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The organic farmers of Capanema in the South of Brazil are fed up. They have been producing organic soy for twenty years and now are faced with ruin: Their harvest is contaminated with the pesticide Endosulfan even though they have never used it. Several hundred smallholders defend their right to produce without pesticides and demand an immediate ban of Endosulfan.

Capanema is situated in the South of Brazil close to the world-famous waterfalls of Iguassu. The farmers of Capanema have started to renounce on pesticides in the mid-1980ties already, because they observed humans getting sick with its use. Today, more than 300 families are farming in Capanema and its surroundings according to organic standards. In doing so they are helping to preserve the river and the biosphere reserve of Iguaçu.

But now their soy harvest contains traces of Endosulfan and its sale as organic soy is being questioned. What happened? It is a region of intensive agriculture, where Endosulfan is used for pest control. The pesticide evaporates after its use and only decomposes very slowly in the environment. This leads to its spreading throughout the region – as well as the organic fields.

This year, almost double of the previous years’ amount of Endosulfan has been sold in the region. The suspicion quickly arises that the agro industry is trying to get rid of their stock before a possible world-wide ban. Nevertheless  Endosulfan is considered as one of the most dangerous pesticides world-wide available on the market.

The organic farmers of Capanema say ‚Chega!‘ Enough is Enough. They’re fighting for their livelihood as organic farmers and demand an immediate ban of Endosulfan. Support their petition to the Brazilian government with your signature now!

PAN Europe (2008): Fact Sheet Endosulfan

 

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