Science

French farm minister blasts Monsanto, DuPont

American food corporations like Monsanto and DuPont are trying to monopolize the world's food supply, France's Agriculture Minister Jean Glavany charged Wednesday.

DuPont Co. and Monsanto Co. are two of the world's largest seed manufacturers and leaders in the production of genetically modified grains.

Glavany, a Green Party member of the coalition government in France, told a party meeting that large North American food producers are more interested in quantity than quality.

His comments follow summer protests by French farmers angered by North American tariffs on goods such as foie gras and Roquefort cheese.

The tariffs were imposed after the World Trade Organization ruled the European Union was illegally restricting the import of beef produced with hormones.

In France, McDonald's restaurants have been attacked and taxes have been raised on Coca-Cola products.

The protesters argue that they are fighting to protect traditional production methods against multinational corporations they accuse of exerting growing control over the food supply.

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