents the plaintiffs have presented as evidence.  rDespite a denial to a similar request from our side, the companies´ motion to reject some of our evidence was granted. We have challenged this decision with a revocation appeal.

Because the judge granted to the companies the same request that was denied to the plaintiffs, we have filed a writ of amparo that has been recently been admitted by the court. Collective actions are designed to allow access to justice to those who DO NOT have the means to litigate before the courts. To achieve this, judges must balance the lack of means of the class, against the disproportionate power of commercial corporations, and NOT the other way around.

In addition, in 2018 we have proposed and obtained the acceptance as evidence of new scientific studies. One of them, an official document already accepted by the judge as evidence, proves that the illicit (NOT allowed) dispersion of GM corn causes a combination of transgenes that have never been analyzed nor evaluated. The same study demonstrates the inadequacy of the government monitoring on this issue. Another study that has not yet been accepted by the court brings a meta-scientific analysis that demonstrates that modern biotechnology or genetic engineering produces unexpected consequences in crops.

For more information please write to: rene.sanchez.galindo@gmail.com

Monsanto pushes for GMO seeds in Mexico

Despite ‘probable carcinogenic’ herbicides

First Posted: Mar 10, 2016 08:18 AM EST

“Amidst a local court ruling to rescind the ban on GMO corn in 2015, the fight between the large agribusinesses companies like Monsanto and some locals persists over the growing of genetically modified (GMO) corn in Mexico.”

Full article posted here.

To read more about this Case and Donate, click here.

Judge overturns Mexico GM maize ban

Mexico’s XII District Court has overturned a 2013 ruling that prevented biotech companies, including Monsanto and Syngenta, planting genetically modified (GM) maize in Mexico.


The decision has been appealed by Acción Colectiva del Maíz and will not come into force until the appeal/s have been heard and ruled on.

The tragic ruling follows two years of 93 appeals by the Biotech Industry after the planting of GMO Maize was banned in September 2013 by the Twelfth Federal District Court for Civil Matters of Mexico City. Judge Jaime Eduardo Verdugo J. cited “the risk of imminent harm to the environment” as the basis for the decision.

The 2013 judge’s ruling also ruled that multinationals like Monsanto and Pioneer were banned from the release of transgenic maize in the Mexican countryside” as long as collective action lawsuits initiated by citizens, farmers, scientists, and civil society organizations are working their way through the judicial system.

The group fighting for the GMO maize ban, Acción Colectiva, is led by Father Miguel Concha of the Human Rights Center Fray Francisco de Vittoria; Victor Suarez of ANEC (National Association of Rural Commercialization Entertprises); Dr. Mercedes Lopéz of Vía Organica; and Adelita San Vicente, a teacher and member of Semillas de Vida, a national organization that has been involved in broad-based social action projects to protect Mexico’s extraordinary status as a major world center of food crop biodiversity and as the birthplace of the original varieties of maize.

(Article published in Sustainable Pulse, 20 August 2015)

To read more about this Case, click here.

Juzgado desbloquea siembra de maíz transgénico en México