People opposed to 's work with genetically modified organisms , or GMOs, in the food chain, have said they've been planning for protests worldwide next week, or as organizers described it, a "Non-Hierarchical Occupation of Monsanto Everywhere."
Those events began a little earlier than scheduled with a protest Wednesday in Oxnard, CA against a subsidiary of the Creve Coeur-based firm.
Organizers are planning a 2-day conference in the St. Louis area starting Sunday that includes a Monday "March and activity with the Monsanto Family," including a Monday afternoon protest at the company's world headquarters.
Chief Glenn Eidman told Patch Monday that authorities from several jurisdictions have worked together to prepare for any potential protests.
Earlier this month, a Monsanto spokeswoman said in a prepared statement about the planned protests:
The 21,000 people who work for Monsanto are proud of our efforts to help improve farm productivity and food quality. Agriculture and its uses are important to Creve Coeur, Missouri, the United States and the world. Among the challenges facing agriculture are producing food for our growing population and reducing agriculture’s footprint on the environment. We respect each individual’s right to express their point of view on these topics. At Monsanto, we believe we can make a contribution to improving agriculture by helping farmers produce more from their land while conserving natural resources such as water and energy.
The company has consistently defended the use of GMOs, saying they have been approved by government regulators and that "there has not been a single substantiated instance of illness or harm associated with GM crops."