Greenpeace activists dump nearly four tonnes of soya at the entrance of Cargillís European Headquarters where the company's managers organise the shipping of hundreds of thousands of tonnes of Amazon soya to Europe. Soya expansion is one of the leading causes of deforestation in the Amazon.
This morning, 18 activists in Orléans, France, closed down
aCargill-owned Sun Valley factory. Many of the million chickens
whichSun Valley supplies to supermarkets and fast food restaurants
acrossEurope every week are fed on Amazon soya. In Surrey, UK,
Greenpeacedumped nearly four tonnes of soya at the entrance of
Cargill's EuropeanHeadquarters where Cargill managers organise the
shipping of hundredsof thousands of tonnes of Amazon soya to
Europe. Severalactivists chained themselves to a gate to prevent
the company's300 employees gaining access to the site.
Greenpeace Amazon campaign co-ordinator, Thomas Henningsen,
said: "Mostpeople have never even heard of this company, but its
playing a part inone of the great environmental tragedies of our
time. The Amazon is oneof the most bio-diverse areas on Earth and
we need it to stabilise theplanet's climate, but this company is
trashing the rainforest to growsoya to feed Europe's farm animals.
We'll stay here until Cargillagrees to a moratorium to stop
destroying the Amazon rainforest. Untilit does, companies like KFC,
Tesco and Albert Heijn should avoid buyingCargill's Amazon-fed
Today's protests followed a series of tense protests in the over
theweekend in the Brazilian city of Santarem, in the heart of the
Amazonrainforest, where Cargill has illegally contructed a soya
exportfacility. On Friday, a team of climbers from the Greenpeace
ship,Arctic Sunrise, shut down the facility. Cargill workers acted
violentlyduring the protest, ramming a Greenpeace inflatable boat
and the ArcticSunrise with their powerful tugboat. Three activists
were injured, withone sustaining a broken finger and another
suffering burns after havinga firework launched at him. On Sunday,
over a thousand peoplefrom Santarem joined Greenpeace and other
non-governmentalorganisations reacted by taking to the streets of
Santarem in protestagainst Cargilll's destruction of the
Recent Greenpeace investigations (1) discovered that Cargill's
crimesstretch from their illegal operations in the Amazon across
the entireEuropean food industry. Many of biggest poultry companies
in Europe,including Cargill-owned Sun Valley Foods which supplies
some of themost prominent European supermarkets and fast food
restaurants, areusing Cargill soya imported direct from the Amazon
rainforest. Soyafarmers supplying Cargill are linked to the use of
slave labour,illegal land grabbing and massive deforestation.
Cargill is a US-based international food and agricultural
commoditygiant and is leading the soya invasion of the Amazon (2).
1.2 millionhectares of what used to be rainforest have already -
mostly illegally- been destroyed to grow soybeans. Forest clearance
by burning isendangering the world's climate and destroying the
habitat ofindigenous peoples, as well as plants and animals in the
mostbiologically important rainforest on earth.
Greenpeace is calling on Cargill and the European food industry
toensure that the animal feed they buy does not contribute to
thedestruction of the Amazon and that none of their soya products
aregenetically engineered (3). In a meeting with Greenpeace this
month,Cargill refused to stop its operations in the Amazon.
Greenpeace is an independent, campaigning organisation that
usesnon-violent, creative confrontation to expose global
environmentalproblems, and to force solutions essential to a green
Other contacts: Thomas Henningsen, Greenpeace Amazon campaign co-ordinator, +49 171 8780 833 (in Germany)Natalia Truchi, Greenpeace International media officer +31 646184250 or +55 929 995 2070 (in the Amazon)Gavin Edwards, Greenpeace International forests campaign co-ordinator, (m) +31 652 391429 (in the Amazon)
Notes: (1) Details on that can be found in the report "Eating up the Amazon". A copy is available on:http://www.greenpeace.org/international/press/reports/eating-up-the-amazon. A shorter crime file about Cargill at: http://www.greenpeace.org/international/press/reports/cargill-amazon (2) Cargill, together with Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) and Bunge, controls 60% of soya production in Brazil and more than three-quarters of Europe's soya crushing industry that supplies soya meal and oil to the animal feed market.(0) (0) (3) Cargill is a major player in genetically engineered (GE) soya and has bought GE soya grown in some Amazon regions. On 14th May a ship, Tonga, loaded with GE soya arrived in Brest, France from the Brazilian port of Paranagua, which is struggling to hold on to its GE free status. She was the first ship to bring GE soya from Paranagua into France and was chartered by Cargill.