Free «Monsanto at the Bottom of the Pyramid» Essay Sample

Monsanto is a large scaled industrialized company that focuses on the application of chemistry in both crop production and food enhancement to alienate poverty. Similarly, the Monsanto Company applies improvised environment at friendly and cost effective biotechnology to improve agriculture. Under the management of Bob Shapiro from 1995, the company created a niche for itself in the development of food and agriculture sectors. The company focused on the evaluation and enhancement of four crops: cotton, soybeans, wheat, and corn. However, the year 2000 proved to be a tough period for the Monsanto Company. The company incurred enormous revenue loss after the registration of their herbicide glyphosate with the US patent department expired. The Monsanto Company reaped immense profit from the sale of the herbicide glyphosate. The expiration of this patent caused the Monsanto Company a massive blow; consequently, the company had to cut down the number of employees countrywide. Under the new management of Hendrik Verfaillie, the company took a paradigm shift. The Monsanto Company shifted its focus from plant engineering to seeds, herbicides, and bioengineering. With the new developments and a vast store of improved seeds, the company lacked a strategic plan on how positively to influence the world and still meet their fiscal target. In 2001, the Company renewed its Monsanto Pledge. The renewal of this pledge marked the company’s commitment in the knowledge sharing of new biotechnologies and research development with public institutions. The company strongly believed in the knowledge sharing methodology to improve food production worldwide. The company ventured into programs that aimed at the enlightenment of third world small-scale farmers especially in Africa to better farming methods. These programs and developed technologies would foresee the sustainment of high quality yield and the eradication of hunger and poverty.

Originally, the Monsanto Company formulated and produced products aimed towards the large-scale clientele. However, after an extensive research, Monsanto realized that approximately 700 million of small-scale farmers occupied more than half of the farming land on the planet. This is an extremely important number. The company strongly felt the urge to reach out to small farmers for an effective change of world’s perspective on agriculture. The Small- holder Farmer Program began effectively with the assistance of two prominent non-governmental organizations in the US. Together with the two NGOs, the program targeted small-scale maize farmers in Africa to assist in the increment of seasonal maize yield. The program began as a success; however, in order to expand its clientele base, the company decided to charge its services to the small-scale farmers. Since then, the company continues to experience challenges that lag the whole program behind. In most scenarios, the Monsanto lack collaboration with the local authorities it aims to assist. For instance, when the company launched the Small- Holder Farmer program in China, the country was under a political turmoil. The whole program became a colossal failure. In order to prevent a recurrence of the events in China, it is advised that the company liaises with local intermediaries to reach out to the locals. Local NGOs can effectively enact this significant role. Currently, Monsanto faces a challenge in convincing NGOs (Environment Oriented) to collaborate with them. Most NGOs shy away from collaborating with Monsanto Company because of two main underlying reasons. First, Monsanto is an American Company; the NGOs targets receive funding from the European Union. The European Union has an unreasonable prejudice towards the companies of the US origin. Moreover, the Monsanto company deals mainly with the production of genetically engineered crops. Because of the environmental effects of such programs, the European Union prohibits investments to support such ventures. To address these two profound issues, Monsanto Company should hold forums that interest specifically European-based organization in their products. This creates a business rapport; gradually, the company gains the trust of these NGOs given a significant allowance can blossom into a fully funded collaboration. More significantly, Monsanto should invest heavily in research programs that will reduce the adverse environmental effects of chemically engineered crops. In order to receive funding from donor organizations, the company should wholly implement the Small-Farmer Holder program as a non-profitable venture. It is my belief that an additional application of modern environment friendly technology will lead the program into a success.


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