Bitter Seeds

Micha X. Peled

Every thirty minutes an Indian cotton farmer commits suicide. Manjusha’s father also took his own life. She dreams of a career as a journalist, but her entire family is opposed to that ambition. Nevertheless, Manjusha decides to spread her wings. In the third part of his trilogy about globalisation, Micha Peled (China Blue) follows in her footsteps.

Indian cotton farmers once produced their cotton using self-grown cotton seeds, that they obtained from their own plants. However, the arrival of an American seed producer radically changed their way of working. Multinational Monsanto sells genetically modified cotton seeds, so-called ‘Bt seeds’. These are supposed to be insect-resistant and thus guarantee much bigger harvests. The new seeds need lots of water and have to be sprayed using expensive pesticides. Many Indian farmers were lured into purchasing the expensive seeds and pesticides from Monsanto by slick sales talk. When the promised returns fail to materialise, the farmers are left indebted over head and ears.

With his globalisation trilogy, Peled gives the victims of unscrupulous multinationals an identity, without exaggerating sentiment. Micha Peled previously directed Store Wars: When Wal-Mart Comes to Town (2001) and China Blue (2007).

Credits

Subtitles
EN
Director
Micha X. Peled
Country
United States
Type
Documentary
Duration
87 minutes
Themes
corporations, media corporations, development, sustainable development, aid, ecology & environment, education & schools, labour issues & trade unions, poverty, trade & globalization, women & gender
Year
2011