Moral Low Ground


Forget Monsanto, Nestle Wants to Control Your Water Supply

DI_6CB26KHY_280Jennifer Roth

Generally the first words Americans associate with “Nestle” are “Quik,” “Crunch” or “Toll House Cookies.” But its now just a matter of time before Nestle potentially supplants Monsanto for what calls the most evil corporation in the world.

Peter Brabeck, the current Chairman and former CEO of Nestle S.A., made some shocking comments in 2005 that re-surfaced this year on social media. Brabeck referred to water as a “foodstuff,” and said that it is not a human right for anyone to have free access to water.

Brabeck goes on to say that water should have a value assigned to it, and that it should be privatized and controlled. While Americans are already required to take a boater safety course and get a government-issued license to sail on water, Nestle would like to see drinking water regulated in a similar fashion.

Brabeck responded to mounting criticism this past April in an article he wrote for the Huffington Post. He wrote that he does believe water is a basic human right (contrary to his own words) and any insinuation that he wants to privatize the world’s supply is simply false. But as the saying goes, “actions speak louder than words,” and Nestle has shown its hand over the years.

Monsanto and Nestle: Match Made In Heaven

Monsanto is the world’s leading manufacturer of genetically-modified foods, with Forbes estimating its global market share of plantable seeds at 95 percent. Nestle contributed more than $1 million to last year’s campaign against forcing companies to properly label genetically-modified (GMO) foods in California, according to Brabeck also said in the above interview that no illnesses have been caused by GMO foods in the 15 years Americans have been consuming them.

Research continues to refute these types of claims. Theirry Vrain, a former pro-GMO scientist for Agriculture and Agri-Foods Canada (AAFC), said he now believes GMOs are dangerous to both human and environmental health. Some have speculated that the reason AAFC is eliminating nearly 700 jobs this year is to clear out any scientists who are not on-board with pro-GMO ideals.

The War On Water

Nestle is headquartered in Vevey, Switzerland, but has consistently shown its reach when it comes to monopolizing the world’s water. The company invaded mineral water reserves in Brazil, resulting in a depleted supply and damage to the water’s natural makeup, according to Corporate Watch. Nestle, for all intents and purposes, owns the entire water supplies of South Africa, Pakistan and Ethiopia, which has resulted in mass water shortages in those countries’ villages. Adding to Nestle’s perceived lack of altruism, the company is also accused of buying cocoa from farms in West Africa that use child slave labor.

The war on water has not bypassed the U.S. either. Several states, including Washington, Colorado and Utah, have already outlawed in some way the collection of rain water, notes

Jennifer Roth writes about sustainable business and green living when she’s not hiking and rock climbing. She lives in Phoenix, Arizona. 

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