India Committee of the Netherlands
+++ In solidarity with the oppressed in India +++


FAIR SEEDS - DOSSIER INFORMATION & ARTICLES
2015 - 2014 - 2013 - 2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009 - 2008 - 2007 - 2006 - 2005 - 2004 - 2003 - 2002 - 2001 - 2000 - <2000
Jun 20, 2016 [update]:
Monsanto: Corporate Rap Sheet (Corporate Research Project):
Once a controversial chemical company, Monsanto remade itself into an even more controversial agricultural biotechnology corporation that holds a dominant position in both herbicides and genetically engineered seeds. Identified more closely than any other company with the effort to introduce genetically modified organisms (GMOs) into the food supply, Monsanto has been the target of ongoing campaigns for more than 20 years, including annual March Against Monsanto actions in hundreds of cities around the world.
Jun 16, 2016:
With Organic Cotton and Online Ads, Boll & Branch Helps Indian Farmer (The New York Times)/
With organic cotton and online ads, Boll & Branch helps Indian farmers (The Economic Times - Jun 18, 2016):
When Scott and Missy Tannen were putting the final touches on their home renovation in Summit, N.J., a few years ago, they embarked on a seemingly pedestrian chore: choosing sheets for their new king bed.
...
It does not get much better further along the supply chain. According to a recent report by the Center for Research on Multinational Corporations, a Dutch nonprofit organization, and the India Committee of the Netherlands, forced labor, child labor and poor working conditions are common in Indian garment factories.
Dec 15, 2015:
Low Procurement Prices Fuelling Child Labour in Vegetable Seed Business (The Wire):
Nearly 156,000 minors, about 50,000 of them below 14 years of age, are currently engaged in producing vegetable seeds in India. Many of them have been employed by multinational and Indian companies. These and other aspects of exploitation of minors and women have been documented in a study, Soiled Seeds.
Nov 26, 2015:
Seed companies involved in child labour in India, reveals study (TwoCircles.net):
In a shocking revelation, a study has pointed out the grim realities on the use of child labour grim reality in seed-producing companies, along with the non-payment of minimum wages to workers, especially women.
Nov 23, 2015:
Response to the report "Soiled Seeds: Child Labor and Underpayment of Women in Vegetable Seed Production in India" (East-West Seed International):
East-West Seed recognizes the issue of child labor in seed production in India and has taken steps to combat this serious social and economic problem. We fully support the mission of the India Committee of the Netherlands as we strive for the same goal: total elimination of child labor in India.
Nov 2015:
Response to the report Soiled Seeds: Child Labour and Underpayment of Women in Vegetable Seed Production in India (East-West Seed):
East-West Seed recognizes the issue of child labour in seed production in India and has taken steps to combat this serious social and economic problem. We fully support the mission of the India Committee of the Netherlands as we strive for the same goal: total elimination of child labour in India.
Sep 10, 2015:
29% spike in child labour in 7 yrs in Guj cotton fields (DNA Syndication):
Gujarat’s galloping cotton production hides behind it a cruel fact- the use of children as farm labourers in the cotton fields of the state. In fact, Gujarat is the only state among the five states of India, where Bt cotton production is high, to register an increase in the number of child labourers employed in the cotton field. The number of children (below the age of 14 years) employed in the cotton fields saw 29.4% increase from the year 2006-07 to 2014-15.  The number of children employed was 86,360 in 2006-07 which rose to 1,10,400 in 2014-15.
Sep 2, 2015:
The Plight of Cottonseed Workers Reveals Why Child Labour Persists (The Wire):
A recent study has revealed that nearly half a million children in India — the majority of them girls belonging to Dalit, adivasi and OBC families — are illegally engaged in producing the cottonseeds that forms the basis of our garment industry. Of which, more than 2,00,000 children are aged below 14. One of the findings is that, contrary to popular perception, the majority of these child workers are employed by companies, rather than in family farms owned by subsistence farmers.
Sep 2015:
Niedriglöhne und Kinderarbeit - Arbeit in der Produktion von Baumwollsaatgut in Indien (Südwind e.V.):
Bevor Baumwolle zu Garn versponnen und dieses dann zu Stoffen verwoben werden kann, ist eine Reihe von Produktionsschritten nötig. Dies fängt damit an, dass
1. das Saatgut für die Baumwollpflanze gewonnen werden muss,
2. die Baumwollpflanze angebaut und deren Frucht, die u.a. aus Rohbaumwolle besteht, geerntet wird und dann schließlich
3. die Samen aus der Rohbaumwolle in einem Entkernungsprozess entfernt und die Baumwollfasern gewonnen werden.
Das vorliegende Fact-Sheet gibt einen Überblick über die Strukturen und Arbeitsbedingungen im ersten Produktionsschritt, der Baumwollsaatgutproduktion, im indischen Bundesstaat Gujarat.
Aug 28, 2015:
Workshop on Strategies to Combat Child Labour and Address Minimum Wage Issues in Hybrid Seed Production in India - Proceedings and Highlights (CCP Steering Committee):
The issue of child labour in hybrid seeds production in India continues to receive national and international attention. Despite some improvements in the recent years, the total number of children employed in this sector remains high.
Aug 27, 2015:
Healthy sign: study reveals decline in child labour in cotton fields (The Hindu):
With issues of child labour in hybrid cotton seed production in the country receiving global attention, a study has revealed that there is a sharp decline in the number of children below 14 years employed in the highly labour intensive activity in the recent years.
The study was jointly conducted by India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN), an NGO involved in advocacy work on human rights issues and Stop Child Labour, a coalition of NGOs and trade unions, between July 2014 and January 2015.
Aug 19, 2015:
O trabalho infantil ainda é explorando largamente na colheira de algodão da Índia (StyloUrbano):
Um novo relatório da Stop Child Labour Coalition e da India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN) revelou que 60% dos trabalhadores rurais de sementes de algodão na Índia são crianças o que dá um total de quase meio milhão de jovens. Apropriadamente intitulado de Cotton’s Forgotten Children, o relatório detalhado mostrou que a maioria destes trabalhadores rurais estão abaixo da idade de 18 anos, sendo que muitos tem menos de 14 anos de idade.
Aug 17, 2015:
Response sought in the Dian case along with trafficking of child labour (Rajasthan Patrika):
Recognizing the seriousness of trafficking of children from the tribal belt of the Division to BT cottonseed plots of Gujarat by the traffickers, the Rajasthan High Court has asked the state Government to respond. The Court made its comments in a public interest litigation despite the tall claims made by the state Government about the development of the tribal areas. The recent report of the India Committee of the Netherlands and Stop Child Labour Campaign was handed over to the Court today.
Aug 14, 2015:
Nearly Half a Million Children Toil in India’s Cottonseed Fields (Ecouterre):
A new report by the Stop Child Labour Coalition and the India Committee of the Netherlands has revealed that 60 percent of cotton seed farm laborers in India are children. Appropriately entitled Cotton’s Forgotten Children, the in-depth report has shown that most of these farm workers are under the age of 18, many under 14 years old. The report is part of an effort to crack down on child labor in India, which has risen since 2010.
Aug 13, 2015:
Inde: Un demi-million d’enfants dans les champs de coton (Comité de Soutien à la Révolution en Inde):
Alors que l’Inde sera le 1er producteur mondial de coton sur la saison 2015-16, quelque 25% de ses travailleurs seraient des enfants de moins de 14 ans. Un demi-million de mineurs officieraient ainsi aux récoltes, selon une étude locale. C’est dans son rapport intitulé Les enfants oubliés du coton que le professeur indien Davuluri Venkateswarlu avance ces chiffres.
Aug 13, 2015:
(RajasthanPatrika.com):
[ Publication on the report Cotton's Forgotten Children in the main local newspaper of Rajasthan - Rajasthan Patrika.
The news item quotes extensively from the report to show the continued incidence of trafficking of children to cottonseed plots. ]
Aug 13, 2015:
Hindistan’ın unutulan pamuk toplayan çocuk işçileri (Gaia Dergi):
Her daim görmezden gelinen ve eksik bir sekilde rapor edilen çocuk işçiliği sorununa dikkat çekmesiyle gözler, yazar Mari Marcel Thekaekara’ya çevrildi. Uzun yıllar boyunca Hindistan’ın Adivasi ve Dalit Halkları’nın sorunları hakkında yazan yazar bu kez ise Hindistan’da pamuk alanında çalişan çocuk işçiler sorununa değinerek konunun yeniden gün yüzüne çıkmasını ve tartışılmasını sağladı. Yazarın Hindistan’ın pamuk sektöründe çalışan çocuk işçileriyle ilgili söyledikleri gerçekten sorunun ürkütücü boyutlarda olduğunu gözler önüne seriyor.
Aug 11, 2015:
INDE – Les enfants oubliés de l’industrie du coton (Solidarité Dalits Belgique):
Yadamma est une jeune fille de 14 ans, originaire d’une famille de main-d’œuvre agricole dalit dans un village isolé de l’Andhra Pradesh. Cela fait trois ans qu’elle travaille dans les champs de coton et qu’elle ne va pas à l’école. [...] Le cas de Yadamma est un des exemples décrits dans le nouveau rapport Enfants oubliés du coton, publié par le Comité néerlandais sur l’Inde (ICN) et la Campagne contre le travail des enfants Stop Child Labour Campaign, qui constate que près d’un demi-million d’enfants en Inde travaille dans l’industrie de la production du coton. La plupart d’entre eux sont des dalits, adivasis ou appartenant à d’autres basses castes (OBC). Le rapport avertit que la plupart de ces enfants ne fréquentent pas l’école et sont soumis à des travaux dangereux et des produits chimiques nocifs.
Aug 9, 2015:
500.000 børn producerer bomuld i Indien (Globalnyt):
Delstatsregeringer i Indien beskyldes for at være ligeglade med, at hundredetusinder af mindrårige arbejder i bomuldsindustrien. Arbejdsforholdene er hårde og farlige og de fleste kommer fra andre dele af landet og må derfor også undvære deres familier.
Aug 7, 2015:
Inde: un demi-million d’enfants dans les champs de coton (FashionMag.com):
Alors que l’Inde sera le 1er producteur mondial de coton sur la saison 2015-16, quelque 25% de ses travailleurs seraient des enfants de moins de 14 ans. Un demi-million de mineurs officieraient ainsi aux récoltes, selon une étude locale.
