India targeted "in a big way" for GM soya (22/8/2005)

The American Soybean Association (ASA) claims to be 'a non-profit, farmer-controlled organisation' but it enjoys a remarkably close relationship with Monsanto and other biotech corporations.

In fiscal year 2000 it is known to have received $2.1 million of its $26.7 million budget from Monsanto, Pioneer Hi-Bred International, BASF, Stein Seed Co. and others.

US growers push soy products in India
Financial Express, August 22, 2005

NEW DELHI, AUG 21: - Soybean growers from the US are planning to enter the Indian market in a big way with a variety of soy products.

"India imports about $10 million worth of American soy products. We are aiming at increasing the level of our soy-products exports to India to about $30 million," said Robert Bob L Rikli, secretary of the American Soybean Association (ASA).

US produces about 80 million tonne of soybean annually, out of which 40% is exported to several countries. A variety of food items are made out of soybean in the US. Animal and poultry feed are also prepared from soybean.

Majority of the soybean varieties grown in US are genetically modified (GM)–the ready round up varieties of the seed multinational, Monsanto.

<p>Segregation of GM and non-GM varieties is not done in US. But Mr Rikli feels that this situation will not be a constraint to American exports to India and other Asian countries. He says: "We are farmers and we are simply asking for markets for our produce. India is already importing some American soy products."

In a seminar-cum-interactive session with Indian stakeholders in Delhi on Saturday, the ASA projected all the possible health and nutritional benefits arising out of consumption of soy products. The ASA is a body of US farmers engaged in lobbying for overseas markets by generating awareness about American soya-products. It has nine centres around the world.

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