This paper carefully examines Monsanto’s ethical culture, mainly how it manufactures its GMO seeds. Its subsequent analysis, therefore, will define the main ethical problems and the stakeholders involved. Ethical implications will be evaluated using both a secular and biblically based approach. It tries to provide a detailed picture of the ethics in which Monsanto operates by integrating biblical principles into the study. The entire aim of this approach is to explore this complex connection between agriculture, business practices, and ethics applicable in the new age of agriculturists. Ultimately, combining the secular and biblical ethical frameworks will point to a recommended solution to Monsanto’s ethical issues. The report will guide the morally charged terrain of agrochemicals and genetically modified varieties of crops. The GMO seed production process should involve the corporate practices, stakeholders affected, and their morality from different ethical points of view.
Monsanto’s Ethical Culture and Stakeholders
Monsanto is a critical player in the GMO industry, influencing various stakeholders such as farmers and consumers, environmentalists, and shareholders. As a result, the company has been dragged into an ethical vortex whose powerful winds have also affected its ethics. One of the most controversial aspects, which gives rise to honest debate and controversy, is the proprietary character of its seed genetics. This innovation, on the other side, has aided in increased crop yield as well as resistance of crops against pests and diseases by farmers, thus improving food security globally. It, however, posed compelling questions on farmer’s autonomy and consumer rights. Farmers will be controlled in terms of saving and replanting these genetically engineered seeds, affecting not only their self-sufficiency level but also their traditional forms of agriculture. At the same time, consumers demand transparency on what they eat, particularly in genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and the health implications that come with consuming such foods (“Big Tech Meets Big Ag: Diversifying Epistemologies of Data and Power,” 2022)
To a great extent, another element of importance in the assessment of Monsanto’s ethics is associated with how it treats various intellectual property rights issues, especially seed patents. Even though the patents protect Monsanto’s inventions and the money invested in research and development, they have caused disputes for some time now. Such patents place a lot of pressure on small-scale farmers who often cannot use their own saved seeds or get accidentally into patent infringement litigation. Monsanto’s attempts to secure exclusive rights over genetically modified seed to make profits have put pressure on Monsanto’s relationships with the agricultural society, which often leads to the question of what is fair in exchange for protection of Intellectual Property rights for seed manufacturers in the agricultural value chain. Monsanto operates in a complex landscape when it comes to ethical perceptions. Some quarters have praised it for its innovations that have been recognized as contributing to agricultural developments and addressing food security problems worldwide.
Evaluation of Ethical Implications of Growing GMO Seed.
Monsanto’s ethical culture is a manifestation of the search for innovations and profits towards ethically bound stakeholders. Finding a balance among these competing interests remains an endless endeavor that requires constant self-examination, adaptability, and ethical perfection. At the same time, the company is caught up in addressing short-ethical problems and setting directions for sustainable growth, which considers broader social values, environmental issues of sustainability, and fairness to all stakeholders. The point of how multinational companies such as Monsanto produce and distribute GMO seeds involves questions ranging from health, environment, and economics (Clapp, 2021).
GMO crop environmental impacts are significant concerns. These alterations help crops withstand insects and weeds, but biodiversity may suffer. GMO plants may outcompete or hybridize with their natural relatives, diminishing ecosystem resilience and genetic diversity. Additionally, excessive use of herbicides like glyphosate on GMO crops may create large chemical runoffs that impair the environment. So, long-term effects on ecosystems are currently disputed, and continuous scientific assessment is needed.
The debate can invariably be divided into two specific components from the public health perspective. Firstly, it should be established whether these bio preparations can or cannot be consumed by people. The problem is that people still believe that GMOs in food are unsafe even when many scientific studies show they are safe. The situation worsens with huge companies such as Monsanto that appear to have no transparency in their activities, contributing to this suspicion. The second argument deals with labeling food products, which is a result of genetic engineering. Labeling supporters contend that consumers ought to be aware of what they consume and, hence, can make wise decisions. On the other hand, some critics argue that consumers may be scared off by labeling genetically modified foods as unsafe, even though they may not be less dangerous than non-biologically engineered items.
Monsanto’s leadership in the GM seed market poses a problematic economic challenge to fair competition. Some controversies surrounding Cargill include its aggressive stance in protecting intellectual property, such as seed genetics through patents. The farmers produce seeds for commercial sale. However, these usually cost a lot, and the small-scale farmers cannot afford them. They also have a problem where other farmers whose fields do not contain patented GM strains might be forced into litigations. Here, the consideration should be the ethics of protection for innovations versus equitable competition promoting agrobiodiversity and the viability of smallholder farmers. In light of Monsanto’s behavior, how many things should be done more freely, fairly, responsibly, and transparently? Transparency is essential in matters of science and business. Equity in how the corporation treats small farmers and global trade is also crucial. Finally, Monsanto’s environmental and consumer responsibilities are open-ended concerns that require balancing innovation and ecological conscience.