Aug 6, 2015:
Indien: Fast eine halbe Million Kinder in der Baumwollproduktion (Aktiv Gegen Kinderarbeit):
Fast eine halbe Million Kinder in Indien arbeiten an der Basis unserer Kleidung und aller anderen Textilerzeugnisse, die wir benutzen. Sie produzieren Baumwollsamen für neue Baumwollpflanzen, indem sie jeden Samen einzeln aus der Blüte entfernen. Rund 200.000 von ihnen sind unter 14 Jahre alt. Das entspricht 25 Prozent der Arbeitskräfte auf den Baumwollsaaterntefeldern. Weitere 35% der Belegschaft sind Kinder zwischen 14 und 18 Jahren.
Dies sind Ergebnisse der Studie Cotton’s Forgotten Children von Indiens Langzeitexperten Dr. Davuluri Venkateswarlu.
Aug 5, 2015:
India cottonseed child labour on the rise (Just-Style.com):
Children below 14 constitute around 25% of the workforce in India's cotton fields, a new report has found, a number that has increased over the last five years.
Results of the study, Cotton’s Forgotten Children by India’s Dr. Davuluri Venkateswarlu, found that around half a million Indian children are working to produce cotton seed - the basis for garments and other textile products.
Aug 5, 2015:
Half million Indian children produce cottonseed (People's Voice):
Almost half a million Indian children are working to produce the cottonseed that is the basis for our garments and all the other textile products that we use. Around 200,000 of them are below 14 years of age. This is one of the shocking results of the new study Cotton’s Forgotten Children by India’s long-term expert on the issue, Dr. Davuluri Venkateswarlu.
Aug 5, 2015:
ÍNDIA – Mais de quinhentas mil crianças trabalham nos campos de algodão em condições perigosas (Pime Animação):
Continua crescendo o número de crianças que trabalha nos campos de algodão. De acordo com um estudo publicado pela Comissão Indio holandesa e pela Stop Child Labour, entidade privada, na Índia, se trata de 200 mil menores de 14 anos, idade mínima legal para trabalhar no país asiático.
Aug 4, 2015:
ASIA/INDIA – Over half a million children engaged in risky work in cotton fields (Agenzia Fides):
The number of children working in cotton fields continues to rise. According to a survey by the Indo-Dutch Committee and the private body Stop Child Labour Coalition, in India this activity involves some 200,000 minors age 14, minimum legal age for labour in the country. This year India is expected to become the world’s largest cotton producing country.
Aug 3, 2015:
New report: Low caste children suffer in India’s cottonseed industry (IDSN):
The new report Cotton’s Forgotten Children, released by the Stop Child Labour Campaign and the India Committee on the Netherlands (ICN), finds that almost half a million children in India work as child labourers in the cottonseed production industry. Most of them are Dalits, Adivasis or other low caste children (OBCs). The report warns that most of these children are not in school and are subjected to hazardous work and harmful chemicals.
Aug 2, 2015:
TN Sees Steep Drop in Kids Employed in Cotton Fields (The New Indian Express):
Tamil Nadu has shown a significant decline in the total number of children employed in cottonseed farms from 2006-7 to 2014-15, according to recent studies.
A recent report, Cotton’s Forgotten Children by NGOs ‘Stop Child Labour’ and ‘The India Committee of the Netherlands,’ reveals that the number of children employed in cotton fields has almost halved to 34,300 in eight years when the figure was 65,700. But for Tamil Nadu, it is on the rise across the country.
Aug 2015:
Escalation of Child Labour Depresses Adult Wages (Journal of People's Studies):
There has been growing concern for child labour across the globe and several efforts are being made by the governments, donor agencies, UN agencies and civil society organisations to eliminate child labour. This concern has been translated into action in several parts of the world where certain successful models have evolved that helped in bringing down the incidence of child labour. In this context certain interesting questions come up regarding its impact on the labour practices. It is argued that the labour of children, who were earlier available in large numbers in the labour market, depresses the wages and worsens the labour conditions of adults. Withdrawing children from the labour market would possibly cause rise in the wages for adults. The International Labour organisation (ILO) has developed labour standards and the broader concept of decent work (also including employment creation, social security and social dialogue) and recognised child labour as one of the important impediments to achieve the same. Any successful efforts in the direction of eliminating child labour should therefore also significantly contribute to the achievement of decent work for adults.
The reported large scale violations of child rights in cotton farm sector have caught the attention of many around the world. The specificity of hybrid cottonseed production is that the majority of workers in this sector are children, particularly girls. No other industry in India has such a high proportion of child labour in its workforce.
Jul 31, 2015:
India’s forgotten cotton-picking children (New Internationalist)/
India’s forgotten cotton-picking children (Thrakika.gr)/
India’s Forgotten Cotton-picking Children (ViewsWeek - Aug 2, 2015)/
India’s forgotten cotton-picking children (The Fifth Column - Aug 2, 2015)/
India’s Forgotten Cotton-picking Children (South Asian Pulse - Aug 5, 2015)/
India’s forgotten cotton-picking children (Point Blank 7 - Aug 12, 2015):
Mari Marcel Thekaekara shines a spotlight on the underreported problem of child labour.
"I always associated cotton picking with songs from the American deep-south. It conjured up visions of poor people, mostly African Americans. We associated cotton picking with southern slavery in America. Never with India. Inexplicably, given I have clear memories of detailed geography lessons about India’s agricultural patterns and cotton-growing states."
Jul 30, 2015:
Cotton’s Forgotten Children: Child Labour and Below Minimum Wages in Hybrid Cottonseed Production in India (SHRAM.org):
Data for 2014-15 shows that children under 14 years still account for nearly 25% of the total workforce in cottonseed farms in India. In 2014-15, a total of around 200,000 children below 14 years were employed in cottonseed farms in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Rajasthan states. Gujarat, which has the largest cottonseed production area in the country accounts for nearly 55% of the total children employed in this sector (110,000).
Jul 29, 2015:
‘Cotton’s Forgotten Children’ claims half a million children work at cottonseed fields (Apparel Resources):
Here’s again a report on child labour in Indian textile industry. Dr. Davuluri Venkateswarlu, Director Glocal Research, Hyderabad has come up with Cotton’s Forgotten Children report. The report published by The India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN) criticizes the Indian State Governments, especially Gujarat and Rajasthan, for ‘not paying serious attention to tackle the issue’ and ‘being in the denying mood’. The 47-page report claims around half a million children are working in the seed fields and about 200,000 of them are below 14 years of age. The report also contains 11 recommendations for both companies, the National Seed Association of India and the (State) Governments to tackle child labour, below official minimum or living wages and other labour rights violations.
Jul 29, 2015:
Bambini lavoratori in India (CIAI.it):
Quasi mezzo milione di minori indiani sono impiegati nella produzione del cotone in diversi stati del Paese e circa 200.000 di loro sono al di sotto di 14 anni. Questo è uno dei risultati del nuovo studio Cotton’s Forgotten Children condotto da uno dei massimi esperti in India, Davuluri Venkateswarlu.
Jul 28, 2015:
Gujarat, the largest cottonseed production area in India, accounts for nearly 55% of the total children employed in the sector (CounterView):
A recent study, Cotton’s Forgotten Children, by Dr Davuluri Venkateswarlu, director, Glocal Research, a Hyderabad-based multi-disciplinary reseach and consultancy service, has found large-scale incidence of child labour in cotton producing fields of India. Based on field survey between July 2014 and January 2015, the study analyses primary data collected through field visits to 396 sample cottonseed farms in 72 villages that produce seed for both MNCs and major Indian seed companies. Out of 396 farms surveyed, 60 are in Andhra Pradesh, 56 are in Telangana, 100 in Gujarat and 60 each in Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.
The study has been coordinated by the The India Committee of the Netherlands, an active member the Stop Child Labour campaign, the Clean Clothes Campaign, the International Dalit Solidarity Network and the Dutch MVO Platform.
Jul 28, 2015:
Cotton report slams India’s child labour stats (EcoTextile.com):
Around a 60 per cent of cotton seed farm workers in India are under the age of 18 – a figure which is on the rise according to a new report published by the Stop Child Labour Coalition and the India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN). The Cotton’s Forgotten Children report suggests more governmental reviews and policies are needed to tackle India’s ongoing child labour issues.
Jul 26, 2015:
Child labour on controvertial MNC Monsanto Bt cotton farms just 0.18% of workforce, but 28% on other farms: Dutch report (CounterView):
A well-researched Dutch report, which has sharply criticized Gujarat and Rajasthan governments for failing to take any steps against child labour in Bt cotton farms, has surprisingly praised multinational corporations (MNCs), including the controversial Monsanto, for taking “exemplary” initiatives in fighting the evil. It has said, efforts by “Bayer, Monsanto, Du Pont and few local companies have had some positive impact in reducing the number of working children.”
Jul 24, 2015:
Alleging rampant child labour in Gujarat, Rajasthan cotton fields, Dutch report praises "initiatives" by MNC Monsanto (CounterView):
A new report, Cotton’s Forgotten Children, released in The Hague, has expressed serious concern over the fact that the number of child workers, who haven't reached adolescence and working in cotton farms, has gone up by a whopping 30,000 since 2010 in Gujarat and Rajasthan. As for adolescent children, the report says, the numbers have gone up by another 70,000.
Jul 24, 2015:
Report: Child Labor in India’s Cottonseed Industry on the Rise (Sourcing Journal):
Although the International Labour Organization (ILO) has said there are one-third fewer children worldwide working today than there were 15 years ago, the problem continues, and a new report released Thursday revealed that India is going against the global grain.
Jul 24, 2015:
NGO says half a million Indian children work in cotton fields (SportsTextiles.com):
A Dutch non-government organisation, the India Committee of the Netherlands (LIW), has said in a new report that India’s cotton growing industry employs almost half a million children, that is young people up to the age of 18. It adds that around 200,000 of these children are under 14 years of age.
Jul 24, 2015:
Indien: Zahl der Kinderarbeiter steigt (TextilWirtschaft.de):
Knapp eine halbe Million Kinder ist in Indien in der Produktion von Baumwollsamen beschäftigt. Rund 200.000 von ihnen sind unter 14-Jahre alt. Zu diesem Ergebnis kommt die Studie Cotton’s Forgotten Children, die von der Nicht-Regierungs-Organisation India Committee of the Netherlands herausgegeben wurde. Die Zahl der Kinder, die auf den Baumwollsaatgutfeldern arbeiten, hat sich seit der letzten Studie aus dem Jahr 2010 um fast 100.000 erhöht.
Jul 23, 2015:
Child Labor in India’s Cottonseed Industry Detailed (WWD):
India, which is continuing its rise to the top of global cotton production, has made some strides in reducing the use of child labor in its cottonseed industry, but the problem remains widespread, according to a new report released Thursday.
