SUI GENERIS - A DEAD END ALLEY

A self-critical evaluation on NGO's efforts to devise `sui generis' intellectual property systems that really serve to protect the rights of indigenous peoples and farming or other local communities.

A self-critical evaluation on NGO's efforts to devise `sui generis' intellectual property systems that really serve to protect the rights of indigenous peoples and farming or other local communities.

FREE TRADE VERSUS FOOD SECURITY

The preparatory process to the World Food Summit has been paved with power plays between the different development agendas, with free-trade and globalisation proponents ready to eliminate self-sufficiency as the main food security strategy.

The preparatory process to the World Food Summit has been paved with power plays between the different development agendas, with free-trade and globalisation proponents ready to eliminate self-sufficiency as the main food security strategy.

FROM LEIPZIG TO BUENOS AIRES

Governments and NGO's should take advantage of the CBD discussions on agricultural biodiversity, IPRs and the rights of local communities and indigenous peoples to counter further privatisation of genetic resources.

Governments and NGO's should take advantage of the CBD discussions on agricultural biodiversity, IPRs and the rights of local communities and indigenous peoples to counter further privatisation of genetic resources.

THE BIOTECH BATTLE OVER THE GOLDEN CROP

While maize is a major staple food for many countries in the South, in the North it is the main animal feed crop and, increasingly, a raw material for industrial use. An exploration of the infighting among the biotechnology actors for control over this "green gold".

While maize is a major staple food for many countries in the South, in the North it is the main animal feed crop and, increasingly, a raw material for industrial use. An exploration of the infighting among the biotechnology actors for control over this "green gold".

FROM THE EDITORS

Facing up to the negotiations in FAO and the Convention on Biological Diversity this year, the Editors wrap up the three articles in this issue related to the industrialisation of agriculture and commodification of genetic resources with a brief reflection on the Global Plan of Action which is up for discussion this month in Leipzig.

Facing up to the negotiations in FAO and the Convention on Biological Diversity this year, the Editors wrap up the three articles in this issue related to the industrialisation of agriculture and commodification of genetic resources with a brief reflection on the Global Plan of Action which is up for discussion this month in Leipzig.

EX SITU CONSERVATION: WHEN THE FRIDGE BREAKS DOWN

The Report on the State of the World's Plant Genetic Resources recently published by FAO confirms what NGOs have been arguing for years: the seeds are not necessarily safe in the genebanks.

The Report on the State of the World's Plant Genetic Resources recently published by FAO confirms what NGOs have been arguing for years: the seeds are not necessarily safe in the genebanks.

CGIAR RENEWAL: BEYOND CATCHY WORDING?

Evidence keeps accumulating to demonstrate that Green Revolution agriculture is unsustainable and that industrial agriculture is in crisis. However, a close look at the `renewal process' the CGIAR claims to have gone through leaves NGOs wondering if the new CGIAR agenda will not lead to more of the same.

Evidence keeps accumulating to demonstrate that Green Revolution agriculture is unsustainable and that industrial agriculture is in crisis. However, a close look at the `renewal process' the CGIAR claims to have gone through leaves NGOs wondering if the new CGIAR agenda will not lead to more of the same.

UPOV: GETTING A FREE TRIPs RIDE?

Developing countries are being pressured by industrialised countries and the GATT-related TRIPs agreements to urgently adopt UPOV-like legislation providing for intellectual property rights on plant varieties. Yet governments should realise that they have both time and other options.

Developing countries are being pressured by industrialised countries and the GATT-related TRIPs agreements to urgently adopt UPOV-like legislation providing for intellectual property rights on plant varieties. Yet governments should realise that they have both time and other options.

1996: THE YEAR OF AGRICULTURAL BIODIVERSITY?

As a number of important internacional negotiations on agricultural biodiversity get underway, there is a political challenge to achieve a central position for the role and contribution of Third World countries and resource-poor farmers in the management of plant genetic resources.

As a number of important internacional negotiations on agricultural biodiversity get underway, there is a political challenge to achieve a central position for the role and contribution of Third World countries and resource-poor farmers in the management of plant genetic resources.

NOVEL FOODS, OLD TRICKS

The agrobiotech industry has finally started to bring its genetically modified products to the market, and, to smooth their path, it is concentrating its lobbying efforts in two main areas: deregulating the use and release of genetically manipulated organisms (GMOs) and minimising the labelling of its products.

The agrobiotech industry has finally started to bring its genetically modified products to the market, and, to smooth their path, it is concentrating its lobbying efforts in two main areas: deregulating the use and release of genetically manipulated organisms (GMOs) and minimising the labelling of its products.

THE VALUE OF SANGRE DE DRAGO

While companies like Shaman Pharmaceuticals use the traditional knowledge of indigenous and local communities as part of their research strategies, the question remains as to whether the commercialisation of traditional genetic resources benefits those communities and biodiversity conservation.

While companies like Shaman Pharmaceuticals use the traditional knowledge of indigenous and local communities as part of their research strategies, the question remains as to whether the commercialisation of traditional genetic resources benefits those communities and biodiversity conservation.

ENGINEERED BT: FROM PEST TO MARKET CONTROL

As chemical pesticides are increasingly rejected, the agrochemical industry is rushing to develop alternatives suiting its corporate interests. Side-stepping predicted resistance problems, it is focusing investment on Bacillus thuringiensis. An update.

As chemical pesticides are increasingly rejected, the agrochemical industry is rushing to develop alternatives suiting its corporate interests. Side-stepping predicted resistance problems, it is focusing investment on Bacillus thuringiensis. An update.

PEOPLE'S RIGHTS TO BIODIVERSITY DISCUSSED IN CBD

As it was seen at COP II in Jakarta, the Convention on Biological Diversity seems to be slowly moving towards the incorporation of some of the concerns of indigenous and local communities.

As it was seen at COP II in Jakarta, the Convention on Biological Diversity seems to be slowly moving towards the incorporation of some of the concerns of indigenous and local communities.