How poor countries are used to feed rich countries

Eldiario.es uncovered how the world’s poor are used to feed rich nations. Reporters focused on the most popular crops in Europe, sugar, cacao, bananas, coffee and African palm in Guatemala, Honduras, Colombia and the Ivory Coast. The story covers tax evasion from Guatemalan sugar barons, Colombian farmers relying on the whims of speculation, the destruction of the Honduran environment from growing only African…

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Monsanto, seed-corn companies continue use of contractors despite allegations of migrant labor abuses

In a two-year investigation of GMO seed-corn production, the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting found repeated allegations of labor violations over the past decade against Monsanto, its counterpart DuPont Pioneer, other seed companies, and the companies’ contractors. A review of federal documents, lawsuits and Monsanto records – and interviews with advocates and experts – shows…

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Lax Illinois laws allow for factory-like hog confinements to grow

As large hog confinements grow in number and size across rural Illinois, pork producers have been found to exploit weak state laws to start operations. A special report by the Chicago Tribune has found that these growing operations can harm neighboring families and communities that have to endure the sickening air emissions and pollutions produced by…

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Puerto Rico gives away more than $519 million to multinational seed

During a decade of fiscal crisis, Puerto Rican officials awarded multinational seed corporations preferential tax rates, tax exemptions, industrial incentives and wage subsidies. An investigation by the Center for Investigative Journalism (CPI, Centro de Periodismo Investigativo) found that companies including Monsanto and Pioneer Hi Bred received more than $519.7 million in public funds. Both companies…

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Tampa Bay farm-to-table restaurants make false claims about local ingredients

For months, Laura Riley, the Tampa Bay Times’ food critic, investigated the menus of every restaurant she reviewed since the beginning of the farm-to-table food trend. Of these restaurants, 54 claimed that the ingredients were local. However, after contacting vendors, calling farms and sending food off for scientific tests, Riley concluded that almost all of…

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Monitoring, enforcement lagging on BLM rangelands

The environmental policies that accompany federal grazing contracts have frustrated many ranchers, who see such regulation as a threat to their livelihoods. That was among the primary complaints from armed militants who seized a federal wildlife refuge headquarters in rural Oregon last month. But those environmental policies have been loosely implemented – to the detriment…

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Tracing the origins of a mysterious disease that cost the pork industry $1 billion

More than two years ago a rare and fast-spreading virus arrived in the U.S., killing hundreds of baby pigs and costing the pork industry roughly $1 billion. Harvest Public Media spent months examining the outbreak of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea, a virus never before seen in the U.S., studying documents and talking to scientists and other…

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Soil, water samples show toxic heavy metals leaking into Arizona waterways

Arizona is home to an estimated 100,000 abandoned mines, but no state or federal agency has an accurate count of how many of them are leaking toxic heavy metals into the environment and waterways. CBS 5 Investigates collected soil and water samples from the areas around six old uranium, lead, silver and copper mines. The…

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Small farms – exempt from workplace safety rules – see more and more deaths

As workplace accidents across the country have declined over the last decade, the number of Midwestern farm deaths has climbed 30 percent. And even though farms have eclipsed mines and construction sites as deadly workplaces, government safety regulators rarely investigate farm workers’ deaths, according to a four-part investigation by the Minneapolis Star Tribune.  Farmers are…

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Contaminated soil lingers where apples once grew

At homes and day care centers throughout Central Washington, children play in yards contaminated with lead and arsenic, left over from pesticide spraying decades ago. The state’s Department of Ecology knows about this, and has for decades, according to EarthFix. But many parents and caregivers still do not, despite the risks these chemicals pose specifically to children. The apple industry…

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