“There are poisons in your pap!” shouted the street performers at the Howick Falls on Saturday, startling passers-by who eat Genetically Modified (GM) maize every day without even realising it.
As part of the Global Campaign against Monsanto and Biotech industries, the Yizwa Drama group in collaboration with the MMAEP, created a play about the effect seed giant Monsanto is having on our food. As expected, Dargle was well represented! Eidin facilitates the Yizwa group.
Tinks and Emma joined the audience after shopping at the Karkloof Farmers Market.
Did you know that South Africa is the only country to allow a staple food to be Genetically Modified? 86% of maize, 90% of Soya and 100% of cotton grown in South Africa is GM. Soya and Maize are found in processed foods including bread, baby food, baked goods, sweets, meat and dairy substitutes. Cotton seed oil is used to preserve tinned sea foods & to fry fast foods. Foods with more than 5% GM content should be labelled, but many food producers are refusing to do so.
In the play performed by youngsters from Mpophomeni, a demoralised farmer says “I can’t keep fighting these big bullies. I will leave farming and go to the city. My connection to the land is destroyed. My children will grow up begging on the streets. We will have to steal food.”
GM crops can put farmers into debt because the seed costs more, needs more fertiliser and increases herbicide use. GMO companies profit by making sure that farmers may not grow GM crops or save GM seed without paying the company a patent fee.
Performer, Andiswa Mfubo is really concerned, having only learnt about GM crops recently. She has written poems about the issue and passionately sang “We mustn’t play God” to the entranced audience. “I’m only 21 but I look much older because of my body – I now believe it is because of the food I have been eating.”
In conclusion the call to the crowd was “Wake up people! Wake up and get healthy! If you love life say no to Monsanto, fight for your food, grow gardens and save seeds, save yourself!” Nikki and Emma thought this was a great idea!
see action from around the country at: https://www.facebook.com/NOGMO.SouthAfrica