Some 200,000 children under the age of 14 (India’s legal minimum age threshold) toiled in the cottonseed industry in India in 2014 through the present day, according to the report dubbed Cotton’s Forgotten Children, released by the India Committee of the Netherlands, a non-governmental organization, and the Stop Child Labour Coalition, a collation of NGOs and trade unions.
Jan 20, 2015:
Trafficking of children to cottonseed fields of Gujarat (ICN):
Every year thousands of tribal children from South Rajasthan and North Gujarat are trafficked to cottonseed plots in North Gujarat for work in the cotton seed fields, in particular to do cross-pollination by hand. This work is done in the rainy season, from August to September. Since many years the trafficking of children for cottonseed cultivation is a serious human rights issue. The Dakshini Rajasthan Mazdoor Union aims to combat trafficking through the documentation of trafficking incidences, stopping trafficking of children where possible as well as advocacy with the media, the state government and other institutions. The Union also helped farmers to get paid in time – and not e.g. only after a year - for the seeds they produce for seed companies.
2014
up
Oct 17, 2014:
14 child workers rescued from Salem cotton fields (The Hindu):
Fourteen child workers, including 10 girls, were rescued from cotton fields in Thalaivasal block of Salem district on Thursday. Seven farmers, who employed them, have been arrested.
Oct 14, 2014:
Gerwin: GMO w naszych ubraniach (Krytyka Polityczna):
Skąd pochodzi bawełna, z której zostaऒo zrobione nasze ubranie? Kto ją uprawiał i w jaki sposób? Na metce dołączonej do ubrania zazwyczaj nie znajdziemy tych informacji. Tymczasem jest bardzo prawdopodobne, e któreś z ubraŅ, które mamy na sobie lub które leżą w szafie, zostało zrobione z bawełny Bt, która zawiera modyfikację genetyczną. Ponad połowa bawełny na świecie uprawiana jest w Chinach i w Indiach, a około 80 procent upraw bawełny w Chinach to właśnie bawełna modyfikowana genetycznie. W Indiach jest to ponad 93 procent. Bawełnę Bt uprawia się także w Stanach Zjednoczonych (94 procent upraw to odmiany GMO), w Pakistanie, w Brazylii, a ostatnio również w Sudanie, Republice Południowej Afryki i w Burkina Faso.
Oct 1, 2014:
Dressed to kill? (LexisNexis):
Forced labour is unfortunately a very big part of human trafficking. To raise awareness for both consumers and organisations, this report by LexisNexis and STOP THE TRAFFIK is designed to help the cotton industry – as well as the broader public - understand what is happening today and offers guidance on how to take actions to eliminate or reduce the risk.
Jun 6, 2014:
The Price of Less Child Labour and Higher Wages (ICN):
A new ICN publication - The Price of Less Child Labour and Higher Wages - shows that increasing the price that big seed companies in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh pay to farmers to grow cottonseed has resulted in much higher wages and less child labour in recent years.
Feb 23, 2014:
The task of protecting India's child cotton pickers (BBC):
Rada estimates she is 11 years old, but she can't be certain. She says she has been working in the Indian cotton fields for three years.
Rada, who comes from Andhra Pradesh in south-eastern India, goes to school at the moment but many other children do not. It is estimated more than 400,000 children under the age of 18 work on cotton farms across India.
2013
up
Oct 28, 2013:
Norwegian pension fund withdraws investment in Indian seed company because of child labour: Risk of child labour highlighted by research ICN (ICN):
The Norwegian Ministry of Finance has recently decided to withdraw its investment in the Indian company Zuari Agro Chemicals (‘Zuari’) because of the contribution of the company to the worst forms of child labour. This decision was taken based on a recommendation from the Council on Ethics of the Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG).
Jul 18, 2013:
Children help sustain India’s hybrid seed industry (Ek Sparsh):
Nearly 8 million hectares of land is under vegetable cultivation in India, and about 30% of this area is covered with hybrid varieties. The market for hybrid varieties is rapidly increasing. Hybrid seed production is a highly labour-intensive activity.
A recent study has revealed that the Hybrid Seed Production Industry in India, dominated by multinational companies employs children as labourers.
Jul 10, 2013:
Kinderarbeit im indischen Saatgutanbau (Neue Rheinische Zeitung):
Vor zehn Jahren veröffentlichte die Coordination gegen BAYER-Gefahren (CBG) zusammen mit indischen Partnern eine Untersuchung zum Einsatz von Kinderarbeit im indischen Baumwollsaat-Anbau. Das Ergebnis war erschreckend: Tausende von Kindern, zum Teil nicht älter als sechs Jahre, schufteten für Zulieferer für den Konzern in Leverkusen, für MONSANTO und SYNGENTA. Der Tageslohn für eine 12 Stunden-Schicht lag zumeist bei rund 50 Cent. Wegen des massiven Einsatzes von Pestiziden kam es häufig zu Vergiftungen.
Jul 3, 2013:
INDE – Dalits et enfants produisent des graines de poivre et de tomates pour des compagnies indo-néerlandaises (Solidarité Dalits Belgique):
La société indienne Bejo Sheetal, partenaire de la firme hollandaise Bejo Seeds en joint venture, tolère le travail des enfants à large échelle parmi les paysans qui lui fournissent les graines de légumes. Par ailleurs, les paysans qui fournissent des graines à Nunhems India, part de Nunhems Netherlands, travaillent pratiquement sans enfants de moins de 14 ans.
Telles sont les conclusions majeures d’une étude publiée sous le titre A Tale of Two Companies – The difference between action and inaction in combating child labour (Histoire de deux compagnies – la différence entre l’action et l’absence d’action dans le combat contre le travail d’enfants) publiée par le Comité Inde aux Pays Bas.
2012
up
Dec 19, 2012:
Low Wages Remain an Issue in Indian Agriculture Sector (SiliconIndia.com):
Indian agriculture sector still remains one of the lowest paid in the world. A report on the agricultural wages released in the U.S. and the Netherlands states, “In spite of the legal requirements, payment of minimum wages is an issue in the agriculture sector in general, and seed production in particular, in India,” as reported by E Kumar Sharma for Business Today.
Dec 17, 2012:
Women growing seeds for companies in India discriminated and underpaid (ASEED.net):
On December 12 2012 the Fair Labor Association (FLA) and the India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN) are publishing the report Wages of Inequality – Wage Discrimination and Underpayment in Hybrid Seed Production in India.
Other key messages of the new report: (1) Agricultural wages have increased but they are still below minimum wages (2) Multinationals not better than Indian companies regarding wages (3) Dalits often make longer working days (4) Child labour depresses the wages.
Dec 13, 2012:
Minimum wages still an issue in Indian agriculture: Study (Business Today):
"In spite of the legal requirements, payment of minimum wages is an issue in the agriculture sector in general, and seed production in particular, in India," says a report on agricultural wages released on December 12 in the US and the Netherlands.
The report, Wages of inequality - Wage discrimination and underpayment in Hybrid seed production in India, has been commissioned by the Fair Labor Association (FLA) and the India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN).
Dec 12, 2012:
New report Wages of Inequality: Women growing seeds for companies in India discriminated and underpaid (ICN):
Today the Fair Labor Association (FLA) and the India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN) are publishing the report Wages of Inequality – Wage Discrimination and Underpayment in Hybrid Seed Production in India.
The report is based on field research by Dr. Davuluri Venkateswarlu and Mr. Jacob Kalle into the wages of labourers - women, men and children - who are growing cotton and vegetable seed in four Indian states. They are working for farmers that supply their seeds to Indian as well as multinational companies. The latter are – among others - Monsanto, Syngenta, Dupont, US Agri, East-West Seeds, Bayer, Advanta and Bejo Sheetal.
Dec 2012:
Low Wages Remain an Issue in Indian Agriculture Sector (IndoLink.com):
Indian agriculture sector still remains one of the lowest paid in the world. A report on the agricultural wages released in the US and the Netherlands states: “In spite of the legal requirements, payment of minimum wages is an issue in the agriculture sector in general, and seed production in particular, in India,” as reported by E Kumar Sharma for Business Today. The report further claims ‘Wages of inequality - Wage discrimination and underpayment in Hybrid seed production in India,’ as commissioned by the India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN) and the Fair Labor Association (FLA).
Dec 2012:
Wage Discrimination Continues on Indian Seed Farms (Fair Labor News):
A recent study commissioned by FLA and the India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN) found ongoing wage discrimination and underpayment of wages in hybrid vegetable and cotton seed production in India. The study, conducted by Dr. Davuluri Venketeswarlu and Jacob Kalle, was conducted in four Indian states where hybrid seed production is largely concentrated - Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka and Maharashtra - and involved interviews with nearly 500 workers on 200 seed farms and discussions with growers, civil society organizations, government officials and others.
Nov 15, 2012:
Forced and Child Labour in the Cotton Industry - factsheet (World Vision Australia):
Cotton is one of the most widely grown crops in the world. It is used in the clothes we wear, the fabrics in our homes and even as cottonseed oil in the food we eat. There are wide reports of forced and child labour within the industry, which means the products we buy here in Australia may be tainted with forced and child labour.
Nov 10, 2012:
Once abused, 700 children set to become agents of change (The Times of India):
Life was never promising for 13-year-old Suraj, a tribal, till he was rescued from a Bt cotton field in Banaskantha in Gujarat a year ago. Suraj had migrated to Gujarat in the winter of 2010 to support his family, unaware that he along with many other children were sold by a middleman for five years.
Jun 8, 2012:
Child labour in the cotton industry (World Vision Australia):
The story of India’s cotton industry is a dark one. It’s highly labour intensive and a lot of children, particularly girls, are used to handle its production.
Jun 6, 2012:
Childhood in shreds (The Hindu):
Forced to work for 14-hours at a stretch and even carry pesticides on their back, the plight children engaged as child labour in the Bt cotton production has often gone unnoticed, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has said in its latest survey report.
Jan 19, 2012:
India's exploited child cotton workers (BBC News):
Women and girls, some no more than 10 or 11, fed machines with raw cotton picked from the nearby fields.
It is a process known as ginning - one end of a commercial supply chain that ends up as clothes and textiles in high street shops around the world. Globally, annual revenues from the industry are measured in the trillions of dollars.
Many household-name retailers concede they do not know exactly how the cotton they use is farmed and processed. Yet, for years, labour activists here have campaigned for their help.
2011
up
Oct 31, 2011:
Child rights body wants ban on minor workers in Bt cotton fields (Indian Express):
Aiming eradication of child labour practice in Bt Cotton fields, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has written to the Central Labour Ministry to include the Bt Cotton fields under the prohibited list of hazardous areas where child labourers cannot be employed.
