The EU has now approved the controversial merger between Dow Chemical and DuPont which, according to Friends of the Earth, has serious implications for future food safety.
Adrian Bebb, a Friends of the Earth spokesperson, said: “This merger will mean a lack of choice for farmers and a lack of diversity in our fields. We rapidly need to diversify our farming to adapt to a changing climate, and having less seeds controlled by fewer corporation raises serious questions about our ability to feed future generations.”
Other concerns have been raised over what appear to be attempts, by both companies, to see the back of potentially vast liabilities connected with their respective contamination legacies- in the case of Dow, Bhopal, and for DuPont, C8 (or PFOA), a toxin used in the manufacture of Teflon.
Since announcing the merger, both companies have withheld critical information from shareholders regarding Bhopal liabilities pending against Dow subsidiary Union Carbide. Unresolved monetary claims are several billion dollars over Carbide’s book value in the Bhopal ‘curative’ civil petition alone. The outstanding criminal manslaughter case has the potential for fines and penalties with no upper limit: Dow has now been summoned on five occasions to explain why Union Carbide has not once attended court to face the charges.
Although DuPont recently made an offer to settle one of the most well known C-8 contamination issues in Ohio, USA, there remain numerous other C-8 cases, in the USA and elsewhere, leaving the potential for a much greater liability.
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Brussels is expected to clear a merger between Syngenta and ChemChina within the next two weeks, with further approval of a similar tie-up between Monsanto and Bayer expected later in the year.
How the rush for mega-mergers puts food security at risk: CLICK