Recommended Plan of Action to Address Ethical Challenge
A secular-biblical approach is proposed to address the ethical issues surrounding GM seed development and commercialization, particularly Monsanto’s activities. This approach links Monsanto’s commercial, social, and environmental activities. Building trust with consumers and other stakeholders requires transparency about organizational policies and strategies. Monsanto must promote and label GM products. Consumers might make informed selections, following the biblical concept of honesty and integrity. By exposing GMOs, Monsanto may demonstrate its morality.
Monsanto should intensify spending on measures promoting a sustainable environment. This aligns with the biblical call for stewardship of creation (New International Version Bible,1978, Gen.2:15). Such actions may be creating genetically modified organisms (GMOs) capable of minimizing their use of chemicals, supporting research on mitigation strategies of environmental risks, and contributing to environmental conservation initiatives. This would show that there should be care about conserving the earth for future children and grandchildren (Cox, Spence, & Pidgeon, 2020).
As a result, Monsanto must reconsider its approach towards helping small-scale farmers and addressing their economic issues. This means there is room for financial seed types, legislation against pollen spread inadvertently, and agronomically sound variations. Monsanto has to ensure that the company’s policies and business activities are not discriminatory against groups or individuals who could be perceived as weak. It is necessary for the company to ensure that it respects established labor standards, adheres to sustainable agricultural methods, and gives back to the communities where it operates. Such elements would reveal Christian kindness and fairness.
On its side, it becomes necessary that Monsanto reduces the environmental damages it incurs in the society. Such measures include minimizing the destruction of biodiversity by GM farming, reducing Monsanto’s ecological footprint, and enhancing waste disposal within the distribution channel. The company must involve farmers, customers, environmentalists, and religious groups in these ventures if they are to succeed quickly. This strategy is based on respect, attentiveness, and collaboration. To show social, environmental, and economic integrity, the company should practice both the norms of secular society and the principles outlined.
Integration of Biblical Worldview and Value Judgements
This would transform the approaches used by Monsanto when faced with ethically challenged issues. For example, it can completely change Monsanto’s business by highlighting critical biblical principles such as earth stewardship, truthfulness, and caring for the neighbors. In the book of Genesis, it is stated that humans should be good stewards of the earth (New International Version Bible,1978, Gen.2:15). This means that Monsanto must embrace green agricultural practices. This means moving from profit on natural resources to a model that honors ecosystem harmony. Such developments can be towards GMOs that enhance biodiversity, minimize chemical dependency, and promote favorable environments. In a nutshell, Monsanto ought to be open about their operations, especially on how safe and secure GMOs are. This entails releasing research information, communicating well with stakeholders, and labeling GMO foods, enabling customers to understand. (Eom, Qian, Saad, & Kim, 2021)
Supporting local farmers, acknowledging what it means to be a part of the agricultural community, and avoiding exploiting weak people are some ways that a firm’s business affairs can be managed appropriately. Monsanto should reformulate its corporate culture, making it align with the concepts from the Bible. Success is not only based on financial gain alone but also on the value that is created for local communities, customers, and the environment. This might make Monsanto’s business practice Biblical regarding sustainability and social responsibility. Integration should extend beyond following in the suit and being just another element in the business architecture.
The paper seeks to elaborate on the complex ethics that surround Monsanto’s production and circulation of GMO seeds. A comprehensive analysis of such challenges is based on biblical and secular points, which offer the holistic perception of ethics in the modern-day agricultural venture. Monsanto provides an action plan to reshape its marketing activities and ethical and moral concerns. Such considerations include consideration for the environment as trustworthy, equality, and the neighborliness. It focuses on the use of many diverse ethical concepts, such as religious and non-religious ethics, to inform proper corporate behavior. It is shown how tough it can be for a leader who takes the social, ethical, and economic agenda to make this work. Through undertaking such projects, companies like Monsanto can contribute towards ensuring a better world that is fairer than it is presently.
Eom, K., Qian, T., Saad, C. S., & Kim, H. S. (2021). Religion, environmental guilt, and pro-environmental support: The opposing pathways of stewardship belief and belief in a controlling god. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 78, 101717–101717. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvp.2021.101717
Big Tech Meets Big Ag: Diversifying Epistemologies of Data and Power. (2022). Retrieved November 20, 2023, from Science as Culture website: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09505431.2021.1986692
Clapp, J. (2021). The problem with growing corporate concentration and power in the global food system. Nature Food, 2(6), 404–408. https://doi.org/10.1038/s43016-021-00297-7
Cox, E., Spence, E., & Pidgeon, N. (2020). Incumbency, Trust and the Monsanto Effect: Stakeholder Discourses on Greenhouse Gas Removal. Environmental Values, 29(2), 197–220. https://doi.org/10.3197/096327119×15678473650947
New International Version Bible,1978. ESV Online. https://esv.literalword.com/