Oct 13, 2011:
NCPCR irked over dismal state of child labourers in BT cotton farms in Gujarat (Press Information Bureau, Gov. of India):
The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) under the women and Child Development Ministry has found child labourers to be rampant in the BT cotton fields of Shihori and Khimana of Banaskantha district here during a visit of the Central body on October 7-10, 2011.
Oct 9, 2011:
NCPCR raid 'yields' 12 child labourers on cotton farms (DailyBhaskar.com):
At an age when they are supposed to be studying in schools, children are found working in cotton farms as labourers. Child labour, which is a burning issue in most states of the country, also has Gujarat on the list of state 'killers', who are terminating the childhood of children.
Sep 8, 2011:
Centre to probe child labour in Bt cotton farms (The Times of India):
A delegation of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) will visit Banaskantha and Sabarkantha districts to investigate allegations of child labour being used in Bt cotton fields. The letter to Gujarat chief secretary A K Joti says that the delegation, led by Dr Yogesh Dube, will take cognizance of "the violations/deprivations of child rights".
Aug 15, 2011:
Seeds of Despair (Countercurrents.org):
The escalating corporatization of the agricultural sector, where the bulk of the Indian workforce continues to be concentrated, has had critical consequences for struggles for the rights of landless labourers and small farmers. Land reforms, critical to the empowerment of these two sections of rural society, seem now to be definitely off the government’s agenda. The growing control of massive corporate houses, including multinational corporations (MNCs), over the agricultural sector has left agricultural labourers and small farmers increasingly at the mercy of market forces, leading, as numerous reports have highlighted, to their increasing pauperization.
May 16, 2011:
The Cost of Cotton: Every 30 minutes an Indian farmer commits suicide (ICN/CHR&GJ):
India is failing to address its farmer suicide crisis, says the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice (CHRGJ), in a report released yesterday that has indentified an agrarian crisis in India where farmer suicides are on the rise and caste discrimination only exacerbates the problem.
Feb 23, 2011:
Seed producing units asked not to employ children (The Times of India):
The two-day National Seed Association of India Conference, which began in the city on Tuesday, had child rights protection forums and civil society organisations demanding freedom for over 5 lakh children working in hybrid seed production.
Taking serious note of the continued employment of a large number of children in hybrid seed production activities, they appealed to all the seed producing companies not to engage children in their operations.
2010
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Oct 25, 2010:
Ahmedabad: Child labour reports on BT cotton farms shock NGOs (NDTV.com):
More than one lakh tribal children below the age of 14, from various districts of Gujarat, have been forced into hard labour in BT cotton fields across the state - stated the report of a sting operation carried out by Buniyadi Adhikar Andolan Gujarat (BAAG). BAAG is a state-level body formed in 2005, and made up of seven independent member organizations working for the common cause of basic rights.
Oct 25, 2010:
NGO protests against child labour in Banaskantha (The Times of India):
At least 300 activists of Buniyadi Adhikar Andolan Gujarat (BAAG), Ahmedabad, submitted a memorandum to Banaskantha district collector on Monday, protesting against child labour in BT cotton farms in the district. BAAG convener Jayanti Makwana and others, in the memorandum, said that a large number of tribal children below the age of 14, from various districts of Gujarat, have been forced into hard labour in BT cotton fields across the state.
Jul 19, 2010:
Re 1 per hour: Children fuel Bt cotton boom (Hindustan Times):
In this land of rolling hills, made lush by the monsoon, traffic ceases after dusk. So, it is unusual to hear jeeps running through the night on the winding roads of tribal south Rajasthan.
Through the day, the local police, villagers and NGOs are out in force, trying to stop what they can only slow — the mass trafficking of children across the border into Gujarat from the Rajasthan districts that border it: Udaipur, Dungarpur, Banswara and Sirohi.
Jul 2010:
Combining work and school: The dynamics of girls’ involvement in agricultural work in Andhra Pradesh, India (Children & Society):
Child labour in India has long been the focus of research, policy concern and intervention. This paper presents an analysis of children's involvement in agricultural work, particularly cottonseed production, drawing on evidence gathered for Young Lives in 2007 and 2008. In parts of rural Andhra Pradesh, children have been working in cotton fields for two or three months of the year. Evidence showed marked gender and age differentiation. In the early stages of cotton production in the mid-1990s, there was reportedly a cultural as well as an economic basis for children's work in cottonseed pollination, when it was believed that pre-pubescent girls were preferred, as they were considered 'pure'. This has shifted, and children appear to work in cotton pollination for economic reasons, as well as practical ideas that they are better suited to the work because of their physical height and dexterity. The paper focuses on accounts from two girls involved in such work. They highlighted the importance of work in their everyday lives and its consequences for their schooling. Their situation had changed markedly when the study teams visited the site one year later, and the paper explores some of the reasons for the changes.
Jun 21, 2010:
Child labour props up country's seed industry (Mail Today (India)):
The Indian seed industry, dominated by multinational companies, is a major employer of child labour, surveys have revealed. More than half a million children in India are growing cotton and vegetable seeds under hazardous conditions, including long working hours and exposure to pesticides.
Jun 13, 2010:
New study points to child labour at seed farms, MNCs under cloud (Financial Express):
More than half a million children in India below 18 years are growing cotton seeds and vegetable seeds under hazardous conditions, says a joint study by the India Committee of the Netherlands, the International Labour Rights Forum and Stop Child Labour — School is the best place to work. According to the study, around 2.30 lakh among these children are below 14 years and are putting in long working hours and are exposed to pesticides in these farms.
Jun 11, 2010:
Indian kids labour in fields in hazardous condition: Survey (Sify.com):
More than half-a-million children below 18 years of age have been working under hazardous condition in cotton and vegetable fields in five western and southern Indian states, a report said Friday.
Jun 11, 2010:
More than half a million child laborers in Indian seed production (International Labor Rights Forum):
More than half a million children in India below 18 years are growing cottonseed and vegetable seeds under hazardous conditions, including very long working hours and exposure to pesticides. Around 230,000 of them are below 14 years of age. They produce the seed on the land of small and marginal farmers, which multinational and Indian seed companies use to outsource their hybrid seed production.
Jun 2010:
Kinderfreie Saatgutproduktion in Indien? (MultiWatch.ch):
Ein neuer Bericht von International Labour Rights Forum (ILRF), India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN) und Stop Child Labour - School is the Best Place to Work untersucht die Situation von Kinderarbeit in der Saatgutproduktion in Indien. Der Bericht Growing Up in the Danger Fields, Child and Adult Labour in Vegetable Seed Production in India zeigt auf, dass bei einigen Saatgutunternehmen gewisse Fortschritte gemacht wurden.
Feb 9, 2010:
Child labour in Gujarat's cottonseed farms (India Together):
Labour contractors and large landowners continue to employ children, often exposing them to vulnerable situations. Extreme poverty in Rajasthan's tribal districts fuels the practice.
Feb 6, 2010:
Get Your Gen Mo Out of My Food Yo: Part IV - Farmers who save seeds are soon sued (Conducive Chronicle/GE Free BC):
Farmers have been front and center pawns in the GM Food chess game. To their credit, farmers historically have a hard working life and little return for their investment of blood, sweat, tears and dollars. They spend their morning, days and evenings working, day in and day out, week after week, year after year, and the prospect of being part of a growing corporation could offer great appeal along with the aspiration of one day retiring. While yes, they are partly responsible for producing GM crops, they are also responding to the consumer’s demand and a corporation’s command.
2009
up
2009:
Sexual Violence against young adivasi female workers on cottonseed farms of Gujarat and the forums available for justice (CRY):
Every year a large number of young adivasi girls from South Rajasthan go for cross pollination work on the cottonseed farms of Banaskantha and Sabarkantha districts of Gujarat. They migrate seasonally in groups with a labour contractor, who is also from the same community. For 2-3 months, these young workers live and work on the cottonseed farms away from their families under the supervision of the labour contractor, sharecropper or the farm owner. During this period they are exposed to several risks – rains, snake bites, exposure to pesticides, physical and sexual violence. The purpose of this study was to understand the nature and the magnitude of violence these young workers face, mostly focussing on the sexual violence. Effort was made to understand the reasons for the violence, dynamics of dealing with it and forums the workers have access to seek relief, justice and rehabilitation.
2009:
Girl Child Bonded Labour in Cottonseed Fields - A study of two villages in Rangareddy District of Andhra Pradesh (MV Foundation):
This study shows new forms of exploitation of girl children in cottonseed farms. These girl children working in cottonseed fields are subjected to the pressures of the market economy which forces them to join the labour force as cheap labour (in place of adults). All kinds of myths are circulated to ensure that they are made available. It is shocking that these new forms of exploitation are being accepted unquestionably by everyone. We all know that it is uncivilised to pledge a girl child- which has not been done before in this area. Yet, we seem to be accepting it as if it has always been in existence-this must be exposed and condemned and girls need to be liberated.
Nov 5, 2009:
Child labour stain on Bt cotton (ExpressBuzz.com):
In a hitherto uncovered area in child labour, the Bt Cotton sector has now been found to be exploiting tribal children, as young as eight years, just because they come cheap.
That companies like Rasi, Monsanto, Bayer and Nuziveedu are employing tribal children in their contract farms has come to light through a study on supply chain in Hybrid Cotton Seed Production in Salem and Dharmapuri. For a daily wage of Rs 80 the children toil from 5 am to 7 pm.
Aug 28, 2009:
Life's cheap in the Bt cotton fields of Gujarat (The Times of India):
It was on the night of August 17 that Punjilal Ahuri received the body of his 16-year-old daughter, Haju Ben. She had apparently died of snake bite while working in the Bt cotton fields of Gujarat.
That was the first time Punjilal got to know where his missing daughter had been. She had gone shopping one day to Wardha market in Dungarpur, and never returned. Apparently, there she had met a middleman, Amramam, who took her ”along with others” to work in Gujarat's Bt cotton fields.
May 2009:
Children Combining Work and Education in Cottonseed Production in Andhra Pradesh: Implications for Discourses of Children's Rights in India (Young Lives):
Child labour in India has long been the focus of research, policy concern and intervention. This paper presents a preliminary analysis of children's work in cottonseed production in Andhra Pradesh, drawing on evidence from two case studies from the qualitative component of Young Lives. In parts of rural Andhra Pradesh, children work in the cotton fields for two to three months of the school year. Children highlighted the importance of this work in their everyday lives and its consequences for their schooling. Evidence shows marked gender and age differentiation. In the early stages of cotton production, there was reported to be a cultural as well as an economic basis for children's work in cottonseed pollination, when it was believed that pre-pubescent girls were preferred for this kind of work, as they were considered to be 'pure'. However, this has shifted somewhat, and children appear to work in cotton pollination for economic reasons, as well as practical ideas that they are better-suited to this type of work because of their physical height and dexterity. The paper concludes with a discussion of the implications of the research for discourses related to children’s rights in India.
