Tens of thousands of activists rallied in more than 400 cities across the world Saturday to protest U.S. agricultural giant Monsanto.
Protesters say Monsanto has too much influence over the world's food supply, and are critical of its development of genetically modified (GMO) crops and the company's signature herbicide, Roundup.
“There’s no question that March Against Monsanto is the most powerful grassroots initiative we have in the fight to reclaim our food supply from the GMO seed juggernaut known as the Monsanto Company,” said Anthony Gucciardi, from March Against Monsanto.
Protests were set to hit 48 countries on six continents, from Sweden to Bangladesh, according to organizers.
In Sydney, protesters chanted, “Monsanto, how rude, they are poisoning our food.”
“This company has repeatedly committed I would say crimes against the Earth and what we are trying to show is accountability for corporations,” one protester identified as Papa Sean told RT.
“It's not just them, there are other corporations who are doing exactly the same thing in other ways or another but also we also want to promote clean food. Food that's free of pesticides, which our grandparents just called food,” Sean stated.
The worldwide protests are the third annual March Against Monsanto. The march began in 2013 as an expression of frustration against California's failed bid to require the labeling of foods containing GMOs. However, this year's protests have been fanned by an announcement in March by the World Heath Organization (WHO) that glyphosate is “probably carcinogenic.”
Glyphosate is the active ingredient in Roundup, which is widely used on GMO crops like corn and soybeans. Monsanto has fiercely disputed the WHO's conclusion, but activists say the herbicide could spark a simmering global health disaster.
“With the new admission by the World Health Organization that Monsanto’s best-selling herbicide Roundup is causing cancer worldwide, now is the most important time to join the movement and take a stand,” said Gucciardi.