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Posted Tue Feb 14 2012: from Tom Philpott, Mother Jones:
Dow and Monsanto Team Up on the Mother of All Herbicide Marketing Plans
Last summer, Roundup-resistant superweeds flourished in huge swathes of US farmland, forcing farmers to apply gushers of toxic herbicide cocktails and even resort to hand-weeding--not a fun thing to do on a huge farm. A recent article in the industrial-ag trade journal Delta Farm Press summed up the situation: "Days of Easy Weed Control Are Over."... Dow's new herbicide-resistant product promises to bring those days back. In its petition to the USDA to approve 2,4-D-resistant corn, the company explicitly pitched it as the answer to farmers' Roundup trouble. The 2,4-D trait will be "stacked" with Monsanto's Roundup trait to "generate commercial hybrids with multiple herbicide tolerances," the petition states. Note that the new product marks a point of collusion, not competition, between industry titans Dow and Monsanto--they plan to license the 2,4-D and Roundup traits to each other to form "stacked" hybrids.... The authors note that even by Dow and Monsanto's reckoning, a new stacked 2,4-D/Roundup-resistant product would immediately lead to an increase in herbicide use, because the companies have been advocating an herbicide program that combines current rates of Roundup use with a roughly equal amounts of 2,4-D. That's good for sales, but not so good for the environment.... [T]he advocacy group Beyond Pesticides points to both epidemiological and lab-based evidence linking it non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and other cancers. It's also an endocrine disruptor, Beyond Pesticides reports, meaning it can "interfere with the body's hormone messaging system and can alter many essential processes."...
[Read more stories about: herbicide runoff, toxic buildup, corporate farming, death spiral, corporate malfeasance]

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'Doc Jim says:
Corpetition between frenemies can't end well for the rest of us.

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