2008
up
Jul 2008:
Literature Review and Research Evaluation relating to Social Impacts of Global Cotton Production for ICAC Expert Panel on Social, Environmental and Economic Performance of Cotton (SEEP) (ICAC):
This review seeks to provide an accurate and up-to-date picture of the information sources available on the ‘social impacts’ of cotton cultivation in ten focus countries, identified as the largest producers by volume. These countries are: China, India, USA, Pakistan, Brazil, Uzbekistan, Turkey, Greece, Syria and Burkina Faso.
Feb 25, 2008:
Child labour: That garden stone, handmade carpet or embroidered T shirt you just bought was probably made by Child Labor (Forbes.com):
Yothi Ramullanaga is 4 feet tall. From sunup to sundown she is hunched over in the fields of a cottonseed farm in southern India, earning 20 cents an hour. Farmers in the Uyyalawada region process high-tech cottonseeds genetically engineered to contain a natural pesticide, on behalf of U.S. agriculture giant Monsanto. To get the seeds to breed true the farmers have to cross-pollinate the plants, a laborious task that keeps a peak of a dozen workers busy for several months on just one acre. And to make a profit the farmers have to use cheap labor. That means using kids like Jyothi, who says she’s 15 but looks no older than 12. (Monsanto points to papers indicating she is 15.) To harvest the bolls three months later, the farmers use cheap labor again, not the machinery that is used to pick cotton in the U.S.
Feb 25, 2008:
The Warped Weft: 1.3 lakh children in AP lose their childhood to its cotton fields and factories (Outlook):
It's 8 am on Etukuru Road, a hub of about 120 cotton-ginning factories in Guntur city. Six girls, aged between eight and 13, hurry along, making their way past mounds of raw cotton into a couple of noisy ginning mills. Once inside, they waste no time picking up some baskets and loading them with cotton. They then walk to the machines and toss their bales in where the seeds are separated.
...
According to a recent study titled Child Bondage Continues in India's Cotton Supply Chain — published on behalf of the India Committee of The Netherlands, the International Labor Rights Forum of the US, oecd Watch, German Agro-Action and One World Net nrw (Germany) — about 1,28,000 children work in the hybrid cottonseed fields of AP.
Jan 8, 2008:
Child labour: Govt to expand list of hazardous jobs, amend law (The Indian Express):
With instances of alleged child labour coming to light regularly despite a 22-year-old law prohibiting it, the Government is in the midst of launching a multi-pronged attack on the socio-economic menace that some developed countries have begun using as a non-tariff barrier to prevent exports from India.
The Union Labour Ministry is about to notify a significant expansion of the list of hazardous processes and occupations where the employment of children below 18 years of age is strictly prohibited, even as it is working towards comprehensively reviewing and amending the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act of 1986. A detailed protocol is also being put in place for the rehabilitation and repatriation of rescued migrant and bonded child labourers.
2007
up
Dec 11, 2007:
'YSR govt spawning child labour' (The Times of India):
A recent international report has revealed that the state government is making a mockery of the recently-enacted Anti-Child Labour Act by actively encouraging the continuance of bonded and inhuman child labour, especially in the cotton fields in the state. According to the report, nearly 1,28,000 children are working as bonded labour in sub-human conditions in the cotton fields which are under contract to multinational companies and their Indian sub-licensees.
Dec 2007:
Gujarat Farmers Seek Time to End Child Labour / Crack the Whip to Ban Child Labour in Cotton Seed Farming (Infocus):
When the NCPCR represented by its chairperson Shantha Sinha accompanied by Neera Burra and Venkat Reddy, child right activists visited Gujarat in September this year, they found several thousand children who had migrated to the state for work from Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa and Rajasthan. They worked for long hours in the cotton fields, in cotton ginning mills, saltpan, brick kiln and charcoal industries and were a source of cheap labour.
Nov 25, 2007:
Bayer CropScience’ response to the report “Child bondage continues in Indian cotton supply chain” of Dr. Davuluri Venkateswarlu (Bayer CropScience):
Bayer CropScience appreciates that Dr. Venkateswarlu has taken a closer look at the entire cotton seed production sector of India covering also the major local seed companies which dominate the market. Without the sincere commitment of these companies, there is no hope of any relevant change in the current child labour situation of the seed production sector in India. From that particular perspective, Bayer welcomes the new report as a step in the right direction.
Nov 13, 2007:
The human cost of a cheap shirt (EcoStreet):
This post examines some of the issues concerned with the employment of children in the production of cheap textiles in the third world. Child labour is an emotive subject and a consequence of extreme poverty which creates hunger and homelessness. There are no simple solutions and legislation alone will only drive the practice further undercover. The International Labour Rights Forum (ILRF) have concluded in a recent report that corporations are not making sufficient interventions in eliminating child labour in cotton but that is not the sole problem.
Oct 26, 2007:
Child slavery thriving in Indian cotton industry (OneWorld South Asia):
India has distinction of having the largest area under cotton cultivation in the world and has been a pioneer in developing hybrid cotton seeds for commercial use. The Indian cottonseed industry is also marked by the highest proportion of child labour in its workforce.
The local seed farmer justifies the continued and increasing employment of children, particularly girls.
Oct 23, 2007: 
Monsanto response to “Child bondage continues in Indian cotton supply chain” (Business & Human Rights resource Centre):
The Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited Monsanto to respond to the following report: “Child bondage continues in Indian cotton supply chain”, Dr Davuluri Venkateswarlu, September 2007.
Oct 2, 2007:
Over 4-Lakh Children Work As Bonded Labour In India - A Survey Report (TopNews.in):
Four lakh children, mostly girls and under 18, are involved as child labour in India’s cottonseed fields. The report stated that around 4,16,000 children under 18, nearly half of which are less than 14 years, are doing work in the States of Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
Oct 1, 2007:
Over 4 lakh children work in cotton seed farms (The Hindu):
Notwithstanding the series of `proactive´ steps taken so far to discourage the obnoxious practice of child labour, a study commissioned by five international agencies has revealed that over four lakh children continue to slog on hybrid cotton seed farms across Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.
Oct 2007:
A Global Alliance against Forced Labour? Unfree Labour, Neo-Liberal Globalization and the International Labour Organization (Journal of Agrarian Change):
The ILO is presently attempting to spearhead a ‘global alliance against forced labour’. This article surveys the ILO approach to forced labour, recent theoretical debates regarding forced labour and recent empirical work on bonded labour in India. It argues that the ILO ‘ghettoizes’ forced labour, and that existing theories do not provide an alternative to this, as they focus on high-level ahistorical models. There is a need to develop specific analyses of the processes underlying both free and unfree labour relations in the present context, and their relation to neo-liberal globalization as well as country-specific conditions. The review of Indian case studies and of aspects of neo-liberal globalization points towards such an analytical approach.
Sep 29, 2007:
India's cotton fields: Over 4 lakh child labourers (Rediff.com):
More than four lakh children, mostly girls and under 18 years of age, are involved as child labour in cottonseed fields in India, a human rights report has said.
Sep 29, 2007:
'Over 4 lakh kids in India are bonded labourers' (Times of India/Press Trust of India/India Express/ZeeNews.com/The Hindu):
More than four lakh children, mostly girls and under 18 years of age, are involved as child labour in cottonseed fields in India, a human rights report has said.
Sep 28, 2007:
Child labour on the rise in cottonfields (Business Standard):
More than 416,000 children under the age of 18, of whom almost 225,000 are younger than 14, are involved in child labour in India's cottonseed production. Most of them are girls.
Sep 27, 2007:
Four lakh children slogging in cotton fields: report (Hindustan Times):
About four lakh Indian children are engaged in hybrid cotton fields in four cotton growing states, says a report by the India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN).
Sep 24, 2007:
Increased Levels of Child Labor in India's Cotton Industry Reported (GoodWeave.org):
The International Labor Rights Forum (ILRF), along with international partners including OECD Watch, India Committee of the Netherlands, Deutsche Welthungerhilfe and Eine Welt Netz NRW, released a report today focused on recent trends in employment of child labor on cottonseed farms in India. The report estimates that roughly 416,460 children, out of which 224,960 are under the age of 14, are still working on cottonseed farms in the four major producing states in India, representing an increase from the 2003-2004 harvest season.
Aug 29, 2007:
Childhood lost in Bt cotton farms (Ahmedabad Newsline):
In the Bt cotton farms in Idar taluka in Sabarkantha district it is pollination time for the crop. And so, tribal children shepherded by contractors have started the familiar journey south from Banswara, Dungarpur and Udaipur districts of Rajasthan. Over the past few years thousands of children have been extensively employed in the manual pollination of Bt Cotton in the farms of north Gujarat.
Jun 21, 2007:
GALU gears up to stop child labour on Bt cotton farms in North Gujarat (Ahmedabad Newsline):
The Gujarat Agriculture Labour Union (GALU) is launching a campaign next month against child labour in cotton farms across north Gujarat. Thousands of tribal children from Rajasthan are employed in these farms every year during the harvest season.
Jun 21, 2007:
Disha on route to root-out child labour (Fibre2Fashion.com):
According to a rough estimate, around 1.5 lakh children migrate every year from Southern Rajasthan to Northern Gujarat to work in BT cotton farms. These children are employed as casual labourers on daily wage basis for cross-pollination work in seed plots of Bt cotton. Most of these farms of Banaskantha and Sabarkantha districts are owned by the rich farmers. There are contractors who supply children from Southern Rajasthan to farmers. Annual work cycle is for two to three months during July to August for BT cotton farms.
Jun 12, 2007:
Immer noch Kinderarbeit in der indischen Baumwoll-Industrie (Entwicklungspolitik Online):
In Indien arbeiten noch immer Kinder auf Farmen, die Baumwoll-Saatgut beispielsweise für die Bayer-Tochterfirma ProAgro herstellen. Das ist das Ergebnis einer Studie, die das Eine Welt Netz Nordrhein-Westfalens zum 12. Juni 2007, dem internationalen Tag gegen Kinderarbeit, veröffentlicht hat. Die Studie Die Saat der Kinderarbeit untersucht die Aktivit&aauml;ten der Konzerne Monsanto und Bayer gegen ausbeuterische Kinderarbeit in der indischen Produktion von Baumwoll-Saatgut. Erstellt wurde die Studie vom indischen Wissenschaftler Dr. Davuluri Venkateswarlu im Auftrag des Eine Welt Netzes NRW, der Deutschen Welthungerhilfe und Nichtregierungsorganisationen aus den Niederlanden und den USA.
