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How the Bayer-Monsanto merger will cause the price of groceries to skyrocket


Bayer

(NaturalNews) There are plenty of questions surrounding the proposed mega-merger of Bayer and Monsanto, which (if approved) may mean the creation of the world's biggest agribusiness, but one thing seems certain: The merger will mean higher food prices for all.

Of course, that should come as no surprise. Anytime a monopoly is created, the resulting control over the market means that prices can be set at whatever levels the monopoly sees fit.

And regarding the virtual monopoly over the world's seed supply that the Bayer-Monsanto merger would create, it's difficult to find anyone who isn't predicting a resulting hike in grocery bills.

From Market Watch:

"The consolidation of two big industry players into one of the world's largest agrochemical firms may also limit farmer choice and bargaining power, with increasing seed prices expected to be passed on to the grocery aisles."

Many other experts and opponents of the merger have expressed similar concerns. For example, Robert Lawrence, founder/director of the Center for a Liveable Future, said:

"The consolidation and driving out of smaller competitors, and controlling the marketplace and raising prices of seeds and pesticides for farmers worldwide is going to be a real shock to the food system."

From Foreign Policy:

"[The merger] puts one firm in a pole position to influence, and potentially control, how the world feeds itself. Regulators are likely to investigate whether the merged company will be too big and able to squeeze farmers and shoppers at the price register."

John Vidal wrote in The Guardian that the concerns of those opposed to the merger include the likelihood that "the small farmer will inevitably be blown away, competition could be stifled, and food and farm input prices will rise."

Proposed Bayer-Monsanto merger faces many hurdles

The creation of such a monopoly and the effect on the marketplace is what may prompt European Union, U.S. and other international regulators to reject the deal. In fact, many observers are predicting that the antitrust hurdles faced in gaining approval for the proposed merger may prevent or at least delay its completion.

One analyst, Jeremy Redenius of Sanford C. Bernstein & Co., gives the merger only a 50 percent chance of being approved and completed.

Currently, the companies are seeking approval in 30 jurisdictions, including the United States., the EU, Brazil and Canada, and global opposition is mounting. Small farmers' advocacy groups from developing nations, along with other food activist organizations, are banding together to fight the merger.

Many of these groups are planning to put pressure on the United Nations and attend international meetings over the next few months to raise awareness and galvanize the opposition.

Higher food prices are merely the tip of the iceberg

It's not just consumers who face higher prices following the consolidation – small farmers will be forced to pay more for seeds, and many are likely be forced out of business altogether.

But higher prices are just one of the dangers of such a merger. The many concerns of those opposed include loss of biodiversity, increased use of the carcinogenic herbicide glyphosate, and the decreased availability of organically-grown foods.

And the consolidation of Bayer and Monsanto – which would lead to their control of roughly 29 percent of the world's seeds and 24 percent of its pesticides – is just one of three agribusiness mega-mergers currently in the works.

Chemical giant Dow is planning a merger with DuPont, and ChemChina is intent on buying Syngenta. If all three mergers are completed, it will mean that three companies will control the majority of the world's seed supply – along with the chemicals and fertilizers used to grow them, and nearly all of the world's GM seed patents.

These dangerous consolidation efforts will lead to higher food prices, increased cancer rates, the demise of small farmers and less food security.

The claim that GM agriculture can help feed a growing world population is in fact a huge lie. These mega-mergers will only benefit the corporations involved, while increasing hunger, poverty and sickness throughout the world.

We, as concerned citizens must unite to stop this madness. One way to do so is to sign this petition.

Sources:

MarketWatch.com

ForeignPolicy.com

TheGuardian.com

EcoWatch.com

Bloomberg.com

NaturalNews.com

ThePetitionSite.com

Vox.com

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