In their five-part series on GMOs in global food security, Devex has been investigating the role of GMOs in developing countries through the lens of governments, donors, scientists, and campaigners. In the final article, Devex speaks with the multinationals themselves and ask about their work in developing countries and their motives — with Bayer, Monsanto, and Syngenta acknowledging that profit is a key, but insisting that social responsibility and the ability to improve nutrition, food security, and income is just as important.
The Access to Seeds Index is mentioned, although it should be noted the Bayer features in the Access to Seeds Index but does not contribute to it other than providing data as all companies featuring in the Index are requested to do:
“Within developing countries, Bayer has been partnering with a range of organizations including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the International Rice Research Institute. With the Gates Foundation, they are supporting investment in agricultural startups, while with IRRI they are improving access to direct seeded rice. And Bayer contributes to the Access to Seeds Index, which ranks seed companies on their actions and their efforts to enhance the productivity of smallholder farmers.
“Bayer currently ranks third [in the Access to Seeds Index] for both Field Crop and Vegetable Seeds, and was recognized for its multistakeholder initiatives such as Food Chain Partnerships and the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition, the Much More Rice programs in Vietnam, India, and Ghana, and important contributions to local gene banks,” Elfes said.”