Mar 2007:
"Think Locally, Act Globally?" An actor-oriented case study on the transnational cooperation of NGOs on BAYER and child labour in Andhra Pradesh, India (Master Thesis Julia Brümmer, University of Maastricht):
This master thesis analyses a transnational campaign on a particular case of child labour – namely in the cottonseed production of the multinational company Bayer CropScience in Andhra Pradesh, India. Adopting an actor-oriented approach, it looks at the way in which various non-governmental actors from Europe and India have created a transnational network on the case, thus re-embedding the local problem into a global context. Based on a study of written publications and on interviews with all organisations participating in the campaign as well as with ‘external’ actors, it is established how the local problem is (re-) defined through the interaction of various actors with different approaches and interests. The findings suggest that an actor-oriented approach may help understand how the internal dynamics of a (transnational NGO) network influence its orientation and effectiveness.
2006
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Mar 2, 2006:
India's lost children: Groups work to abolish child labor, help educate former youth workers (IndUS Business Journal):
According to the India-based Mamidipudi Venkatarangaiya Foundation, there are 80 million child laborers working in India. This non-governmental organization has been working for over 13 years to get the message out about abolishing this practice, but it has also gone a step further — it is helping former child laborers by providing them with an education.
Feb 2, 2006:
Bt cotton seed farms spring up in border villages (The Hindu):
Hundreds of acres of irrigated lands in villages in the district bordering Andhra Pradesh have been converted into production farms for Bt cotton seeds.
A seed company based in Mahbubnagar district has been helping farmers based in Andhra Pradesh take irrigated lands on lease from local farmers for cultivation of Bt cotton seeds on a large scale.
Bt cotton seed production farms have sprung up in village after village in Sedam and Yadgir taluks bordering Andhra Pradesh. These production farms are also allegedly employing child labour. Child labour is not only cheap but also available in plenty in these villages due to abject poverty and illiteracy.
Jan 11, 2006:
Bt cotton seed firms at the receiving end (Financial Express):
The Andhra Pradesh government has expressed concern over the inadequate payment to farmers by seed companies for producing Bt cotton seeds. It has also criticised “aggressive marketing strategies” of Bt cotton seed companies and urged them to educate farmers on pest control measures. The state government has written to the Union government as to why field trials of Bt Okra was conducted in the state without its knowledge. The state agriculture minister, N Raghuveera Reddy, admitted having received some adverse reports about performance of Bt cotton seeds. He said: “We sent a team of scientists from the agricultural universities to verify the situation.
Jan 5, 2006:
Proagro penalises 11 cottonseed growers for employing child labour (Business Standard):
Proagro, a company of Bayer Cropsciences, has decided to penalise 11 farmers and cancel the contracts with three more for employing child labour in the cottonseed production last year.
Jan 2006:
Child Labor (Unbroken People/LIW):
Multinational and Indian seed companies like Bayer, Monsanto, Syngenta and Indian companies like Nuziveedu Seeds, Raasi Seeds and Ankur Seeds are paying Indian farmers who are producing their cotton seed almost 40% too little to enable them to hire adults for the local minimum wages of Rs. 52 instead of children. At present farmers working for these companies mainly hire children and young people below 18. At least 100,000 of them work 13 hours a day in cotton seed production in Andhra Pradesh for less than half a Euro per day. They are aften bonded by loans given to their parents.
2005
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Dec 30, 2005:
Proagro to provide lower interest credits to farmers: Move aimed at eradicating child labour in cottonseed production (Business Standard):
Proagro-Bayer CropScience has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the State Bank of India to arrange lower interest credits to cottonseed growers as a part of its initiative to improve productivity and profitability under its Harvest of Happiness project to eradicate child labour.
Dec 23, 2005:
Bonded for life (NewIndPress):
In the course of my work as a researcher on elementary education I have come across many situations that leave me numb. Like in a recent field visit to Andhra Pradesh, where I was informed that young prepubescent girls are taken out of school so they can pollinate cottonseed farms.
Dec 14, 2005:
The 14 worst corporate offenders (IndyBay.org):
...
According to the India Committee of the Netherlands and the International Labor Rights Fund, Monsanto also employs child labor. In India, an estimated 12,375 children work in cottonseed production for farmers paid by Indian and multinational seed companies, including Monsanto.
...
Dec 4, 2005:
European Commission cottons on child labour (The Times of India):
Working 13 hours a day under the blazing sun for a measly Rs 25-30 a day is no child's play. But that's what 100,000 children — of which over 60% are girls — have been doing at cottonseed farms in Andhra, says a report commissioned by the India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN), the International Labour Rights Fund and Eine Welt Netz NRW (OneWorld Net Germany). Titled The Price of Childhood, the report has been cited by Max van den Berg of the Party of European Socialists and vice-chair of the development committee in a written question to the European Commission. The question raises the issue of multinational companies fostering child labour by not paying Indian farmers who produce their cottonseed enough to hire adults.
Nov 29, 2005:
Syngenta & co responsible for rampant child labour on Indian cotton farms (GMWatch):
Two separate studies conducted recently held that multinationals like Bayer, Monsanto and Syngenta and Indian companies like Nuziveedu Seeds, Raasi Seeds and Ankur Seeds as responsible for the situation [extensive use of child labour].
Nov 25, 2005:
Child labour rampant in AP cotton farms, report (Financial Express):
Production of cotton seeds has become problematic with recent studies revealing extensive use of child labour. Two separate studies conducted recently held that multinationals like Bayer, Monsanto and Syngenta and Indian companies like Nuziveedu Seeds, Raasi Seeds and Ankur Seeds as responsible for the situation.
Nov 21, 2005:
Monsanto still involved in child labour in India (GMWatch):
Over the last few years a series of reports have exposed the involvement of Monsanto and other multinationals in largescale child labour in India, as part of cotton seed production.
In 2003, for instance, a report showed, "around 17,000 children work for Monsanto and their Indian subsidiary Mahyco. These children get no education, earn less than 40 Eurocents (Rs. 20) a day and are exposed to poisonous pesticides like Endosuphan during their work. More than 11.000 children work under similar conditions for the multinationals Syngenta (Swiss), Advanta (Dutch-British) and Proagro (owned by Bayer from Germany)."
Nov 17, 2005:
MNC seed cos chalk out action plan for child labour (Business Standard):
Multinational seed companies, Emergent Genetics and Proagro, which have their operations across Andhra Pradesh, have chalked out an action plan in collaboration with non-government organisations to address the problem of employment of child labour in hybrid cottonseed production in the state.
Nov 10, 2005:
India: Cotone, prezzi bassi e lavoro minorile (Unimondo.org):
Multinazionali e compagnie indiane, attive nel settore dei semi di cotone, pagano i coltivatori indiani il 40% in meno di quanto sarebbe necessario per assumere solo lavoratori adulti, pagando loro il salario minimo stabilito a livello locale, evitando il ricorso al lavoro minorile. Le compagnie coinvolte sono multinazionali come Bayer, Monsanto e Syngenta, e imprese indiane, come Nuziveedu Seeds, Raasi Seeds e Ankur Seeds. Attualmente, sono almeno 100.000 i minori, in maggioranza ragazze, che lavorano 13 ore al giorno, per meno di un euro, presso i coltivatori che riforniscono queste compagnie, nello Stato indiano di Andhra Pradesh, che, insieme a quello di Gujarat, copre circa il 75% della produzione di semi di cotone del Paese.
Nov 9, 2005:
Employment of adult labour to cost an additional Rs 7,970 per acre: Low cottonseed procurement price spawns child labour (Business Standard):
An inalienable link has been established between the procurement price by seed companies including multinational enterprises and use of child labour in hybrid cottonseed production in Andhra Pradesh.
Nov 9, 2005:
India: Multinazionali perpetuano il lavoro minorile (Vita.it):
Multinazionali e compagnie indiane, attive nel settore dei semi di cotone, pagano i coltivatori indiani il 40% in meno di quanto sarebbe necessario per assumere solo lavoratori adulti, pagando loro il salario minimo stabilito a livello locale, evitando il ricorso al lavoro minorile. .... E' quanto afferma il rapporto The Price of Childhood, diffuso il 31 ottobre e commissionato da India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN), International Labor Rights Fund (Usa) e Eine Welt Netz NRW (OneWorld Net Germania).
Oct 25, 2005:
"Glückliche Ernte" für Bayer-Profite (Die Tageszeitung):
Der deutsche Chemiekonzern will eigentlich gegen Kinderarbeit vorgehen. Aktivisten unterstellen aber, dass Bayer weiter von Kinderarbeit profitiert: Indische Zulieferer des Konzerns würden tausende Kinder auf Baumwollfeldern rücksichtslos ausbeuten.
Sep 11, 2005:
Withering cotton kids (Mumbai Mirror):
On a hot September afternoon, the hybrid cottonseed farms in this village buzz with activity. However, from a distance, one can only make out a sea of heads bobbing amidst the green plants, not because the cottonseed plants are very tall but because the workers on the field are really young.
Sep 10, 2005:
Children of the farms (Mumbai Mirror):
Around 82,875 children are employed in the cottonseed farms of Mahbubnagar and Kurnool districts of Andhra Pradesh and the girl child constitute most of the work force.
Jan 25, 2005:
Food multinationals threaten fight against poverty (ActionAid):
Multinational food companies are growing too big and powerful and are threatening the fight against poverty in developing countries, says a new report by development agency ActionAid...
ActionAid’s evidence from Brazil shows that 50,000 dairy farmers have been forced out of business, after a series of takeovers by Nestlé and Parmalat. In India, an estimated 12,000 children worked last year on cotton seed farms supplying subsidiaries of Bayer, Monsanto, Syngenta and Unilever. Many children were also exposed to dangerous pesticides.
2004
up
2004:
100% Cotton - Made In India (Coalition against BAYER-dangers):
TV Documentation about poisonings with Bayer's pesticides in India.
Dec 1, 2004:
Lavoro minorile? Un vero affare (www.barcellonapg.it):
Bayer, Monsanto continuano a trarre profitti dal lavoro vincolato di minori nelle aziende produttrici di semi di cotone in India.
Nov 4, 2004:
MNCs accused of hiring child workers in India (The Economic Times):
A number of multinational corporations including Monsanto and Bayer have been accused of employing, and in some cases exploiting, children in India, a report has said.
The India Committee of the Netherlands has said the children are forced to work long hours on cotton-seed and other plantations that supply seeds to these companies, OneWorld.net, an online advocacy group based in Maine, said in a recent news report.
