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Just four corporations control most of the global supply of seeds and pesticides. Public oversight of their activities is crucial for a safe and healthy food system. Yet all these corporations – Bayer (which owns Monsanto), Corteva (formerly DowDuPont), Syngenta and BASF – have long histories of manipulating science, hiding the harm of their products, and attacking scientists and journalists who raise concerns about their products. Since their records do not inspire trust, these companies rely on third-party allies for their PR and lobbying.
The fact sheets below shine light on this hidden propaganda network: the front groups, academics and writers the pesticide companies rely on to promote and defend pesticides and the genetically engineered (GMO) seeds designed to increase pesticide sales.
Our reporting is based on internal corporate and regulatory documents obtained via public records requests in a years-long investigation by U.S. Right to Know. Our investigation inspired a counter campaign by the pesticide industry which has tried to discredit our work. According to a Monsanto PR plan, “USRTK’s investigation will impact the entire industry.”
Reporting on our findings
Meet the Merchants of Poison: The front groups and PR allies Bayer relies on to defend glyphosate, by Stacy Malkan, Kendra Klein, PhD, Anna Lappé. Article for U.S. Right to Know and full report. 2022.
Pesticide industry “helped write” disinformation playbook used by Big Oil and Big Tobacco, by Dana Drugmand, DeSmog. 2022.
Fact sheets on pesticide industry front groups and PR allies
Academics Review: The making of a Monsanto front group
AgBioChatter: Where corporations and academics plotted strategy on GMOs and pesticides
Alison Van Eenennaam: Key outside spokesperson and lobbyist for the agrichemical and GMO industries
American Council on Science and Health is a corporate front group
Bayer’s Shady PR Firms: FleishmanHillard and Ketchum PR
Biofortified aids chemical industry PR & lobbying efforts
Center for Food Integrity food and agrichemical industry PR partners
Cornell Alliance for Science is a public relations campaign at Cornell to promote GMOs
Council for Biotechnology Information, GMO Answers, CropLife: pesticide industry PR initiatives
Council for Biotechnology Info: Industry PR group CBI closes; GMO Answers moves to CropLife
Drew Kershen: agrichemical industry front group ringleader
Food Evolution GMO Documentary is a misleading propaganda film, say many academics
Geoffrey Kabat: ties to tobacco and chemical industry groups
Glyphosate Spin Check: tracking claims about the most-widely used herbicide
GMO Answers is a crisis management PR tool for GMOs & pesticides
Hank Campbell’s maze of Monsanto-loving science blogs
Henry I. Miller dropped by Forbes for Monsanto ghostwriting scandal
Independent Women’s Forum: Koch-funded group defends pesticide, oil, tobacco industries
International Food Information Council (IFIC): How Big Food spins bad news
International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) is a food industry lobby group, documents show
Jay Byrne: Meet the man behind the Monsanto PR machine
Jon Entine, Genetic Literacy Project: Key messengers for Monsanto, Bayer and the chemical industry
Keith Kloor: How a science journalist worked with industry allies behind the scenes
Kevin Folta’s misleading and deceptive claims
Mark Lynas of Cornell Alliance for Science deceptive and inaccurate promotions for the agrichemical industry’s commercial agenda
Monsanto’s campaign against transparency: “U.S. Right to Know communications plan”
Monsanto named these “industry partners” in its PR plan to confront glyphosate cancer ruling (2015)
Nina Federoff mobilized the authority of American science to back Monsanto
Pamela Ronald’s ties to chemical industry front groups
SciBabe says eat your pesticides, but who is paying her?
Science Media Centre promotes corporate views of science
Sense About Science/STATS spin science for industry
Tamar Haspel misleads readers of the Washington Post in her food columns
University of Saskatchewan: Peter Phillips secret “right to know” symposium
University of Saskatchewan: Stuart Smyth’s agrichemical industry ties and funding
Val Giddings: Former BIO VP is a top operative for the agrichemical industry
More front groups, trade groups and PR writers
BIO: biotech industry trade group
International Life Sciences Institute
U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance
If you like our work, please DONATE HERE to help us turn up the heat on the Right to Know investigations.