From Die Deutsche Wirtschaft Nachrichten we get this cheerful news: EU wants to regulate cultivation of fruit and vegetables in gardens
The European Commission wants to impose on farmers and gardeners in the future the use of unit seed. Old and rare species have little chance of an approval, its cultivation is punishable by law – even if it takes place in the private garden.
The European Commission is working on a revision of the European seed market in the form of a regulation. Thus, a decision of the European Court is legalized in July 2012: Farmers are allowed to sell only officially authorized seed. So far, old and rare seed varieties were excluded that were grown in long standing economic and exchange traded, usually in small quantities. If it goes to the Commission’s plans, small farmers or individuals may not even give away their homegrown seeds in the future. (…)
Beneficiaries of the normalization are the just those food-companies that already split the bulk of the seed market among themselves. For years, the lobby of the agricultural industry in Brussels has been working for a further step in the direction of [a] seed cartel. Objective is to control the entire food production by a few large corporations. Already, smaller competitors are forced by Monsanto and Co to exclusively buy their seed. In the future, they would also face administrative penalties. (…)
If Parliament were to wave through the regulation, even private citizens can no longer distribute their fruit and vegetable products, if they do not meet
the Wishes of Monsanto EU standards.
The article notes rather testily that ‘It is indicative of the lack of democratic legitimacy of the EU that such fundamental decisions are taken, without the citizens being given notice on any of it’. Once the Regulation is adopted, food companies like Monsanto are in the right and citizens are on the defensive and will have the greatest difficulty in undoing the legal regulations.
Actually, calling this regulation an indication of ‘lack of democratic legitimacy’ is a rather weak indictment, methinks. This is malignant corporatist lunacy. But we mustn’t call the EUnion a tyranny in the making. That would be, you know, extreme…
Can we leave now?
(The translation above contains some ‘augmentations’ of the rather clunky google-translation of the original item)
[UPDATE001] I asked the good Dr. North about this and he pointed me to this.
[T]he Commission is currently concluding the review of the EU legislation on marketing seed and plant propagating material, including rules on conservation and amateur vegetable varieties. The review acknowledges the room for improving the legislation as regards these varieties. This legislation is distinct from Directive 98/44/EC on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions(1), which sets rules regarding the patentability of biological material, not the marketing thereof.
Taken at face value this makes the DWN story sound a tad hysterical. Still, we’ve seen obfuscation by the EUnonistas before, haven’t we? I’ll keep an eye on this one.
For those of you who prefer more pre-emptive actions here are two links for you: Seedforall.org and Monsanto vs. Mother Earth.