Nov 2004:
MNCs continue exploitation of children (Indiatogether.org):
A new report on finds agribusiness corporations from India and abroad are reneging on their promises to stop employing children in Andhra Pradesh.
Oct 13, 2004:
200.000 bambini indiani tra i semi di cotone (www.piccolopopolo.org):
Più di 82.000 bambini lavorano in condizioni orrende nella produzione di semi di cotone nello Stato indiano di Andhra Pradesh. Di questi, oltre 12.000 lavorano per le multinazionali Advanta (Olanda), Bayer (Germania), Emergent Genetics (USA, con una partecipazione di Unilever) e Monsanto (USA). Gli altri 70.000 lavorano per imprese indiane.
Oct 11, 2004:
OECD Complaint against Bayer because of Child Labour in India - Current investigation: Children die due to poisoning by pesticides at cottonseed farms in India (GermanWatch.org):
Subcontractors of Bayer (Leverkusen, Germany) employ about 1500 children under age 15 in the production of cottonseed in the Indian union state of Andhra Pradesh. Moreover, three other international companies - Advanta, Emergent Genetics and Monsanto - are responsible for 10,725 further cases of child labour.
This is the result of a corporate study by the three NGOs Germanwatch, Coalition against Bayer Dangers and Global March against Child Labour published today in Germany. These NGOs will submit a complaint to the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Labour today against Bayer for violating the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises.
Oct 8, 2004:
MNCs Reap Profits from Child Labor in India's Cottonseed Farms (OneWorld/CorpWatch.org):
A new report says an estimated 12,375 children continue to work under terrible conditions on cottonseed farms in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh which supply their produce to multinational corporations (MNCs) like Bayer and Monsanto, in defiance of last year's promises to eradicate child labor.
The detailed study titled Child Labor in Hybrid Cottonseed Production in Andhra Pradesh: Recent Developments, was released today by nongovernmental organization, the India Committee of the Netherlands (ICN), in co-operation with its partners in Europe and India, and the International Labor Rights Fund (USA).
Oct 7, 2004:
Cotton multinationals slow to address child exploitation (Ethical Corporation):
Multinational companies, including Bayer, Monsanto and Advanta, are dragging their heels in curbing child exploitation, despite public commitments made last year. According to a report released last week by the India Committee of the Netherlands, an estimated 12,375 children continue to work for less than a dollar a day in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. The report found the children to be working for multinational companies including Advanta Seeds, Bayer affiliate ProAgro, Emergent Genetics and Mahyco-Monsanto.
Oct 7, 2004:
RSC.- Monsanto, Bayer y Unilever, acusadas de permitir el trabajo infantil en sus filiales en India (Labolsa.com):
Cerca de 84.000 niños trabajan en "horrendas condiciones" en campos de cultivo de semilla de algodón en el Estado indio de Andhra Pradesh (sureste), al servicio de empresas locales o de filiales de multinacionales como Monsanto, Bayer y Unilever, según denuncia el informe publicado por organizaciones no gubernamentales que trabajan en el país asiático.
El informe Trabajo infantil en la producción de algodón híbrido en Andhra Pradesh ha sido elaborado por el Comité Indio de Países Bajos (ICN) y la ONG estadounidense Fondo Internacional por los Derechos Laborales. Este documento se completa con una segunda investigación relativa a la situación en los Estados de Gujarat y Karnataka, donde unos 117.000 menores de quince años se encuentran en la misma situación.
Oct 4, 2004:
US companies, Monsanto and Emergent Genetics, still profit from bonded child labor on cottonseed farms in India (Laborrights.org):
There are estimated 12,300 children working in horrendous conditions on cottonseed farms in India producing for multinational corporations (MNCs), out of which 4,400 were found on farms supplying to Monsanto's subsidiary, Mahyco-Monsanto, and nearly 5,000 children on farms supplying to Emergent Genetics - both of which are US based companies.
Oct 4, 2004:
Bayer, Monsanto still profit from bonded child labor on cottonseed farms in India (CBGNetwork.org):
An estimated 12,375 children are still working in horrendous conditions on cottonseed farms in the state of Andhra Pradesh (India) producing for the multinational corporations (MNC's) Advanta (Dutch), Bayer (German), Emergent Genetics (US, with co-investment from Dutch-British Unilever) and Monsanto (US). In addition more than 70.000 children are working for Indian seed companies under similar circumstances. Children are working long hours, do not go to school and are often bonded to the employers by loans. A number of children have died or became seriously ill due to exposure to pesticide. Promises by companies made last year to eradicate child labour in the sector have not translated into solid actions.
Oct 4, 2004:
Cotton farms continue to employ children: survey (The Hindu):
Three months after pesticide exposure snuffed out three young lives, a survey has shown that scores of child labourers continue to be employed in hybrid cottonseed farms in several villages of Kurnool district, thanks to the failed promises of the seed industry and the Government's apathy.
The survey, conducted by the Mamidipudi Venkatarangaiah Foundation (MVF) in August as a follow-up to a meeting with multinational seed companies (MNCs), revealed that 1,538 children continue to slog in 105 cottonseed farm lots spread over 390 acres in "horrendous conditions" and are exposed to harmful pesticides. August, in fact, is considered a non-peak period.
Aug 24, 2004:
Kinder sind gut für den Profit: Chemiekonzerne lassen weiterhin Kinder schuften (www.telepolis.de):
Über Kinderarbeit wird seit Jahren diskutiert, geändert hat sich wenig. Das Kinderhilfswerk Terre des hommes schätzt, dass in Asien und den Ländern des Pazifikraumes rund 127 Millionen Kinder arbeiten, die meisten in der Landwirtschaft. In Indien gehören internationale Konzerne zu den Nutznießern - so auch die Bayer-Tochter Pro Agro.
Jun 30, 2004:
Probe demanded into child labour in seed farm (The Hindu):
Expressing deep concern at 13-year-old Mallesh's death while spraying pesticide in a hybrid cottonseed farm in Dudekonda in Kurnool district (see: "Pesticide exposure claims another child labourer's life", The Hindu, 29-6-2004), the MV Foundation has called upon the Government to conduct an enquiry into the exploitation of children in the sector.
Jun 29, 2004:
Pesticide exposure claims another child labourer's life (The Hindu):
A 13-year-old Dalit child labourer, Mallesh, of Dudekonda in Pathikonda mandal in Kurnool district, lost his life while spraying pesticide in a cotton farm on Tuesday. The death comes at a time when the district is preparing for the Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh's visit.
May 12, 2004:
Syngenta opens up to independent scrutiny (The Financial Times):
Syngenta, the Anglo-Swiss agrochemicals group, had no idea that it might be using child labour in its supply chain until the news was splashed across the pages of the Swiss Sunday tabloid Blick nearly a year ago, writes Alison Maitland.
The report Seeds of Bondage, based on an Indian study, named it as one of a number of multinationals and Indian companies supplied by farms in Andhra Pradesh that employed young children, particularly girls, in cottonseed production.
May 9, 2004:
Seeds of Child Labor (IndiaNest.com):
Nearly 400,000 children, mostly girls between seven and 14 years of age, toil for 14-16 hours a day in cottonseed production across the country. In Andhra Pradesh (AP), which accounts for 60 per cent of the hybrid cottonseed production, girls (mostly from the lower caste) earn about Rs 20 (1US$=Rs 45) per day; sleep in cowsheds or makeshift camps; and are constantly exposed to poisonous pesticides like endosulfan.
May 9, 2004:
The Seeds of Child Labor (Boloji):
Nearly 400,000 children, mostly girls between seven and 14 years of age, toil for 14-16 hours a day in cottonseed production across the country. In Andhra Pradesh (AP), which accounts for 60 per cent of the hybrid cottonseed production, girls (mostly from the lower caste) earn about Rs 20 (1US$=Rs 45) per day; sleep in cowsheds or makeshift camps; and are constantly exposed to poisonous pesticides like endosulfan.
Apr 21, 2004:
Dutch Union to Meet HLL Brass (The Financial Express):
Dutch union FNV, to which Unilever’s unions are affiliated, will hold a meeting with vice-chairman of Hindustan Lever Ltd (HLL) MK Sharma on Wednesday to discuss, among other issues, the child labour controversy concerning Paras Extra Growth Seeds, in which HLL has a 26 per cent stake.
Mar 2004:
The Politics of Negotiations: MVF and Multinational Corporations on Child Labor in Cottonseed Fields (Yumi Lifer):
The employment of children in cottonseed fields of Andhra Pradesh in India has become a global issue in recent years. As a result of media campaigns from numerous international lobbyists and efforts to eliminate child labor from local NGO’s, multinational corporations have been increasingly cooperative in negotiating and taking responsibility towards finding a solution to the issue. One local NGO based in Secunderabad, Mamadipudi Venkatarangaya Foundation (MVF), has taken the lead in not only raising awareness in local communities against child labor in cotton fields, but has also recently taken steps to negotiate with multinational corporations to eliminate the use of child laborers in their fields. The involvement of the corporations in the negotiations is critical in the progress towards a solution. MNCs can provide initiatives to eliminate some key factors perpetuating the employment of children (such as insufficient wages and lack of implementation of existing laws). It is the responsibility of the MNCs to ensure that human rights are not violated in any step of the line in the production of their products. MNCs, though slow to respond and take responsibility in earlier stages, have become active in ongoing negotiations. It is the methods and strategies that the NGOs have utilized in the progress of negotiations and the consequential shifts of the responsibilities taken by the MNCs that are being discussed in this report.
Jan 3, 2004:
Bambini sfruttati per i semi di cotone (Unimondo/La Stampa Web):
Sia la ProAgro Ltd, una sussidiaria della multinazionale tedesca Bayer, che la multinazionale americana Monsanto, fanno uso su vasta scala di pericolose forme di lavoro minorile nella produzione di semi di cotone in India.... Oltre 11.000 bambini lavorano in condizioni analoghe per le multinazionali Syngenta (Svizzera), Advanta (Olanda-Gran Bretagna) e Unilever. Questi sono i risultati di una ricerca eseguita dallo studioso indiano Dott. Venkateswarlu per conto di Indian Committee of the Netherlands.
2003
up
Nov 2, 2003:
MNCs get together against child labour (The Pioneer):
In a major initiative, child rights activists and some of the world's biggest seed companies are joining forces to end child labour in southern India's cottonseed fields, reports OneWorld.net.
Oct 28, 2003:
Indian Activists Welcome MNC Pledge to Ban Child Labor (Yahoo! News):
In a major initiative, Indian child rights activists and some of the world's biggest seed companies are joining forces to end the practice of child labor in southern India's cottonseed fields.
