The Anishinaabeg -- the Native American tribes from Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Canada who have cultivated Manoomin (Wild Rice) for thousands of years -- have started a dialogue on how to protect wild rice as an indigenous resource. The following information was produced by the White Earth Land Recovery Project as a result of a collaborative meeting between representatives of many Native American (American Indian) tribes.
Your support will be critical in protecting wild rice from corporate takeover. Wild rice is not only an important economic source of wealth for the Anishinaabeg. It is also integral to their spirituality. Please help to stop this cultural genocide.
1) Two California companies have received patents on hybrid strains of domestic (paddy) wild rice. Their work involves male sterility in wild rice. Increasing the male sterility of wild rice, which destroys the natural reproductive process of wild rice, will have the potential of requiring ricers to purchase wild rice seed to replenish rice beds.
2) The University of Minnesota in collaboration with big seed and chemical companies has completed a map of the genome of wild rice. This is a first step in genetically modifying or altering the wild rice.
It is likely that wild rice has already been or will be genetically modified in laboratories, and it is only a matter of time before field trials take place, which is when genetic pollution of our sacred wild rice will begin.
The clock is ticking, and university and private researchers are moving to profit from their work on wild rice. It is urgent that tribes address the issues and take action.
Genetic modification, which means altering life from a genetic level, facilitates corporate control or claims of ownership over wild rice through the use of patents.
Genetically modified rice has the potential to irreversibly alter natural strains of wild rice when released into the environment.
There is a long controversy about the misrepresentation of paddy rice as wild rice, and this has already caused great economic hardship to our communities. The labeling laws designed to protect our wild rice labels were repealed by the Minnesota Legislature (the only state with any protection whatsoever). This problem is getting worse as well.
Hybridization of wild rice -- the development of varieties that exhibit desired characteristics for industrial production -- could eventually lead to the extinction of real wild rice.
Wild rice is central and sacred to the heart and spirit of the Anishinaabeg (and other indigenous peoples).
The Anishinaabeg territories are the center of origin for natural diverse original strains of wild rice.
Wild rice is an essential part of Anishinaabeg sustenance and survival, and its integrity is threatened by corporate control.
The right and responsibility to protect wild rice for future generations is an inherent right of the Anishinaabeg, and is further protected by our self-governance, sovereignty and treaty rights.
If you have questions or comments, please call or email WELRP at:White Earth Land Recovery Project (WELRP) 32022 East Round Lake Road Ponsford, Minnesota 56575 USA Tel: (1-888) 779 35 77 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
ABOUT THIS LISTSERVER -- BIO-IPR is an irregular listserver put out by Genetic Resources Action International (GRAIN). Its purpose is to circulate information about recent developments in the field of intellectual property rights related to biodiversity & associated knowledge. BIO-IPR is a strictly non-commercial and educational service for nonprofit organisations and individuals active in the struggle against IPRs on life. The views expressed in each post are those of the indicated author(s).
HOW TO PARTICIPATE -- To get on the mailing list, send the word "subscribe" (no quotes) as the subject of an email message to mailto:email@example.com. To get off the list, send the word "unsubscribe" instead.
To submit material to the list, address your message to mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org. A note with further details about BIO-IPR is sent to all subscribers.
ABOUT GRAIN -- For general information about GRAIN, please visit our website: http://www.grain.orghttp://www.grain.org or write us at mailto:email@example.com.
For questions or comments email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please note that all materials presented here are copyrighted. You may download it for your personal use or forward it to your friends or anybody you think might be interested, but please send
it in its entirety and quote the source. Any other reuse or publication of our content is only permitted with expressed permission of the author.
Please send comments or inquiries to Sacred Earth.
This Article was originally published in the Sacred Earth Newletter. The Newsletter is a FREE service containing articles, news and reviews on all things herbal and/or ethnobotanical, with an approximate publication cylce of 6 - 8 weeks. If you wish to subscribe, please use the subscription box to submit your e-mail address.
Please note that although all the references to edible and medicinal herbs are tried and tested, their efficacy cannot be guaranteed and has not been approved by the FDA. Furthermore, everybody responds differently to various plants, and adverse reactions cannot be ruled out. Historical information regarding poisonous plants is included for educational purposes only and should not be tried out at home. Everybody uses herbs at their own risk and thus must make themselves fully aware of their potential power. Any information given here is educational and should not replace a visit to the doctor should this be necessary. Neither Sacred Earth nor Kat Morgenstern accepts responsibility for anybody's home experimentation. Links to external sites are included as pointers to further resources - we do not endorse them or are in any way responsible for their content, nor do we thus verify that their content is accurate.