“The World According to Monsanto”


World_according_to_monsanto_dvd1 You won't be surprised to hear that a documentary about the maker of PCBs, Agent Orange and Roundup has lots of shocking bits. 

  • Monsanto falsely claimed that Roundup is biodegradable and a French court made them stop.
  • In a more criminal move, Monsanto tried to bribe a Canadian health agency.  Good lord.
  • There's a toll-free number (1-800-Roundup) for ratting on farmers who are, against Monsanto policy, saving their Roundup Ready seeds.  The full story is told in Seeds of Suicide, which won the "Alternative Nobel".

But here's the real shocker:  this documentary may put you to sleep.  Maybe it's just me, but watching the filmmaker enter search terms into Google is not my idea of exciting investigative journalism, and a shocking chunk of the movie is just that – Internet searches.  

But hey, it's free on Youtube and conveniently divided up into eight parts, so you can take your Monsanto evil in small, stay-awake doses. Here's Part 1.

To be fair, I did enjoy the part about Kay Jenkes, the awesome EPA employee who blew the whistle on Agent Orange.  And Treehugger's reviewer liked the movie a lot more than I did. 


  1. Found the doc strangely mezmerizing but must also confess to skipping a segment or two…..
    Yet, I remember thinking that I liked the google research bit because it was sort of an everyman/woman’s kind of approach implying that all this info’s out there and any one of us could have pieced this nasty puzzle together. Despite the style issues really, isn’t it the content that’s important? And this doc is darn big in the content department. I am a fan.

  2. I’m not a huge Monsanto fan (though I do think they sometimes get scape goated), but I was surprised by your choice of examples in this post — the first two, totally evil. But having a hot line to report people stealing their technology? Sounds reasonable to me. I’m sure the music industry would do the same for music pirates if they thought anyone would actually call in. After all, they spent a LOT of money developing round-up ready, so if you want to grow it, pay for it. It not, grow something else!

  3. I can’t believe it – a big, multinational corporation, lying about the safety of its products. What’s next, a documentary revealing that global warming is real? (she said with tongue firmly planted in cheek)

  4. Been working since 1978 in the plant business. Read every publication I get. My little dinky business is honest and green and is going down. It hurts to be poor. Theirse always spring to make it better. Maybe I’m just screwed.

  5. In that movie “Food Inc” it was shocking to see how many government officials are former Monsanto executives. Somethings, rotten, for sure.

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