USAID: TAXPAYERS’ DOLLARS FINANCE BIG AG’s EXPANSION IN AFRICA
For years, US international food aid has prioritized domestic commercial interests by shipping food grown, processed, and packaged exclusively in the US to countries in need. Similarly, the US Agency for International Development’s (USAID) programs for agriculture aim to create new market opportunities for US exports in developing countries and increase the control of local food systems by Northern, mostly USbased, corporations. Of the six multinationals that control 75 percent of the world’s seed and pesticide markets, three are US-based. USAID has spearheaded a great push to expand the use of patented seeds and synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, especially in Africa. The aid agency is also known for its pro-GMO stance and its effort to drive the adoption of agribusiness-friendly reforms in Africa and the developing world.