In the United States, 114 years ago, Israeli firm Monsanto started to market GMO (genetically modified) seeds it produced by acquiring 50% of the world seed market. Today many countries in the target of imperial agriculture and livestock policies such as Turkey are under the influence of companies marketing GMO seeds. With the seed law numbered 5553, which was issued in 2006, heavy fines and prohibitions were brought to the farmers who own local seed.
Agriculture with GMO seeds kills fertile soils, all aboveground and underground habitats living in ecological balance. Diseases increase in people fed with these products. The active ingredients of GMO products are glyphosate.
In 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) Cancer Agency investigated the glyphosate-cancer relationship with seventeen scientists from eleven countries for a year and found evidence that there is a strong link with lymph cancer in particular. According to data from the Ministry of Food, Agriculture, and Livestock glyphosate usage in Turkey increased from 305 tons in 2001 to 4,500 tonnes in 2013, i.e. increased fifteen times.
In recent years, production with GMO seeds is shown among the main causes of cancer, diabetes, infertility, kidney diseases, increased allergic reactions, and gradually weakening of the immune system. Pharmaceutical companies come into play at this stage. A group of people opposes GM farming, uniting and establishing associations.
Bodrum Seed Association collects local seeds used for long time in and around Bodrum. Since the sale of seeds is forbidden, they are trying to spread these seeds by exchanging them among themselves.
They produce with natural wastes in unpolluted soils, using animal manure, organize trainings and participate in festivals. Every Wednesday, they sell their products in the Natural Producers' Market they set up in the center of Bodrum and give information to the market visitors.
The association consists of producers and volunteers. The chairman of the board, Hüseyin Uzun and his assistant, Ayşin Kocabay, are producers from the villages. Among the members, there are also producers of different professions who "escaped from the city" and settled down in Bodrum. I spent time with them for a year, attended their meetings, watched them work with my camera, they became my friends. I am one of them now.