Oct 2003:
No children on the farm (IndiaTogether.org):
Following allegations of wide-spread child labour in their business activities, foreign and Indian agri-business firms pledge to reform themselves. An update from the India Committee of the Netherlands.
Sep 24, 2003:
Seed group pledges to end child labour in India by March 2004: Monsanto (Business and Corporate Ethics):
The six month target set by the Child Labour Eradication Group (CLEG), to stop children working in the Indian hybrid cotton seed production process is achievable, a Monsanto India spokeswoman said on Wednesday.
Sep 23, 2003:
Monsanto, Syngenta, ProAgro agree measures to tackle child labour in India (Business and Corporate Ethics):
Global seed producers Syngenta AG of Switzerland, Monsanto Co , India's ProAgro and US firm Advanta Corp have set up a joint taskforce with local NGOs to tackle child labour in Indian hybrid cotton seed production, the head of Syngenta Seeds India said.
Aug 28, 2003:
Kinderarbeit im indischen Baumwoll-Anbau: Bayer, Monsanto und Unilever in der Kritik (LabourNet Germany):
"Eine neue Studie aus Indien enthüllt, dass große Saatgut-Konzerne in Indien von Kinderarbeit profitieren. Auf der Anklagebank sitzen Konzerne wie Monsanto, Unilever, Bayer und Syngenta. Bis zu 400.000 Kinder arbeiten in Zuliefer-Betrieben, die für die Multis Baumwoll-Saatgut produzieren. Die Kinder brechen für die Arbeit ihre Schulausbildung ab.
Jul 31, 2003:
Interview: Syngenta vows to eradicate child labour in Indian seed operations (Human Rights):
Swiss seed manufacturer Syngenta AG plans to lead the industry by totally eradicating child labour from its Indian seed production process and is pressurising other companies to do the same, a company spokesman said Thursday.
Jul 31, 2003:
Bayer: Absichten besser als Wirklichkeit (Die Tageszeitung):
Eine Studie indischer Wissenschaftler wirft dem Saatguthersteller vor, für Kinderarbeit verantwortlich zu sein.
Jul 31, 2003:
Kinderarbeit für Wucherzinsen (Die Tageszeitung):
Wie das 12-jährige Mädchen Narsamma arbeiten in Indien nach Schätzungen 450.000 Kinder in Schuldknechtschaft, um für transnationale Konzerne Baumwollsaat herzustellen. Von fünf Global Playern stellen sich nur zwei ihrer Verantwortung.
Jun 17, 2003:
Syngenta questioned on "no child labour" label (AFX Global Ethics Monitor):
Swiss seed producer Syngenta has been asked to explain a "no child labour" label printed on seed sacks which contain cotton seeds farmed in Andhra Pradesh, India, where it has acknowledged that child labour by its sub-contractors does exist.
Jun 17, 2003:
Syngenta to urge Monsanto, Unilever, others to set up child labour monitor (AFX Global Ethics Monitor):
Swiss seed producer Syngenta will ask representatives from Monsanto, Unilever, Proagro and Advanta to meet in Andhra Pradesh, India with the aim of setting up an independent monitoring committee on child labour, according to a local NGO.
Jun 11, 2003:
En Inde, Monsanto et Unilever emploient de la main-d'oeuvre infantile (Transnationale.org):
Pour la production de semences de coton en Inde, Hindustan Lever Ltd (une filiale indienne du conglomérat anglo-hollandais Unilever) ainsi que la multinationale américaine Monsanto ont recours sur une grande échelle et dans des conditions dangereuses à une main d'oeuvre d'enfants. On évalue à 25.000, en majorité des filles, le nombre d'enfants qui travaillent entre 10h et 13h par jour pour Hindustan Lever.
Jun 6, 2003:
Hind Lever accused of using child labour: Company says not responsible for third-party sourcing (Business Standard):
Leading international non-governmental organisations (NGOs) such as Amnesty International, India Committee of the Netherlands, the FNV trade union and Novib have brought to Unilever's attention that the hybrid cotton seeds production business in India, handled by its local arm, Hindustan Lever, allegedly uses child labour in some farms.
May 17, 2003:
Girls fettered: bonded labour on AP farms (Deccan Herald)
A new trend of employing young girls as "bonded labourers" has come into practice on hybrid cottonseed farms in south India in recent years, a recent survey reveals.
....
The study was commissioned by the India Committee of Netherlands. However, the MNCs do not own responsibility for employment of female child labour. One MNC said it did not employ child labour directly and this practice was being perpetuated by local farmers.
May 16, 2003:
Girls in India Labor to Fill MNC Coffers, Says Report (OneWorld South Asia)
Around 200 Multi-National Corporations (MNCs) engaged in the production and marketing of hybrid cottonseeds, buy the produce from Indian farmers who employ thousands of small girls as forced labour in the south Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, says a recent report.
Nine out of ten workers in cottonseed fields are children, mostly girls, says the report Child labor and Trans-National Seed Companies in Hybrid Cottonseed Production in Andhra Pradesh -- published by the India Committee of the Netherlands, a campaigning organization supporting the poor in India. The children earn less than half a dollar a day.
May 16, 2003:
Wykorzystywane dzieci z Indiach (Pomagamy)
Dwie Indyjskie korporacje Hindustan Lever Ltd., która współpracuje z brytyjsko-holenderską firma Unilever oraz Mahyco pracująca dla Amerykańskiej firmy Monsanto, na dużą skalę wykorzystują niebezpieczną pracę dzieci na polach bawełny.
W raporcie sporzadzonym przez dr D. Venkateswarlu z Indian Committee of the Netherlands (ICN) wynika, że okłoo 25.000 dzieci indyjskich pracuje na polach bawełny dla Hindustan Lever Ltd. a 17.000 dzieci dla Mahyco.
May 14, 2003:
Monsanto, Unilever use child labour in India (IndiaResource.org)
Both Hindustan Lever Ltd., an Indian subsidiary of British-Dutch multinational company Unilever, as well as the American multinational Monsanto are making use of hazardous forms of child labour in cotton seed production in India on a large scale. An estimated number of 25,000 children, mostly girls, work an average of ten to thirteen hours a day for Hindustan Lever, while around 17,000 children work for Monsanto and their Indian subsidiary Mahyco.
May 9, 2003:
Unilever and child labour (Expatica.com)
A new report has criticised consumer goods giant Unilever for links to child labour in India. But what is so wrong with giving young people in poor countries the chance to earn a living?
Anglo-Dutch company Unilever prides itself on "meeting the everyday needs of people everywhere" by producing a myriad of consumer goods from washing powders to shampoos and toothpaste. It is number one in the world for ice cream, margarines and tea drinks.
May 8, 2003:
Unilever is accused of abetting child labour (South China Morning Post)
The company seeks to clarify claims its Indian suppliers hire girls as young as six. Multinational firm Unilever has pursued policies that encourage child labour, according to a report published by campaigners for underage workers in India's huge cotton seed industry. The Anglo-Dutch giant said it was opposed to child labour and would be happy to meet the voluntary group responsible for the report, the India Committee of the Netherlands, to discuss its findings.
May 7, 2003:
Unilever, Monsanto, others linked to child labour in India's cotton industry (Global Ethics Monitor)
Multinational companies, including Unilever PLC, Monsanto Co, Syngenta AG, Advanta Corp and Bayer AG have been indirectly linked with the widespread use of child labour in India through a network of subsidiaries which produce and market hybrid cotton seeds, according to a report released Tuesday.
The report, published by independent NGO the India Committee of the Netherlands, said these companies buy hybrid cotton seeds from farmers who pay children a pittance to work long hours in hazardous conditions.
May 7, 2003:
Unilever in Child Labor Controversy (RetailWire)
A report published by the India Committee of the Netherlands claims Unilever buys hybrid cotton seeds from farmers who are using children as young as six years old as their labor force.
May 6, 2003:
Unilever denies child labour link (BBCNews.com)
Unilever, the Anglo-Dutch consumer goods giant, has denied that its policies encourage child labour in India.
May 6, 2003:
Unilever to discuss child labour (BBC World Service)
Unilever, the Anglo-Dutch consumer goods giant, has denied that its policies encourage child labour in India.
May 5, 2003:
Unilever to work on child labor practice (Newsday.com)
The Anglo-Dutch food maker Unilever agreed Monday to meet with labor watchdog organizations over allegations that the multibillion dollar company profits from the employment of tens of thousands of children, some as young as 6, working on farms in India for just pennies a day.
May 5, 2003:
Unilever, Watchdog Groups To Discuss Indian Child Labor (Morningstar.com)
The Anglo-Dutch food maker Unilever Plc agreed Monday to meet with labor watchdog organizations over allegations that the multibillion dollar company profits from the employment of tens of thousands of children, some as young as 6, working on farms in India for just pennies a day.
May 2003:
Childhood, cropped (IndiaTogether.org)
Both Hindustan Lever Ltd., the Indian subsidiary of British-Dutch multinational company Unilever, as well as the American multinational Monsanto are making use of hazardous forms of child labour in cotton seed production in India on a large scale, the India Committee of the Netherlands reports. An estimated 25,000 children, mostly girls, work an average of ten to thirteen hours a day for Hindustan Lever, while around 17,000 children work for Monsanto and its Indian subsidiary Mahyco. These children get no education, earn less than Rs.20 a day and are exposed to poisonous pesticides like Endosulphan during their work. More than 11,000 children work under similar conditions for the multinationals Syngenta (Swiss), Advanta (Dutch-British) and Proagro (owned by Bayer of Germany).
Apr 2003:
Child Labour and Trans-National Seed Companies in Hybrid Cotton Seed Production in Andhra Pradesh (ICN):
A new system of employing female children as 'bonded labourers' has come into practice on hybrid cottonseed farms in south India in recent years. Local seed farmers, who cultivate hybrid cottonseeds for national and Multinational Seed Companies, secure the labour of girls by offering loans to their parents in advance of cultivation, compelling the girls to work at the terms set by the employer for the entire season, and, in practice, for several years. These girls work long days, are paid very little, are deprived of an education and are exposed for long periods to dangerous agricultural chemicals.
2001
up
2001:
Seeds of Bondage: Female child bonded labour in hybrid cottonseed production in Andhra Pradesh (BCF/Plan International):
This study by Davuluri Venkateswarlu gives a vivid account of how children are virtually trapped in a never ending cycle of debt and exploitation and are forced to work on long-term contract basis with low wages. During the summer season when availability of work becomes very scarce in the region, seed producers approach families and extend loans to them on the promise that they send their young daughters to work in the cotton fields during the next season. Parents are thus forced to send their daughters for work in the cotton fields as per the agreement settled in the earlier season.